Torx screws are wee Stars of David. Have you seen them? If you’ve peed at a urinal you have. Or if you’ve waited for your preschooler inside a public loo. (In both cases, the screws are at about eye level). Torx screws are part of most public bathroom installations because they are fabulously functional. Torx don’t “strip out” as easily as do Phillips or slotted screws, because the design resists torque. There’s more to grip and less room to slip.
This anti-slip head design just happens to be a 6-pointed star: the Mogen David. Who knew the logo on the shield of an ancient king of Israel would be so darn practical? Pretty, too: the screws and their drivers. I first noticed these hexalobular beauties at a hardware store last month.
You know how the Jewish education world talks about seeing the world through Jewish lenses? (Figuratively speaking. For literal Jewish lenses see my note below.) Mine are always on, and a stroll down the aisles of a hardware store usually ignites Jewy upcycle-repurpose ideas. When I first saw these Torx screwdrivers at Harbor Freight, I went weak at the knees. True, I was also woozy from rubber tire off-gas, but the screwdrivers were an absolute thrill.
The screws come in two flavors: outies and innies. By that I mean some have an internal pin, which is a tamper-proof measure for screws that hold together stuff that might otherwise kill us or at least nullify our warranty—like brake systems and hard drives, respectively. This is easier to show than to describe. Let me Google that for you: Torx at Wikipedia.
Starry screwdrivers can be awfully useful in an art room or a Maker home. Poke them into soft stuff or punch them into softish stuff to leave impressions or holes.
Clays of all sorts (including playdough)
Metal sheets (foil, copper, etc.)
Wood (soft, like balsa)
Fondant (I presume. I haven’t fiddled with it yet)
with rubber stamp ink pads, they can leave inked designs on paper:
Stars also appear in hardware stores as bits that fit inside handled drivers. Like this:
After my hardware store epiphany, I opened up the socket set I’ve owned for 20 years, and discovered a set of star bits.
Check your stuff, too. You might have stars galore.
Do let me know if you come up with more arty uses for these tools.
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Note: See my post about actual, literal Jewish lenses (holographic spectacles that convert every point of light into a Jewish star), and some legitimately educational ways to use them: