In late October I was scanning the endless sea of imagery on Instagram when a post by Fix It Sticks caught my eye. Unfamiliar with the company, I dug into their offerings and found that they are well-known in the cycling community for their simple, functional, and reliable pocket-sized T-wrenches and tool kits. The Instagram post, however, showcased their new line of Combination Kits, which aim to support the needs of “hunters and precision shooters” while in the field and at the range.
Over the past two months I have had the opportunity to test an upgraded version of the most diverse of Fix It Sticks’ Combination Kits, the “Ultimate Kit,” which is essentially the 65, 45, 25 & 15 Inch Lbs Kit with an upgraded wrench, housed in their deluxe case. The kit has served me well as part of my current range backpack. It has also served me well at home, where I have found myself increasingly reaching for the kit instead of a tool from my tool chest.
The T-wrench is the foundation of Fix It Sticks kits and there are several to choose from.
All kits come standard with the Replaceable Edition T-wrench, which is a two-piece wrench that can retain four bits at once, but also requires a bit to lock the two pieces together. Our kit came with the new T-Way Wrench, which is a one-piece wrench that provides a “shop tool experience” by way of two short ends for leverage, one long end for reach, and a Speed Spinner for quick fastening.
The original version of the T-Way Wrench is available at a reduced price. All three wrenches are made of high quality steel, weigh 116 grams, can withstand 40Nm of torque, and accept any standard 1/4″ bit.
The new T-Way is very handy and reliable. All bits and torque limiters fit with a slight but acceptable amount of play, and the retaining magnets were strong enough to easily hold all four limiters and a bit in-line. It’s also well balanced and feels nice in the hand.
The Speed Spinner is a slick feature that Fix It Sticks has executed with excellence. The Spinner allows the wrench to spin within the textured sleeve with minimal friction and is positioned to avoid making the wrench top-heavy when gripping only the Spinner.
Sixteen good-quality bits are included in the Ultimate Kit. They come organized and stored in plastic blocks of four bits a piece. The blocks do a very good job retaining the bits – sometimes too good. Sixteen bits is a decent number, however, absent is a Phillips bit of any size and there is only one slotted bit, which I found to work for most windage and elevation adjustments, but well undersized for any standard firearm screw that requires torque.
Bits included in the Ultimate Kit:
• #5 Slotted
• 2.5mm Hex
• 3mm Hex
• 4mm Hex
• 5mm Hex
• 0.05″ Hex
• 1/16″ Hex
• 5/64″ Hex
• 3/32″ Hex
• 1/8″ Hex
• 5/32″ Hex
• 1/2″ Socket
These limiters are impressively compact (1 1/8″ – 1 1/4″ long with a diameter of 1/2″ – 3/4″) and feature both an audible click when torque limit is met, as well as free-spin to prevent further torqueing. They are available in 15, 20, 25, 45, 49, 65, and 70 inch-pound configurations.
Accuracy and longevity of consistency are the key factors in play when considering a torque limitation device. The device must maintain precision over a respectable time period to be successful. Fix It Sticks lists an accuracy rate of +/-6% over 20,000 cycles for the Sloky limiters. When I first received the kit I compared the limiters to my Wheeler FAT Wrench using the provided T-20 bit. They were not perfectly matched but neither was more than an eighth of a turn off from the other. After a few hundred clicks on each limiter, I did a second test and the results remained consistent.
The Torque Limiters performed more than adequately across the board. The color-coding was helpful, especially given that the small labeling could become scratched-off. The audible click is very soft and can be somewhat tough to hear or feel, but not impossible or problematic if you’re paying attention. And as with the wrench, the bit retention magnets are very strong.
Fix It Sticks offers two storage options for their kits (above); the Basic Pouch (left) and Deluxe Case (right). Both of which are designed by Tactical Tailor, who holds an outstanding reputation within the industry.
As an admitted addict of cases, I was impressed with the Deluxe Case that came with our kit. It is absolutely pocket-sized with largest possible closed dimensions of 5.5″w x 4″t x 1.5″d (above) and open dimensions of 5.5″w x 7.5″t x 0.75″d (below).
The case incorporates solid, utilitarian features:
That’s a lot of features in one small case.
When we get down to brass tacks, a Fix It Sticks Combination kit can range from $112.00 for a set with two torque limiters to $167.50 for a set with four; Replaceable Edition wrench, bits, and Basic Pouch included in all. The “Ultimate Kit” somehow has an MSRP of only $162.00, and is not available on their website – only through a few online retailers.
Those price tags constitute a decent investment. Two of the top items everyone should be willing to invest in when it comes to firearms are optics and tools. And given most optics rely on tools from the get-go, reliable tools that perform consistently are worth the money. After using Fix It Sticks’ products, I believe an investment in their tools is a good investment in your firearms.
Fix It Sticks’ website also sells most of the components of the kit individually. This allows you to build a kit over time, try the torque limiters individually with other tools, or give components as gifts.
The “Ultimate Kit” from Fix It Sticks is a top-notch purpose-build, pocketable, modular tool set that should fill a common need shooters of all types of weapons share. It delivers features that make a difference and leaves off the fluffy ones that only add weight, cost, and take up space. The T-Way Wrench and miniature Torque Limiters are outstanding tools that will impress most. Housed in a durable, well-organized case, Fix It Sticks’ kits have a permanent place in my range and hunting bags.
Specifications: Fix It Sticks “Ultimate Kit”
Price as reviewed: $162.00 MSRP (Available through online retailers only)
Item #: FISTLS11-T
Ratings (out of five stars):
Design: * * * * *
The wrenches, torque limiters, and case are all well-designed, purpose-built components. They serve their respective purposes without issue and with simple, utilitarian elegance.
Completeness of Kit: * * * 1/2
There is no denying this kit has a lot of great components that will be used regularly. However, I believe Fix It Sticks could better tailor the selection of bits for the firearms/hunting market. No large slotted and or Phillips bits is a miss. For kits with more than three bit blocks, there needs to be a fourth elastic retention strip in the Deluxe Case.
Bit Fit & Torque Limiter Capability: * * * * 1/2
The Torque Limiters are excellent and extremely compact, but labeling could be much bigger and even etched to avoid removal. The bits are good quality and reliable but with some play in the T-wrench.
Durability: * * * * *
Wrench, bits, and torque limiters all continue to perform without issue.
Case: * * * * 1/2
The Deluxe Case has a host of features that make it worth the purchase. My two complaints are that there is no retention strap for the fourth block of bits in the “Ultimate Kit” and the Malice Clips take more time than desired to detach the kit from a host set of PALS webbing.
Overall: * * * * 1/2
The “Ultimate Kit” by Fix It Sticks has an excellent wrench, torque limiters, and case. It needs a different selection of bits and a fourth elastic retention loop for bits in the case. With the ability to adjust, subtract, or add to this kit, it is an outstanding choice for shooters of all types. Its size allows for easy inclusion in any pack or pocket.