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SERVICE, SUPPORT, AND SUCCESS

Customer Experience Means Everything

Throughout our company’s history we have learned many lessons about how to be successful at supporting and servicing our customers.  Each area of Team Torque has been formed around the core concept of maintaining these values.

On the front lines of our company are our Technicians.  These torque experts spend their days in the Team Torque Labs applying their technical knowledge and abilities to ensure each torque tool we service performs correctly and accurately.  Calibration and repair are done with confidence to ensure end users can produce their products or perform their services with that same high level of confidence thereafter.  The technical staff also can provide Onsite options for unique circumstances and special projects.

Backing up our technical crews are teams of support staff. While the Technicians are servicing torque tools, many others at Team Torque are fulfilling additional needs to assure high level service is given to our customers and partners at all times.

Our Customer Service department verifies that we provide good communication with our customers, and ensures we receive & send tools in a professional and timely manner.

Quality is an integral part of our company’s philosophy and working environment.  The Quality department provides ongoing audits and adds confidence to our A2LA ISO 17025 accreditation conformance.

Other supporting staff behind the scenes including our Marketing and Sales force to help keep Team Torque moving forward; an Office department that keeps us on track; and an Information Technologies department that maintains our website and internal computing needs.

All together, Team Torque aims to offer the best customer experience in the torque tool service industry.  We are always happy to hear what you think – contact us through our website at www.teamtorque.com.

We hope you find Great Service, Support, and Success in all your dealings

WHERE TORQUE COUNTS

Torque is everywhere.  Any time two components come together using a method involving a twisting force…torque is there.  This holds true with everything from the lid on your soda pop bottle to the bolts holding a space station together.

In the first example involving a plastic bottle of soda pop, the results of too little torque might result in your beverage leaking if it’s tipped or shaken.  Apply too much torque, and you could have trouble removing the lid when it is time to quench your thirst.  While these are not the most critical scenarios in the torque world, they do represent a recognizable version of how torque affects us in our daily lives.

A more significant illustration of torque’s importance is seen in assembling such massive undertakings as the International Space Station.  Torque measuring instruments, such as torque wrenches and torque multipliers, are used to apply the right amount of torque to a joint.  Here again…too loose or too tight could lead to problems. In the case of warding off the vacuum of space, proper torque is the difference between life and death.

Of course there are an immeasurable number of other torque applications between those two examples ranging in nature from insignificant to highly critical. In an upcoming article we will talk about how torque affects your safety on the road. In the meantime, as we start ramping down 2007 we hope you have a safe and prosperousend to this year.

As always when dealing with measuring instruments, it is highly important to keep your torque tools “reading right.”  Have your torque tools calibrated on a regular basis…contact Team Torque for assistance in working out your best tool maintenance program or send in your torque tools as previously scheduled.

TORQUE IN ASSEMBLY 

Where Torque is Used

Here at Team Torque we are immersed in torque – everything we do revolves around the torque industry.  Since we “talk torque” constantly it can become easy to assume others are in the know about how torque affects our lives.  However we do recognize many of our partners, customers and friends do not realize the extent of torque’s impact on our society – part of our Newsletter’s mission is to help folks understand torque better.

One major area in which torque is very relevant is within the Assembly industry.  This includes companies that manufacture everything from tiny computer components to automobiles & their accessories to airlines & spacecrafts.

Each time two components are joined together using a bolt or screw, torque is involved.  The application of the twisting force (torque) to the bolt results in a clamping force that holds those two components together.

In order to ensure parts remain together, engineers determine how much clamping force is necessary to keep the components from working loose.  They also have to ensure that not too much force is applied, or damage could result in the components or to surrounding fixtures.  Once that information is compiled, a torque range is determined for the joint.

The most common measure and application for that clamping process in Assembly is done through torque tools, including torque wrenches, power torque tools, and DC electric torque tools.  These tools measure the amount of torque applied to each joint and help determine that the applicable torque range is maintained.

Team Torque provides the calibration & repair services that keep those tools functioning properly – not only for our Assembly customers but also for those in a variety of additional industries including Automotive Wheel Installation, Engine Repair, Medical & Computer Component Service and others.

So, as you begin 2008 we hope to help further your understanding of torque in our world.  May you have a prosperous and happy New Year!

MOM & POP TORQUE

Where Torque is Used

From the assembly of vehicles and industrial equipment to regular maintenance of oil field machinery and thousands of other applications, torque tools are used to assure fittings are tightened properly.

Last month we discussed some of the torque applications in the Assembly industry (for reference: recent editions of our newsletter are available at www.teamtorque.com).  Another segment of our world that involves torque includes Mom & Pop Shops.

These torque tool users consist of mechanics and maintenance specialists that work out of their garages, or maybe have a shop in a commercial or industrial neighborhood.  Generally there will be at least a couple of torque wrenches mixed in with the rest of the instruments found in the toolbox at a Mom & Pop Shop.

Upstanding mechanical gurus follow strict regiments for tool maintenance, ranging from keeping all their tools clean and orderly to regular maintenance as prescribed by tool manufacturers.  Of course, torque tools are treated with special care since they are precision measuring instruments.

“In the Know” customers might even check with their mechanic to ensure torque wrenches used on their vehicles have been calibrated…or even simply verify that a torque wrench is used as needed and prescribed by the auto maker.

The Mom & Pop Shop is an American Institute, and continues today as an integral part of the Maintenance Industry.  Thanks to ongoing education and growing experience within these varied special fields, consumers can have confidence that their torque needs should be met when dealing with these handy folks.

Team Torque provides calibration and repair services for all types of torque tools, and for all types of torque tool customers.  We regularly handle tools for Moms & Pops, and our team looks forward to keeping these folks running for decades to come.

WHEEL RETENTION

Where Torque is Used

Torque tools are used in a variety of applications – including the general areas of Assembly / Manufacturing and Mechanic’s Shops, as we reviewed in recent Team Torque Newsletters.  This time around we will cover a more specific area: Torque in the world of automotive wheel retention.

There are thousands of tire shops around the United States and the World.  These businesses focus on installing or servicing tires, and fall into three separate categories regarding torque: Good, Bad and Ugly.

The Good:
These tire shops are knowledgeable about their industry and are aware that torque plays a major roll in keeping their customers safe and secure.  They include the use of properly maintained torque tools as part of their wheel installations, and keep their installation specialists trained on the use and handling of these tools.

The Bad:
These are companies that offer tire installations and are aware of torque specifications and the requirements for applying torque during installation…but do not follow those obligations.  These tire shops either do not include torque tools in their procedures, or might be using poorly maintained or incorrect tools for the job.

The Ugly:
Unfortunately, there are businesses that offer tire installation as a primary service, or just as part of other services, that are unaware of the importance of torque in the wheel & tire industry.  These companies are ill informed about how significantly they affect the safety of their customers by not properly applying torque during wheel installation.  They have no safety program, and likely do not even use torque tools (much less keep them properly maintained).

Team Torque has helped a number of tire shops set up Good programs for helping ensure their customers are kept safe following tire service or installation.  Part of ongoing support includes regular maintenance and calibration for torque tools, and those Good companies keep up to date on those needs as well.

Remember that the safety of you, your family, and those around you are at stake, so be a Good consumer – make sure your tire service provider is using a calibrated torque wrench during tire installations.

MAINTAINING YOUR TOOLS

Torque instruments can be expensive to purchase but proper maintenance will help to extend the life of your equipment and benefit your bottom line.  Developing a maintenance plan can be time consuming but will improve the life-span and functionality of your tools.

Storage is an important factor in maintaining your torque instruments.  Tools should be stored in their original cases. Avoid storage locations that are subject to high or low temperatures, as well as high humidity.

All torque instruments should be cleaned and calibrated on a regular cycle.  Most instruments have a factory recommended calibration interval.  Extensive usage or mishandling may require that your tool be recalibrated on a shorter interval.  When it comes time to recalibrate your torque instruments, contact us at 888-682-8675 to get your instruments serviced and returned to you!

For anything torque, think Team Torque.

TIMING IS EVERYTHING

Timing of tool service is one key factor in which Team Torque helps customers create successful torque maintenance programs.

The best case scenario in torque tool programs is to have a replacement tool for use while the original tool is out for service.  However, this is not the most common situation for most companies.

First, it is important to determine when a tool is due for service.  If the tool is physically damaged or otherwise not working properly, it should be removed from use and repaired immediately.

Calibration is a regular part of tool maintenance, as well – this should be an ongoing, scheduled event.  See your owner’s manual or contact Team Torque for help in establishing proper torque tool calibration cycle intervals.

Keep in mind that batching tools together for service does have advantages, including shipping cost-savings and convenience in calibration cycle tracking.

The final planning step for deciding when to send tools for service is overall company needs.  Look for slow periods or other opportunities when tools may not be greatly missed.

QUALITY SERVICE

Doing It Right is Good…Doing It Right with Good Service is Better

Team Torque is proud of our both our Quality System and our Quality Service.  We have dedicated a lot of resources to ensuring high quality, including steps ranging from creating an A2LA ISO 17025 Accredited Quality Management System to ongoing Quality Audits and Improvements.

However, a good Quality System is not worth much to our customers without the Customer Service to back it up.

Our founder, Mr. Gary Anderson, knew that communication is one of the fundamental factors in creating a good service organization. That dedication continues today through the many vehicles we use to keep open those important lines of communication.

First, tools calibrated in our Labs are given a fully traceable certificate of calibration.  The information contained in those documents ensures the tool owner has all the data needed to determine the status of their tool.  Certificates include both as-found initial findings and final readings, as well as other technical reference information needed for tool users and for quality auditors that may need to review such material.

Another area of significance for our Customer Service priorities is availability.  Our team of torque experts is on hand to provide technical and informational help Monday through Friday, 8AM – 6 PM Central Time.  Talk to us by calling 888-682-8675…we will provide immediate assistance or direction, or will find the answers you need and return your call ASAP.

A further area we focus on for top-notch communication is our website: www.teamtorque.com.  Information there includes Lab pricing, shipping forms, email addresses, technical resources, and a plethora of other details about our company and services.

Quality support is the best service we can provide to our customers.  Open lines of communication help keep us in tune to the status of the industry and specifically the needs our customers.  Call or visit our website any time – we are here to help improve Torque Quality the best we can!

TESTING TORQUE TESTING

Who checks the checkers?

Torque tool users have two options to ensure their tools are kept “in check” – verify them internally (in-house) or have someone else do it for them.

Many companies are learning that checking wrenches them-selves may be a good option.  The cost of basic torque testers has been coming down recently, allowing many new opportunities for ongoing internal torque tool verification and even calibration.

Testers are also known as checkers, verifiers, transducer/display units, and other similar titles.  Whatever the name, it is essential that this equipment be kept “in check” as well – test equipment must be included in tool management programs.

Confidence in any test equipment can only be obtained through calibration to properly traceable standards.  Calibration Labs, along with all other tester-owners, must have their equipment certified on a regular basis to ensure the readings given by those testers are accurate.

Team Torque offers calibration for torque testers, including Free A2LA / NIST Traceable Certificates.  We have helped many companies set up calibration programs for everything ranging from standard torque wrench programs for individual mechanics to large corporations starting a new tool program including many thousands of torque tools and testers.

Cost is a consideration for setting up internal or external calibration programs.  Review your current program and let us know if we can help improve your system, or contact us for an independent review of your current program.  Either way, the Torque Experts at Team Torque are here to serve your needs!

By the way…for those folks not testing their own torque tools – you should set up regular cycles for having their tools calibrated by an outside vendor, such as Team Torque.  Visit us at www.teamtorque.com for more information about the services we offer for all types of torque tools.

TORQUE MEASUREMENT

How much torque should a torque wrench torque?

Torque tools are used for millions of applications every day, and each use is only the central part of a much larger process.

Torque tools are instruments that apply and measure torque – torque wrenches, torque screwdrivers, torque gauges, torque pulse tools, DC electric tools, torque transducers, digital torque wrenches, and many other sub-categories make up the realm of “torque tools.”

These instruments are used to affect or verify how much torque is applied to a joint.  Here again, there are many varieties of joints, ranging from industrial assembly to home garage projects to medical device maintenance.

The end result of applying torque to a joint is considered to be the joint’s “clamping force.”  This is the outcome of twisting a fastener onto a bolt.  The current most efficient measurement of clamping force is the use of a torque tool during the assembly of a joint.

Working backwards from that end-point, we can discuss the torque tool itself.  The tool must be used properly in order to achieve the proper torque application to the joint. Maintenance of the tool is also integral to the success of the torque tool’s function and longevity.  Review the tool manufacturer’s documentation or contact Team Torque for more tool use & maintenance information.

At the beginning of this overall process is the determination of the torque specification for a joint.  Whether specified or not, every joint has an optimum torque spec – it is up to engineers and other product developers to state the “right” torque setting for each joint.

With the utilization of that knowledge, every torque application should be consistent and accurate.  Additional variables may play in to the completion of each joint – successful tool management and trained tool users help ensure those variables are kept to a minimum.  Contact Team Torque for information on these torque subjects, and watch for future editions of our newsletter for more torque tips.

TORQUE QUALITY

What is Torque? What is Quality? What is Torque Quality?

The grand-daddy of dictionaries, Webster, defines torque as “a turning or twisting force,” among many other wordier and more specific definitions. Quality is defined in the same manner as “degree of excellence”.

Twisting & turning happen in all aspects of life – torque is all around us.  The act of opening a jug of milk is one of thousands of torque applications we may experience every day.

To achieve any level excellence in the application of such a turning or twisting force, measurement is the primary factor.

Torque is measured using instruments of varied types and sizes.  Ranging from a small torque gage measuring inch-ounces up to massive torque wrenches measuring in the thousands of foot-pounds (and beyond), these tools are used to apply and measure the turning and twisting forces of torque.

This brings us to the beginning stages of Torque Quality, which includes the proper use and maintenance of torque tools.  In order to achieve true & precise measurements of torque, the instruments used for torque application must be accurate.

Accuracy is achieved through the planned & ongoing process of calibrating torque instruments to a known standard.  This is the specialty of independent labs like Team Torque. Our A2LA Accreditation means that not only do we calibrate torque tools, but we do it at the highest level of quality possible for calibration labs.

Torque Quality begins with the measurement of a turning or twisting force, and continues with the use of instruments properly maintained to achieve a high degree excellence and confidence in the application of such force.

Next, remember to apply the right amount torque to that jug of milk you opened – we will discuss the ramifications of too much & too little torque in another edition of our newsletter. Stay tuned!