Frequently Asked Questions
Scroll down for advice regarding disaster recovery
What are Hodlinox plates?
Hodlinox plates are stainless steel plates specifically designed to keep the seed phrase of your crypto wallet safe. A handheld electric engraving pen (see below) is used to engrave the seed phrase into the stainless steel plates.
A set of Hodlinox plates with an engraved seed phrase is immutable and therefore safer than competing products that require you to assemble your passphrase from loose letters which are prone to fall out when the plates are handled incorrectly, deformed, or exposed to intense heat.
The plates are about the size of small mobile phone and weigh 156 grams (5.5 ounces).
What is a seed phrase?
A seed phrase, also know as 'mnemonic phrase' or 'recovery seed', is a list of 12 to 24 words which store all the information needed to recover a bitcoin wallet. It is created when you initialize your wallet for the first time and serves as a back up that may later be used to recreate your wallet later if needed, for example if you have lost your hardware wallet. Each word is 3 to 8 letters long.
See more information about seed phrases on the Bitcoin Wiki.
Example of a 12 word seed phrase:
novel interest powder ocean meadow act doctor toast element ability goddess april
Wallets that use a seed phrase are called HD wallets (Hierarchical Deterministic) and are based on a standard called BIP32. The BIP32 word list contains 2048 words in total.
Which wallets use a seed phrase?
Most modern wallets now are HD wallets that use a seed phrase for recovery. Here are a few of the most popular ones:
Because all these adhere to the same standard, you can restore your wallet in any compatible program or hardware device even if your seed phrase was generated somewhere else.
Why should I use Hodlinox plates?
When setting up your HD wallet for the first time you will be prompted to write your seed phrase on a piece of paper and keep that safe. But a piece of paper is easily lost in case of fire, flooding or other catastrophes. Stainless steel, however, will likely survive any disaster you can think of, it is resistant to water, fire, extreme cold, physical force and a number of corrosive acids.
Why are Hodlinox plates better than competing products?
Hodlinox plates combine a number of features not found in competing products:
Hodlinox consists of two interlocking plates fixed together with a single screw. It is thus very easy to lock or unlock your seed phrase with just a screwdriver.
Sealable with an all-metal security seal
This allows you to always verify that your seed phrase has not been compromised.
Immutable seed phrase
Because the words on the Hodlinox plates are not assembled from loose letters, but engraved (using an easy to use pen-like engraver), it is not possible to alter or 'remove' the seed phrase after it has been applied.
More privacy with two separate plates
Because Hodlinox uses 2 separate plates you can dispose of each plate separately when you no longer need them (e.g. your wallet is empty). This will make sure that it is not possible for anyone to recreate your wallet and trace your history of transactions.
Extra thick stainless steel
Hodlinox plates are made from 1.5mm (0.06 inch) stainless steel. This is much thicker than needs to be but ensures that your plates will withstand most physical abuse and, in case of a fire, dissipate heat more easily.
You are not limited to just 4 letters per word. Since the words in your seed phrase can be up to 8 letters long, there is room for every letter on Hodlinox plates.
How do I write my seed phrase onto the Hodlinox plates?
It is very easy to engrave your seed phrase into the plate using a handheld engraving pen such as the Dremel 290 which can be purchased online for less than $20 (See it on Amazon or find with Google).
Using the engraver is like writing with a large pencil and does not require any special skill, practice or additional tools.
You must do this yourself, do not ask someone else to do this for you.
We do not recommend punching the words in with a letter punch set as this will most likely contort the plates and requires considerably more skill than an engraving pen.
What are some best practices for keeping my crypto safe?
Rule #1: never leave your crypto on an exchange but always transfer them to a wallet of which you control the private keys.
Enable 2-factor authentication (when possible) if you have an account with an exchange.
Add a passphrase (also known as “25th word” or “wallet extension”) to your seed phrase. Do not save this together with your seed phrase.
Engrave your seed phrase on a set of Hodlinox plates.
Never share your seed phrase with anyone or make digital copies (e.g. a photo).
Do not trade but HODL.
What more can I do for extra security?
If you have a lot of digital assets and you want to add an extra layer of security, you can divide your seed phrase across three sets of plates and store each set on a different location. This is similar to a '2-3 multisig' scheme where three people hold a digital signature and at least two signatures are required to gain access.
Dividing your seed phrase across three plates.
Is it possible to pay for my order with bitcoin?
Absolutely! In fact, we prefer bitcoin payments and will give you a 15% discount.
Please send us an email if you want to pay with bitcoin so we can send you a bitcoin address and QR-code for your transaction.
My hardware wallet is stolen/missing
Assuming that you have secured your hardware wallet with a PIN code and your PIN code is not compromised, this is not a very big emergency.
What to do: use your seed phrase to restore your wallet on another wallet (any HD wallet will do).
Next, get yourself a new hardware wallet, configure it with a new seed phrase and transfer your funds to it.
My seed phrase is compromised/missing
Your seed phrase is more important than your wallet, this is a major emergency!
What to do: get a new wallet right now (any HD wallet will do), initialize it with a new seed phrase and transfer your funds to the new wallet immediately.
My computer is infected with malware
The gravity of this threat depends on the type of wallet you use:
Your computer is still safe to use for sending crypto but make sure to always check the recipient address on the display of your wallet before confirming the transaction.
Disconnect your computer from the internet, switch it off and do not use again until your funds are safe.
Use your seed phrase to recreate your wallet on a trusted device and transfer your funds to it as soon as possible.
Get a hardware wallet, configure it with a new seed phrase and transfer your funds to it as soon as possible.
I forgot the PIN code to my hardware wallet
No problem, just restore the wallet with your seed phrase, the PIN code is not needed for this. You will be prompted to choose a new PIN code (which is best stored in a password manager).
Is your question not on this page? Send us an e-mail and we'll try to help you.