A simple, yet invaluable device when you are servicing the caliper or cantilever brakes on your bicycle.

The third hand is a small tool which compresses the springs which pull the brakes away from the wheel-rim, thereby allowing you to adjust or remove the cable with your other two hands.

Often made of sprung steel, there is a plate on each side, with a hole for the brake-pad post to go through. It is applied across the levers, with the connecting part going between the spokes of the wheel.