Experiments aimed at assessing the robustness of nitrogen-etched, single-atom tips (SATs) prepared using W(1 1 1) single crystal wire were performed. Our experiments showed that single-atoms tips sustain minimal damage when exposed to atmospheric conditions and can be readily and quickly nitrogen-etched to single-atom tips thereafter. The SATs can be annealed at temperatures up to 1100 °C with minimal shape changes. Moreover, annealing temperatures in excess of 1200 °C resulted in an apex faceting which may prove important in further single-atom tip creation. Procedures for warming of the SATs from operating temperatures of 80 K were also evaluated to determine conditions that limit tip contamination. These results show that SATS could be fabricated in a dedicated vacuum system and subsequently transferred to other instruments where they would undergo a brief conditioning procedure to recover the single-atom apex configuration prior to being subjected to operating conditions.