Picture of DIY Lockring Pliers
You can buy different types of tools to remove the lockring from a fixed gear track bike. Some are the spanner type and some are pliers. I like the pliers best but I don't want to shell out $30-$50 for a set so I decided to make a set.
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Step 1: Gather your weapons!

Picture of Gather your weapons!
First thing is to buy some pliers. I bought a cheapo set from Menards for $5 and they worked great. Just make sure you buy a big enough set that they'll open wider than the locking and still have the jaws parallel to one another.

You'll also need something to file the metal, I liked to use a hand file but you could also use a dremel tool with a stone wheel. The cresent wrench in the picture is to take the pliers apart, you probably don't have to take them apart but I thought it made it easier.

Step 2: Dremel or file the teeth

Picture of dremel or file the teeth
Get to work cutting down the teeth, leaving the front bit of the pliers to fit into the notches of the lockring. Take your time and try to get them to fit as tight as possible and get the teeth to fit into the notch as far as possible so that they won't slip off.

Step 3: DONE!!

Picture of DONE!!
When you get done they should look something like this. When you go to use them just fit them in the notches, give them a good tight squeeze and crank the lockring off. Remember that the lockring will be reverse threaded, don't rip the threads off of your hub.
Triole6661 year ago
Excellent! You saved the day, thanks a bunch
rigtenzin2 years ago
I'm going by the hardware store on the way home to buy a set of channel locks so I can build this. It's a brilliant project. Thanks
kelseymh5 years ago
Technically, you've modified channel locks not "pliers."  Other than that, well done!
"Technically" they are slip joint pliers (also known as water pump pliers). Channel Lock is a brand name.

Nicely done russd32.
Touche!  Well played, sir, well played :-)
Theoretically, the same concept could be applied to a set of Vise-grip brand locking pliers.  >random heckling from the crowd<
I was just thinking the same thing, with the benifit of being able to lock them on!

great bit of thinking here though,hats off.
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Channel lock  calls them tongue and groove pliers
OMG, shuddup already. you both are right and wrong.
That is actually incorrect. There are slip joint pliers that have 2 positions, but they are not the only type. they are by far the most common, however. Every cheap, and most expensive, tool set you buy, almost without exception will have the 2 position  straight jawed pliers . I even have a set of those that has 3 positions (not grooved, but 3 overlapping semi-circles like the 2 position ones). some of the first multi position Channel Locks were designed like this as well, until the tongue and groove type was proven to be superior in almost every way. to this day, you can buy a cheap imported set of water pump pliers that use the overlapping circle design.
Made a set for myself today out of El Cheapo Pliers from Harbor Freight. Great Idea and thanks for saving me some money!
Yours looks better but it all works the same I guess. :P
sprinks4 years ago
I just made one the other day with my bench grinder and a spare set I had laying around. Thanks for the instructable, this will make a great tool to keep in the bike tool box and a nice replacement for my missing pedro trixie multitool.
tisit15 years ago
in the land down under we call them Multi Grips so there you go self explanitory Aussie Aussie Aussie oi oi oi
maxlycos5 years ago
Very good idea. Thanks for sharing.
profpat5 years ago
 very clever, yes, this is a cheap alternative...
russd32 (author) 5 years ago
Thanks for all the kind words folks!
trgz russd325 years ago
I have two pairs of those type of pliers and a couple old bikes without sealed BB's so I may well be doing this myself. Could be good for old -style headsets too. Nice one.
Jur5 years ago
Nicely done, clear and easy instructions for a very good result.
Can you still use them as slip joint pliers/water pump pliers/channel locks/polygrip, or are the teeth filed away too much?
russd32 (author)  Jur5 years ago
I wouldn't use them for anything else. They teeth are super dull so they won't grip much. Also I wouldn't want to damage the squared off edge I filed to fit in the lockring teeth.
shiftrk5 years ago
Great job this will come in handy
asibonzai5 years ago
Very cute idea for old lockring pliers.
desertdog5 years ago
Very interesting mod for pliers (note that I did not enter into the game of naming them specifically).  I bought a "cotter pin pliers" from Sears many years ago.  They are pretty much the same as what you did.  Possibly  the most useful tool I have ever bought.  Don't think they sell them anymore. 
ascii5 years ago
Thanks - that's a nice, simple hack that I wouldn't have thought of.  Modifying tools is one of the more rewarding things one can do.
rimar20005 years ago
DIY Dave5 years ago
When I first read the title, I thought it said "DIY locking pliers". I thought you were making a pair of vise grips from channel locks.
kissiltur5 years ago
that is brilliant!, and so simple!
lemonie5 years ago
That's simple, and so nicely done.

trayo5 years ago
Awesome. I will definitely keep this in mind for the future.