- That renowned build quality
- Has (almost) everything for those trail side emergencies
- Tyre lever is too bendy
- Missing a phillips screw driver
Park Tools IB-3 is a 15 piece multitool built around an ‘I’ shaped beam. It’s chunky, weighty and sturdy, and it has just about every emergency tool you need – plus a bonus tyre lever on the back. Each tool can be used confidently without fear of rounding bolts, but the tyre lever holds the whole thing back.
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The IB-3 is a chunky little unit. It’s 25mm thick and weighs 170g, so it’s not the most suitable choice if you store your multitool in a pocket, but stick it in a pack and it's no issue.
That mass isn’t there for the sake of it, either; the IB-3 offers the same reassuring build quality that Park Tool's bigger items are renowned for. Each bit is sharp, and each fits into Allen or Torx heads precisely. I’ve been as confident using this tool as I have been using workshop-style Allen keys.
The IB-3 houses 1.5, 2, 2.5, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 8mm (an adapter) Allen keys, plus a T25 Torx and a flat blade screwdriver. It also has a tyre lever that slides neatly on the back. Strangely it's missing a Phillips screwdriver though, which is a pain if you have Phillips head derailleur screws.
The composite-wrapped metal tyre lever makes the IB-3 even more of a mini workshop. It not only has 3.23mm and 3.45mm spoke wrenches notched into the side, but it acts as the handle for the chain breaker with its 8mm box wrench built in. It offers a tonne of leverage when breaking a chain thanks to its size and thickness... but it’s almost useless as a tyre lever. The metal core doesn’t run full length, so the spoons on either end are far too flexy to pop a tight bead off a rim.
The tool's width does fill the hand, which is great for leverage, but it's not very comfortable under pressure and the bits themselves are a little stubby. For example, my rear brake caliper is mounted inside the stays, and the IB-3 struggles to reach it without removing the rear wheel first – hardly ideal for caliper alignment. For almost every other job, to be fair, it isn’t an issue.
While the obvious gripe of the Park Tool IB-3 is its tease of a useful tyre lever, the missing Phillips head screwdriver is perhaps a greater downside. That aside, the IB-3 is a comprehensive tool that’s built to last.
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Thought I would try my universal log in, just because I can now.
I own the IB-2, I wanted more hex keys, especially the 8mm (I could not for the life of me find a 6-8mm thingy) and a T25, but as I carry around the CT-5 and still have my Cool tool, I didn't want a chain tool. It is very good, proper quality as I would expect from Park, good sizing on the Hexes. What I really would like is not a Phillips head screwdriver (I have one on my swiss army penknife) but a JIS or equivalent. My "cross head" deraillier and brake adjusters are are all Shimano.