I like my Wiha MagicRing ball hex keys, reviewed here, I really do. But they sure pissed me off today.
There’s an adage about how it’s better to have and not need something than to need it and hot have it. Well, that doesn’t work here.
I have been meaning to build a rack in the basement, to hold a couple of dozen Quantum dividable containers. I have my 80/20 aluminum in, and ordered some different types of materials to play around with as support rails. The idea is that the containers will slide in on the rails, allowing for easy spacing adjustments, at the least.
I spent a few hours clearing things up, to make space for the rack. My T-handle hex drivers and favored L wrenches were upstairs. Feeling lazy, I thought I could make do with my set of Wiha MagicRing ball end hex keys.
Wiha MagicRing hex keys have retainer clips that help to keep fasteners from slipping off during installation or removal.
I usually love using these tools, because they do help prevent fasteners from dropping to the floor in certain situations. And when that feature isn’t needed, they still work pretty good.
But for the 80/20 anchor fasteners I’m using, you really need an angled approach, and cannot engage the fasteners at too shallow of an angle.
I just couldn’t get the hex keys to bite. After taking twice as long to move forward by half a step, I decided to take a lunch break and share my frustration with you.
One thing I like about this example is that good tools might not always invoke good feelings. That’s why online reviews sometimes need to be taken with a grain of salt. If I bought these tools for this project, I would have had to return them. And if that happened 10 years ago, just before I started ToolGuyd, I might have had negative things to say about the tools.
A few years ago, when first introduced to Zero Tolerance, I bought one of their knives, possibly with a media discount – sorry I don’t remember. It was the 0560. A lot of people raved about this knife, and others fiercely complained about it. To me, the 0560 is a good knife that I absolutely don’t like. But that’s okay if it’s not well suited for me.
The same is true here. Those Wiha hex keys are good, and I’d like to think that they would be suitable for any type of work that regular ball end hex keys could or would be used for.
But they can’t. They don’t slip into socket head screws very easily at the steeper angle I need to use them at, and when they do, they don’t turn easily or confidently.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go grab a PB Swiss 1/4″ ball hex key and my Bondhus T-handle hex key and head back down there.