Ever wish you could do more with less? So do the folks at Mininch (pronounced like “mini” + “inch”), the Taiwanese company behind the innovative Tool Pen.
Inspired by the cultishly popular fruit-scented “Pop-A-Point” stacking pencils of the 90’s, the Tool Pen houses six interchangeable bit heads that can be “popped” out and replaced for different jobs.
It’s a… screwdriver?
Looks-wise, the Tool Pen is sleek and sophisticated—something you’d expect to find in a super spy’s gadget arsenal. But its appearance is pretty ambiguous, especially when the cap is on.
I admit, its appearance made me question its functionality at first. Obviously, I needed to field test the thing.
For weeks, my bathroom towel rack had been getting looser, threatening to rattle off its mounts every time I used it. All of my conventional screwdrivers were to bulky or awkward to get close enough to the wall to tighten the screws holding the mounts in place.
Fortunately, the Tool Pen was the perfect size for the job and within sixty seconds my towel rack was secured and ready for business.
There’s a lot to like about the Tool Pen: it’s compact, easy on the eyes, and great at getting into cramped spaces.
Nostalgia isn’t always the best formula for success
However, there are a couple drawbacks worth mentioning. The first is more of a personal grievance, and involves swapping out the bit heads. It’s easy to do, but can require a bit of fiddling.
For example, if you want to change out your current bit head—say, a flathead—for a new one—say, a Phillips head—you will have to remove the flathead, load it into the top of the pen and push down to pop out a new bit.
In other words, if the Phillips head is sixth in line, you will have to repeat this step five times before it reaches the terminus.
It’s also worth mentioning the price. The Tool Pen starts at $69 for the basic edition, $90 for the premium.
If you’re in the market for a basic, inexpensive set of screwdrivers, you’re probably better off looking elsewhere (you can find a decent set on Amazon for under $30).
However, if you want a multi-tool that performs well on both basic and precision jobs, I can confidently say the Tool Pen is a top contender.
Tool Pen: 4/5 stars.
The Tool Pen is available in three editions and comes in a variety of colors. Click here to find the one that’s right for you, and while you’re there be sure to check out some of Mininch’s other nifty tools, like their multifunctional WRENCHit.