When it comes to mounting road tires, there’s huge variation in how easy the process can be. From loose fitting clinchers to painfully tight road tubeless tires, this unique little British tyre lever promises to take away the pain using a grooved lever blade to unmount & claw to remount stubborn road rubber.

TyreKey, an easy-to-use No-Pinch tire installation tool

TyreKey, an easy-to-use No-Pinch tire installation tool tyre lever, tire lever

Even though you don’t actually need it for many tire+rim combinations, the standard tire lever is a simple, but necessary tool for every cyclist – a smooth-tipped, non-marring pry bar that lets you leverage a tight tire bead over the edge of the rim. But as simple as it is, pretty much every cyclist has struggled at least once to get a hardheaded tire on, and probably inadvertently pinched a tube in the process. Now with the adoption of more road tubeless tires, a securely fit bead becomes ever more important and many tire+rim combos have become more difficult to manage.

Enter the TyreKey, designed and manufactured in North Yorkshire to ease our tyre [sic] mounting woes.

TyreKey, an alternative tire installation tool – How does it work?

The TyreKey was developed specifically to help repair punctured tubes out on the road when hands are rain-soaked & fingers frozen, that time when you are most likely to pinch a hole in your last spare tube.

So to pull a tire off, you slide the TyreKey under the bead like a standard lever, but then the claw design allows you to twist the key to easily pull the bead away from the rim. The TyreKey doesn’t really look to be better than a standard lever for unmounting, but reinstallation is its secret power.

After installing a new tube and making sure it is inside the tire body (or sitting a tubeless tire in place), by hooking that claw over the entire tire the hook on the claw lifts the lire bead into place without ever contacting the tube inside – no pinching possible. Since the TyreKey doesn’t have to fit between the tire bead and rim, it should work for tight tube-type and tubeless setups, making it a universal aid for any tight tire-to-rim combination.

TyreKey, an alternative tire installation tool – Tech Details & Pricing

TyreKey, an easy-to-use No-Pinch tire installation tool tyre lever, tire lever

Of course the claw design does limit the size of the tire you can use this tool width. TyreKey suggests that it is best suited for up to 35mm tires only – sorry fat tire gravellers & mountain bikers (you’ll have to wait for the bigger version that is currently in development.)

TyreKey, an easy-to-use No-Pinch tire installation tool tyre lever, tire lever

The injection molded in the UK, carbon rim friendly TyreKey weighs just 20g and is a decent bit bigger than a standard lever at 148x48x6mm.  But if you have a tight tire setup on your road or cross bike, the TyreKey is probably well worth the added bulk and the £9 asking price. #stockingstuffer



    • Agreed. This is basically a more portable tire bead jack, but with fixed width capacity and less of it. Mine is made by Bike Hand, and it’s been a godsend with tires that have tight beads when new.

      This is a good innovation and should find a few fans pretty quickly. I figure they may need at least two more sizes to cover gravel and MTB rubber though.

    • Yeah, this is basically a tire bead jack with fixed width, and less of it. It’s neatly judged for portability’s sake.

      Your mileage will vary with tire and rim combinations but this is a good innovation and one that should find fans. I do think they may need to introduce a couple wider options to cover gravel and MTB tires though.

  1. Fixing a problem that doesn’t exist ? Never had this problem or I’m lucky.

    Just inflate a little bit the tube so it conforms better to the tire wall.

    • What tires do you use? I’ve had experiences with certain tires (Conti GP4000s) where the only way to mount the tire was with a Kool Stop tire jack. Your assertion that this is a problem that doesn’t exist is a bit glib.

    • It is a problem that genuinely exists but is totally dependent on tire/rim combination. So, it is certainly possible for someone to go their whole life never encountering it.

      I have a pair of Hed wheels with some Michelin tires on them. For the first few months, I actually got anxiety thinking of getting a flat on the road because of how difficult the tire is to remount to the rim… it seems like after a few months of riding it has become easier though.

  2. Seems like this might be super helpful if it works – I use the Kool Stop bead jack tool at the shop when things are tight. This seems small enough for a more portable solution, they and you say.

    Ordered two. Will see if it works!

  3. Can an mtb tire fit in there? Looks like it would be tight. I would otherwise be very interested as some thick casing can sometimes be tricky to mount.

  4. Ive had one of these for a few months and used it a couple of times when swapping tyres.
    Still managed to pinch one very awkward tyre/tube but I guess that will improve with more practice (I havent pinched with a lever in ages)
    Works well when fingers alone wont do it and easier than levers
    Sliding the notch along the bead is easy BUT ive skinned my knuckles a few times on the spokes doing this so not great.
    Ive still got this in my road bike tool pouch instead of levers and Id rate it at 3.5/5 but unless youre in need of new levers I wouldnt go out of my way (again) to buy one of these.

  5. C’mon people, just get 2 Pedro’s plastic levers and put on almost ANY tire with ease. If you can’t do that, then you’re probably doing it wrong.

    • Broke a Pedro’s on a very tight fit tubeless tire / extra tape combination for ‘cross. Too bad because those were my favourite. Didn’t want to try my metal levers on the same carbon rim.

      You don’t need a tool? Great, doesn’t mean no one needs the tool. This one has worked ok for me, although it still takes a lot of work on some combinations.

    • yeah im tubeless on 3/4 of my bikes, just my road bike still remains tubed, mostly due to lack of good tyres that arent stupidly expensive.

    • Hey, I actually use these to mount very tight tubeless tires (Pro-ones on carbon rims without the deep central well to ease installation)!

  6. You can still pinch on hte tire removal step. the problem here is not tools it’s rim design. Now thaat we are moving to discs can we get a decent trough in hte center again.

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