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For little jobs and frequent flyers, the Granite Hex Stand is ideal. It's never going to replace a full workstand, but I found it mostly stable and robust enough for cleaning and travelling. As a pure workstand, it's easily beaten by anything that clamps the bike – I'd see this more as a secondary stand, one to take in a bike box on holiday.
Let's start with the compact size. At only 720g and with dimensions of 415 x 110 x 85mm while closed, this is perfect for those with zero space at home and for flying. With a little bubble wrap, I'd be happy to pop this in my bike box. It comes in a range of six colours, too, all in an anodised finish for extra matching to your bike points.
There is adjustment up to a 400mm bottom bracket height, for those of us with mud-plugging cyclo-cross bikes, but bike compatibility is a slight issue. I have Shimano 105 on my winter bike, a 24/22mm axle SRAM Force crank on my cross bike, and a Cannondale Si crank on my race bike. Of these, the Cannondale crank will fit, but the bearing preload cap must be removed, and the SRAM crank is mounted to the system on the drive side, which makes working on the drivetrain quite awkward as the main arm of the stand gets in the way of turning the pedals.
The Shimano-equipped bike is much easier to work on. The bearing pre-load cap is simply replaced with the supplied M20 adaptor. You then remove the 30mm sleeve from the stand arm and you have the ability to work on the drivetrain with nothing in the way.
In operation, the stand is reasonably stable. The bike remains firmly in the stand while cleaning and adjusting the gears. I did find that anything other than flat ground caused the BB to start slipping off the arm, but when used properly, there's no issue.
I took the stand along to CX races, for some light post-race cleaning, so it has seen quite a bit of water. The spring loaded crank arm has remained smooth, but you've got to keep the main support pole clean otherwise opening and closing the stand becomes difficult.
At £62, it's a fair amount of money to invest, and I'm a little unsure as to whether I would. Its biggest drawback for me is that it's only a small step up from working on the floor; any more than a few minutes of working at this level left my back and knees complaining. Unless you live in a flat with zero space, I'd advise investing in a larger stand that folds away to a slightly bigger size. You'll still be able to take it to races, but it'll be a lot easier to work on the bike when you need to.
For frequent flyers, though, I'd thoroughly recommend it. The simplicity it offers when rebuilding the bike and washing it in an unfamiliar location is great. Your travelling companions will be envious, hopefully to the point that they buy you an ice cream in return for its use.
A great stand for frequent flyers and useful for pre-race prep, but there are more back-friendly options
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Granite Hex Stand
Size tested: n/a
Tell us what the product is for
"Light and portable bike stand for hollow crank axle bikes. It is compatible with most mountain bike cranksets and Shimano road crankset with M20 adapter bolt."
Yep, it's certainly light and portable. Granite shows it being used after a ride, specifically a mountain biker who is wanting to wash his bike before it goes back in the car. Yes, it's good for that, but there are better stands for doing that. I'd say its real USP is that it's a bike-box-friendly stand, so ideal for taking abroad.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Shimano Road Crankset Adaptable
An M20 adapter for Shimano road crankarm is also included in the box. Replacing the left crankset bolt with the adapter, the road crankset can be adapted to the 10mm axle of Hex stand.
Multiple Axle Standard Support
Axle sleeve for 24mm and 30mm hollow cranksets. Inner axle for 10mm hex holes and Shimano adapter
Adjustable Axle Height
Hex stand has the unique height adjustment feature. There is 65mm adjustment range that makes Hex stand fit up to 400mm BB height.
Weight: 720g (1.6 lb)
Dimension: Open - 415(H) x 480(W) x 380(L) mm
Close - 415(H) x 110(W) x 85(L) mm
Color: Black, Sliver, Red, Blue, Green, Orange
Package includes Hex stand, carry bag and adapter for Shimano crankset
The construction is very good. The spring-loaded crank arm feels very secure and the M20 adaptor very well made.
If you have a Shimano crank and do a lot of flying, this will be a great little tool.
So far so good. The spring is still positive and the metal hasn't been affected by the constant washing. I have had to keep the main support pillar clean as dirt will make opening and closing the stand difficult.
I could pop this in my bike box and not trouble airline weight limits.
As you're still effectively working on the floor, the old back and knees will suffer should you need to spend much time working on the gears.
It's well made and light, but £62 for a stand I'd only really use when flying or cleaning my bike during the CX season is a little steep.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
On flat ground, with a Shimano crankset, this worked really well for a quick clean or mech adjustment.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The ability to stick this in my bike box for post-flight rebuilding and holiday cleaning.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
The fact that you're still effectively working on the floor when larger, cheaper stands that still fold away to a relatively small size raise the bike to a standing height, make this just a little niche.
Did you enjoy using the product? For small periods of time, yes.
Would you consider buying the product? I don't do enough flying to justify the cost, so no.
Would you recommend the product to a friend? If they were a frequent flyer, yes.
Use this box to explain your overall score
Gains points for light weight and portability. Loses them for a high price and low-to-the-ground working position.
About the tester
I usually ride: Cannondale Supersix Di2 My best bike is:
I've been riding for: 5-10 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, time trialling, cyclo-cross, commuting, club rides, general fitness riding, I specialise in the Cafe Ride!