I have an Origin8 compression plug 90mm long with recommended torque of 8Nm. But it can't be inserted fully into the Hylix carbon fork I bought online as there's lots of epoxy blocking the tube in the last 10mm of space the plug requires to be fully inserted (given the length to which the steerer has been cut, ~7 inches, 17.5cm). The obstruction extends up to about 9cm above the fork crown. Rather than try to drill some of that stuff out, I bought a slightly shorter plug that is only 81mm in length.
The recommended torque for the 81mm plug is 10Nm (per the manufacturer's website). I can't find any technical info on Hylix, so I'm wondering if 10Nm is OK, as it is a good deal higher than recommended torque on the Origin8.
The Whisky compression plug instructions say to tighten their plug to only 1.6Nm, so clearly there must be quite a difference in the design of these plugs, or quite a wide range of opinion on the proper torque, or that number is a typo.
Is there any way the consumer can make fact-based judgments on such things? Is the thickness of the steerer tube wall the determining factor? It is 2.65mm
“People often make the mistake of thinking that the plug is solely to preload the headset bearings,” he [Raoul Luescher of Luescher Teknik in Melbourne, Australia] said. “However, due to most carbon steerers not having much in the way of hoop strength, due to the difficulty in laying down 90-degree fibers in a production environment with the process used, the plug is important to contain the hoop loads from the stem clamp. Thus I do not recommend ultralight or poorly designed or installed plugs in most steerer tubes as we see lots of cases of delamination caused by the stem clamp.”