Muddymoles mountain biking in the Surrey Hills and Mole Valley

The Devil Makes Work of Idle Hands

Posted by Colin | February 24, 2010 | 13 comments so far

Part of Colin's remarkable bike lab
So, a strained back from trying to trampoline with 3 kids and particularly gruesome weather convinced me that I really just couldn’t be @rsed to ride on Sunday, sorry chaps.

However I had a plan and after many hours of doing the dutiful husband and father bit, I slipped into the garage to indulge in my hobby in an indirect way.

I imagine those regular readers who are prone to a bit of nudge-nudge-wink-wink innuendo (Lee?) who read that intro were thinking all manner of things, however there were no ‘workshop manuals’ involved, just me and some wood, nails, screws and a few tools.

A couple of hours later and I have finally produced the solution to my tool storage problems that have plagued me for months.

We have a couple of carpenter/joinerers in our group who needn’t worry about competition from me in future, however I’m really pleased with the result.

Rather than including every tool in my garage, these are just the regular ones required for bike fettling and I find it quite surprising that just this selection is really all I ever need to keep the mtb’s on the trail and swap components from one frame to the other, as seems to be my want lately.

So no more tools strewn over the garage floor, there really is no excuse. Its also quite a good way of stopping me buying any more tools as I’ve not left much space for anything else.


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  1. tony says:

    Very nice Colin. Do I detect some tool colour grouping as well?

    Is that a fork crown race separator too? I could do with borrowing one of them?

    Not much missing. Chain tool?

  2. Dave says:

    What’s the tool top right? Looks like a nut cracker but I can’t imagine it is?

    Also, where is the hammer? ;o)

  3. Dave says:

    Ahh…..ok, that’s what it is! Cheers, Tony!

  4. Tony says:

    hmmmm not sure Dave it could be a pipe cutting guide for steerers / bars.

    Over to Colin…..

  5. Matt says:

    I think it’s a cutting guide. See the biggerer picture on Flickr which gives a better idea. An impressive array of lubrication…

    I’m curious to know how the bottom shelf is fixed though, it doesn’t appear to be capable of holding too much. But the I guess it only needs to cope with the odd mug of tea?

    Is this the right time to talk about fantasy garages? Mine has heating, a rubberised floor, built in cupboards and bike storage and an adjacent luxury shower room with underfloor heating for when I get back from a ride. Oh, and a games room above with a billiards table, gym equipment, sofa and plenty of books.

    No need to ever go back in the house again :o)

  6. tony says:

    It’s clearer with the “bigger picture”. Pipe cutter guide.

    Have you noticed that all the hex keys are lined up.

    Do you think that there was a spreadsheet involved in Colin’s planning of this? 🙂

  7. Dave says:


    No need for one of those then!

    However it did get me looking for a crown race remover and at £20 I might get one of those to replace the infeasibly large screw driver I currently use.

    I suspect Andy will be more likely to comment on the impressive range of lubricant and devil’s hands. Lee will no doubt store this information up and deliver a killing blow some time in the future…..

  8. Colin says:

    Top of the class Tony – yes, its a steerer cutting tool. Chain tool lives in my camelbak.

    Funny to see this generating so much comment. My missus would laugh that everyone now thinks I’m anal about tidiness – couldn’t be further from the truth.

    Matt the bottom shelf is fixed through a complex system of dovetail and mortice joints…….well no, actually a couple of very small brackets underneath and good old ‘no more nails’. As you say, not much weight to support.

    My fantasy garage would have to include Ola Jordan to provide the service work!

  9. Colin says:

    And that is so incredibly perceptive to note the space for tea mug – we’re on the same wavelength !

  10. Andy C says:

    Matt – you missed the beer fridge and the kettle in your ‘fantasy garage’. No need for a bog as I’m sure there’s a door to the back garden.

    Colin – glad to see that you took an old head’s advice on the lubrication. Running dry requires an increased effort which can have a significant impact on performance, especially for the over-40s

  11. DaveW says:

    Nice work Colin – beats rumaging around in a tool box. I have your headset presses twin. Awesome piece of overengineered kit!

    I need one of those steerer cutting guides. I generally use an old hose clamp stolen from a discarded washing machine hose, which is marginally better than no guide at all, but my head tubes still look like they’ve been attacked by some p1ssed bloke with a hacksaw (hold on – actually they have…). Does the proper device override the effects of intoxication?

    +1 for the hammer – well a rubber mallet anyway. Indispensible.

    As far as workshops go, I’d want a decent sized workbench, with a vice and a bench mounted bike clamp. Also the fridge sounds good

    AndyC – remind me not to go into your back garden. Is this a strategy to discourage shed break ins? Or do you do big jobs in the loo?

  12. Andy661 says:

    I can imagine a Muddy Mole remake with wall to wall carbon frames… Enjoy!

  13. Related: Build a bike jump | Mutterings, Stuff & nonsense | Muddymoles: Mountain biking (MTB) in the Surrey Hills and Mole Valley

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