The flat head screwdriver is a ubiquitous tool found in every toolbox, but what exactly is it, how did it get its name, who invented it, and what is it used for? Let’s dive into the world of flat head screwdrivers and learn more about their design, uses, and history.
What is a flat head screwdriver?
A flat head screwdriver is a tool used to turn screws with a single slot in the head. The tool features a flat, tapered tip that fits into the slot and allows for turning of the screw. The flat head screwdriver is one of the oldest and most common types of screwdrivers, and it remains a staple in every toolbox.
Why is it called a flat head screwdriver?
The flat head screwdriver is named for its flat, tapered tip that fits into the single slot on the head of a screw. The tip is typically wider than the slot to provide a better grip on the screw and to prevent slipping during use.
Who invented the flat head screwdriver?
The Phillips Company was the company responsible for developing and popularizing the Phillips head screw. This credit goes to their major contributor, John P. Thompson. He patented two different versions of a recessed cruciform screw in 1932 and 1933, respectively, that were developed by Phillips. The Phillips head screw, with its cross-shaped indentation, was designed to provide better torque transfer, making it faster and easier to install than previous screw designs. The Phillips head screw became popular in the manufacturing industry due to its ability to speed up production lines and reduce labor costs. Today, Phillips head screws are commonly used in a wide range of applications, from household appliances to automobiles and airplanes.
When was the flat head screwdriver invented?
As mentioned, it’s difficult to pinpoint the exact date of invention for the flat head screwdriver, as it has been in use for centuries. However, the use of screws with a single slot in the head dates back to at least the early 16th century, so it can be assumed that flat head screwdrivers have been in use for at least that long.
What are flat head screwdrivers used for?
Flat head screwdrivers are used to turn screws with a single slot in the head, which are commonly found in a wide range of applications, from electronics and appliances to furniture and construction projects. The tool is especially useful for tasks that require a low torque, as the tapered tip allows for precise control during use.
How are flat head screwdrivers measured?
Flat head screwdrivers are typically measured based on the width of their tip, with sizes ranging from 1/8 inch to 1 inch or larger. The tip should be slightly wider than the slot on the screw head to provide a good grip and prevent slipping during use. It’s important to use the correct size screwdriver for the screw being turned, as using the wrong size can damage the screw head and make it difficult or impossible to turn.
In conclusion, the flat head screwdriver is a simple but essential tool found in every toolbox. Its flat, tapered tip allows for turning of screws with a single slot in the head, and its design has been in use for centuries. Today, flat head screwdrivers come in a range of sizes and are used in a wide range of applications, making them a must-have tool for any DIY or professional project.