The 'Stique project started in Sep-13 when our founder, Greg McDonald, decided that a new plastic he had come across in his plastic injection moulding activities, would make a great tyre lever for cyclists. This plastic came from the automotive industry, where it is used to make parts in plastic that used to be made of metal. It's therefore known as a metal-replacement plastic. Greg's frustration with existing tyre levers breaking, however well-made or strong they were said to be, prompted him to try injection moulding some tyre levers in this metal-replacement plastic.
First trials proved a success. The material's strength meant it could be made thin where it needed to be, without compromising the efficiency with which it did the job - getting those tough, tight-fitting bicycle tyres off their wheels. It was this toughness that made Greg go on to add further functionality to the tyre lever in a way which no other tyre lever had done. Working with a team of designers and engineers, he pushed for storage spaces on the levers to hold split chain-links, coins, batteries and all the other little things that he knew he had, but could never find when he needed them.
When Greg asked his team to add tools to the mix, he realised he had something that could replace the multi-tool - he called it a 'Multilever'. After many prototypes and extensive field trials, they ended up with three levers, all made from the same metal-replacement, engineering-grade polymer. In laboratory tests, these proved to be 90% stronger than market-leading levers. And because they didn't feel three tyre levers were necessary, they turned the top lever, which holds the standard 1/4" hex-drive tool-bits, into a bottle opener with a useful clip that would also hold a puncture pad...and a thermometer (for now!). The bottom lever is referred to as the ML1, the middle one is the ML2 and the top one is the ML3.
The 'Stique Multilever ML123, to give it its full name, was launched at the NEC Cycle Show
in Sep-14, after a successful crown-funding round on Kickstarter
in the summer of 2014.