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Lifeline Performance 2 in 1 Crank Remover



Too fragile, if our test sample is indicative, but worked well till it failed

At every product is thoroughly tested for as long as it takes to get a proper insight into how well it works. Our reviewers are experienced cyclists that we trust to be objective. While we strive to ensure that opinions expressed are backed up by facts, reviews are by their nature an informed opinion, not a definitive verdict. We don't intentionally try to break anything (except locks) but we do try to look for weak points in any design. The overall score is not just an average of the other scores: it reflects both a product's function and value – with value determined by how a product compares with items of similar spec, quality, and price.

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The Lifeline Performance 2 in 1 crank remover is a workshop staple for pulling square taper and splined cranks off their axles. Or it would be, if our sample hadn't broken.

It bears more than a passing resemblance to similar tools from household names. It's an integrated design, complete with floating tip for precise alignment with ISIS types, which run to slighter closer tolerances.

The standard of machining is pleasing and more than good enough for occasional use, though it benefitted from a quick drop of wet lube to achieve the flushest possible fit.

Unlike more expensive crank removers, there's no 14mm socket or 8mm Allen key here to remove the crank bolt, so you'll need a standalone tool for that.

To remove a square taper crank you then unscrew the tool head and its tip before engaging with the crank arm. Turn carefully until you're satisfied everything's correctly aligned, and back up and start again if in any doubt.

I was able to get the extractor to work with some cranks that had partially striped threads, indicating that the fit is very good. There are spanner flats on the head so you can snug the tool into the threads.

Two complete revolutions of the 190mm handle were enough to free even the most weathered examples, although a quick shot of maintenance spray certainly helped. For ISIS systems, only the floating pin must be engaged.

I was beginning to bond with our sample quite nicely when, on the fifth run, its floating pin sheared without warning under surprisingly little force.

Chances are this was a fluke and easily addressed under warrantee. Nonetheless, I'd be inclined to spend a little extra and invest in a premium model.


Too fragile, if our test sample is indicative, but worked well till it failed.

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Make and model: Lifeline Performance 2 in 1 Crank Remover

Size tested: Black

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?

'A high quality bespoke tool for removing square taper crank arms, Shimano Octalink and ISIS splined crank systems. An essential addition for professional workshops and garage toolkits alike.' Not something I'd consider for professional contexts.

Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?

Compatible with Shimano square taper, octalink and Isis Splined cranks

Comfortable, Grippy moulded handle

Durable corrosion resistant black finish

Heat treated

LifeLine Logo

Rate the product for quality of construction:

Very disappointing hopefully ours was the exception, not the rule.

Rate the product for performance:

Reasonable while it worked.

Rate the product for durability:
Rate the product for weight, if applicable:
Rate the product for comfort, if applicable:
Rate the product for value:

Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose

Despite some nice touches, I was disappointed by its sudden, premature demise so would happily plump in favour of a better quality and more refined example.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

Nicely machined, fairly comfortable handle.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

Our sample's disappointing build quality.

Did you enjoy using the product? Initially, until it broke.

Would you consider buying the product? No.

Would you recommend the product to a friend? Not on the strength of our sample.

Overall rating: 3/10

About the tester

Age: 40  Height: 1m 81  Weight: 70 kilos

I usually ride: Rough Stuff Tourer Based around 4130 Univega mtb Frameset  My best bike is: 1955 Holdsworth Road Path and several others including cross & traditional road

I've been riding for: Over 20 years  I ride: Most days  I would class myself as: Experienced

I regularly do the following types of riding: cyclo cross, commuting, touring, fixed/singlespeed, mtb,


Shaun Audane is a freelance writer/product tester with over twenty-eight years riding experience, the last twelve (120,000 miles) spent putting bikes and kit through their paces for a variety of publications. Previous generations of his family worked at manufacturing's sharp end, thus Shaun can weld, has a sound understanding of frame building practice and a preference for steel or titanium framesets.
Citing Richard Ballantine and an Au pair as his earliest cycling influences, he is presently writing a cycling book with particular focus upon women, families and disabled audiences (Having been a registered care manager and coached children at Herne Hill Velodrome in earlier careers)

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