Tool:  Wheels Manufacturing Dropout Saver Kit

Job:  To fix frames with damaged non-replaceable derailleur dropouts

Thumps Up:  Many frames these days have replaceable derailleur hangers.  Many steel and titanium bikes don’t, however, which means that if your dropout threads get mangled you can expect a costly bill to have a new dropout welded into place.  The Dropout Saver Kit is a much faster and less expensive option.  Using the provided drill bit, simply drill out the mangled threads, pop in the appropriate-width threaded insert, check the alignment, and then reinstall your rear derailleur.

Thumbs Down:  This tool won’t work in every instance of mangled dropout threads.  If your threads are messed up, but the  hole is no longer perfectly round (from the derailleur getting ripped out in a crash, for example) it’s likely that your dropout is to too far gone to repair.

Tool Tip:  Take care when drilling out the mangled threads.  It is possible to drill the hole at a slight angle, which means that you’ll have to spend more time aligning the dropout before you can reinstall your rear derailleur.

Last Word:  This is probably not a tool that a home mechanic needs to own, but if your bike ever needs it you will be grateful that your local shop has one.

Info:  Retails for $60.

By Katie Arehart-Rose – Boulder, Colorado