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The Crankbrothers Speedier Tyre Lever is a nifty little tool that makes the fitting and removal of tyres quicker and easier for not a lot of outlay. It works on the majority of tyre and wheel combinations while also removing the risk of pinching the inner tube; get a stubborn tyre and rim pairing, though, and it's no better than a standard lever.
Over the last six weeks I've tested or been in the process of testing about five sets of wheels and at least eight pairs of tyres, ranging from skinny race rubber through to 2.1in-wide gravel tyres, so the Speedier Lever has seen plenty of work.
How it works is simple. At one end you have a standard looking curved hook, like any other tyre lever on the market, for removing the tyre. Tuck it in under the bead of the tyre and whizz it around the rim, popping the tyre over the outside edge of the wheel.
The lever is designed so that you wrap your fingers around the bottom flat section and the D-shaped section protects you from scraping the bark off your knuckles should the lever slip.
If the bead is really tight, you'll still need two levers, one to hook the sidewall of the tyre up so that you can slip the other lever in and start going around the rim.
I had no real issue removing any tyres, to be honest, and apart from the knuckle protection it works just like any other lever.
At the opposite end you'll see that there is a different style of hook, one that drops down, leaving a slot between it and the D-section of the lever. This is designed to slot over the rim's edge to help reinstall a tyre. It's got a bit of flex to it so it does work on a variety of rim wall widths.
The idea is that you get a bit of the tyre seated, place the hook of the lever between rim and tyre and pull the lever around the wheel. As it goes round it pushes the unseated edge of the tyre up and over the rim and seats it.
If you have a favourable tyre and wheel combination it works a treat, and is much quicker than feeding the tyre on with just your thumb and fingers. You also have the bonus of not pinching the inner tube, as it is tucked away safely behind the tyre.
Some tyres and wheels just don't hit it off, though, something I've noticed a bit more lately, with some manufacturers using the new standard of tight tolerances for tubeless tyres but some wheel makers not. This can make some tyres a very tight fit indeed.
In these situations, I found that the Crankbrothers lever's thin design meant I couldn't get enough purchase on it to really get the effort into flicking the tyre over the rim.
Sometimes it's better to be able to push the lever away from you to get that extra force needed to get the tyre on, but then you are leaving your knuckles exposed again to the spokes when it all goes wrong.
So, on the whole, if you've got a tyre and rim that work together then the Speedier Tyre Lever really does live up to its name. You'll be able to get your tyre off, fix your puncture and get the tyre back on in a jiffy. It'll be a massive help in the middle of winter, too, with ice cold rain making your fingers numb and shivering.
If you've got a stubborn combination, though, it's no more effective than a standard tyre lever. Something like the Pedros tyre levers, for instance, that you can get for about seven quid, or the RaceOnes that are available for under £6.
These don't make the £6.50 RRP of the Crankbrothers lever look too bad either. True, you are only getting one instead of two or three, but if your wheel/tyre combination allows then one is all you'll need anyway.
If you want all the help you can get when fitting your tyres, the Speedier lever is definitely worth a punt.
Simple and effective way to speed up tyre fettling on all but the most stubborn of combinations
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Crank Brothers Speedier tyre lever
Size tested: n/a
Tell us what the product is for and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
Crankbrothers says, "The tire lever has finally been revolutionized."
Its UK distributor Extra says: "A knuckle-saving tyre lever that removes and installs bicycle tyres in seconds."
It's a clever bit of kit that makes life easier in most situations.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Weight: 26 g
Length: 144 mm
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
On the majority of tyre and wheel combinations it works well.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
If you have tyres that go on easily it makes the job very fast with no risks of inner tube puncturing.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
You can't quite get the force required to get really stubborn tyres over the rim.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
It is the same price as many packs of two or three tyre levers on the market. That's fine if one on it own works, but if you need two it can get pricey.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your overall score
On the whole, the Speedier lever is quite a clever design that works on the majority of tyre and wheel combinations. It's robust as well, showing very little wear and tear.
About the tester
I usually ride: This month's test bike My best bike is: B'Twin Ultra CF draped in the latest bling test components
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, club rides, sportives, fixed/singlespeed,
With 20 years of road cycling and over 150,000 miles in his legs it's safe to say Stu is happiest when on the bike whatever the weather. Since writing his first review for road.cc back in 2009 he has also had a career in engineering including 3D-CAD design and product development, so has a real passion for all of the latest technology coming through in the industry but is also a sucker for a classic steel frame, skinny tyres, rim brakes and a damn good paintjob.
His fascination with gravel bikes is getting out of control too!