What size torque wrench do I need for gunsmithing?

As a gunsmith, precision and accuracy are key in all aspects of your work, from assembly to repairs. One tool that can help ensure you achieve these goals is a torque wrench. But with so many sizes, how do you determine which is suitable for your needs?

In this article, we’ll explore the importance of using the correct size torque wrench in gunsmithing and provide a step-by-step guide to finding the perfect one for your specific tasks.

what size torque wrench do i need for gunsmithing

Do you really need a torque wrench for gunsmithing?

Yes, a torque wrench is essential for gunsmithing. A torque wrench allows you to tighten firearms screws and bolts to the precise level specified by the manufacturer, reducing the risk of damage and promoting proper function.

Importance of using the correct size torque wrench for gunsmithing

Ensures proper assembly

Using the correct size torque wrench ensures that screws and bolts are tightened to the manufacturer’s specifications, preventing damage to the firearm and ensuring it is appropriately assembled.

Maintains accuracy

By using the proper size torque wrench, firearms can be adjusted to maintain their accuracy and perform optimally.

Prevents damage

Over-tightening or under-tightening screws and bolts can result in stripped threads, damaged parts, or even a failure to fire.

Ensures safety

A poorly assembled firearm can be dangerous, and using the incorrect size torque wrench can negatively impact accuracy and safety.

Compliance with regulations

Proper torque specifications also are required by regulations, such as those set by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives.

Improves longevity

By using the correct size torque wrench, firearms can be maintained properly, extending their lifespan and preserving their value.


Using the correct size torque wrench is a sign of professionalism and attention to detail, which is essential in the gunsmithing industry.

How the size of the torque wrench affects the gun assembly?

The size of the torque wrench affects the gun assembly in several ways:

Torque application: The size of the torque wrench determines the amount of torque it can apply. Using a torque wrench that is too large or too small can result in under or over-tightening, leading to improper assembly.

Precision: A torque wrench with the correct size provides more precision in the amount of torque applied. This is important in gun assembly, where minor variations can have significant impacts on accuracy and safety.

Accessibility: Different size torque wrenches are designed for different applications, and the correct size can ensure proper accessibility to tight spaces and hard-to-reach areas.

Comfort: A correctly sized torque wrench can also be more comfortable to use, reducing the risk of injury and allowing for greater precision and accuracy in assembly.

Effects of using the wrong size torque wrench

  • Over or under-tightening can cause damage to the screws, bolts, or other parts of the firearm.
  • Over-tightening can strip the threads on screws and bolts, making it difficult or impossible to remove them.
  • Under-tightening can result in loose parts that can move around while firing, affecting accuracy and potentially causing a malfunction.
  • An improperly assembled firearm can decrease accuracy and make it difficult to hit the target.
  • In some cases, an improperly assembled firearm can fail to fire, which can be extremely dangerous.
  • A poorly assembled firearm can be dangerous to the user and others. Using the incorrect size torque wrench can increase the risk of accidents and injury.
  • Using the incorrect size torque wrench may void the manufacturer’s warranty, leaving you without protection in case of a malfunction or defect.
  • Repairs or adjustments due to incorrect assembly can be time-consuming and require additional tools or expertise.

See Also: Is a torque wrench necessary for scope mounting?

What size torque wrench do I need for gunsmithing?

The size of the torque wrench for gunsmithing depends on several crucial things, such as the type of firearm, the specific tasks to be performed, the size of the screws or bolts, the required level of precision, and so on. It’s also recommended to consult the manufacturer’s specifications or use a torque chart to determine the appropriate size torque wrench for your needs.

How to determine the right size torque wrench for your needs?

Determining the right size torque wrench for your needs involves considering the requirements of the specific firearms you will be working on and the tasks you will be performing. There are two easy and effective ways to determine the size-

Using the manufacturer’s specifications

The manufacturer’s specifications are valuable in determining the right size torque wrench for your needs. The specifications will include the size of screws or bolts used, the precision required, and the specific torque values required.

Using a torque chart

Another way to determine the right size torque wrench for your needs is to use a torque chart. These charts provide a range of torque values for various sizes of screws and bolts, allowing you to match the requirements of your firearms with the capabilities of different torque wrenches.

How to choose the right size torque wrench for gunsmithing?

Type of firearm

The type of firearm you will be working on can influence the choice of torque wrench. Consider the firearm’s size, weight, and specific requirements when making your decision.

Tasks performed

The specific tasks you will perform can also impact the choice of torque wrench. If you are performing various tasks, consider a wrench with a broad torque range.

Size of screws or bolts

The size of the screws or bolts you will be working with can also play a role in choosing a torque wrench. Consider the size and weight of the fasteners and choose a wrench that is appropriately sized and capable of applying the necessary torque.

Level of precision required for firearm

The level of precision required is also an essential factor to consider. If you need a high level of accuracy, look for a wrench with a high level of precision, typically expressed as a percentage of the full scale. Keep in mind that higher precision often comes with a higher cost.

Unit of measurement

Torque wrenches can measure in several units, including Newton meters, inch-pounds, and foot-pounds. Choose a wrench with a measurement unit that matches your firearms specifications.


There are several styles of torque wrenches to choose from, including beam, click, and digital. Consider your personal preferences and the specific requirements of your work when choosing a style.


As with any tool, a torque wrench will experience wear and tear over time. Look for a wrench made from high-quality materials and a durable design to ensure it lasts for years to come.


Finally, consider the cost of the wrench. While it’s essential to choose a wrench that fits your budget, remember that quality is key in ensuring the accuracy and safety of your firearms.


Finally, choosing the right size torque wrench for gunsmithing is essential for ensuring that firearms are assembled correctly and safely. To determine the correct wrench for your needs, consider the above factors. Utilizing the manufacturer’s specifications and torque charts can also help you make an informed decision.

With the right torque wrench in hand, you can be confident in correctly assembling and maintaining firearms, providing peace of mind and a safer shooting experience.

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