Magnetic Hex Extension Keyring




Introduction: Magnetic Hex Extension Keyring

About: Just an ordinary person who loves #thinking and #tinkering

It's time to treat someone at Christmas. A simple value added gift will bring joyful to the world.. er him, my best friend who helped me survive my financial crisis once. A hex bit extension from used parts as a gift? Shame on me. Well, but this is classy, portable, useful and unique. You could not find one in the market. It is made with love.

Normally I will show you how it works at the very last step. Today, this special gift, I will show you why I called this "value-added" and how it works.

  1. Keyring : 1" (3 mm wide) Gold color gives a classy look. Strong and portable. Give a good grip and torque with your thumb and pointer to drive a screw in or out.
  2. Magnetic Hex Bit Extension : Support standard 1/4" hex bits so you can carry your favorite most useful bit. The strong magnetic will keep the bit in place without fear of loosing it, yet it is easy to pull and switch. The shiny chrome finishing presents classy look.
  3. Leatherman Compatible : It is redesigned to fit into some Leatherman's products namely Skeletool, Signal, Charge, MUT, Wave, Surge (certain varians may not support the plug-in bits). The Leatherman's bits are also fit into the extension because they are made based on standard 1/4" hex.
  4. In some cases, you cannot drive your screw in or out of a tight space with your bulky multitools, then you need an extension to finish the job.

I am sure he owns a Leatherman Signal and I am pretty sure he will love this keyring. The extra bits are nothing to count, but those are bonuses so that he can pick his favorite bit to carry. This is a kind of DIY gift from a person having financial problem :D

Interested to make one? I will make one for myself ^_^

Step 1: What You Need

Actually you can make one from brand new stuffs at cheap. All we need are :

  1. Hex Quick Release Magnetic Screwdriver Extension Bit Holder 1/4". Mostly sold in set of three sizes or ten of the same size.

  2. Flat Key Ring 1" Gold Color.

  3. Power Drill with 3 mm and 3.5 mm drill bits.

  4. A set of files.

  5. Center punch and Hammer.

Step 2: Shape the Hex

Leatherman's bits are using 1/4" hex, that is 6 mm, but they slimmed it to 3 mm at two opposite sides of the hex. Now we do the same to the full 6 mm extension. We need to file 1.5 mm off of each sides (opposite) to reduce a total of 3 mm. Keep filing and measuring and try-fitting into the Leatherman clip until you get the perfect size (3 mm). Make a shallow lock-gap at 16 mm from the hex end with a triangle file or a saw. Keep trying at the Leatherman lock-clip to get the best gap size (about 1 mm gap).

Step 3: Drill a Hole

Now we drill a hole to let the key ring in. I picked a point where the key ring can serve good grip to my thumb and pointer, and also easily lock into Leatherman lock-clip without having to remove the ring. There it is as you can see in the picture.

Punch a small dimple with your hammer. This gives the tip of your drill bit a place to ride in as you begin to drill. It is not only about a good drill bit, but you need to maintain the pressure and low speed or you will break your drill bits no matter how good they are.

Drill a 3 mm hole and then enlarge with 3.5 mm to give a good space to the flat 1" key ring which has 3 mm thickness at its wide side.

Step 4: Handling Sharp Edges

Remove any sharp edges with files. For inner side of the hole, if you don't have a tiny file to fit into the hole, you can pick any thin screw, long enough to provide good grip. Scrubs all the sharp inner edges with the threads.

Step 5: The Ring

Another good trick is using a drinking straw to help sliding in the ring. Cut the straw 3 mm then cut off one side so that we can spread it into a rectangle. Fold the rectangle in the middle and put it in the hole. The smooth surface of drinking straw prevent scratches on both the extension hex (if you decided to give a new paint on it) and the ring.

Now it's time to pick a box, ribbon, and send it. It will be delivered in time just before Christmas.

Merry Christmas,

My Friend, and all Instructables Crews and Members ^_^



    • Fix It! Contest

      Fix It! Contest
    • Tiny Home Contest

      Tiny Home Contest
    • Water Contest

      Water Contest

    13 Discussions

    Great idea I think you also have to make something for the bits too. At least few of them.:)

    2 replies

    Well, I think you can read minds, do you? I am thinking of modding one of the flats or phillips to be able to use for both because we can carry only one in our bit extender ;-)

    Haha haha, I definitely wanted to see that how you do that.

    Great Idea!

    One of the reasons I never bought the Leatherman interchangeable bit knives was that the bits were not commonly available. This idea makes the knife much more usable, using ordinary bits.

    1 reply

    FYI : Leatherman does sell cool design of Bit Driver Extender at $18, but no magnetic and no keyring ^^

    Take a look at their catalogue here :

    Wow! This is a really awesome use for those magnetic bit holders. I have at least one just sitting around that I could to this to and have a handy bit holder/screwdriver in my pocket all the time.

    1 reply

    Yeah, the same thing happenned to my magnetic bit holder, stayed in my pocket drill bag since the day I bought it (3 or 4 years ago). Well, now you can bring it everyday with your keys ;-)

    Great idea! Depending on the size of your keyring, the hole for it may be a weak point if you want to excercise some force. Therefore, one could drill a much smaller hole at the end of the extension (that sits in the Leatherman bitholder) and use a small keyring to link the extension with the big keyring.

    As I use a big carabiner for my keys, flashlight, whistle and other stuff, I need a big keyring that fits over the carabiner but is much too big to fit into my small flashlight (Fenix E5), so I put a smaller keyring between the flashlight and the big one.

    1 reply

    It is my intention using big keyring is because of its rigidity. Surely I have to sacrifice the strength of extension hex with such big hole, but drilling 3 mm (which I later enlarge to 3.5 mm) out of 6 mm the hex is still strong enough to be broken by your fingers in fixing light furniture at home. Put a small hole at the end of the extension has a better look as keychain, but I want to achieve the quick plug and play without having to remove the ring everytime I want to use it with Leatherman Tool.

    Thank you for your input anyway. Every idea will guide us to a better tool.

    Very clever addition! Thanks for the idea, and a Merry Christmas back to you! :)

    1 reply