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I am looking for a key chain or ring that is easy to get keys on and off without breaking or injuring one's nails/fingers, accommodates 10 or so keys, and ideally fits into one's pocket easily. Anyone have some contenders?

asked Apr 09 '12 at 14:32

Jenny%20Benevento's gravatar image

Jenny Benevento

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The best system I have found is braided nylon cord, tied in a loop. I use "accessory cord" found in outdoor outfitters because it comes in many colors. 2mm or 3mm cord works fine.


  • It is soft and flexible, and lets the keys lie flat in your pocket.

  • It is strong and durable. My current piece of cord is over a decade old. Even cord that is frayed and worn will still work without breaking.

  • You can create different loops for different purposes, like work and home. You can use different colors of cord for different purposes. You can connect the two with an s-biner or some such.

  • The system is cheap as heck.


  • Though it is the simplest system overall, it isn't so simple to release one single key from the loop. You have to undo the loop and unthread some of the keys. You should do it over a table so you don't drop all the keys on the ground. But I don't need to do that often.

  • You should use a bowline knot because it is strong but easy to untie. An overhand knot is harder to untie. If you want to get sophisticated, use a Zeppelin bend.

  • You should melt the ends of the cord over a candle to prevent fraying. If you immediately press the melted end against a cool smooth surface like a plate or spoon, the end will mushroom, making it harder for the knot to loosen.

  • You will need more cord than you expect, perhaps 8 inches. You can trim it if it is too long.


answered Nov 20 '12 at 00:57

KokoTheTalkingApe's gravatar image


By Far my favorite so far is the nite-ize key-rack in stainless:



answered Jun 07 '12 at 08:44

patrick%20w's gravatar image

patrick w

First a general suggestion: search every-day carry (EDC) sites (like EDC or EDC Forums). You will find posts and pictures of almost any possible item that can be used as a keychain. My personal solution (at the moment) is a split ring and clips from County Comm.


answered Jun 07 '12 at 07:03

DanW's gravatar image


edited Jun 07 '12 at 07:04

Agree with other posts. Aircraft cable key rings are great. Easy to add/remove keys, accommodates many keys, and doesn't feel bulky in my pocket. Cool Tools archive link: http://goo.gl/pd8Zl


answered Jun 06 '12 at 18:51

mprasek's gravatar image


The best detachable-ring keychain I've found is the Bison Designs Circle Key Caddie, available at REI for $10. It lasts longer, in my experience, than the Kikkerland/MOMA version; mine has been going for 6 or 7 years so far. I ditch the lobster claw and instead put a Black Diamond mini carabiner on one of the rings. (As another recommendation, that carabiner is by far the best mini biner I've ever used.)


answered Jun 06 '12 at 17:50

Grego's gravatar image


Ever since this cool tools article I've been using the cable type exclusively and I'll never go back to split ring. Go for the plastic coated ones. There's the screw type: and a spring retention type


answered Jun 06 '12 at 17:21

dthree's gravatar image


I use a variant of the aircraft cable key ring, best darn key ring in the world. I've used the same one for years. Best part is the keys lay flat in your pocket, makes for a smaller profile than your standard key ring. Also, getting keys on and off is a breeze and it won't pop open on its own.

I actually use several of them in different ways. I have a main cable key with my main keys on that I use daily. I also have a variant that I sling smaller keyrings onto based on what I'm doing (i.e., I have a keyring with my office keys, keyring with car keys, and keyring for motorcycle keys, and keyring for house keys). Based on what I'm doing, I put the various splitring keyrings together with one of these cable key rings.

It's better than a carabiner because it doesn't pop open on its own and yet it's still very easy to pop open and reconfigure. I also will use it with an s-clip or carabiner from time to time - I usually leave the carabiner on my bag and just clip this to the bag with the carabiner when I'm in the mood.



answered Jun 06 '12 at 16:27

jradi's gravatar image


This one is somewhat expensive, but totally worth it.


answered Jun 06 '12 at 16:21

Kster's gravatar image


Similar to the Kikkerland is this one, available from the MoMA store. It lacks the latch, but adds an extra ring.


answered Jun 06 '12 at 15:50

QuestionMarcus's gravatar image


This is what you're looking for: FREEKEY


answered Jun 06 '12 at 13:57

KCL's gravatar image


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Asked: Apr 09 '12 at 14:32

Seen: 30,377 times

Last updated: Nov 20 '12 at 00:57

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