Product review: HX-ONE Home and Travel Essential Kit

Published by Lyn on 12 May 2016

Richard Peace road-tests the HX-ONE Home and Travel Essential Kit, a high-quality hex key set from Silca.

HX-ONE Home and Travel Essential Kit

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HX-ONE Home and Travel Essential Kit
High-quality hex key set
RRP: US$125
Website: silca.cc

Any list of vital bike maintenance tools would surely have hex keys (Allen keys) very near the top of the list. An ideal set should have a full range of sizes, feature long shafts with ball ends to access tricky hex nuts, and have a coloured, textured grip surface so they don't slip and are easy to spot when put down.

Silca's HX-ONE tool set combines all these qualities in eight hex key sizes most commonly used on bikes; 2, 2.5, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8 and 10mm. In addition, there is a magnetically attaching 1/4” socket drive with six Torx bit sizes (T8, T10, T15, T20, T25 and T30) and two flathead and two crosspoint bits.

HX-ONE Home and Travel Essential Kit

This should keep your bike adjusted just right, whether you're adjusting the length of a brake cable, fine-tuning the position of your seat or any other of myriad tweaks required to keep your bike running smoothly and your riding pleasureable.    

At first glance they look startlingly expensive; after all hex keys are widely available for coppers. Cheap hex keys are made from low grade steel and can wear out very quickly if used regularly and may not be accurately machined, meaning they can also wear out the hex nut that can then be very tricky to remove. Expensive alloy and titanium nuts can also be damaged by poor hex keys. 

HX-ONE Home and Travel Essential Kit

The Silca keys are made from extremely strong S2 steel with the heads coated in chrome (often used when extreme accuracy is required, for example in molding tools).

Silca was originally an Italian brand but is now based in Indianapolis, home of motorsport and a centre for quality engineering. Their keys are beautifully designed, very functional and housed in a lovely beechwood case with magnetic closure. 

In short, these are a lifetime purchase that will not wear out nor, if used correctly, will they damage the fixings on your bike.

HX-ONE Home and Travel Essential Kit
High-quality hex key set
RRP: US$125
Website: silca.cc

Richard Peace is founder of Excellent Books, specialists in cycle publishing. He is author of Cycling Southern France (UKUS), Cycling Northern France (UKUS), and Electric Bicycles: The Complete Guide (UKUS). He is a regular contributor to A to B magazineBike Europe and writes for Eurobike Show Daily.

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