Bike tool/bottle opener Kickstarter- Bring on the critique!

What do you guys think of this bike tool I made?

It’s meant to be kept on a keyring for emergency bike adjustments, assembling furniture, opening that ritual end-of-the-day-beer, and other miscellaneous daily needs. It’s easy to use too, much like the turning of a door key, between the thumb and bent forefinger.

Soon a moderator will flag this as spam. They have rules about just linking to kickstarter. It is what it is, I’ll let them further explain the rules.

That said, I think it is sweet and I am in for the first batch.

Uh oh. Didn’t mean to break the rules… I had read mixed opinions about this. The design is in progress so I was just trying to get some feedback. I suppose I will just wait until it gets flagged!

I like the concept.

Here are some questions:

  • Why an M8 – the only component on a bike that I can think of with an M8 is a crank extractor bolt on a GXP compatible crank.
  • Can it reach and adjust front derailleur limit screws?
  • What size Phllips head driver? 0,1,2,3?
  • What size slotted head driver?
  • What grade of steel did you choose?

Hey Jon, glad you posted this, didn’t realize you were on the boards. You’ve got my support as well, but in the interest of feedback:

My first impression with the bottle opener aspect was to question whether there was enough leverage, maybe extend the largest bit to get a better grip on that? You’ve used it, and obviously it works for you, so maybe make it clear somehow that there is enough.

What type of steel are you using? This just got funded, and they really played up that aspect of it: Stout Bottle Opener: A Forever Object by Joe Starmer & Lance Atkins — Kickstarter

I’ve got three bottle openers on my bike currently. What do I need a 4th for?

Also looks like it might be painful to operate as a bottle opener, and I’m worried about accessing some bolts with such a short tool length, not to mention the width…

(And yes, we would usually like to see a bit more on the forum than "check out my kickstarter! What made you get to that point? What did you do for process work? Did you make any prototypes that failed? That kind of thing. This goes for everyone posting kickstarter projects)

Nice clean design, for the sake of the discussion here, you should edit your first post to include the information and a picture of your product.

You have used sintered stainless for the prototype, how does that hold up to actual usage in this application? What does a hex bit look like after a few uses? ( Just out of curiosity for the collective prototyping of stainless, I have built a few pieces as well but not for this kind of dynamic.)

What technology for the production tool? Tool bits always require a good manufacturing technique, forging or heading. Can lost wax cast stainless provide enough strength in the bits?

Looks like it would poke me pretty bad when it’s in my pocket. I assume this a keychain?

Looking at it, it doesn’t look comfortable to use for any of it’s many uses or to carry in my pocket, but I’d let people who have used / carried it make that call.

For the sake of the video and the messaging, drop the contractors and mechanics bullshit, these guys aren’t using this thing except as a last resort, it’s a fun thing just let it be what it is, celebrate the real, kill the bs.

Yeah, definitely a casual product. Not a bad thing, but present it as such.

I too agree with taking a more casual lifestyle approach. This isn’t intended to replace a ‘serious’ tool.

I have questions about the use of the bottle opener when also used as a keyring. Some of the elegance of the form is negated when another keyring is looped into the opening. I’d have liked a more intentional hole or loop that a keyring would fit into. And perhaps that intentional hole has an oblique secondary purpose, like its a 10mm box-end wrench, or some kind of size gauge.

Wow. I had that same exact idea about 4 years ago, except in the middle were 8, 9 and 10mm openings for bolt heads!

I like the bottle opener better, but I think you should extend a handle down that doubles as a tire lever.

Weird how you can wind up around the same place in design.

So let’s see some of your “developmental” stuff … sketches, prototypes, how did you find a manufacturer, what problems did you have working with them, inventory management, etc.

This just got funded, and they really played up that aspect of it: > > … ver-object

Well-made products should last forever — that’s what the guys bringing us the Stout Bottle Opener ($35) think. Weighing in at a quarter pound, cast from stainless steel, heat-treated, tumble-finished and bead-blasted, it should last a while. Uniquely-designed to open a bottle without bending the cap, it has a built in magnet that keeps caps from falling away. Stout ships with drywall anchors, wood and metal screws, machine screws, and an adhesive pad, so you can attach it to pretty much anything.


$35 to magnetically hold your opened bottle cap seems a bit pricey. Then again, having a bottle opener that doesn’t bend the cap is pretty cool.

… especially when I can get this one for $8.95 ($13.95 in stainless) … and IT has a boss for my open cap (to be glued onto)

Have you been looking for your favorite bottled drink wall mount bottle opener but can’t find it? Our new Zinc Plated, ‘Bottle Cap Mount’ STARR “X” bottle opener offers you the opportunity to solve this problem. It has been specifically designed with an embossed mount for holding a bottle cap. Caps are then fastened into place with adhesive. The adhesives we recommend are GOOP or E-6000 which are readily available at your local craft or mass merchant.

Even the oldest, continuous, manufacturer of wall-mounted bottle openers in the U.S. needs a gimmick … apparently.

This comparison was what I thought was really smart:

We haven’t had 30 years to watch Stout, but here’s what we have in mind. We’re casting these out of 314 stainless steel. We selected this type of stainless steel for its corrosion resistance. It also takes well to the casting process we’re working with. Basically, we’re making Stouts with the same process and the same material that metal hardware for a boat is made of.

We’re thinking of those polished “rope tie-down cleats” on my (Lance’s) father in law’s boat. The boat has been sitting in Lake Erie for 20 years and they still look great, no corrosion, etc… The general rule for testing metal corrosion is that salt water spray is THE WORST… so I’m confident that Stout will stand up really well in any environment. If it doesn’t, we’ll send you a new one. Also, all the screws are matching stainless steel, so they should match Stout’s lasting qualities.

Similarly, Makerbot has always advertised their ABS material as being “the same plastic that LEGO is made of”. It really works well to convey the lasting strength by making the direct comparison to something the consumer is familiar with and trusts the strength of.

-I selected which tool heads might be most common based on the crankbrothers mutli19. So the Phillips head is a size 2 and the slotted is a size 1. The M8 is a common size for pedals.

  • No, the tool does not have the depth to reach the front derailleur limit screws.
  • I’m using the same hardened and tempered 416 stainless steel Leatherman uses to make it’s multitools.

Thanks for the comments and for your support. I have decided to slightly extend all of the toolheads based on the overwhelming amount of new feedback I am receiving. It is not hard to remove a bottle as is but this will make it even easier. I’m using hardened and tempered 416 stainless which I’ve been told is the same grade as used on Leatherman multitools.

Thanks for your comments NURB. If you already have several bottle openers maybe you don’t need this tool. I like that it is easily accessible even if I’m not on my bike. Re: concern over the tool head length- I’ve decided to increase 2mm based on your and many others who have shared your concern.

To speak a little bit about the process- I used Shapeways to make stainless steel models for testing. It took a few tries to get the opening for the bottle cap opener to be the perfect dimension to work both on and off the keyring. Initially I wanted to use titanium and even had a prototype made but it ended up the wrong material for such a small tool. Without getting too technical, the problem had to do with a reaction that occurs with titanium within the lost wax ceramic shell. Also the weight saving affordance that titanium offers is negligible compared to steel with such a small tool. I speak a little bit more about the process in an article for which hopefully will be going up week. I’ll post a link. Thanks again.

The steel used in Shapeways tools holds up decently, similar to a 420 stainless, but it is infused with 30% bronze so the production part in hardened and tempered 416 will be much stronger. I will be using a company that specializes in investment casting for small parts. They use vacuum assist technology to retain a high level of detail. I realize casting is unusual for tool heads but it can be done. See the Parktool MT-1 which is similar (whether you want to believe me or not I saw it after thinking of the Ringtool concept ha).

Yes, a few other people have shared your concern. All I can say is that I’ve had it in my pocket for a about a year now and never been poked. It’s really no sharper than the keys which are already in your pocket. The production part will be have a blasted finish which I expect to knock off any excessive sharpness.