Topeak’s Ninja system isn’t new. They normally mount onto a quick release ‘shoe’ on the bottom end of seven different bottle cage options or a universal mount strip. What the Pivot collaboration introduces is a two-bolt base plate that attaches directly onto a standard bottle mount or the accessory mount under the top tube on the Switchblade and increasingly common on other brands bikes.
There are three Phoenix Dock options: The Ninja 16+ (2 / 2.5 / 3 / 2.5 & 4 (L-type) / 5 / 8 mm Allen wrenches, 4 / 6 mm hex sockets, T10 / T15 / T25 Torx® wrenches, #2 Phillips / flat head screwdrivers, 14G / 15G spoke wrenches, CrMo steel chain tool and chain hook). The Ninja Mini 20 Pro (which adds Mavic and Shimano spoke keys, bottle opener and stumpy metal tyre lever to the mix) and the Ninja CO2 which carries two 16oz CO2 cartridges and Topeak’s Micro Air Booster head.
Interestingly apart from the paper sleeves on the cartridges and the cardboard boxes they come in, there’s no Pivot logos on the cases or the tools, just the normal Topeak ones. You can get a Pivot branded version of Backcountry’s Mutherload frame strap for tubes etc.
While the Ninja tool cases and the CO2 clips are permanently fixed to the base plates they can be rotated 90-degrees for easy access. The snug fit and rubber band around the tools means they still take some teasing out, but that stops them rattling at all on the bike. While these Pivot kits have only just been announced we’ve been using Ninja tools for a while and a 16+ is a permanent resident on my gravel bike.
They’re a masterpiece of miniaturised design too, packing an impressive array of tools into a tiny package. The tools are all shiny high-quality stainless steel too, but you will need to take care not to lose some of the extra clip-on or slide-out bits. Separate parts like the chain tool on the 20 and the inflator on the CO2 kit need unscrewing before you can use them too, so while they’re ready and waiting on the frame they can still take a while to pull out of their cases and get into action.
The mounts and cases also add 59g (16+) 71g (20) or 46g (CO2) to the tool weights and the package prices $52.99/€64.99 (16+) $56.99/€69.99 (20) or $46.99/€56.99 (CO2) are expensive. Pivot are seriously top end bikes though so we doubt their owners will blush too much about that and the latch locked cases do protect the tools very well so you can use them on underside mounts or other weather-exposed points.
Pivot has taken the three most useful tools in the Topeak Ninja line up and added a really useful direct bike mount so they’re instantly accessible. The cases also add protection to the tools inside but while the quality is excellent, downsized design and loose tool parts can make them more of a faff to use than a cheaper, full-size multitool. They’re expensive and slightly weighty, too.