DIY Lockring Pliers





Introduction: 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.

Step 1: 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

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!!

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.



  • Oil Contest

    Oil Contest
  • Game Life Contest

    Game Life Contest
  • Water Contest

    Water Contest

30 Discussions

"Technically" they are slip joint pliers (also known as water pump pliers). Channel Lock is a brand name.

Nicely done russd32.

Theoretically, the same concept could be applied to a set of Vise-grip brand locking pliers.  >random heckling from the crowd<

Reminds me of the "Vise-Whip", which is an alternative to a chain whip that operates like locking pliers.

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.

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

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


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.

in the land down under we call them Multi Grips so there you go self explanitory Aussie Aussie Aussie oi oi oi

Very good idea. Thanks for sharing.

 very clever, yes, this is a cheap alternative...

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.

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?

1 reply

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.

Very cute idea for old lockring pliers.