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  1. #1
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    Portable Tools - Spanner/Wrench

    This might not be the ideal place to post, so apologies in advance!

    My touring (light touring!) bike doesn't have quick release wheels and I wondered what tools people carry for quick removal of wheels? In the past I've carried an adjustable wrench/spanner but this isn't great for the bike. I've also carried around a handful or proper spanners but the weight starts being prohibitive.

    Any cool tools or tips? Or should I just change the axles for QR??

    Chris

  2. #2
    <riding now> BigAura's Avatar
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    15mm spanner cut in half is all you need for wheels and pedals. What other size spanners do you need?

  3. #3
    Senior Member bktourer1's Avatar
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    Have you considered changing hubs to quick release? This will save the toolweight issue

  4. #4
    don't try this at home. rm -rf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigAura View Post
    15mm spanner cut in half is all you need for wheels and pedals. What other size spanners do you need?
    I cut off the open end wrench with a hacksaw and filed it smooth. It's not heavy, maybe 100 grams.
    DSCF01441.JPG

  5. #5
    Fred-ish rogerstg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by neocaligatio View Post
    In the past I've carried an adjustable wrench/spanner but this isn't great for the bike.
    I can't understand how an adjustable wrench "isn't great for the bike." It can be used for a variety of sizes, including as a spoke wrench.

  6. #6
    Senior Member bud16415's Avatar
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    I have also thought a lot about what tools to bring along and the weight vs. need analysis. I work a lot with tools and I know the importance of good tools and not making due with makeshift tools in the shop. But then I also don’t want to haul along a 10 pound tool kit for fear of rounding over a nut I can easily replace. I like things that have lots of uses and are of high quality and reasonably small and light, like my bike multi tool and my leatherman tool. I carry a cassette socket but then again what do you use to turn that. You can improvise a chain whip a number of ways but a wrench is a bit harder.
    I was going thru some tools I have the other day and found something that was a gift quite a few years ago and was seldom used because it did a lot of things but I had single use tools that did the same things and were easier to use in the shop setting where many tools isn’t a problem. I got to thinking on tour how useful this might be and I will toss it out for you to think about weight vs. useful. If you have a nut you didn’t want to damage, a single socket carried with a couple flats ground on it like my Cassette socket has could be easily held with this tool. Having all the other features on it could be useful alone or used in conjunction with a leatherman tool for all kinds of tasks. I carry spare spokes as much for having a tough wire along if needed to fix something as to use as spokes when needed. Or you can many times find a coat hanger, but you need a way to cut and bend it into something.

    Just an idea link below.

    http://wiki.multitool.org/tiki-index...ge=6LC+Toolbox
    What's not in your legs needs to be in your gears.

  7. #7
    Senior Member staehpj1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rogerstg View Post
    I can't understand how an adjustable wrench "isn't great for the bike." It can be used for a variety of sizes, including as a spoke wrench.
    Pretty heavy, and depending on the bike, the uses may be extremely limited. Might be worth it if you have a wide variety of sizes of fasteners that it fits, but none of my bikes do. On my current bike the only bolts or nuts it would fit are 8mm, except for the headset and I am not willing to carry a wrench big enough for that. Easy enough to borrow one along the way in the rare case the headset needs attention. Most of the fasteners on my bikes take either an allen key, a phillips, or a straight screwdriver. Those are typically on even the lightest and cheapest minitools.

    What tools are needed really varies bike to bike. My latest bike I will carry only a Lezyne V10 multitool and a cut down 8mm box end wrench. The bike I used on my last tour had a similar amount of tools but the selection was different and contained a smaller multitool and a few small individual tools.

    For the OP, I'd take a cut down 15mm and might either grind the handle portion thinner or maybe use a cut down cone wrench. If he wants an old style head set wrench too, Park makes a short wrench that is 32mm and 15mm. I forget the part number.

    Edit: The part number is RW1
    PTRW1-1.jpg
    Last edited by staehpj1; 04-27-12 at 06:41 AM.

  8. #8
    Bill G Bill G's Avatar
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    Stubby 15mm carry one in my single speeds seat bag, got it at Harbor Frieght Tools cheap the hole set of them in metric around $12.00

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    Bill G
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  9. #9
    Senior Member mulveyr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rogerstg View Post
    I can't understand how an adjustable wrench "isn't great for the bike." It can be used for a variety of sizes, including as a spoke wrench.
    Adjustable wrenches in general are not "great" in the sense that they grip only on two flats, as opposed to proper wrenches that grip on more. Thus, there's a greater chance of stripping nuts or bolt heads.

    That being said, it's not like you're constantly removing the wheels. I always carried a 6" adjustable to take of my kids' bolt-on wheels when we rode, and it was light and perfectly fine for the job.
    Knows the weight of my bike to the nearest 10 pounds.

  10. #10
    Goes to 11. striknein's Avatar
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    Consider the 3Wrencho by Portland Design Works. Since it's got a flat on one end, you can use your foot for additional leverage if you've got a particularly stubborn axle nut. The flat also works as a tire lever.

    Nashbar sells a similar item with a bottle opener and spoke wrenches. The nice thing about that one is that it can double as a pedal wrench as well.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Rob_E's Avatar
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    I have this trouble times 3. Due to my unusual rear hub, it is bolted on with a different sized bolt on each side, plus an extra piece that is a 3rd size. I regularly travel with a set of Craftsmen Robogrip pliers. Not too heavy, not too light, but they fit multiple nuts and can be used in other ways as well. It is not the perfect tool for the job, but it works, and that's good enough for a seldom-used traveling tool. Still, having the properly-sized wrench can make things a lot easier. There are a few multi tools that incorporate a standard, 15mm wrench into it, so that might be worth investigating.

    While changing a rear flat on my bike is a hassle, I do feel like it has it's advantages in terms of security. If I'm concerned about theft, I always have to make sure the frame and the front wheel are locked to something. Someone has to be really determined if they want to steal my back wheel, even if it's not locked to anything.

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    Thanks all - what a lot of info! I used to carry an adjustable for the brakes (weinman side pulls) but the new bike only has 15mm wheel nuts so the cut-down wrench seems a sensible idea. I don't take the wheel off very often but got stuck recently with an adjustable that wouldn't stay 'adjusted' and it was a nightmare.

    QR is a nice idea but more effort than just cutting down a basic wrench.

  13. #13
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    Barcho wrenches are the best ones in terms of wobble at the moving bits.
    Cooltool includes a wrench on the toolbody.

  14. #14
    It's true, man.
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  15. #15
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    If you can find an old "Cool Tool," grab one. It is indeed a nifty gadget. Includes an adjustable wrench that has flat jaws, which also can serve as a cone wrench and even turn the included crank bolt socket. I don't think they make them anymore (correct me if I'm wrong), but I love mine. See http://www.mtbr.com/cat/accessories/...74_152crx.aspx
    Last edited by briwasson; 04-27-12 at 10:42 AM.

  16. #16
    Senior Member Rob_E's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by truman View Post
    Always good to have a tool that doubles as a bottle opener. I think my cutterly set functions as a bottle opener. My keychain can be used as a bottle opener. My can opener can be used as a bottle opener. And then I have a purpose-specific bottle opener. I may not be able to pedal this load up hill, but I can surely open a bottle to celebrate having walked to the top!

  17. #17
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    is Park RW1 still even made? I got mine over 25 years ago..

    A 6" adjustable wrench is useful.. I got the pedal extender "Knee Savers",
    you need an 18mm open end to get those tight on the crank arms.

  18. #18
    Senior Member staehpj1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
    is Park RW1 still even made? I got mine over 25 years ago..

    A 6" adjustable wrench is useful.. I got the pedal extender "Knee Savers",
    you need an 18mm open end to get those tight on the crank arms.
    Nashbar still has them or at least did recently

  19. #19
    Fred-ish rogerstg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mulveyr View Post
    Adjustable wrenches in general are not "great" in the sense that they grip only on two flats, as opposed to proper wrenches that grip on more. Thus, there's a greater chance of stripping nuts or bolt heads.

    That being said, it's not like you're constantly removing the wheels. I always carried a 6" adjustable to take of my kids' bolt-on wheels when we rode, and it was light and perfectly fine for the job.
    That's my point, for occasional use it sure beats bringing separate full wrenches on a tour and is at least a little bit multifunction. The kind of bike that has bolt on wheels often also use nuts in a number of other places as well.

  20. #20
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    My commuter bike is an Alfine drivetrain. I carry the Lezyne Sabre Levers since they double as wrench and tire levers.

  21. #21
    Senior Member Aushiker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rogerstg View Post
    I can't understand how an adjustable wrench "isn't great for the bike." It can be used for a variety of sizes, including as a spoke wrench.
    I agree



    Regards
    Andrew
    Attached Images Attached Images

  22. #22
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    I've been using a cut down adjustable wrench in my tool kits as of late as I need one to take apart both the rear wheel on my touring bike and both wheels on my road bike. Works just fine, though I may need to use a rock to hammer off a very tight wheel nut now and then. It can be a bit hard to spin on and off a pedal however.

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