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Old 12-03-08, 05:42 PM   #1
sourdough
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Multi tool? Which one?

Is there a good Multi tool that people like?

I want one that just about does everything.

A chain tool and spoke wrentch are important.
Any good place on line to buy one?

thanks
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Old 12-03-08, 06:25 PM   #2
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I'm not a big fan of multi tools.

To me the issue is orienting the bulky tool when you use it. Even the simplest job, like installing a water bottle cage, can be a challenge when you only have a multi tool. I'd much rather work with individual tools.
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Old 12-03-08, 06:59 PM   #3
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I've got a Park MT-1, just basic but functional. Anything that can't be handled with it, I've got bus fare and a cell phone.
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Old 12-03-08, 07:07 PM   #4
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anything from park tools is respectable. a good cheapy can work but you get what you pay for.
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Old 12-03-08, 07:20 PM   #5
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I've got a Park MT-1, just basic but functional. Anything that can't be handled with it, I've got bus fare and a cell phone.
+1, I have the MT-1 also. A simple, light weight, inexpensive and amazingly effective tool.
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Old 12-03-08, 07:38 PM   #6
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I have the Park Tool MTB-3 does everything I ask of it. Retro Grouch pointed out that it is difficult to install a water bottle cage with one. I don't use a multi tool for my mechanical work. I have a set of full sized tools for that. I use a multi tool as an emergency tool to fix something so I or someone else can make it home.

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Old 12-03-08, 07:42 PM   #7
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I have a Topeak mini 18+ but I bought it because I needed its wide range of hex wrenches and it's all one piece.
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Old 12-03-08, 08:42 PM   #8
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I like the Topeak Hexus. It has a chain tool, tire levers, and all the allen keys my bike needs.
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Old 12-03-08, 10:29 PM   #9
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I don't like the run of the mill multitools either, I have a pedro's chain tool that comes with a flat head screw driver, 5mm hex key, and has spoke wrenches built into the handle-http://www.pedros.com/products_tools.htm. I also carry a 6 in one allen wrench set, leatherman, and a small adjustable wrench in my seat bag, along with a few bucks. I find that what I carry will allow me to fix almost anything I might need to on the trail, and do so without fumbling with a bulky multitool. What i carry weighs more than multitools, but I am no weight weenie.
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Old 12-03-08, 11:49 PM   #10
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The Topeak Alien II has over 26 tools in a 1/2 pound package that fits in a nylon case that can fit on your belt - or in a small seat-pack. It is designed specifically for bicycles. I love mine! I have a almost complete shop at home, but this is what I carry.

http://www.amazon.com/Topeak-Alien-2.../dp/B000FIE4AE

I believe this matches your criteria for one that will do most everything. It will. Including chain-tool and spoke-wrench.
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Old 12-04-08, 12:01 AM   #11
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The Topeak Alien II has over 26 tools in a 1/2 pound package that fits in a nylon case that can fit on your belt - or in a small seat-pack. It is designed specifically for bicycles. I love mine! I have a almost complete shop at home, but this is what I carry.

http://www.amazon.com/Topeak-Alien-2.../dp/B000FIE4AE

I believe this matches your criteria for one that will do most everything. It will. Including chain-tool and spoke-wrench.
I broke a Ksyrium ES spoke on a century last year and the Alien II's pliers broke in half when I tried to loosen the spoke. It made for a crazy projectile!

It's a beutifully engineered tool, but not as high quality as:

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Old 12-04-08, 12:31 AM   #12
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I have Crank Bros Multi-19 that I like.
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Old 12-04-08, 03:19 AM   #13
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Topeak Hexus/Hummer.

wahoonc and Retro Grouch are both right in their respectful, respected and respective ways.
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Old 12-04-08, 05:14 AM   #14
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Crank Brothers Multi-19
Most bang for the buck.
Lightest weight for the amount of tools.
Takes least amount of room in small wedge bag.
Has least flex.
Indestructible.
I personally use the Multi-10 as I don't carry a chain tool.
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Old 12-04-08, 06:06 AM   #15
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I have several. My favorite is the Crank Brothers.
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Old 12-04-08, 07:26 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by sourdough View Post
Is there a good Multi tool that people like?

I want one that just about does everything. ...
On my long-distance bike I carry two different multi-tools, a separate spoke wrench, and (on really long rides) a separate chain tool. I ride alone usually, and my bike is a recumbent--which has a few more bolts in different locations than a standard bike does.

The two multi-tools are a Topeak Alien and a Crank Bros.

One reason I have two different tools is because sometimes you cannot do a job with only one tool--like if the bolts holding your chainrings on comes loose, one is a 5mm and the other is a 6mm. Normally you can tighten them from just one side (using one hex wrench) but sometimes the opposite side will slip. If you look at something like the Crank Bros tool shown, it is a nice tool but you can only use one tool on it at a time. Also others, like the Topeak Aliens,,,,,, it's two separate "handles" with stuff that folds out of each. You may need to use two tools at once to do something, and if those two tools are on the same "handle", then you can't. You end up needing two separate multi-tools.

The second reason is that different multi-tools can reach different things better, due to however they are designed. Sometimes something that is very easy to reach with one tool is very difficult with another, so I just pick two different tools.

The spoke wrench I carry is a Pedro 3-way. Both my multi-tools have spoke wrenches on them, but due to the size of the tools, they are a bother to use. The Pedro wrench is easy to use and is made well (so it won't chew up the spokes).

When I am going on a particularly long ride (30-50 miles one-way) I will also throw in a Shimano mini chain tool (part# TL-CN23). I have seen a few multi-tool chain tools rip their threads out (I've done a couple and seen a few others) and have given up on them as any reliable solution. Many are cast metal with only half the thread engagement that the Shimano tool has. I also put a tiny bit of oil on the chain tool threads; most of the chain tools I've seen die in use were being used with un-lubricated threads. Coincidence? I suspect not.

-----

The only thing I don't like about most multi-tools now is that most have no way to tighten bicycle pedals by the spindles. I realize that better pedals have a hex hole in the back of the spindle, but many cheaper pedals don't. I have a Gerber Cool Tool CT41945 and it adjusts wide enough to grab the spindle flats, but these multi-tools are out of production. I have been looking for anywhere online to buy a new one for at least four years now, and got nuthin'.

(The Cool Tool was one of the two multi-tool chain-tools I've blown out, by the by. The chain tool shaft simply didn't have nearly enough thread engagement in the wrench body to bust out a rusty chain pin)
~
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Old 12-04-08, 07:48 AM   #17
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Yes - I run into the "need two" problem also. My favorite problem is a loose saddle - requiring and extra 5mm hex-wrench (I think). So I've taken to carrying a folding set of hex-wrenches. And my never-fail Swiss Army. The really BIG one in a holster.

Think I'll take a look at the Crank Brother's offerings. Thanks for the tip.
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Old 12-04-08, 08:10 AM   #18
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http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/cta...emnumber=96995



$9 for the bike. Real tools in the garage.
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Old 12-04-08, 04:11 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by wahoonc View Post
I have the Park Tool MTB-3 does everything I ask of it. Retro Grouch pointed out that it is difficult to install a water bottle cage with one. I don't use a multi tool for my mechanical work. I have a set of full sized tools for that. I use a multi tool as an emergency tool to fix something so I or someone else can make it home.

Aaron
I've used the MTB-7 and found there isn't much I can't do with it. It's alot easier to use the tool in the bike bag than to go get the full sized tool out of the tool box in my storage locker.
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Old 12-04-08, 04:27 PM   #20
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Alien II. It pretty much beats the clumsiness mentioned earlier, because it separates easily into two halves (and the tongues on the tool double as tire irons. Chain tool, spoke wrench, just about everything you might need. For big tool jobs -- pedals and headsets, you might have to stop and beg a wrench off somebody. I had to once. No problem.

Now I make certain everything is tight, and that threads that should be greased are greased and the other stuff that shouldn't be is treated with threadlocker.
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Old 12-04-08, 11:32 PM   #21
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Mini-tools are for roadside and trailside repairs only, not for maintence and shop repairs. I have a Topeak Alien for my MTB and a Wrench Force mini-tool for my road bike. Then I have a fully stocked tool box at home for bike repairs.
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Old 12-04-08, 11:36 PM   #22
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Crank Brothers M5.
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Old 12-05-08, 01:38 PM   #23
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The current issue of Road Bike Action (Lance on the cover) includes a comparo between seven different brands. They end up choosing the Park I-Beam as best value, Pedro's as Gram Counter's Choice and the Topeak Alien DX as Kitchen Sink Choice.
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Old 12-05-08, 01:44 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Retro Grouch View Post
I'm not a big fan of multi tools.

To me the issue is orienting the bulky tool when you use it. Even the simplest job, like installing a water bottle cage, can be a challenge when you only have a multi tool. I'd much rather work with individual tools.

wat


a multitool is for typically compact and for trail or road use, not installs
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Old 12-09-08, 10:46 PM   #25
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I got a cheapy Wrenchforce multitool that actually is really nice. All the allen wrench sizes, both screwdrivers. I carry it with an adjustable wrench. If I need more than those two, I should be using a full toolkit anyways.
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