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Let's talk multi-tools

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Yesterday my shock was loose and I went to tighten it up, but my crank brothers tool was too short to do the job. I have a longer Park tool that I can toss in my bag but that has no chain breaker and no Torx bit.

Anyone have a recommendation for one they like that has longer keys on it? Bonus for being lightweight, extra bonus for being rustproof and extra, extra bonus if it has an 8mm Allen head for pedal and crank adjustment.

This is the crank brothers one that I am not happy about. you can see the length of the keys is pretty short. Generally not a problem except for that shock.

image.png.b5dfa599bda16ea29d7d3c90a3b87a1b.png

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I have a very well used Topeak Alien... like first edition.  Chain tool was long lost on a trail.  I like how it comes apart for some repairs.  Likely heavier than many but has served me well for a long time.  They still make them just newer versions

 

Also have a Topeak Mini that I recently found in my garage and put in saddle bag before Come and Grind it.  Thank god, I had to pull the rear tire and tube it and it pulled the thru-bolt or I was walking 10 miles.

 

Edited by Taco Man
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I also have a Topeak Alien, Liked it and might go back to that one. It was a lot bigger than I need, so when doing repairs there always seemed to be a couple extra steps involved. But it did have everything. Maybe too much, but I never had a time where I wished I had more.

 

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I have a Topeak Hexus II, I think it may have recently gone out of production and replaced with Hexus X. It's held-up really well for me over 6 years, no rust, and has a decent amount of tools. It does include an 8mm but as an adaptor onto the 6mm which isn't uncommon on many tools. I wouldn't call it heavy or light, but I've never cared, so not a good judge either. 

As for length of tools... yeah there has been some suspension bolts I've had trouble reaching because access was through a sprocket. I haven't seen many swiss-army style multi-tools that are any better with regards to tool length, it's an easy way for them to save weight/cost.

https://everydaymtb.com/topeak-hexus-ii-review/

 

Maybe a T-Style Tool?: https://store.fixitsticks.com/collections/kits/products/compact-ratcheting-multi-tool

 

Edited by RedRider3141
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That looked really good, I like Topeak stuff, but then upon further review, the Allen wrenches seem pretty short. Here's the challenge I have:

IMG_2836.thumb.jpeg.00c11c27edd7aaaba90c3e64a6531e3b.jpeg

With the Allen wrench in the bolt the body is too wide to turn it because of the linkage.

The Park tool works, but no chain breaker and no 8mm:

IMG_2837.thumb.jpeg.2defda8b6a501b1b4308b443b87e2580.jpeg

It's long enough that the linkage does not get in the way.

 

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4 hours ago, AustinBike said:

It's long enough that the linkage does not get in the way.

The one I have is about 1/2" shorter than the Bondhus tool I have. The newer version looks very short in comparison. 

Have you considered just getting one L-key of the right size and carrying it in addition to the multi-tool you already have? 

16473119644748918096675563526931.jpg

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16 minutes ago, olddbrider said:

Loctite

I've seen poorly designed fastener joints on MTBs from time to time. Compromises such as material (weight) and limited distance can make for some high stressed joints with improperly designed fasteners due to limitations. I'm not faulting the designers. You can't always fit the "correct" screw where you need it, especially where you're primary goal is suspension geometry. I have a rear suspension bolt that is way too short for it's relatively large diameter and there isn't any bolt stretch you need to maintain compression. Because bike frames can only be so wide you can't always get the length you need. Even with Blue (medium) Loctite it comes loose now and again. I don't like using red (high strength) Loctite unless absolutely needed/specified. It can be very difficult to remove, often at the expense of the bolt. 

https://www.cpgnation.com/how-to-measure-bolt-stretch-for-proper-torque/

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Yeah, I am frustrated that this bolt has come loose several times. It is torqued up to spec right now and I am going to loctite it (blue) the next time it comes loose. Luckily it is metal to metal connection and does not involve carbon. Carbon still freaks me out, even with a torque wrench.

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If you find one with the Allen & torx bits you like do you mind carrying 2 tools?  I’ve been carrying this park chain tool for 20+ years. https://www.parktool.com/product/mini-chain-brute-chain-tool-ct-5
I’ve tried other multi tools with one built in and none work nearly as well to me.  My shop breaker grew legs a few years ago and I’ve just been using this one at home too. 

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41 minutes ago, Chongo Loco said:

If you find one with the Allen & torx bits you like do you mind carrying 2 tools?  I’ve been carrying this park chain tool for 20+ years. https://www.parktool.com/product/mini-chain-brute-chain-tool-ct-5
I’ve tried other multi tools with one built in and none work nearly as well to me.  My shop breaker grew legs a few years ago and I’ve just been using this one at home too. 

Same here I carry this chain breaker since always and another small multi tool this: 

https://www.parktool.com/product/i-beam-mini-fold-up-hex-wrench-screwdriver-set-ib-1

not sure if it would work for you but has 8mm. 

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Yeah, I have one of those chain breakers. I could put that in the pack because if I ever needed it at home, the pack would be home.

I tossed a 6mm in my pack for now. 

I am thoroughly convinced that the multi tool market a.) has too many choices and b.) even with all of those I can't seem to find the one perfect tool. 

The only reason I had resisted the "just put one more thing in your pack" is that over the years there is always "just one more thing" and then you realize that you are dragging half your garage with you.

I'm done for now. The closest thing at this point is a Park AWS-11 multi-tool along with a Park CT-5 chain breaker. I have an AWS-10 and it has 3 small Allen heads that are too small and do nothing for me except some brake lever bite adjusting. The 11 has an 8MM for pedals and cranks; and that is more used in my opinion.

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i've only had it about 9 months and only needed it a bit but have a Lezyne Super SV23 which so far i'm happy with. Seems like the tools MAY be a bit longer than what you but doubt it's by much. The whole folding tool thing doesn't give a lot of room for situations like you have, but it does have the 8mm you're asking about and the quality is good. Ask me again about rust-resistance next Sept, but seems likely okay.

https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B087W68V71/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1

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Everything You Wanted to Know about Hex but were Afraid to Ask: directed by Woody Allen Wrench

I use to carry a multi tool. But there were parts of it that I would never use. Now I just carry the three Allen wrenches that I would actually use out on the trail. Lighter, smaller space, and better tools when being used. I also carry a small pocket knife in with them

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15 hours ago, AustinBike said:

I have an AWS-10 and it has 3 small Allen heads that are too small and do nothing for me except some brake lever bite adjusting. 

Coming off the San Juan Hut to Hut my buddy had so much mud in his chain it wouldn't stay on the cassette.  We had to stop and use the smallest hex key on the multi-tool and poke out every link, add more water, repeat.  Of course when I got home I had to pull and replace every pivot bearing with all the abuse and mud that got into them.

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4 hours ago, mack_turtle said:

I'd like to hope I'll never need this, but if one was to plan a very long bikepacking trip, it could come in handy. 

https://uniorusa.com/products/pocket-spoke-and-freewheel-remover-wrench

I can tell you that on a road trip, where I brought bike tools, I ended up having to buy a bottom bracket tool, despite having two at home already. Next year, I am bringing a toolbox with all the tools instead of just the "usual suspects."

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3 hours ago, mack_turtle said:

 

here's a little research I did on various multi-tools that I found compelling a while back. in a hilarious turn of events, I didn't buy any of them. 

 

 

Fix It Sticks $34 51g
Mineral mini bar $40 112g
Granite Stash $55 57g
PB Swiss $40 91g
Blackburn Big Switch $35  
spurcycle $70 90g
Lezyne storage drive $25 77g
Uniche ratcheting tool $30 136g

I have been redeemed. For a moment there I thought I was the most anal-retentive person out there. 

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On 3/17/2022 at 10:17 AM, mack_turtle said:

I'd like to hope I'll never need this, but if one was to plan a very long bikepacking trip, it could come in handy. 

https://uniorusa.com/products/pocket-spoke-and-freewheel-remover-wrench

Holy crap that is genius!  I've never really needed to tighten or loosen my cassette while out on the trail....but....during the EB my rear center lock disc rotor kept loosening up on me.  I had to stop about every 5 miles and snug it up best I could.  This thing would have been invaluable in that scenario.  Cheap, small, effective.  Love it

-CJB

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On 3/17/2022 at 3:40 PM, AustinBike said:

I can tell you that on a road trip, where I brought bike tools, I ended up having to buy a bottom bracket tool, despite having two at home already. Next year, I am bringing a toolbox with all the tools instead of just the "usual suspects."

i think my "road trip kit" is like 30# between the toolbox and two plastic boxes of "trip savers" that include bike specific parts, likely failure parts, and some other stuff that's just better to have instead of needing to "get to the shop before closing" ... like when someone notices their brake pads are cooked after a day at Klondike or TWE run. Prefer to spend my trip money on food, drink, and friends vs overpriced repl parts and waste time. On the up side these parts serve as my back repl parts for when something wears out normally ... use it and order replacement immediately.

Reminds me I need to order a repl BB for my bike since I just cycled one out.

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