Versadriver Versatool Screwdriver
Miniature Screwdriver Bit Set
by "Mad Dog" Earle for webBikeWorld.com
Motorcycle Tool Reviews
Summary: Handy little screwdriver bit
set with a unique multi-position drive handle that
provides different amounts of grip and torque. The
entire package is about as small as it could possibly
be; it fits easily in any shirt or jacket pocket or a Sportbike seat.
It's been over a year since my last
webBikeWorld motorcycle tool reviews, which looked at
two different miniature tool sets, the
GearRatchet Vortex Ratchet Set and the
Stubby Screwdriver set.
obsessed since then with finding more
sets for my collection, like the
Fenix E01 LED flashlight (review) I also discovered
recently. My criteria include small
or pocket size; light weight; low cost;
and high quality. And yes -- it definitely helps
if the tool set can also be used for working on a motorcycle!
During my search, a friend told me about a
screwdriver kit called the "Versatool" or the "Versadriver",
the subject of this review. It definitely
meets all my criteria, and it's also useful both on and
off the bike. You'd need a couple more tools to
rebuild, say, a Norton Fastback, but the Versadriver is
The first trick was finding one of these Versatool
I realized there is some confusion over the correct name
of this tool. First of all, the name "Versadriver" is pretty
popular and it's used by more than one manufacturer (trademark dispute anyone?).
But to make things even more
confusing, the Versadriver is also known as the Versatool -- but it's sold under
both names and a variety of spellings: VersaDriver,
VersaTool, Versa-Driver, Versa Tool...
Also, these brand names are used by different companies for
completely different products. For example, there's the DuraPro VersaDriver ratcheting screwdriver handle; the
SnapOn VersaDriver impact wrench; the Versa Tool wood
cutting saw guide holder; the Versa Tool knife set and
holder; the Versa-Tool 950 degree F wood burning etching
tool...and probably a half-dozen more . And we're
still not to our Versatool screwdriver set.
I looked around for a Versadriver and found one just
by chance. When it arrived, it was in the plain
black zip-up bag shown in the photos and completely
absent any branding information. I wanted to know
who makes this tool, but finding the information was
going to require the little grey cells of M. Poirot,
until I noticed some engraving on the 1/4"
drive square head of the tool. It is inscribed:
"Doc.Allen us pat.D439120
It is engraved exactly as shown above, including the errant
before the Doc.Allen. Doc Allen -- there's a clue!
As soon as I searched on "Doc.Allen", I found it.
Paging Doc Allen
Once I got that sorted out, be it known that
this product is officially called "Doc Allen's Versatool",
the "Swiss Army Knife of Hand Tools", according to
The Doc. The Swiss Army Knife reference surely must be another
trademark dispute in the making, but I'll leave that one
up to the lawyers.
Doc Allen -- whoever he or she is --
sells the tool for a
very reasonable $12.95 USD. The Versadriver
version shown here was purchased from County Comm, a sort of survivalist/police
store that sells everything from watch straps to
The Versadriver shown here is nearly
identical to the Doc Allen original, with
a few exceptions: first, this one did not come in a blister
pack (thus the mystery on where it was made); second, the
little tool bag it came with does not have the Doc
Allen logo; and third, this one also includes a 2" long,
1/4" drive extension that is missing from the Doc Allen
original, for some reason.
Versatool handle positions, L to R: Folded, low torque,
medium torque, high torque.
Doc Allen's Versatool
Now that my extended intro is
complete, with probably way more background information than
you wanted to know, let's take a look.
The Versatool kit consists of a set of
11 standard 1/4" drive hex bits: Phillips 1, 2 and 3;
Pozidriv 1, 2 and 3; and flat hollow-ground
screwdriver bits 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7. The bits that
come with the Versatool seem to be the higher quality
type, about like you'd find with a good brand-name
One of the good ideas used by Doc Allen is the use of
the standardized 1/4" drive bits. Don't like the
Pozidriv selection? Need a bigger selection?
No problem, simply add your own.
plastic holder included with the Versatool holds 11 bits, but
you can fit many more in the pouch if you'd like, or buy
a tin of Altoids and use it to hold more 1/4" drive bits than you'll
ever need (eat the mints first). Or get a specialized
bit holder from
Wiha Tools (review).
But the most unique Versatool feature is
the tool itself. It looks somewhat like a
carabiner but it has a 1/4" drive tool head attached
to the loop.
The tool driver head slides all around the looped carabiner
and it can be placed anywhere along the loop; the location defines the amount of torque
the user can apply.
The tool has 4 positions: Fold the
tool head inside the loop for storage;
to the large end for low torque; to the middle of the loop for medium
torque; and slide it to the narrow side for highest
Of course, "low", "medium" and "high"
are relative terms, because the Versatool is designed
for hand use only. In fact, the Versatool was
originally designed for bicyclists, and bicycles
certainly don't need the power of a 1/2" torque wrench.
The Versatool also comes with a separate
1/4" drive hex driver that can be attached to the
driver, but is really designed to be used with the fingers
for even lower torque.
Pop a 1/4" drive bit into the
holder and you're ready to go.
And finally, the County Comm Versadriver version also
comes with a 2" extension, which is very handy and, I
think, a vital part of the system. I'm not sure
why it doesn't come with the Doc Allen version of the
The carrying bag feels like nylon.
It's basic quality, nothing fancy. It has a "GEM"
labeled zipper and it has a belt loop sewn on to the
back. The loop is made from woven nylon
When the Versatool parts are packed in
the bag, the entire package is about 10 mm thick by 57
mm tall by about 100 mm wide. It fits easily into
a shirt pocket or one of the smaller pockets on a
motorcycle jacket, or by using the built-in belt loop.
The tool is very easy to use, and the
design of the multi-choice torque handle actually seems
to give better grip with less chance of slipping than a
regular screwdriver. It's easy to move the head to
any of the desired torque positions or anything in
between. I also think that because I can keep the
tool closer to the screw, rather than having my hand
farther away like it is when I'm using a long
screwdriver, I feel like I have better control and feel
for how much torque I'm applying to the fastener.
The tool is chrome plated and it really
does seem like it's all pretty high-quality stuff --
this is not a cheaply made tool set by any means; just a
simple, ingenious device that fits in a minimal amount
of space and basically does everything a large
screwdriver set can do.
The Versatool (aka Versadriver) kit is a very handy
little tool kit that actually works very well.
It's a solid kit that feels well made and seems well
worth the 12 bucks or so that it costs to buy it.
And it has to be one of the "smallest full size" tool
sets ever made!
Review: Doc Allen's Versatool Versadriver Screwdriver
||List Price: $12.95
|Date of Review:
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From "R.G." (9/09): "I recently one
of these at a contest at bolty.net and I absolutely LOVE
it. It's so nice and compact but functional, it's
basically my new toolkit on my Hawk. I purchased a
socket driver set from Lowes that has SAE and Metric
sockets with an adapter that fits the Versatool.
So I now have a complete mini-toolkit that takes up
about 1/4th the size of other toolkits I've bought or
While I wouldn't use it to do a rebuild, or if I was
at home with access to a full toolbox, it's perfect for
on a ride when you just need to tighten or loosen or
I think I'm going to buy two more, one for my other
bike, and one for my mountain bike."