Review: Fix It Sticks

A little over a year ago I bought some gear for an AR that I had been meaning to get into a usable state for a while. There comes a time in almost every shooter’s life (early for some, later for others) when you realize that perhaps locktite and raw muscle is not necessarily the best way to attach things to a rifle.

I have known this for years, but I’ve always been kinda stuck with analysis paralysis when it comes to torque wrenches for guns. I was a machinist in a former life, so when I buy a tool, I tend to spend an inordinate amount of time researching the best tool before I commit. If you’ve looked into gunsmith’s torque wrenches you know that there are basically two varieties: cheap and “well I guess I only need one kidney…”

If I recall correctly I’d decided that Wheeler was about the only choice if I didn’t want to spend several hundred dollars on a torque wrench that I’d use probably a couple dozen times, and the reviews said I’d be lucky to get that from the Wheeler before it broke. But I figured I’d take one last look before I committed and that’s when I rediscovered Fix It Sticks.

I’d known about this company for a while but I’d always hesitated because of the cost and the fact that I would need multiple (expensive) torque limiters rather than one torque wrench. It was during this time that I discovered that Fix It Sticks had fairly recently released an “all in one” torque limiter. Aaaaand since I was already gonna spend at least $100 on a torque limiter and T-way wrench, might as well spend $140 on their AR-15 Toolkit and a torque limiter.

Now I want to be very up front about this. These tools are pricy. You can achieve the same ends far cheaper if you are simply looking to do something like attach a rail section to an MLOK upper. If however you are someone who appreciated a quality tool and the convenience of being able to take said tool with you to the range in a small and convenient form factor, Fix It Sticks may be for you.

In short, I love these things. My only regret is that I didn’t get the works kit, because I have spent easily the same amount of money in adding tools to my kit. Partially this is because the hard case version of the AR-15 Toolkit doesn’t have much room for expansion, this is my only complain with my original purchase. You can see in one of the images above that I had to jenga the torque limiter into the case by shifting all the bits on the opposite end to one side and flipping the one in the lower left corner to get it to fit. I went with the hard case rather than the soft case because I wasn’t thinking that I would expand my kit much past my initial purchase, but clearly that isn’t how things went down.

Since the initial purchase I have bought their Duo Case (which at $38 is spend but should pretty well solve my lack of expansion room issue), and their Ratcheting T-way wrench with locking hex drive (at $48), and am strongly considering their cleaning rod kit (at ~$112 that’s speedy so I’m not certain that I’ll end up pulling the trigger but I’m seriously considering it).

The bits themselves are well made and properly hardened, but like all 1/4″ tool bits the are considered consumable and will wear with use. In fact the bits are not covered by their warranty because they are considered consumables.

The warranty otherwise is two years for the tools and one year for torque limiters. At this pice point I would rather see a 5-10 year on the tools (if not lifetime), and I am a bit concerned by the one year on the torque limiters. Mine has held up through pretty standard use at a little over a year and still holds accurate to +- 5% when I put it on a gauge.

This kit has lived in my range bag since I got it and I’ve gotta say I never realized how much I was using the Leatherman I keep in there until I had actual tools available to me.

Fix It Sticks offers several kits and all of their tools are available individually. I look at this as a buy once, cry once purchase, and I wish I had just gone all in on my initial purchase as it would have saved me a fair bit of money.

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