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Tool Pen by Mininch aims to be your go-to multi-tool

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July 10, 2014

The Tool Pen, by Mininch

The Tool Pen, by Mininch

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Those in the market for a new multi-tool already have plenty of choice, but Mininch aims to stand out from the crowd with its Tool Pen: a screwdriver-like tool which draws inspiration from a 1980s kid's pencil and can carry six bits in its barrel. The company is currently running a Kickstarter campaign to help raise funds and bring its product into production.

The Tool Pen is made from aluminum, and is available in silver, champagne, or gunmetal. It measures 15 cm (6.2 in) long and 1.75 cm (0.68 in) in diameter – so it's bigger than your average pen, but still pocketable.

With the six bits inside, the total weight of the tool comes to 93 grams (3.2 ounces). The side of the barrel includes windows, which allow the user to work out where the required bit is, and there's also a magnet-secured lid to stop you stabbing yourself.

From the Kickstarter pictures at least, the Tool Pen looks particularly well-made

The bits are available in various sizes and come in slotted, Phillips, hexagon and star shapes. When you need to change one bit for another, it's pulled off and inserted down the back of the barrel – this action pushes out the next bit in the line. There's a ring in place to stop the bit popping out the back again when pressure is added. According to Mininch, the mechanism used draws inspiration from the "Pop-A-Point" pen and pencil line from the 80s.

Those wishing to secure a Tool Pen must part with a minimum of US$35, for which Mininch promises to eventually deliver a silver pen, with six bits of your choice – assuming they reach production. More money brings more bits and an extra pen or two, depending on the pledge amount. The shipping date is given as this October.

The promo video below shows the Tool Pen in use.

Sources: Mininch, Kickstarter

About the Author
Adam Williams Adam is a tech and music writer based in North Wales. When not working, you’ll usually find Adam tinkering with old Macintosh computers, reading history books, or exploring the countryside with his dog Finley.   All articles by Adam Williams
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7 Comments

I think that is very useful. It is great for times one wants to have it on hand but not look like a tool.

BigWarpGuy
10th July, 2014 @ 10:51 am PDT

Making it out of stainless wouldn't have made it that much heavier.

Make it a bit longer and put a pencil bit inside it too.

Slowburn
10th July, 2014 @ 12:22 pm PDT

can you use bits from some other tool set?

what if you want torx 5-point-star, or some other odd bit?

wle

wle
11th July, 2014 @ 08:36 am PDT

very neat. they could configure the pen cap in a way that put on in reverse it could serve as a (one size only) mini wrench

ukrauskopf
11th July, 2014 @ 09:31 am PDT

Nice idea, the screwdriver is the least usable tool on many multitools>

Stainless would increase cost considerably without much benefit, if we could get titanium at reasonable prices (what happened to the MIT 90% cheaper titanium process which was announce in 2006? (Followed by a huge price increase by DOW of TiO2 in Asia "in order to control rising prices." Titanium would offer some weight advantages.

It does need to accept standard screw bits, I know that this flies in the face of the all too common 'buy our supplies or don't use our tool' philosophy used by so many companies, but it is MUCH less useful if I can't hit the nearest hardware store and purchase tooling.

There are, for instance, nut drivers and much more exotic drives, including drill bits.

I'm far less interested if the bits have to be specially purchased. Bits wear out, and they don't do so predictably.

Charles Barnard
11th July, 2014 @ 11:53 am PDT

what do you do when you lose a bit? how do you push the next bit into place?

the bits are hollowed out to allow more bits to be carried in the tube. therefore, the size of the bits are limited. also, because there is less material, the bit is also more likely to deform under stress.

the hexagonal shape of the tool would make a natural spot to place a wrench for higher torque needs, yet the video never shows this. the maximum amount of torque this spindly tool alone could generate wouldn't be enough for real world problems.

this tool would be much better marketed towards customers who need a multi driver for small screws found on electronics, etc.. i would never use this tool to tighten the brake cable on a bike, as done by our carefree hipster in the video.

toolman65
11th July, 2014 @ 11:55 am PDT

@ toolman65

The problem is that the aluminum would never take the stress. Stainless Steel on the other hand...

Slowburn
12th July, 2014 @ 11:04 am PDT
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