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Praise for the Monkey Wrench!

Discussion in 'The Tool Shed' started by Joel_BC, Jan 5, 2016.

  1. Jan 5, 2016
    Joel_BC

    Joel_BC Super Self-Sufficient

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    I feel like extolling the virtues of a monkey wrench. I tend to believe that the best ones were made before 1950. There was a wide variety of them made between the mid 19th century and mid 20th. Some have lovely hardwood handles. Monkey wrenches can often still be found in second-hand stores… sure, sometimes maybe needing a good cleaning or de-rusting. Apart from exquisite specimens being sold at “collector’s prices,” you can usually acquire one for $10 or less.

    They tend to be heavy-duty hand tools, and all the good ones have comfortable handles. They get a good solid grip on bolt heads (hex or square), or nuts. They adjust easily. Any of the common sizeable wrenches offer good leverage. In use, they feel very solid.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monkey_wrench

    As one used-tool sales guy pointed out to me, the classic monkey wrench has a flat back surface that in a pinch can be used as a hammer - such as when you don’t want to switch tools, but feel the need to bang something.

    I bought mine because I’d seen a blacksmith using one. In terms of my own usage, the usual purpose of the wrench is to bend or twist flat-bar or square-rod steel that I’ve heated to yellow hot with a torch. With a careful pre-adjustment of the wrench, it works great for that.

    Now here’s another use: Lets say you’ve got the usual homestead or garage shop, with a substantial vise of the mechanic’s or metal-worker’s sort fastened to your bench. But you also need a different vise for the occasional finer work with smaller parts. You need a small-jawed vise? Voilà!
    Monkey Wrench 02.JPG
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2016
    sumi likes this.
  2. Jan 6, 2016
    Britesea

    Britesea Super Self-Sufficient

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    It was originally named for the fellow that invented it- Moncke; but Moncke's Wrench eventually turned into Monkey Wrench
     

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