Getting a flat tire while commuting to work on your Roundtail Bike isn’t the best way to start your day. Especially since the lack of trunk space means you can’t carry a whole kit of tools to fix on-road mishaps with. Here’s a way to save you some time when dealing with a flat: the Cobra Tire Tool.
If you can rip a bike tire from the rim with your bare hands like you’re peeling a banana, you don’t need this. For the less able among us, though, a tire lever is necessary. While most people need to carry two or three levers to pull off flats, this tool lets you do the same thing with just one, saving you a good amount of space in your backpack.
The Cobra Tool is a small half-ounce tire lever that should fit easily on most seat tool bags and jersey pockets. Like other levers, you hook it between the tire and the rim. Unlike them, though, it comes with a looped section that will hook around the fork or chainstay to lock in place. From there, you just spin the wheel to peel the tire off with no other tool necessary.
The website claims it will cut your downtime in half. Personally, I think that’s a bit optimistic, since the design doesn’t exactly help you put a tire back on faster (you’ll still have to fumble your way though that, as usual). Still, we’re pretty sure bicycle geeks the world over will appreciate the more efficient tire-removal this little tool makes for.
You can buy the Cobra Tire Tool directly from their website. Price is $5.99.