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A split beam torque wrench is a deflecting beam style. They differ from the original deflecting beam style in that the beams are encased in an enclosure. It’s also different from a single beam wrench in that the deflected beam is working against a lever to provide more accuracy than a single beam with no resistance. Here’s how they work. These guys invented the concept back in the 40s.

For a quality domestically produced wrench figure $200 once all is said and done. Might sound like a lot for something you may not use that often but a failure could cost more than that to repair. For example if a main cap were to come loose.
 

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I've been saving my nickels and dimes for one of those split beam wrenches, but from what I've seen the accuracy is slightly less than the typical bending beam which is around 2% or 3%.
I used to have an LS7 454 from Scroggin Dickey. Removed one of the heads to retrieve a washer that my nimrod neighbor dropped down the head port. Reinstalled the head and when I tried to torque the bolts, two of them wouldn't torque. Removed them and they had noticeably stretched out. These were stock OEM Chevy head bolts. This was a new long block that had never been run. It had some nice parts on it but the head bolts weren't on that list.
 

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Did you reuse the head bolts ? I'm sure an LS engine has TTY bolts, which can't be reused. Well, if you get lucky you can, I reused the TTY bolts on my Toyota V6 :)
 

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I had this happen to me and it turned out my buddy who had borrowed my torque wrench did not return it to zero, old craftsman torque wrench. It didn't dawn on me that it wasn't on zero when I went to set it for my build. After the main cap bolt broke, then I knew exactly what had happened. Now I do not own a torque wrench designed like that but I always set them back to zero after I use them.
 
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