romeandstuff romeandstuff

105 posts   884 followers   930 followings

Dave Rome  Tech writer and content strategist at CyclingTips. Tool nerd. Photo taker.

It’s impressive that a bicycle cable cutter is designed to cut both inner bowden cables, and outer steel-reinforced housing. They’re quite different tasks. *
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My Knipex Wire Rope Cutter (95 62 190) has served me well for a few years and continues to slice through whatever cable you put in its jaws. However, admittedly it occasionally frays inner cables. Having experienced such fraying from other cutters, i was used to it, but also keen to find a solution. *
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Thanks to @deanhorsfall for the find, it turns out Knipex makes a cutter for the very purpose of thin, multi-strand steel cables, aka bowden cables. These Bowden Cable Cutters are pretty much purpose built for cutting derailleur and brake inner cables, and do so with an amazingly light action. The trick is in the rounded jaw shape, which doesn’t pinch the cable on cutting. The benefit is that I haven’t had an unraveled or frayed cable yet. *
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Now, the Knipex wire rope cutter remains nearby for housing and the Bowden cutter sits next to it for inner cables. Having two expensive tools do the job of one will seem beyond excessive for many, and it is, but it’s one step closer to perfection for me. *
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For those with a better handle on their tool buying habits, the Knipex cutters, while impressive, are not essential. I’ve had great success with Park Tool’s cable cutter, as I have with Shimano’s. Both will serve you well if you take care of them. *
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#cooltooltuesday #cablecutter #biketools #bikemechanics #knipex #tooltuesday #cooltools #handtools

“There’s so much tyre clearance on the ToughRoad SLR that you’d be excused for thinking it started life as a mountain bike that had been converted for gravel use. The gaps surrounding the 39.5mm-wide tyres (measured width) are more obvious than Madonna’s front teeth.” *
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Yep, the tyre clearance on the ToughRoad SLR is Giant (sorry, not sorry).
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Another review now live on CyclingTips. Not ashamed to say it, but I’m currently without a test bike and I’m loving riding my own. *
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#giantbikes #gravelbike #mostercross

At first I thought the new @kask_cycling Valegro was too light (186g!), but I soon started loving it. Certainly helps that it fits me perfectly. Full review, including the negatives, now on CyclingTips. *
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#kaskhelmets #italianmade #cyclesafe #helmet #cyclingtips

I managed to purchase the new @abbeybiketools micro press. This particular version was produced for Specialized mechanics and features specific pilots for Roval and DT Swiss hubs. And obviously, it’s the “wrong” colour. 😏 *
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With a 1/4” (6.3mm) threaded rod, think of this as a miniature version of the Abbey universal modular bearing press. A similar thrust bearing is the secret sauce within, and holy crap, it makes a world of difference in keeping the bearing straight and with minimal effort. I was blown away by how much of a difference it made with the universal press, and it’s a similar story again. *
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Add in amazingly smooth and wiggle-free threading and this tool is a pleasure to use (even if that’s only one hub so far). *
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Unlike the bigger universal press, this one does not have Abbey’s cool split nut design. It’s partly due to the finer thread used and partly due to the extreme cost the split nut adds. Instead, a small spinner nut is used, slower than a clever split nut, but it’s still noticeably quicker than spinning a set of handles. *
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It’s been about a decade since I bought my Enduro hub bearing press, and while it has served me well and still functions well, the thrust bearing in this takes the sting out of the purchase. I’m now looking forward to getting my hands on more bearing pilots (included with the upcoming and official production of the micro bearing press) to complete this tool. And as always with #cooltooltuesday , swipe to take a more detailed look. 👉👉👉
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#cooltooltuesday #cooltools #abbeybiketools #bearingpress #biketools #bikemechanics #rovalwheels

I feel partially responsible for creating a stir around using JIS screwdrivers on bicycle derailleurs. It’s been a few years since those articles on BikeRadar, and I’ve since learnt that Japanese International Standard (JIS) screwdrivers aren’t really a thing anymore, rather they were superseded by a newer standard (DIN 5260-ph) that works with both Philips and JIS. There’s a bunch of quality Phillips or cross-tip screwdrivers that meet this new DIN standard (such as Vessel), but it can be hard to know exactly who they are. And more importantly, there’s a longer list of Philips screwdrivers that don’t meet the standard at all. *
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Made in the USA, @parktoolblue is now offering a cross-tip screwdriver (DSD-2) built to the new standard. They also have a #4 flat blade to match. With machined aluminium handles, they certainly have a quality feel. The handles are pretty small, helping with clearance against front derailleurs or similar tight spots. Likewise, the shafts are surprisingly long, I suspect to keep your hands away from cable housing when adjusting rear derailleur limit screws. There’s a little indent for your finger or thumb to sit and apply downward pressure when driving that screw, and there’s knurling at the shaft for quick spinning. *
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Even though it’s well-thought for bicycles, the small handle isn’t what I’d pick for other workshop work. Likewise, the chunk of aluminium that is the handle feels oddly heavy, and in most instances it’s enough to stop it from passing the “can it hold its own weight” test. Still, I have to hand it to Park for offering a vastly improved screwdriver that’s built for the shop, and have done so even though the pricepoint isn’t all that friendly (they’re expensive). Be sure to swipe to see more, including size comparisons. *
*. #cooltooltuesday #cooltools #americanmade #parktool #jisscrewdriver #cncmachining

Very happy to see this review done. There’s plenty to like about the newly updated @cycliq products, and even more to tell. 🤓 Check it out on CyclingTips.com. #cyclesafe

I always thought a blow gun was a blow gun and never had much reason to change my $10 hardware store special. Oh how I was wrong!
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The Hazet 100mm blow gun (P/N:9040P-1) changed my opinion. Using it offers an unbelievable amount of air control, a comfortable grip and most importantly, a noticeably more pressurised puff of air. Where my hardware store special has a wide open nozzle, the Hazet’s is very fine. Now my compressor needs to fill less, and the results are more efficient too. *
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Certainly this air tool isn’t made by Hazet themselves, but it’s clearly good enough for the German company to slap their brand on. *
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#cooltooltuesday #cooltool #airtools #blowgun #hazettools #cartools #biketools

Honest words from @erikanthonycho last week, telling it how it is with T-handle wrenches. To paraphrase, “they’re a luxury, and one that should really only come after a good set of L-keys.”
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It was a few years ago that I got my hands on a set of Beta 951 wrenches (and reviewed them for BikeRadar). Since then, Silca, Feedback Sports, Pedro’s and PB Swiss have all added such things to their line-ups. *
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I still enjoy using these sliding T-handle tools, and occasionally even prefer them (such as on newer disc calipers), but I absolutely get more use from other styles of hex keys. Something, that at the time of writing my BikeRadar review, wasn’t the case. *
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The original Beta remain high on my list, only bested by the new PB Swiss due to a more secure detent that prevents the handle from sliding when you don’t want it to. It’s a trade-off though, as the Beta heads are a hair larger, resulting in a tighter fit at the bolt. *
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However, both of those options are super expensive. Pedro’s offer what’s nearly a full set (no 10mm), and while not cheap, it’s noticeably more affordable than the Euro tools above. They work well, but the detents are noticeably weak, and they lack a stop to prevent the T-handle part from sliding all the way out. I find that annoying, and the tips are machined and not forged like those on the Beta, but the set is otherwise pretty solid for the money. *
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Then there’s the little Feedback Sports wrenches. I get what they’re doing here and commend the effort for creating a bicycle-specific product, but the fixed handles (no sliding feature) and short length both kill it for me. The case they come in is super cool, but they’re my least favourite right now. *
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Last on the list is Silca (not pictured). Their storage pouch looks nice and the size selection provided is great, but short of a quick play, I haven’t used them. *
*. #cooltooltuesday #tooltuesday #cooltools #slidingthandle #hexkey #pbswisstools #betatools #bikemechanics #biketools #handtools

Last weekend I shot this sweet @parleecycles belonging to @petehowie. It’s built with the sort of parts I used to salivate over on WeightWeenies, and yet, remains perfectly functional for everyday riding. Nicely done by @skunkworks_bikes. This is the latest featured bike in CyclingTips’ Bikes of the Bunch series. Now on site. #parleecycles #3kcarbon #zoomzoom

The Saturday just past saw me visit the @killenbike workshop for the Sydney Makers Show. *
An amazing amount of passion was present and I hope just an inkling of that comes through in an article that just published on @cyclingtips . *
Tap the image to see the maker, or better yet, check out the full article. *. #makers #handmadebicycles #australianmade

This fresh hub tool (“Hub Genie”) from @uniorbiketools combines an expanding collet with a handle. Simply stick it in the end cap of a 12 or 15mm hub, tighten and then give it a yank. No vise needed, no scratched end caps. Thankfully this Genie will work more than three times. *
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Thanks to Unior for sending me this one to play with. *
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#cooltooltuesday #uniortools #wheeltools #tooltuesday #bikemechanics

Such a prick. * *
Having first spotted it under the brand of Elvedes at Eurobike last year, I was equally intrigued and skeptical of this cable housing opening tool (aka, cable pricker). It’s effectively just an awl with a guiding barrel. You push the housing down into the barrel, and a needle within opens up your freshly cut housing. * *
What’s wrong with a sharpened spoke, or better yet, a straight seal pick (PB Swiss, of course)? Nothing. However, I must have had a gin too many and ended up adding this prick to a shopping cart one night. I also ordered a Unior Tyre Tread Cutter, which is silly because I haven’t raced mountain bikes for years, but I digress. * *
Having now used the cable pricker for a few weeks, I’m actually starting to like it. It works perfectly on gear housing (use the 4.1mm side), and is certainly quicker than a poke of a spoke. Brake housing (on the 4.9mm size) is a little slower, especially as you have to finish the end before you can poke it open. But when you do use it, it goes deeper into the housing than most awls, and does it neatly. * *
At this stage, I’m still reluctant to recommend buying one. My usage is a far cry from what a shop would put such a thing through, and it’s still too early to judge the durability, or if it’s possible to accidentally bend the poker pin inside. But if your someone that has to have all the tools, then here’s one you probably don’t have, and for that, it earns a spot in #cooltooltuesday . * *
#bikemechanics #pbma #cablepricker #tooltuesday

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