Stephen @Whataspoon here and today we are going to have a look into the Sonic Sports skate tools and accessories.
I’ve been skating for around 18 years now and I can say for certain that if there is one thing that needs improvement, then it’s definitely the tools that are supplied by brands to maintain your skates. We’ve all rounded a few bolts in our time and I reckon a few of you have also damaged or twisted tools whilst trying to remove a bolt. When I came across a metal tool that was from a car garage I suddenly realised that maybe there were some tools I could grab from other industries to help solve these issues. Conveniently, at around the same time, Brad from Endless Blading introduced me to this American brand called Sonic.
Sonic is a company from Los Angeles USA and it was started with the goal of improving the skate tools we use to alter and maintain our skates. Inline skater and roller hockey player, Cliff Chi started the brand using his skating plus engineering background to come up with the perfect tool for maintaining skates. The first tool was called the Gripz Inline Skate Tool and the main objective was to be able to hold the tool in a more comfortable way that also made the tool more efficient. After having a look at the Sonic website it seems that Cliff was tired of hurting his hands when his normal skate tool would slip away with the force exerted trying to remove bolts. The Grips tool completely took the risk of slipping away with its unique shape. The product was so much of a success that it now sits in the Museum of Modern Art in NYC as part of the Permanent Collection in MoMA’s Design and Architecture Department. Now that’s pretty cool.
So I went on to purchase one of Sonic’s tools to try it out for myself. I got myself the Sonic Pro Tool + T which was actually the wrong one for me as the star end was the longer one in this case. A great tool for anyone skating Powerslide skates. I myself use mostly FR and Endless skating products so the Sonic Pro Tool + H would have been a better option for myself so I could get the 4mm hex end as the longer one. But, besides my mistake, the tool is just flawless. I genuinely can’t fault it. When I place the hex into my axles or frame bolts I can feel that the tool fits perfectly. Certainly a huge improvement from the standard hex keys which sometimes spin side to side even when placed in the bolt/axle. The next thing I loved was that the tool cannot twist. It is so much easier now to get out those stuck bolts that customers are handing over to me. I used to place the original hex keys into a vice, place the skate on top of the tool and rotate the skate to get the bolts out. Sometimes if the bolt was super stuck it would twist my tool into some kind of spiral shape, essentially making the tool useless from that moment on. With the Sonic tool though, I can forget about the vice and simply just remove those extremely tight bolts with only my hands.
I can see that Sonic pride themselves on selling top quality products. They even manufacture everything in the USA supporting local factories and workers alongside receiving top quality work. Even NASA has tested some of Sonic’s products and have said that their spacers and axles could be used on the space shuttle. Now that is the type of equipment I want in my skates.
Here at Slicks we are happy to announce that we now stock Sonic in store and online. You can get yourself a solid Sonic tool, some bearings and bearing maintenance kits.
The tools that we have in at the time of writing this are the shorter pro tools in two colours plus the original Gripz tool. Each tool has multiple tools in one.
The Sonic Pro Tool:
- 4 mm hex
- T25 Torx
- 2 Bearing Pushers
- 2 Floating Spacer Aligners
- Bearing Extractor
- Bearing Press
- Phillips #2
Made with premium S2 tool steel
The Sonic Gripz Tool:
- 4 mm Hex
- Phillips #2
- 2 Bearing Pushers
- Floating Spacer Aligner
- Flat head
We have bearings all the way from Abec 5 to Swiss and Ceramic all from Sonic Sports in the US. These bearings will keep your travel expenses down as you will find it hard not to skate absolutely everywhere.
We have bearing cleaner kits too so you can rely on having the same set of bearings for a longer time. Going by how great Sonic’s products are I bet the bearings last a long time anyway. I am definitely interested in trying some of their bearings in the future to compare them to others that I like to skate with.
Sonic seems to offer everything I could ever have asked for in a skate tool, so thanks Cliff.
Check out the range here.