A novel two degrees-of-freedom external fixator that can accurately control interfragmentary mechanical conditions over an ovine tibial osteotomy is presented. The device can apply either axial or torsional motion, to investigate mechano-transduction mechanisms in fracture healing. The device was bench-tested over a range of gap stiffnesses, for its ability to apply pure axial or torsional motions, control interfragmentary strain magnitudes and to measure stiffness over the gap. The experiments reveal very little cross-coupling between axial and torsional displacements, although some transverse displacement occurs for both degrees-of-freedom. The mean interfragmentary strain can also be accurately controlled, but with some variation over the gap (due to coupled transverse displacement error). Interfragmentary stiffness measurements are accurate up to gap stiffnesses corresponding to bony bridging. This characterisation study has shown that the system is adequate to control and measure the mechanical conditions in a fracture healing experiment.