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You’ll see tons of wrenches that are insulated by coating the handle, but to meet the 1000V ATSM standard rating, Klein does something a little different: they embed two ratcheting box end wrenches in see-through plastic so you can visually confirm they aren’t touching. Grab one end of the wrench and there’s no path for the current to flow to the other.

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Made in the USA, Klein’s Lineman’s insulating box wrench features 9/16″ and 3/4″ ratcheting 12-point sockets. There’s no reversing mechanism; to switch from tightening to loosening, just flip the wrench over. They mold grooves into the handle so you can get a good grip of the wrench.

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It’ll be interesting to see if they come out with similar insulated wrenches in other sizes. For now, you can purchase one of these insulated wrenches for $44, except the Klein Connection says you must order this wrench in multiples of three.

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Insulating Box Wrench [Klein Connection]

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9 Responses to A Different Concept For Insulated Wrenches

  1. Jupe Blue says:

    As a residential electrician I’m trying come up with an situation where working in an energized j-box/panel would require this type of wrench. Maybe in commercial/industrial switch gear? Most times I would “hot” I need a flat or square drive screwdriver or an Allen wrench.

  2. heywood says:

    @Jupe: yes, being in commercial/industrial gear you deal with high potential with buses.

    However, I have recently become quite disenchanted with Klein’s b.s. pricing scheme that has nothing to do with the quality of their products…if you want to see quality products, there are much better out there that are insulated to a much higher degree (safer setup) that cost less in the long run.

  3. Shopmonger says:

    Klein is expensive, but quality tools………

    yeah i think if you are in a live box, you should be using these, but best ot just shut off power in most cases…..unless connecting to grid….

    ShopMonger

  4. David Bryan says:

    Most people have no business messing with hot work, even on 120/240 volts, and insulated tools can make them think they’re safer than they are. They ought to be expensive, to discourage people who might think they can buy safety instead of learning it. These wrenches aren’t a good choice for working anywhere there’s a short circuit hazard, like the live box people talk about.

  5. browndog77 says:

    In my opinion, this design is patently unsafe. The separation of the two conductive ends would serve to give a false sense of security, while you are holding one of them in your hand and working inside a charged enclosure. Who hasn’t accidentally dinged an adjacent surface with the tail end of a wrench. In a tight spot, that surface could easily be another conductor.
    why not simply put this apparently well designed handle on a single wrench. I see a gimmick!

  6. David Bryan says:

    Mr. browndog77, you’re right, this design would be unsafe for work where there’s a short circuit or ground fault hazard, but it’s fine for use on connectors in an open-air installation with the additional use of gloves, sleeves, and other protective equipment, by people who are trained in hot-work safety. Harry Homeowner has no business putting together bugs like that on hot wires, and I think that anybody who would lead someone to believe that insulated tools make hot work safe does them a great disservice.

  7. Alex French says:

    Whether they’re useful/worth the money/encourage a false sense of safety aside, so of the comments seem to mis-understand the wrench design:

    The two ends are not connected electrically, each one is seated in the handle but the don’t touch. So dinging an adjacent surface with the tail end of the wrench doesn’t create a conducting pathway.

  8. David Bryan says:

    Alex, the wrench design is obvious, and I don’t think anybody has missed that point. Browndog77 specifically referred to the separation of the two conductive ends. But having that exposed end ding into something energized is a serious potential hazard even without a connection from one end to the other. No pun intended. Insulated tools for working in spaces with energized surfaces don’t have a bunch of exposed metal away from the working ends, because dinging an adjacent surface with the tail end of a wrench or other tool can cause you a lot of grief. But that’s not what this is for. This is a pretty specific-use wrench, for Fargos or split-bolt electrical connectors.

  9. heywood says:

    David has it right.

    I would never get in live switch gear anyway, but if I were to do so I would never get in anything with the aforementioned wrench. The only insulated tools I would ever touch for something like that would be a socket set/wrench that is completely covered in insulation except for a very small area to contact the bolt/nut being serviced.

    Either way, doing hot work is extremely dangerous and must be avoided by everybody who doesn’t have the proper qualifications and/or skill.

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