I'm not a fan of square bits. Torx works better, and to me, looks
better. I don't mind "quality" Phillips either, and they look the best
in most applications. Torx is the way to go though, but like you, it's
a slow conversion.
One big disadvantage of both square and torx, is for a very long time,
Phillips (and yuck slotted) have been used by everyone in the US, so if
you are half way with square and torx, you always need an assortment of
drivers to repair stuff, and both square and torx are picky with size of
driver, unlike Phillips where you often can get away with the wrong size
driver, you certainly can't with square bits.
My Swiss army knife that is always with me has a Phillips bit that I
have used to tighten up everything from doors, chairs, even pool tables.
That one bit works fine on a large variety of different size Phillips
Add Life to your Days not Days to your Life.
For looks, you can't beat straight slotted brass screws.
That's the way to go if you want the classical craftsman
The huge advantage of Torx is the bits are self-centering.
In a production enviroment, where some low-skill worker
with an air driver is trying to drive hundreds per day as
fast as possible, that's a big thing. That's why you see
Torx everywhere, and not Robertson or Allen head screws.
I ran into something different on a little trailer I bought used. The
screws looked like Torx but none of my bits would fit. I wanted to
replace a few that were starting to rust. On very close inspection
they were 8 point. I emailed the manufacturer and they confirmed they
were "double square" screws. They suggested using a #2 square drive
bit. It fit perfectly.
Now THAT might keep me in the square drive business.
One of pet peeves with square drives is the polarized positioning (same
with phillips and most worst with slotted).
This double square concept is genius! You probably didn't drive enough
of them to offer an opinion, but I wonder how they do in the long run
with stripping out, etc.
"Playing is not something I do at night, it's my function in life"
You'd think that, except in very tiny sizes, they'd do as well
as Torx. There is a 12-pointed variety, called a spline-drive,
that's been around for a long time (started as an alternative
to allen socket, I think), and those don't seem to have problems.
Incidently, there's also a double-Torx, from what I've been told,
which, of course, is not compatible with spline-drive, even tho
they both have 12 points.
(there's also a 5-point Torx, for use on fire hydrants...)
I think it is probably 10 of thousands of screws. I can easily drive
hundreds and I am not any thing near a production environment.
FWIW Ford wanted a better screw for production, vs. the slot head screw.
Robertson would have been adopted had Robertson agreed to Fords terms
about patent and or use rights of the screw. As a result the Philips
head was eventually developed/adopted.
And FWIW I do see more Torx, I saw its introduction to GM in 1975 but by
far I still see the Philips and square drive as the dominant variety.
I've seen about a dozen variations on the "history of the
phillips screw", but what I beleive to be the true one is
that Phillips invented it for assembling aluminum aircraft
hulls, because it was too easy to strip out the hole in the
soft aluminum sheets. By the time he'd figured out the
design and manufacturing, aircraft were switching to rivitted
assembly, but someone at GM saw the screw and thought it
would work well in auto assembly, since the same problem of
stripped screwholes existed with sheet steel auto bodies.
To a degree that's intentional. At my prior employer, we
used phillips for screws the customer was expected to want
to undo, and Torx for ones internally he wasn't susposed
to mess with. So we'd have 4 or 8 externally visible
phillips heads, and a couple of dozen Torx inside.
The silver retainer around the sealed beams/headlights, part of the
headlight capsule, used Torx starting in 1975 with GM. It was a welcome
change as the Phillips head screws were often rusted and did not want to
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