But that doesn’t mean that I haven’t been drooling over the (new) Wiha website on a regular basis. Wiha (Willi Hahn Corporation) has more uniquely designed tools than I’ve ever seen in one place before.
And they have regular sales, which for a tool freak is like throwing a bucket of Cod cheeks to a school of sharks. Tool frenzy mania!
That’s how I discovered the Pop-Up Screwdriver and the ClicFix bit holder.
The Wiha tools I’ve seen and own are made in Germany, although they have manufacturing plants all over the world.
They always unique in their design, very high quality and with features that make them eminently usable for anyone with dirt under their fingernails.
Somehow, this too has acquired the street name of “screwdriver”, but it’s really a bit driver.
It’s officially called the “Pop-UP Torx Bit Holder” by Wiha. The “Pop-UP” part refers to the handle, which has a cool rotating magazine that, yes, pops up to reveal 12 different 1/4″ bits.
The magic is that the cushioned non-slip handle is no bigger around than a normal screwdriver grip. At 21 cm long overall for the driver, they’ve managed to squeeze in 12 of those useful bits for a total weight of 188 grams (6-5/8 oz.).
And just by chance — or maybe by design — the bit selection is perfect for working on motorcycles and scooters. The designer must be a biker.
Press the two buttons on the sides of the handle and the magazine pops up, presenting 12 different bits, each held in a plastic hex friction clip. This means any bit you need is right there, literally at your fingertips.
Besides being handy, this means you’ll always have exactly the right bit for the job, which in addition also means that you’ll be less likely to use the wrong tool for the job.
This is great for us lazy folks who don’t want to walk the 5 steps over to the toolbox to grab the right one!
But seriously, use the right tool and you’re less likely to strip the head in the screw, be it slotted or Phillips. The right tool for the job also means you can apply more torque more evenly.
So you see, buying a good tool like this saves money in the long run — the perfect “significant other” purchase argument!
One Dozen Bits
The Pop-Up includes hollow-ground flat blade screwdriver bits in 4.5 mm, 5.5 mm and 6.0 mm (1/4″) widths. Also the standard Phillips #1, 2 and 3 and the Torx T10, T15, T20, T25, T27 and T30. Of course, you can mix and match your own bits if you’d like.
And by the way, if a bit gets damaged, simply replace it with another. That’s a lot cheaper than buying a brand-new replacement screwdriver.
Most every other motorcycle fastener that is larger than the bit selection included with this tool will be a SHCS (Socket Head Cap Screw) or hex bolt anyway, and you’ll need either a wrench, socket or T-handle set for those. So the Wiha Pop-Up meets just about any need for motorcycle use.
The bits are the Wiha Premium type, using their “Special Chrome-Vanadium-Molybdenum Hardened Tool Steel”.
The bits also have a friction-based “rough” finish that provides good grip on the fastener. Believe me, these are so much better to use than anything you’ll find in a chrome-plated screwdriver set that there’s no comparison.
And by the way, the hollow ground on the flat blades gives more “bite” because it’s designed to allow more of the surface area of the blade and the screw slot to touch. That’s way better than using a cheap tapered screwdriver blade.
The Wiha ClicFix Bit Holder
Add the Wiha ClicFix locking bit holder (P/N 71490) and you gain a useful 4.5 cm in length (2.4″), again a bonus for reaching in to those deep recesses on a motorcycle.
The ClicFix has the standard 1/4″ end and is held in place by the magnet in the bit holder of the Pop-Up.
The ClicFix is also made in Germany. It has its own magnet (not quite as powerful as the magnet in the bit driver) and it has a sliding collar.
Slide the collar back to lock the bit in place or push it forward and you can pull the bit out (see the video below).
This is once more perfect for motorcycle use because many times, the magnetized bit will stay with the fastener as you pull the bit holder/screwdriver away. Lock the bit in place with the ClicFix and this will never happen.
In fact, we’ve been using the heck out of those and all of the other Wiha tools purchased over the years. This is proof enough that their designs are very usable and nicely designed, because we reach for them more than any others.
Wiha — and others — have dozens of bit holder type tools; in fact, Wiha makes a couple of other bit holder screwdrivers in the 3803 series. Those have shiny non-non-grip handles (i.e., doesn’t have the grippy rubber like ours) and fewer bits included. Also, they come with the ClicFix attached but no Pop-Up.
There’s no doubt about it, the Wiha Pop-Up screwdriver or bit driver is one of the best tool investments you can make.
It’s almost like the thing was designed for motorcycle use and it’s good for anyone from non-mechanic types who don’t own a lot of tools (or don’t want to) and semi-pro, hard-core garage tweakers. And the ClicFix is like icing on the cake.
So only one thing left to do: get back in the garage and let the farkling continue!
From “H.S.” (January 2016): “Just read the review of the Wiha pop-up screwdriver. Looks like a quality tool that most of us could use in our home kit as well as on the bike kit.
It made me think of my favorite, the Megapro 13-in-1 driver. Has the same pop up bit holder that makes the Wiha nice, and a fantastic ratcheting system to boot! It’s not cheap (~$35.00) but seems like it will last a lifetime.
It’s made of quality materials and, if the feel of the ratcheting system is any indication, it’s built to take a beating. Just feels really solid and it’s made here in the US.
I’ve read your reviews for years and found them to be very helpful. Keep up the great work.”
From “C.A.” (December 2015): “I Read your review of the Wiha pop-up screwdriver. Looks cool and Wiha makes some very nice tools. Milwaukee Tools makes a very similar line of screwdrivers. I have the TORX and Metric Hex in my bag.
One of the nice features is that you can use the same bits in a battery-powered driver. Another is the slender 3-1/2″ long bits fit in places the conventional short ¼ inch bit can’t.
They are relatively inexpensive and you can mix ‘n match the bits you might be most likely to use on your bike in one handle. The metric hex version is a real bargain if you buy it at Home depot (under $10!).
Love the website and your reviews. Thanks for all the work you put into it.”