Interbike 2016: Industry Nine's MatchStix
One of the neatest products we saw at Interbike is an emergency tool kit intended for nothing more than getting you moving again after a mechanical out on the trail.
The MatchStix emergency tool kit from Industry Nine is intended for nothing more than getting you moving again after a mechanical. Booth staff stressed that it's not meant for workshop use. That said, it's still a very helpful toolset for the weight-conscious rider. The MatchStix first appeared at the 2015 Interbike as a concept piece, and is the brainchild of Industry Nine's Jacob McGahey, himself a leading adventure racer in the USA's South East region.
A set of wrenches and the all-important chain tool neatly become part of a thru axle, keeping weight off the body, and putting it on what McGahey reckons is a better part of the bike than under-saddle. Up to 10 individual functions are provided for with a range of hex and torx ends as well as a flat head. The handle serves as a chain tool, #5 hex, spoke tool and the bit receiver. The bit holder end cap also works as a bit receiver, valve core remover and SRAM 11 speed power link holder. It looks like it might accept the Wipperman Connex link, but that's not been tried yet.
The MatchStix set comes with six bits, of which the rider can slide four into the plastic sleeve. Product weight is approximately 100g, depending on bit selection. According to booth staff, the only changes needed during a one-year test period were using stainless steel as the bit material and slight modifications to handle and sleeve insert carrier. Maintenance advice is to keep the O-ring oiled.
So far, Industry Nine has found these kits to fit into Fox, and Rox Shox regular and Boost forks, and at the rear, Rock Shox Maxle and Syntace x12. See the photograph. Pricing on these kits includes (from industrynine.net/matchstix): $160 - Chain breaker handle, axle, bit sleeve, six stainless steel bits, bit holder end cap. $120 - Chain breaker handle only. $50 - MatchStix axle only. (Front, Rear MSRP is $60) Prices are USD.