The fine folks at Pedro’s were more than kind enough to send one over for me to fool around with right away – thanks again, Jason. My first impression of the Trixie; it’s small enough to fit into your pocket, a small bag, or the pen pocket of a larger bag but weighty enough to give you some confidence in it’s ability to withstand abuse.
15mm box wrench, lock ring wrench, 5mm hex head, 8,9,10mm box wrenches, pin hole to make your own chain whip and most importantly… a bottle opener. Booya!
As a little bit of back story; I’ve been very happy with my Dura Ace Chain Whip / Lockring combo but it’s just a little bit too large to carry around with me on a regular basis. In fact, when the fellas and I headed across the pond for a little cycling adventure last spring I had Under The Weather stitch me up an extra large tool pouch just to take it with me. Had the Trixie been in production then, well, I probably still would have wanted a new tool pouch, because I like stuff, but it wouldn’t have needed to be so large.
In terms of size; something a little bit longer would help greatly in terms of gaining the right amount of leverage to really wrench on over-tightened track nuts and lockrings but increased size would obviously mean decreased portability so I think it’s a fair trade when discussing a tool that is presumably intended for fixed gear riders – not necessarily shop mechanics.
The lack of leveraging length isn’t what I’d call a deal breaker for a tool at this price point; the fact of the matter is that the Trixie is a fairly inexpensive, useful and highly portable tool that doesn’t really have a market rival as far as I can tell (unless you count the $122 EAI Super Track) and I applaud Pedro’s for working to develop very specific types of products geared towards very specific types of riders. Say what you will about the fixed gear bicycle boom, but for every piece of garbage that has come out as a result there have been quite a few gems that perhaps wouldn’t have seen the light of day otherwise.
From a corporate perspective; In the literature that accompanied the Trixie, Pedro’s used at least as much space promoting the bicycle as a viable and positive means of transportation as they do promoting their products. Their commitment to the environment (especially for a company that makes as many cleaning / care products as they do) and their attention to the changing needs of a wide variety of cyclists makes them a company that I’m proud to support.
My overall impression of the Trixie; if you’re at home and / or have access to shop tools you may be better off using them but if you’re on the road, traveling or otherwise and you need a quick fix the Trixie is a great little friend to have on your side and I’ve happily placed mine in my ReLoad Roll-Up along side all my other portable favorites.
I think that Pedro’s has used the limited space they have on the Trixie well and have included several useful features in one small package. Opening up the 15mm box might be nice to allow for pedal wrenching but I find closed boxes tend to work better when you have limited leverage so I guess it’s a fair trade.
I found it easy to use and just thick enough to not feel like it was slicing through my hand under pressure. A longer handle would provide more leverage for serious wrenching but again, at the cost of portability I think it’s a fair trade.
Time will tell, of course; the sample that I was sent hadn’t yet been heat treated (as production models will be) and I was able to put a little bend in it while reefing on an overly tight lockring (I am much man, after all) but I’d estimate that the beefy little tool made of heat treated steel will hold up to just about anything most of us will throw at it. The steel still felt very hard and I don’t get the impression that the purchase points will get “mushy” as some cheaper quality tools tend to under repeated use.
Edit: In conversation with Dan, Curbside’s head mechanic earlier today, he mentioned that Pedro’s tools are extremely, extremely tough and will stand up to a great deal of abuse. Some say that their hardening process is superior even to that of Park Tools which have a reputation for being pretty tough sumanabitches!