Hailing from Quebec, near the legendary hills of Mont Sainte Anne, Tool bikes fall into the rare yet growing subset of frames made completely by CNC mill processes. Cut from a slab of aluminum in two halves, then bonded together, the frames can be tweaked in just about any way the creator pleases, allowing for rapid prototyping and rolling changes. We covered the earliest Tool prototype
a while back, but things have certainly progressed since then, resulting in what you see here.
Tool's William Boisvert was rallied to the MADE show by We Are One's Dustin Adams, making him a member of the small but strong Canadian contingent on the floor of the warehouse space. The Canadians all brought some heat, with a fleet of very impressive full-suspensions in the group, but Tool's milled aluminum creation certainly turned many heads.
Tool V5 Details
• 29" front and rear
• Mullet option via link
• 150mm frame travel, 160mm fork
• 62° head angle (at sag)
• 500mm reach
• 454mm chainstays at sag, 1/2" growth through travel
• 78.5° seat tube angle
• 30mm BB drop
• Weight: 36-37 lbs
• Tool's Instagram
The machined halves are bonded together, with cylindrical inserts at the headtube, bottom bracket, and seat tube to assure that nothing will peel apart under heavy stress. This intuitive approach has proven robust under use, and also assures that tolerances are all to spec during the assembly process.
Will said the Tool bike is essentially a Balfa BB7 for the modern ages, with its simple linkage-driven high single pivot designed specifically for the use of a coil shock. He's been riding and tweaking the design for the past three years, with the bike you see here standing as the fifth iteration in the series. There are a few changes left to attend to, but overall the fit and finish feels like a sorted bike.
Hidden away in the guts of the frame are the links that drive the shock, which can be swapped to convert the bike from full-29 to mixed-wheel setups. While there isn't yet word on availability for mass-market, you can keep up to date with the project on Tool's Instagram.
More photos of the Tool can be found here