DIY Cone Wrench - Page 1 of 6

Figure 1

When you need to service your front or rear wheel, you will no doubt need to remove the cone nuts in order to remove the axle and get access to the bearings. In order to remove cone nuts, you will need a special "slim" wrench designed to catch the flat faces on the cone nuts. This special wrench is of course called, a cone wrench. You can purchase a cone wrench at most bicycle shops, but if you are a all about DIY, then you can also make your own using nothing but an angle grinder and an old box wrench like the one shown in this photo.

To see an example if using a store bough cone wrench to service a wheel, check out our Wheel Bearing Service Tutorial.

Figure 2

A bicycle axle cone nut is actually a threaded bearing race. This race supports the weight of the bicycle through the axle and onto the ball bearings in the wheel hub. The cone nut is made of very hard steel, and also includes a dust cap that helps keep water and dirt from entering the bearings.

Figure 3

To make your own DIY cone wench, you will need a box wrench that fits onto the flat sections on your cone nut. Well, you can actually use a smaller wrench like I did, and open it up to fit, but it is easier to start with a wrench that fits if you have one you are willing to "hack" for the cause. As shown here, a normal wrench is much too thick to fit on the cone nut when there is another nut installed over the top of the cone nut. What we will do here is simply grind down the wrench until it is about half as thick as it is now. I choose a wrench that was slightly too small to fit, so I will also be opening up the slot in the wrench to fit the cone nut.

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You can build it yourself from our easy to follow DIY plans!