Feedback Sports introduced us to a whole range of new tools and workstands at the Bike Connection Agency meet up this spring. They also told us how they’ve created their own Sustainability Action Group to reduce their eco impact with recycled plastic-free packaging and increased use of sustainable bio plastics. Their new Thru-Axle Chain Keeper is a great example of applying those principles to a simple, well executed and affordable workshop tool that you might be amazed how often you use.
To be honest there’s not a ton to talk about here. The Thru-Axle Chain Keeper is basically a narrow bobbin about the size of an 11-tooth sprocket. The hole through the centre lets you slide it onto any 12mm rear axle while raised edges on either side hold the chain in place.
The roller wheel is made from a renewable bio-based, PA56 polyamide plastic and comes on a recycled plastic header card.
Once you’ve removed your rear wheel for cleaning, transporting or servicing you slide the through-axle back into the bike, slotting the Chain Keeper on part way through. Running the chain over it provides enough of a stretch to get the chain and rear mech engaged rather than hanging loose. It also means you don’t get chain cleaner/lube from the chain onto the axle or grease from the axle onto the chain which is possible if you just drape the chain over the bare axle.
Because the roller spins and slides back and forth freely you can spin the cranks and/or even shift through the full range. That makes chain cleaning or servicing much easier although obviously you can’t check indexing without a cassette in place. Adding tension to the chain also stops everything slapping around if you’re moving the bike round or boxing it up with the back wheel removed.
With no moving parts, there’s nothing to go wrong with the roller wheel, while the high-density plastic is very solvent resistant too – so it should last for years even in a busy workshop.
Feedback Sports Thru-Axle Chain Keeper isn’t revolutionary in design or purpose, but it’s really nicely made in an ecologically sensitive way for an affordable cost and it’s become one of my favorite workshop/travel accessories since I bought it back from Italy.
Tech specs: Feedback Sports Thru-Axle Chain Keeper
- Price: $10 / £10 / €10
- Options: Anodized alloy QR version also available ($49)
- Weight: 17g