Reverence: Lezyne RAP6

Reverence: Lezyne RAP6

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La Vie Velominatus is a life spent in the sway of the push and pull between function and aesthetics. The former, of course, is paramount, but not necessarily at the cost of latter. A prime example is the European Posterior Man-Satchel; many feel that its use is dictated by functionality, that to abandon the saddle bag is to abandon the tools and supplies required for the ride. But it is also a crutch. A crutch that allows us to forgive ourselves of poorly maintaining our machines. A crutch that allows us indulge in excess, to indiscriminately carry tools and supplies that are not required. Tools and supplies that will only serve to weigh down both rider and machine, disrupting the harmonious balance between the two.

Riding our bikes is about simplicity. The simplicity of flight. The simplicity of silence. The simplicity of self-reliance. To amputate the saddle bag is to sever the last remaining tie to excess. It requires that we distill our needs to the essential and choose tools that are functional and lightweight, yet unfailingly reliable, for while a well-maintained machine should require little roadside maintenance, those incidents which do befall us are often critical and it is in these moments of need when our tools must not fail us.

Enthusiasm got the better of me when I elevated the Pro Mini Tool 11 onto a pedestal that it would later prove unworthy of. While it is remains a fine tool and still holds a place in my quiver of multi-tools, after 6 months in use, it has failed me on several occasions; a crime for which it cannot be forgiven and for which it has been demoted from my daily riding kit and, as a consequence, from it’s Reverence status. Twice it has occurred, once for a derailleur mishap riding the cobbles of Queen Anne and once during my 90km commute, that the tool was required desperately and failed to answer the call due to imprecise machining of the 3mm and 4mm allens. Unbecoming of a Velominatus not to notice such a thing earlier, I know; for that I humbly apologize.

But when Merckx closes a door, he opens a window, and with that I have returned to the unofficial Velominati tool brand of choice, Lezyne. I have owned it for some time – I’m not even sure how it came into my possession – but for reasons I can not fully explain, my Lezyne RAP6 tool sat idly in my tool box. It sat there, resplendent in its lightweight aluminum body and its 6mm, 5mm, 4mm, and 3mm allens, with its screwdriver and its Torx T25. Compact, and meticulously crafted, this tool is classic Lezyne: small, light, and with the complete set of required functionality. It fits neatly into my center jersey pocket, just underneath the spare tube, C02 canisters, and Lezyne tire irons. The Lezyne C02 chuck continues to live happily in my left pocket, with my key and patch kit living in the right.

Balance has been restored. Vive la Vie Velominatus.

// Reverence

  1. Big call to demote a Lezyne due to manufacturing issues and promote… a Lyzene. Are the 3 and 4mm allens even different parts or are they shared between the two tools?
    Still, pretty unlucky to have allens on a multitool fail. My first, a Topeak something or other, was used for ten years, tucked in the camelback (MTB days), without any stresses.

  2. @Blah

    Big call to demote a Lezyne due to manufacturing issues and promote… a Lyzene. Are the 3 and 4mm allens even different parts or are they shared between the two tools?

    The demoted tool is made by Shimano, not Lezyne.

    Yeah, it’s a monster when your tools don’t work. The issue with both the 4 and 3 was that they were not perfectly hexagonal, in one case they would not fit in the bolt at all, and in the other they stripped it because it wasn’t seated properly. Massive bummer. Had to get a screw extractor to pull the bolt.

  3. Yet another article that provides another moment of clarity. Like Morpheus said so famously, “there is a difference between knowing the path, and walking the path.” I eliminated the EPMS from my Machine, adopting the tool pouch as required by the Rules. But again, I have erred, and greatly erred, as my pouch clearly has too many tools. Multi tool, 2x CO2+chuck, one tube, one lever, and patch kit. And no fucking tube caps or tube stem nuts.

    The person that figures out how to securely carry CO2 canisters in the seatpost so they don’t rattle around in there will be hailed as the next Tullio.

    Thanks Frank. And may Merckx bless.

  4. Awesomeness. Like a gift from Merckx, since you can’t pinpoint when you got it, Frank.

    Sheeit, what did you do when the Shimano 11 failed you? Phone the Broom Wagon? Take the bus with your bike on the front?

    I’ll have to check this tool out. I like Lezyne pumps and am pretty happy with my Crank Brothers m.t., but one can always upgrade.

    It’s total garbage when a tool doesn’t work. “You fucker, you were built to do one thing, and you can’t do that right. Bastard you are.”

    Frank, it’s a rest day! Go take a rest & quite writing awesome articles!

  5. @frank
    My bad right there. Learning to read. It goes slowly…

  6. Looks nice! I use this in the road satchel, and this in the mtb satchel. Both bike are now Rule #29 compliant. And that, I think, is Frank’s not-so-subtle admonition for us. A-Merckx.

    Speaking of Lezyne, however, I recently added this bad boy to the road satchel, and it’s everything it’s cracked up to be. I also picked up this for long mtb rides. Maybe I’ll write up a review, if it wouldn’t cause too much discomfort for everyone…

  7. @eightzero
    You can always carry CO2’s above the seat post, and they won’t rattle either. I don’t recommend it though.

  8. @eightzero: Valve stem caps keep your tube from getting self-punctured from rubbing on the metal core whilst bundled in your seat bag. Once the tube is installed into the tire their presence is no longer necessary.

  9. @Mark

    @eightzero: Valve stem caps keep your tube from getting self-punctured from rubbing on the metal core whilst bundled in your seat bag. Once the tube is installed into the tire their presence is no longer necessary.

    All true. Good tip.

  10. @Ron

    Sheeit, what did you do when the Shimano 11 failed you? Phone the Broom Wagon? Take the bus with your bike on the front?

    I’ll have to check this tool out. I like Lezyne pumps and am pretty happy with my Crank Brothers m.t., but one can always upgrade.

    It’s total garbage when a tool doesn’t work. “You fucker, you were built to do one thing, and you can’t do that right. Bastard you are.”

    I can take Adrian all day long, I can have Slash come by every fifteen minutes and call me a bitch, and it will never scratch the surface. But an inanimate object that disobeys my will? Fucker is going down. I have no patience for that shit. Little basterd should do as I say, and that’s it.

    I managed to hobble home in both cases, but I did so angrily. I keep my bikes in tip-top shape and find it inexcusable to have a mechanical on the road, let alone one I can’t repair quickly.

    @Blah
    No worries, you can be forgiven for the assumption that the old tool was also Lezyne.

  11. @frank
    Special reverence mention to Wipperman chain links. My mate Kiwicyclist was yesterday having his dream ride up Mont Ventoux. Snapped the chain 20 minutes in – luckily he had a wipperman link with him. Took him a while to get it re-joined (because he is a wussy banking lawyer, not a wrench) but it saved him from having a dream day on the bike ruined.

  12. sorry, story here

    This story of derring do also exposes his tyre skills too.

  13. @Mark
    Ah ha. I do wrap the tube(s) in a cut down sock in the bag. The cap in the bag is rule compliant, but the cap ON the stem ON the bike is not.

    Getting the feeling the first thing I must learn is that there is no spoon.

  14. Great taste Frank. I got the exact same one, color and all, a few months back. Love that feather weight bitch!

  15. Have EPMS, filled with 2 tubes (with valve caps on), 2 CO2 cannisters, a pair of tyre levers and some of those Park tyre boots. At the risk of cursing myself, and other than on commute, haven’t carried multi/mini tool for some years. In my experience most multi tools have tools you don’t need and omit certain functions that you are at least as likely to require. If I’ve just adjusted something I might carry appropriate hex wrench next time out but that’s it.

    Jersey pockets usually full of phone, key, gels/bar. Don’t like squeezing puncture repair paraphenalia into jersey pockets as (a) weighs jersey down, which gets pulled in a manner that doesn’t look pro and (b) empty space in pockets often required for arm warmers once removed and rain jacket (required a lot of the year where I am). And I think its one less thing to think about in the morning if you know puncture repair kit is already mounted on bike.

  16. ‘But when Merckx closes a door, he opens a window’… Great article as usual Frank and great prose!

  17. Hmm, you lads are making me seriously reconsider the Crank Brothers 15 I carry. Might need to put my mult-tool on a diet. Not a bad idea to carry a missing link/master link/power link. All my main road bikes have Campa chains & I use a KMC missing link, so I might as well carry an extra wedged in my tubes.

    Yep, my bikes are all in good form too. Aside from punctures I have very few mechanical issues on the road. In June I snapped a right shifter cable. No tool could have saved me from that long ride in, 103*F, in the 12, and only big/small rings. Two years ago on my Worst Shift Of All-Time I ripped my derailleur hanger off. Again, no tool could have fixed that.

    Just when I think I have my gear sorted, one of you dicks gets something better and ruins it for me. Damnit. Now I need the Lezyne chuck and the Lezyne multi-tool. Bastards.

    I did pick up the Lezyne Caddy Sack and despite the Reverence from others, it’s too bulky for me. I’m sticking with my Sci-Con pocket protector.

    GREAT tip on the cap on the valve when carrying the tube as a spare. That makes sense.

  18. Correction, I have the Crank Brothers 17.

    This:
    http://www.crankbrothers.com/tools_multi17.php

    Frank, why do you think this Lezyne is superior, aside from weight? Just think the chain tool & flat head screwdriver are excessive? I’m curious. The only time I’ve used my tool on the road is for seat post adjustments or to make sure my stem face plate is snugged after swapping stems. I always like to check before a big downhill.

    All I’ve ever really used are hex wrenches, but having a Phillips & a Torx seem like a good idea.

  19. @Ron

    Two years ago on my Worst Shift Of All-Time I ripped my derailleur hanger off. Again, no tool could have fixed that.

    With the deralier out of the way, you could have used the chain tool to shorten the chain and run it single speed. Not much fun if you’re a long way out but good enough to get you home.

    I’ve got the CB 19 and I might not have used all of it but I’ll stick with it. Having the spoke key might even prompt me to learn how to true a minor kink and wobble caused by an unavoidable pot hole…

  20. Jersey pocket checklist: spare tube (rolled up n rubberbanded with stem on inside); Park GP-2 patch kit, Kool stop levers (2, not all 3), 3 CO2 canisters, $20+$1 (boot) in a little European Man Satchel (in the jersey, not under the seat). Gels, and because the VMH insists, iPhone.
    Like Frank, my steeds are pristine, and if shit breaks, I’ll get home one way or another. I’ve beaten tacoed wheels straight, had those self-extracting Campa cranks ‘self extract’ (riding 30 miles home one legged is a hoot), broken shifters. The only time I’ve been rescued out on a ride is after getting hit by a car. Turns out carbon frames don’t take side impacts so well, they break in half.
    All that said, looks like a nice tool. Have to get one for the traveling tool kit.

  21. @Ron

    In June I snapped a right shifter cable. No tool could have saved me from that long ride in, 103*F, in the 12, and only big/small rings.

    Au contraire… with a Phillips you can crank down your limit screw to get you onto a 15-18 (i.e., middle of the cassette), which makes a long ride back a bit easier. I try not to let chains get to the point here there’s a risk of breaking (knock wood), so a chain tool isn’t critical for me.

    @Nof Landrien

    Jersey pockets usually full of phone, key, gels/bar. Don’t like squeezing puncture repair paraphenalia into jersey pockets as (a) weighs jersey down, which gets pulled in a manner that doesn’t look pro

    Not if your kit fits. Besides, are you really suggesting that full pockets look less pro than an EPMS? Really? Seriously folks, rationalize seat bags (or other Rules violations for that matter) any way you want, EXCEPT THIS WAY.

  22. @Ron

    Frank, why do you think this Lezyne is superior, aside from weight? Just think the chain tool & flat head screwdriver are excessive? I’m curious. The only time I’ve used my tool on the road is for seat post adjustments or to make sure my stem face plate is snugged after swapping stems. I always like to check before a big downhill.

    In the end, it’s all about weight, minimalism, and reliability.

    The problem with the crank bros is the weight and bulk of the tool, not it’s quality. The Lezyne has everything you need, works as well or better, and is much more compact and light. Real estate is short in the jersey pockets, and you don’t want your jersey sagging. Plus, we go through all this effort to get our bikes and bodies light, why carry a heavy steel tool with components on it you don’t need? You don’t need both a phillips and a flat-head screwdriver; all critical screws on a bike (i.e. derailleur adjustment screws) are made to accomodate both. Choose one or the other, and dump the chain tool; I love the idea of the quick link in the pocket if you feel you need to protect against a broken chain (Thanks @Marcus!)

    The RAP6 is super light and super compact. It stows in the jersey without leaving any hint that it’s there. Add to that a very lightweight tire iron like the Mavic one or the Lezyne irons, a lightweight chuck, and you’re in great shape towards a very lightweight, bulk-free set of tools for the ride. CO2 cartridges weight about the same, but some are a bit lighter than others…I haven’t found the Lezyne cartridges for sale separately yet, but I bet they are light. Also, latex tubes, while expensive, are also very light and would lighten the load even further.

    @sgt

    Not if your kit fits. Besides, are you really suggesting that full pockets look less pro than an EPMS? Really? Seriously folks, rationalize seat bags (or other Rules violations for that matter) any way you want, EXCEPT THIS WAY.

    A+1.

  23. I have given thought to making sure the multitool includes a chaiin tool just in case there is a Major Malfuntion of the drivetrain requiring cut down. Of course, you have to carry a spare master link, not so difficult to do with the SRAM chain it run. However, I also give consideration to the actual probablilty this may be required, and have rejected it in favor of another object of Reverence: the cell phone. My iPhone not only has a “dial 911” feature, but has a camera to document crash scenes as well. And of course, the velomohottie on speed dial “just in case.” Yes, if she is on a ride with me, this might be a problem, but the one time I did trash the drive train, she played domestique back to the team car and fetched it for me/us.

    And for those places when I ride out of cell phone coverage, I have van support. Merckx dammit, I’m a bike rider, not a radonneur.

  24. @frank “I can take Adrian all day long, I can have Slash come by every fifteen minutes and call me a bitch, and it will never scratch the surface. But an inanimate object that disobeys my will? Fucker is going down. I have no patience for that shit. Little basterd should do as I say, and that’s it.” Is that really true, Frank? I was going to lay off, not so comfortable playing the roll of angry drunk. But . . . if you want . . .

  25. Chris – good point! I never thought about running it as a single speed and getting home that way. Should I ever shift that poorly again, I’ll keep this in mind.

    sgt – Do you mean the outer limit screw on the RD? I’d still have to manually move the chain, right? The cable was completely snapped and pulled right out.

    And I have nothing but praise for a well-fitting jersey. I like older pro team jerseys, got some off of the bay, but the pockets sag and flop. Finally paid up and got a nice, new Mavic jersey. WOW! Fits like a champ, nice and short, tight, and the pockets sit high on my back and what I stuff in them stays in position. I’ve seen the light! Now I just need to find a good sale from a dealer who will ship me another few Mavic jerseys to the U.S. Most of the UK dealers won’t send it over here.

    Frank – that makes perfect sense regarding your choice of multi-tool. I shall put the RAP6 on my list of bike wants, but it might bridge up to bike needs before the race is over…

  26. I cant imagine using a EPMS, I’m just not organised enough. Using jerey pockets, I am forced to run through a mental check list of the Eleven Articles of Self Sufficiency (tubes x 2, lever x 1, chuck x 1, cannisters x 2, multi tool x 1, waterproof x 1, cell, x 1 and gel x 2) often laying them out in pocket order the night before a ride. If I realise mid ride that I have forgotten something, it’ll eat away at the back of my mind which effectively does away with the whole point of being out there in the first place.

    If I used a EPMS and wasn’t forced to empty out the articles after each ride and relaod before the next, things would inevietably be taken out in the interim and would never quite make it back in. Either that or it would become infested with mouldy used gel packs.

    Whatsmore, it looks ridiculously pro to be able to retrieve and use things from your jersey while on the move. Gels I cn do, but donning a waterproof on the go without killing myself is the target!

  27. @Ron

    Frank – that makes perfect sense regarding your choice of multi-tool. I shall put the RAP6 on my list of bike wants, but it might bridge up to bike needs before the race is over

    Looks like Nashbar has them for $6.99. Might not break the bank.

  28. @Chris

    Whatsmore, it looks ridiculously pro to be able to retrieve and use things from your jersey while on the move. Gels I cn do, but donning a waterproof on the go without killing myself is the target!

    Excellent observation. Just go Casually Deliberate and grab things from the pockets. Also, if you stop putting your vest/rain coats in your pockets, but instead fold it flat and slide it between your jersey and your bibs, you’ll be even more Pro. Very slick way to carry that stuff; not as bulky that way as it is in the pockets, and you can get it in/out more easily, and without also accidentally dropping your phone/wallet/etc.

  29. @frank

    @Ron

    Frank – that makes perfect sense regarding your choice of multi-tool. I shall put the RAP6 on my list of bike wants, but it might bridge up to bike needs before the race is over

    Looks like Nashbar has them for $6.99. Might not break the bank.

    Nice tip frank. Just ordered it.

  30. @frank

    …you can get it in/out more easily, and without also accidentally dropping your phone/wallet/etc.

    I can see the whole style thing working with less bulky pockets and that I’m probably less likely to spill my crackberry and other accoutrements along the road when I pull my waterproof out but I really can’t see how carefully folding said waterproof and slipping it back between my jersey and bibs while on the go is less likely to result in my untimely demise than simply stuffing it back in my jersey pocket.

    I will, however, give it a go if it rains on my morning ride which being England in the summer is highly likely.

  31. @frank
    @Ron

    Chris – good point! I never thought about running it as a single speed and getting home that way. Should I ever shift that poorly again, I’ll keep this in mind.

    Did i jinx myself by talking about this earlier in the week or was it luck that I reminded myself how to deal with a terminally damaged rear deraileur? Who knows but no better time to put to test than 15 miles into your first group ride with a new club.


    It seemed like a perfectly normal shift, but it sheared across the point where the lower limit screw passes through the deraileur body. Felt a bit under pressure with ten or so strangers watching me put theory into practice but with the aid of a borrowed power link I was up and spinning at a very high cadence on the new CAAD8 single speed.

    I don’t think I got the chain line quite right as it kept trying to drop a gear under pressure which locked the whole lot up so I called it quits and headed home. We were 15 miles out and close to a railway station but it still had to get me another 8 or so miles back to the car at the other end.

    I’ll stick with the Crank Bros 19

  32. I used to ride with this multi-tool and just recently added this one to my center jersey pocket. The Lezyne Carbon 10 is a thing of beauty and 20 grams lighter than the Park Tool. I never had any issues with my Park Tool, other than the weight, which as I personally get lighter, I get increasingly obsessed with the weight of my machine and my jersey pockets contents. The Park Tool was my first multi-tool, recommended by my LBS and emblazoned with their shop name. Meh.

    As with anything, the more one learns and knows about a subject, and the more experience one has with a particular interest, the more one finds the need to “upgrade and replace” for no other than reason than it “seems right” to do so. This particular “unwarranted” purchase seems quite right to me.

  33. Just a heads up…Nashbar (a U.S. dealer) has the RAP6 for $7 and today is free shipping if you buy any of their products. Just ordered the tool + a CX tube, which I didn’t really want, but hey, free shipping & a good price on the tool.

    They have sales every other day though, so not to worry if you can’t get it order before midnight.

  34. Yeehaw, mine just arrived in the mail. Feels like a feather next to my Crank Brothers 17. Going to be awesome to only have the Lezyne in my jersey pocket, might up my average km’s on each ride by 2 or 3…

  35. Okay, put in a long ride on Sunday with friends and the tool was AWESOME. Never did I imagine that 100g would be such a huge difference. But, having this in my jersey pocket versus the Crank Brothers M-17 was a big change. Had to check a few times to make sure it was still there.

    Haven’t had to use it yet, but it’s nice to shed some weight.

    Might be the best $6 I’ve spent in the cycling world in a long time.

  36. @Ron
    Very cool; nice to get some validation that the demoting of the Shimano tool was indeed for a good cause. Still loving mine, too…

  37. Was out doing some country riding last night when my Super Flash tail light died. Really dangerous to not have any rear light on these roads. Decided to try and pop it open & rotate the batteries, maybe the trick would be enough to get me home.

    I was reminded that there is no flat-head on the Rap-6. No coins in my pocket, obviously. Frank, I nearly cussed you but I remained calm, didn’t insult the Founder, and was able to use the side plate of the tool to pop open the light.

    Phew.

    So if you have a light that requires a coin to pop open, the side plate will work. Hopefully none of you need to give this a go though.

  38. @Ron
    Clever solution!

  39. As much as I love Lezyne stuff, this is my (micro)weapon-of-choice:

    The drivers are very well machined and the metal tyre lever is beautifully scalloped to minimise any pinching or gouging, but is strong as an ox and slides around the rim beautifully.

    If I have one criticism, it’s that the phillips could be a little more crisp at its point, for getting in to the finer cross-heads.

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