A novel approach to the home repair stand from Topeak that promises more than it delivers.
The Topeak Prepstand ZX is not one of the best workstands on the market, but it has a unique take on bike support for home repair and might suit the occasional DIY mechanic.
For quick repairs, such as aligning a brake caliper or adjusting gears, I rarely bother clamping the bike in a workstand. Instead I simply hang the nose of the saddle over the clamp so that the bike is supported off the ground. It’s a quick and easy shortcut if you don’t need full stability. I’m obviously not the only person to do it, because Topeak has actually created a stand designed to do just this. By eliminating the clamp mechanism completely, weight and cost are reduced. As a result the Topeak Prepstand ZX weighs a scant 2.8kg and packs down so small it’s no problem to sling in the back of the car for a weekend riding trip. It’s also reasonable value at £150 considering its quality, although a lot of the complicated bits of a workstand are missing.
The build quality is superb, with smooth quick release fasteners, etched height markings and a keyed main support that remains aligned as you raise it. To work on the bike, you simply insert the seatpost between the two horizontal prongs and rest the saddle on the flat rubber pads.
While it’s a well-made product, it’s not without its limitations. Obviously the bike is free to swing and sway, so any job where you want it to remain fixed in place (removing bottom brackets, bleeding brakes) is made more difficult. Also the front wheel ends up resting on the floor, so you can’t use the stand for jobs where you need it to spin. And the working height is low compared to the best home repair stands, so even someone of average height will need to stoop a bit to work on the gears.
A neat idea in principle, the Topeak Prepstand ZX doesn't work that well in practice. As such we'd recommend checking out one of our recommended stands or Topeak's more conventional Prepstand Pro instead.