Looking for the plastic nut starter

With the original VEX kits we got a plastic tube that was a really wonderful nut starter. I’d like some more for new teams, but VEX doesn’t sell them as an item.

I’m looking for a new source, can you help?

Need the tube, don’t need the “use a magnetic nut driver, use gum on the end of an Allen key, use tape on one side of the wrench opening, use rolled up paper, let your cat lick your finger and that will hold the nut, there is a Convex library call that you can use, etc.” type tricks. Just sources for a similar device. Thanks

I’ve never heard of those, do you have a picture?

I’d think that some type of semi-flexible hose of the right size would work well.

In the bottom of the picture, between the flat metal and the bearing block. It’s the plastic tube about 4" long. You’ll need to click the picture to get it full sized.

That’s unfortunate that Vex does not sell them as an individual product. Here’s a similar product I found after a few minutes of searching.

I’ve actually never tried using a nut starter, though my club does have nut drivers now that we use sometimes.

I had found that on a prior search, that’s very, very close to what I want. That tool will start a #6 nut, but I need it to start #8 nuts (for the 8-32 bolts).

I did a bit more searching and found this. It’s not exactly what you’re looking for but it would probably work.

Alternatively, if you have a 3D printer you could look into 3D printing your own nut driver.

I found those 2 links as well, but nothing similar to the pictured one. I’m guessing the one that came with the VEX kits was custom, just like those awesome wrenches with the holes that fit axles, I wish they still made them.

The next time I’m at Home Depot I’ll take a look around, I’m sure there will be some good DIY ways to make one.

Oh yes, the axle wrenches. I horde the last few of them. The ability to be able to spin a gear train with them or putting a collar on and pulling a tight axle out of a gear is awesome.

Maybe we can add the wrench to JVN’s new product list!!!


We use two different tools for the job.

Telescoping Magnet

-Fairly good hold
-Any orientation will work

-Magnet can be attracted to other things


-Locking grip
-Excellent hold

-Shorter reach


-Nick H. (8000)

Jewelers pliers work too. Various types to get the nut in place. This set gives you snips too.


In tight spots, wrapping a zip tie around the nut can hold it just enough to get started. A little dexterity is required here.