Pocket Ratchet & Hex Bit-Driver Kit
I’ve re-engineered my Bit Kit, to be a stand alone item to carry. I was having a hard time finding a good sheath/pouch to use. When I discovered that I could nest two Victorinox bit holders together to hold bits and wrenches solid together, it sparked the idea to carry it all without a sheath.
The centrally located 1/4” hex bit friction fits snugly into both bars, and holds them together.
The holders only carry 10 bits, and doubled up still only 10 as one side forms a cover.
But offsetting it because the 1/4” socket drive adaptor won’t fit into the cover bar, provides room to leave a bit in each wrench, giving 12 spaces.
I chose to leave a 3/16” flat driver in the ratchet, and a #2 Phillips in the L-wrench. They are honestly the two most used fasteners I come across, and this is fast and easy, no need to retrieve and place a bit when needed. If anything I just swap them between the wrenches depending on what drive style I need.
Now, the next point was that 12 bits is rather limited options, but many more gets rather heavy. Thus, I added the double ended Leatherman bits that provide twice the options in the same general space.
But, the Leatherman bits are a 1/8” flat profile version of 1/4” hex bits… SO, in the larger bits, the driver tip itself is not full profile in one direction, and in turn less contact area to the fastener, and a weaker driver. For drivers smaller that the 1/8” thickness, you get full profile, and full drive contact.
What I am doing is mixing the smaller drivers in Leatherman bits, with larger drivers in full profile 1/4” hex bits. A couple of the bits I don’t actually need in that full 1/4” drive, (for instance the 1/8” hex bit) but I ran out of Leatherman bit card spaces, and had left over full size spaces, so I opted to fill them with useful bits.
Finish by epoxying the Leatherman bit card in place on the bit bar that hold the bits, being careful to clear the wrenches, and not hinder the flex of the clips holding the wrenches.
The big problem I had though, was needing to carry the extensions. They are great because they provide clearance of work surfaces for your fingers to get a full grip of the wrenches. Not to mention reaching into holes/tight spaces.
Also, the Leatherman extension is obviously made to drive the Leatherman bits, and holds them much better than the wrenches alone, or the Victorinox Extension.
Why carry both extensions? Because the Leatherman one being able to hold the flat bits is a deeper socket, and while it does hold full profile bits OK, I prefer the shallower hold of the Vic bar for clearing in smaller spaces. Also it obviously gives twice the extended reach to have both.
The easy solution is that the Vic extension fits in the holder clips on the Vic bit bar. But another whole bit bar to carry the extension is too bulky(and doing so would tempt me to carry another 10 bits and run the weight to high!) And that only solved it for the one, the LM extension is too big of a dia to fit the Vic bit bar clips.
I needed to have the clips, with clips to fit the Leatherman bar too, and attached to the main bars to keep it all ones solid item to carry, without adding much bulk.
The solution was to get two more Vic bit bars, and cut them down to remove the bit storage and make short simple holder clips for the extensions. Then I lathed the Leatherman extension dia down to match the Vic, and epoxied the mounts to the main bit bars.
List of included drivers/tools;
- Victorinox ratchet
- Victorinox L wrench
- Leatherman extension
- Vic extension
- Custom 1/4″ hex wobbler (see pics below, and slightly more details Here)
In full profile 1/4″ hex bits;
- 1/4″ hex to 1/4″ square socket drive adaptor
- 1/4″ hex bit
- 1/8″ hex bit
- T10 security
- T15 security
- T8 security
- PH #0
- PH #2
- PH #3
- 3/16″ flat
- Victorinox Micro flat driver/eyeglass screwdriver
And the Leatherman bits provide;
- 1/4″ hex (redundant, but its on the 6mm bits opposite end)
- 6mm Hex
- 7/32″ hex
- 3/16″ hex
- 5/32″ hex
- 9/64″ hex
- 5mm hex
- 4mm hex
- 3mm hex
- 2.5mm hex
- 1/8″ flat
- 3/32″ flat
- 3/16″ flat
- # 2 PH
Edit; Verson 2.0 with Topeak Ratchet;
Build details at bottom of this page.
And the rest of the details are the same as originally built;
Bottom(doesn’t technically have a top or bottom, but I keep considering the side with the extensions on it the top, or front…)
And opened for bit access. The central 1/4” hex bit fits snug into both halves, and holds them together.
The other side, open.
Here is a close up of the trimmed down holder bars, and the epoxy line. Also the turned down Leatherman extension In BO/SS 2–tone.
Here is the custom wobbler extension stored, it fits onto the end of the Vic extension, and I epoxied a small magnet to the bit bar to keep the tail from flopping around. (sorry for blurry pic), and a couple pics of the wobbler itself, as used.
Plus, an add on kit I have for for this,
A nut driver/socket kit. I’ve wanted to carry the nut drivers for a while, and now I can dedicate the Vic ratchet to them, in their own little kit to drop in a jacket or bag pocket. Gave a use for the original modded bit rail too.
Much more versatile than the other way I’ve been carrying these;
Topeak ratchet mount details;
I had already found the Topeak ratchet to be much more useful after just a week of having it, so I def wanted it on the kit. Problem being it is a significantly smaller handle Dia, so it won’t fit the Vic clips. Luckily I had bought spare Vic bit rails, so I just had to attach the clips from the Topeak case to one.
Used my spare utility knife and the wingman I keep in the den to cut it from the case and pry the rivets from its ends. Some careful testing to make sure I get the ratchet to clear everthing else, and a few drops of super glue later; I glued it on the wrong side! It would have been in the way of the Leatherman bit.. Ugh!
So, a razor blade, and lots of careful wedging/prying and it finally came off… prooves the glue is good! So, re-glued on the proper side;
So, getting my compliments of bits before, was one bit kept on the ratchet, but thankfully with a empty space under it… so I lose one of the instantly available bits, but can still carry it. But the way it sits there isn’t room for a big dia. bit. Thankfully, one of the bits I recently swapped to, fits in perfectly; the Vic eyeglass screwdriver. (got rid of the 2nd/spare #2 phillips in favor of this bit)
Turns out I shoulda left the clip on the other side, to be able to put the extension on with the big end toward the L wrench curved end, to make the whole package more streamlined.. like so;
But as is, like that the head doesn’t fit in to the plastic rails deeper contour for that head. Might flip sides again later. Might not. Will see how it goes.
And, a general update i had done to the kit before this, was to move the bits to being holded in the opposite rail. Where they were in the other side, gripping them to remove them easily was blocked by the Leatherman bit card.
Just playing around, dual ratchets anyone?