So, I got this little project I did a few months back and never posted… it worked fine, but turned out really rough, so I never wanted to show it.
The idea was a as compact as possible ratcheting bit driver extention, for places where I could get my wave and a extention into, but didn’t have much room to turn it. I did a LOT of looking for a compact retcheting mechanism just for this project, and what I came up with was a mini extendable 4mm reversable/ratcheting screw driver.
Taking the mech. out of the screw driver revealed a hex nut on one end that was 9mm, and a recess in the other end that was 8mm hex… SO I welded it together with a 1/4″ drive 8 mm bit in one end to provide a drive end, and 9mm socket on the other, and a 1/4″ spring loaded bit retainer socket butted up to the 9mm one with a section of 1/4” square steel stock between them for alighnment, for a bit holder end.
Ended up just a tad longer than a regular Leatherman extension, and about 1/2″ max dia. at the selector ring.
I did fine welding the first end, but when i did the second, I didn’t pause enough between short welds and melted the plastic forward/lock/backwards selector ring… Looks like hell… After that, I didn’t bother to clean up/over fill the other welds, figured no matter how smooth I got the main shaft it didn’t matter if the plastic bit looked like crap. So, its a little rough, but works fabulously!
I also flat ground the drive end to fit in a stock Leatherman bit driver… This was before I cut my Wave bit driver to take full 1/4” bits. I might cut this end down again a
nd re-weld a full 1/4” hex onto it. Maybe…
Also, ts not technically a ratchet… it reverses, and locks solid in the center position, but there is no ratcheting/clicking sound… Not sure exactly how it works(was too scarred to take it apart 😉 but it withstands a fair bit or torque, hasn’t slipped yet.