On Wednesday, August 12, 2015 at 1:19:56 PM UTC-4, krw wrote:
It has nothing to do with expense. It has to do with what they know and wha
t they deal with. The vast majority of the families involved in the Derby a
ren't involved in the types of activities where Torx vs. Robertson vs. Phil
lips becomes a issue of which type of screws to use. By rule, they must use
the supplied Phillips head screws in the construction of the Derby cars. W
hile some of us are also serious DIYers (building our own decks, etc.) and/
or contractors, where the choice of screw matters, most families still live
in the Phillips head world. When we say "Hey, Bob! Can you grab you screw
gun and take that starting ramp apart?" it had better be put together with
Phillips head or odds are Bob isn't going to be able to help.
ple, setting up tracks for Soap Box Derby races. We have to construct start
ing ramps and safety rails. We have to secure 10 x 20 canopies to the black
top, etc. For years I have wanted to switch to Torx or Star or Robertson, a
nything but Phillips. Unfortunately, I can't do that.
is what is used for the Derby car shells. However, not many of them have To
rx or Star or Robertson bits, so we are basically forced to use Phillips he
ads for everything if we want everyone to help with the set-up and tear-dow
move a stripped Phillips screw from something because some rookie chunk-chu
nk-chunked it in with a bit-up Phillips bit. Gawd, how I hate that sound.
e report to the Derby.
Too much variability in participants. Also, not my job. ;-)
Geez, Home Depot, Harbor Freight, and everybody else sell the same 10
buck box of bits that fit just about everything. I'm sorry, but "don't
have bits" is a crock. The only reason they have Phillips bit is that
they bought them in a store.
That was my thought too. Not so long ago, it took work to
find a Torx or Robertson bit. Now, tho, the stores are full
of bit assortments that include straight, phillips, 3 or 4
sizes of Torx, a couple of Robertons and half a dozen small
If you want to mess someone up now, you have to find screws
with Bristol splines or 12-point splines. Or maybe the old
"clutch-head" screws with the hour-glass shaped recess.
Where were you looking? Now I will admit that I have a pretty long
automotive back ground but I bought my first Torx screw driver in 1975.
They were pretty plentiful at all the auto supply stores.
I sis not look at Craftsman but that probably would have been my seconds
guess back then.
Same here. And there's bins full of several sizes of bits at the
hardware store too. I've got bags full of Phillips screws that I'll
never use because the Torx (and Roberston) are so much nicer.
There's getting to be less and less of a reason not to make the switch...
On Wednesday, August 12, 2015 at 6:54:32 PM UTC-4, Kevin Miller wrote:
Absolutely true. So if you decided it was time to orchestrate the switch fr
om Phillips to Torx/Star/Robertson within an organization of ever changing
volunteers, you'd show up on site with a box or two of the screws of your c
hoice, meaning you'd have one or two bits that match the screws. You, and m
aybe one other person, would then have the pleasure of doing all of the set
up and tear down because the vast majority of the other volunteers would b
e sitting around drinking coffee with their Phillips-bit-loaded screw guns
by their side.
Granted, I'm talking about a specific organization where Phillips screws ar
e mandated in the construction of the cars, therefore Phillips bits are wha
t the vast majority of people bring to the race.
Usual home handyman sort of places - Home Depot, Ace, Sears.
They were considered "specialty tools", like circlip pliers.
No surprise you could find them in an auto parts store, but
that's not the first place someone other than an auto
mechanic would have looked.
I'd guess they started showing up widely about 7-8 years
ago. (which would be about the same time it became normal
to find a driver bit in a box of screws).
74? Wasn't that the Pintang? ;~)
Funny how Ford and GM started upper end vehicles based on their entry
level vehicles. Pinto/Mustang II...... Vega/Monza/Starfire/Skylark, IIRC.
That is entirely possible/likely. IIRC GM adopted the Torx in 1975.
Seat belt bolts were also some heavy duty applications of the Torx
screw. And for what that is worth, they may have been around earlier
than 1975 for GM however not for replacing the Phillips style screw.
the big deal back then was the better screw to replace the applications
that used Phillips screws.
More expensive vehicles based on the entry level. I had both a Chevy
Vega and an Olds Starfire. The Starfire looked different from the Vega
and had one hell of a more reliable V6 engine but looked different in
many respects, but handles, knobs, steering wheel positions, pillars,
pedals were all exactly in the same place.
That could be true, either way the Torx was/are better and easier to use
than the Phillips head screws regardless of the user, robot or man.
Early 70's is when GM really started "platform" engineering,
building many models which only differed in small ways on
the same basic car. It reached it's peak in the following
generation, when the same platform was used for everything
from the Chevy Cavalier to the Cadillac Cimarron.
Apropos of engines, some of the Vega derived models had either
305 or 350 small-blocks wedged in them, somehow. In that era
I think it was a rule at GM that everything got a small-block
The age of true junk.
Took a bankruptcy to clean things up at GM.
FoMoCo brought in somebody from the outside.
There was no hope for Chrysler.
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