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Hutchinson Tyre Levers

6
£14.95

VERDICT:

6
10
Decent levers that tackle very stubborn tyres without damaging tubes, but quite expensive
Strong
Effective

Price is high
Weight: 
50g

At road.cc 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 Hutchinson Tyre Levers employ a steel core that's coated in a rim/tyre friendly composite, theoretically offering the ideal blend of strength and kindness. You'd be going some to bend (let alone snap) one, and they do a decent job of shifting and refitting very stubborn beads. However, there are cheaper composite models capable of giving them a seriously good run.

These are a wedge pack-friendly pairing and clip together for safe keeping (or so you can lose both...) The lip is more pronounced than some designs, which theoretically (although not always, in practice) bodes well for hooking tight beads away.

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You can use either the bare metal end or the coated end, depending on whether you need the protection of the softer plastic or not.

2021 Hutchinson Tyre Levers 1.jpg

I've tested ours on a range of road, tour and mountain bike tyres; some more stubborn than others. The good news is they made short work shifting and repatriating most of them.

The steel core's rigidity compensates for the absence of spoke hook, enabling me to pin one section of bead in situ and then, with the second lever, hook the final section home.

> Beginner's guide to bike tools – get all the vital gear for basic bike maintenance

Small tyres – the types common to tagalongs – can really fight back, and the knobbly on my trailer commonly induces pornstar-esque grunting and spits standard levers across the garage (hence I typically reach for my workshop tyre wand). I was pleased to discover the Hutchinsons can conquer this too.

Value

Compared with other steel core levers, the Hutchinsons are priced reasonably: the Park TL6.2 Steel Core Tire Levers are £15.99, while the Feedback Sports Steel Core Tyre Lever Set is £14. That said, you can pay far less for much the same thing – the LifeLine Steel Core Tyre Lever Set is £7, and includes three levers.

You can of course get composite models for considerably less again, and some are surprisingly strong. Some people may also feel more comfortable avoiding hard steel when tackling expensive carbon rims – the RaceOne Tyre Levers are a good choice for very stubborn beads, for instance, and well worth considering. They're £2.50 and also come in a pack of three. My test set is still in good nick several years down the line, too.

B'Twin's three-pack of polyamide levers (as seen in its 300 Bike Tool Kit) remain my defaults and seem really hardy, are just £1.99 and even have a two-year warranty.

Summary

With so many tyre and rim combinations, it's difficult to find a universally perfect lever. That said; Hutchinson knows a thing or two about tyres, and while these won't enter my personal hall of fame, they are decent staples.

Verdict

Decent levers that tackle very stubborn tyres without damaging tubes, but quite expensive

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road.cc test report

Make and model: Hutchinson Tyre Levers

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?

Hutchinson seems to feel this is self-explanatory. And it is.

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

Steel core for strength, thermoplastic coating to protect rims, tyres and tubes from damage.

Rate the product for quality of construction:
 
7/10

No signs of wear.

Rate the product for performance:
 
7/10

Good performance and have removed and refitted a range of tyres with ease, including a very stubborn, bargain-basement 16x1.75.

Rate the product for durability:
 
7/10

So far, there are no obvious signs of fatigue or cosmetic damage. I have deliberately left them out in the rain for a few nights. No hint of corrosion.

Rate the product for weight (if applicable)
 
7/10

Relatively svelte, compared with some high-quality composites.

Rate the product for comfort (if applicable)
 
7/10

Reasonable length, so grazed knuckles haven't been an issue.

Rate the product for value:
 
5/10

Competitive alongside other steel-core models, but relatively expensive against regular composite designs.

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

Perform reliably on various (some very stubborn) tyre types and seem kind to rims, tyres and tubes - no pinching to date.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

Rugged and well designed.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

Nothing.

How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?

Compared with other steel core levers, the Hutchinsons are priced reasonably: the Park TL6.2 Steel Core Tire Levers are £15.99, while the Feedback Sports Steel Core Tyre Lever Set is £14. That said, you can pay far less for much the same thing – the LifeLine Steel Core Tyre Lever Set is £7, and includes three levers.

You can of course get composite models for considerably less again, and some are surprisingly strong. Some people may also feel more comfortable avoiding hard steel when tackling expensive carbon rims – the RaceOne Tyre Levers are a good choice for very stubborn beads, for instance, and well worth considering. They're £2.50 and also come in a pack of three. My test set is still in good nick several years down the line, too.

B'Twin's three-pack of polyamide levers (as seen in its 300 Bike Tool Kit) remain my defaults and seem really hardy, are just £1.99 and even have a two-year warranty.

Did you enjoy using the product? Yes

Would you consider buying the product? Yes

Would you recommend the product to a friend? Generally speaking, yes

Use this box to explain your overall score

These are decent tyre levers for really stubborn beads, they're well made and they get the job done. They're at the expensive end for what they do, though, and only outperform far cheaper composite levers at very high forces.

Overall rating: 6/10

About the tester

Age: 47  Height: 1m 81cm  Weight: 70kg

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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