Because we are not octopi
If you ride an old-skool scooter, one thing you can count on is a cable breaking. You can also count on that cable breaking at the most inopportune time. And you are almost certain to be alone at that inopportune time when the cable breaks. That’s why you need a fourth-hand tool.
A what? One of these:
Like a third-hand tool, this is something you’ll find in a bicycle mechanic’s tool kit. The difference? The third-hand tool lets you grip a cable more securely than would be the case with your fingers, but you still have to find a way to keep the cable taut while you’re gripping it. The fourth-hand tool takes care of that for you.
The picture below shows how it works. The tool grabs the cable, then allows you to tighten it by squeezing the handles with the little ratchet thing engaged. Once the cable’s tight, you can use the two hands God gave you to easily tighten the pinch bolt (if there is one) or whatever other fastener applies.
Pretty slick, huh? The tool in the picture is made by Prima, available at Scooterworks for $18 plus S&H. While any well-equipped bicycle shop should have this item, I was met with blank stares when I asked for a fourth-hand tool at a couple of local bike shops. Bike Nashbar had a fourth-hand tool… for 38 bucks, plus S&H. It looked an awful lot like the Prima tool.