Our "Rider Review" article series features the honest reviews from verified purchasers of Worldwide Cyclery. They contain the photos, thoughts, feedback & overall review you are looking for.
Having the appropriate bicycle specific tools can make working on your bike much easier and more approachable. Thankfully, Pedro's makes various extensive tool sets that will have you wrenching like a pro in no time. Our buddy Joe recently upped his tool game with their Apprentice Bench Tool Kit. Read on for more!
Completeness: Almost every tool the home mechanic will need for basic to intermediate bike maintenance on a modern bicycle.
Quality: Impressive quality for the price. This set bridges the gap between top-end tools that cost almost twice as much (they’re blue) and the bottom end made-in-China sets in blow molded cases that often have thin and bendy tools. By the way, these tools are made in Taiwan. Not one of the tools in this set is poorly made and a few are downright impressive. Unless you’re starting your own shop you probably don’t need higher quality than this. The tools come with a lifetime warranty, which is explained on pedros.com as covering tools “against breakage, malfunction, or defect. Under this warranty, we will repair or replace your product, at our discretion.”
Tool Count Honesty: This set has 55 tools that you need and want. It does not bloat the tool count by adding superfluous tire levers, patch kits, and hex bits. You may want or need that stuff, but chances are if you’re a home mechanic buying this type of thing, you already have that and don’t want to buy them again as part of a set.
Packaging: This was one of the more underwhelming things about this set. The tools came loose with a bit of padding in a cardboard box and each of the tools was wrapped in plastic bags. The plastic bags do a good job of keeping them from corroding and keeping the protective oil on the tools, but the packaging underrepresents the quality of the set.
Content Guide: This is an extremely useful paper that explains what tools are in the kit and tells the use of each tool as well as providing a numbered photo of each tool. The contents of the box exactly matched this content guide. No surprises.
Color: Wow, that’s a lot of yellow. I hope you like yellow. Pedro's did a nice job of using gray handles to differentiate similar-looking tools like the Y wrenches that are Torx rather than hex (those handles are yellow). That way you can quickly grab the correct tool.
Tools That Wowed:
- Cone Wrenches: There are 2 each of the 13-16 mm size and 1 each of the 17-19 mm size. They are good quality steel and not too thin or too thick.
These wrenches were a big factor for me in purchasing this kit because I have struggled with getting cones and locknuts tight using lower quality wrenches.
- Adjustable Wrench: A good mechanic uses a forged open or box end wrench of the correct size for most hex fasteners, but there are just times when you just need an adjustable wrench. What you don’t want is one that’s springy and sloppy. This one is not like that at all; it has tight tolerances and adjusts smoothly. It may be the best adjustable wrench I’ve ever held. It even has nice markings to show the MM to which it is set.
- Vice Whip: This is a great and simple tool that holds your cassette while you loosen the lock ring. It’s so much better and easier to use than a chain whip. I like it! By the way, it works on a 12-speed SRAM cassette.
- Pro Chain Tool: How did I suffer through life without this? Quality steel, fine threads, replaceable driving pin. Intuitive and strong.
Tools That Left Something to be Desired:
Spoke Wrenches: Don’t get me wrong, these are nice spoke wrenches. They are good quality steel which fit on the nipples tightly. What’s weird is that the plastic handle interferes with the 4-sided opening’s entry onto the spoke. Maybe I’m too dumb to use it right, but I could not get it to work. Anyway, the 3-sided entry worked great.
Where is the toolbox or bag? Even if this is geared toward a semi-pro mechanic, he or she could use a bag for an event or race. Interestingly, on the side of the box, they point out the lack of a toolbox as a feature in keeping the cost down. I understand this kit may be more for someone who has a workbench and may not need a toolbox to store the tools. I see their point, but I think a container for the tools would really enhance the kit.
Tools to Consider Adding:
- 16 notch x 44 mm external bearing BB cup/centerlock disc brake lockring tool
- Master Link Pliers
- Pedro's Burrito Tool Wrap
- Torque Wrench
- Headset / Bottom Bracket Bearing Press
In conclusion, I give this set 4.5 out of 5 stars. Good quality, complete set, good value. The only things that were disappointing was the packaging and the lack of toolbag or toolbox. I would definitely recommend this set to others looking for a quality set of bike tools.