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Old 02-04-02, 10:44 PM   #1
Dahon.Steve
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I need an Air Pump Recomendation

1. I have been using a compresser I purchased at sears for cars to inflate my tires but was wondering if this was the right thing to do since it could give an inaccurate reading. Does anyone here do this?

2. I just recently bought a Blackburn hand pump since my last one by Bell broke. I thought it was perfect since it can pump to 90 PSI but it has no way to measure the pressure. Now I want to bring it back and get one that can. Can anyone make a recomendation?
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Old 02-04-02, 11:01 PM   #2
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I think the Topeak Morph pumps are the best out there. You can get them with or without a gauge.

They're a little bulkier than some, but the ease of use outweighs that.

I believe the road morph comes either with or without a gauge, and the mountain morph doesn't have a gauge but despite it's name can easily pump to over 110psi.

You can always carry a small tire gauge with you.
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Old 02-04-02, 11:51 PM   #3
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For a floor pump, I'm very happy with my old Meidai which has an easy-to-read gauge and is a pretty red color! I had to put lithium grease on the gasket inside about a year after I got it, because it was failing to hold a seal. That's been almost ten years now and it works perfectly with no further intervention.

For a carry-with-you pump I've heard nothing but good about that Topeak line of pumps, and intend to buy one next time one of mine (currently Zefal on road bike, Blackburn on the MTB) breaks. I find neither the Zefal nor the Blackburn will pump much beyond 60 psi for me. The connection just pops off after after a while.
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Old 02-05-02, 01:04 AM   #4
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If you ask anyone in the bike biz there is only one floor bike pump. Silca Pista. Everything else is wannabes.
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Old 02-05-02, 03:36 AM   #5
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I've got 3 different ones that I like
- floor pump at home: SKS (German) which has a gauge and can theoretically go up to 16 bar.. this is the pump I use the night before a major ride to top up the pressure
- full size frame pump: Zefal HPX (France) which is the best full size pump.. had a problem replacing it when I lost it, as I use an uncommon size.. this is the pump I use for unloaded rides when trying to ride as fast as possible
- small size pump that replaced the Zefal and which I like better now as I can hide it in panniers: Topeak Mountain Morph (USA) it's a decent little pump and works fine.. actually almost as fine as the Zefal, but I don't like to have it on the bike when I have no luggage.. where to put it.. the Zefal is better then.
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Old 02-05-02, 05:39 AM   #6
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Silca floor pump is a great investment.
For carry pumps you dont need a guage, you can use the thumb test, after calibrating your thumb with the Silca.
I use a Blackburn minipump for everyday use (not all that good, double action doesnt work, max 80psi)
A Zefal hpx as a touring pump, gets better pressure than the Blackburn.
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Old 02-05-02, 05:53 AM   #7
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As a mini-pump I'm very happy with my topeak mini-master blaster DX. It's fine for topping pressure up to what thumb and finger tell me is the maximium (calibrated using my neighbours floor pump & guage).

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Old 02-05-02, 06:38 AM   #8
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Hmmm ... it must be a NL thing.

I agree on both the SKS for the floor (which over here apparently has the same rep in the shops as the Silca has in the U.S.), and the Zefal HPX for the bikes.

Cheers...Gary
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Old 02-05-02, 08:08 AM   #9
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Topeak Road Morph w/ Gauge is an awesome frame pump that actually unfolds to act as a floor pump. I would still recommend a real floor pump for at home use, but on the road or touring the Topeak is a fine pump.
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Old 02-05-02, 09:19 AM   #10
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Yep, i agree to that the Topeak Morph pumps (road or mountain) are really good pumps.
Its a sized between a a frame pump and mini pump, and fitted with a tube, feetstep, and t- handle.
Expensive but good.
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Old 02-05-02, 10:09 AM   #11
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Floor: ancient Medai (Schrader only) and recent $20 Nashbar (dual-outlet head). I do not know how long or well the Nashbar will hold up, but for now it works incredibly well at 100-110 psi. The Medai is great for basketballs, cars, kids' bikes, and mountain bikes, but I can't push it past about 80 psi.

Frame (full-size, for the road bikes): Zefal HP-X (2), Blackburn (1)

Frame (compact, for the mountain bike): Trek dual-action

I am still figuring out the ergonomics and best grip for the Blackburn's clever flip-out T-handle.
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Old 02-05-02, 06:27 PM   #12
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I've been using the Topeak Joe Blow Sport floor pump for about two years, and it works great. The pressure gauge reads to 160 psi, and it has a little spinny ring with a red dot on it around the edge, so you can mark your desired pressure instead of squinting at those little numbers. I can get my tires to 110-120 fairly easily. It has a double sided head for Presta and Schrader, a good seal machanism, and a big foot platform. It's also cheaper than most other floor pumps on the market ($29 at REI), so that's a major plus too.

And it's bright yellow. It matches my bike almost perfectly. That doesn't help you, but I though I'd mention it cause I think it's cool.

On my roadie I use the Zefal HPX-3. I (thankfully) haven't used it much, but when I have it has worked great. I've been able to get my tires up to fairly high pressure (there's no gauge, so I don't know for sure), but I'll usually top them off with a floor pump once I get home. It's spring loaded to clip between your headtube and down tube (that's how I do it anyway. They say it should go between the top tube and bottom bracket, but I think that's stupid), so there's no clip or velcro to have to worry about. It can be used for both valve types by unscrewing the head and flipping a little rubber widget, but that's kind of a pain in the butt to do, so I don't usually do it. The only really drawback is that it sometimes rattles a bit on rough roads (or is that my Ultegra shifters?). $22 from Excel Sports.

My mountain bike sports the Topeak Harpoon Master Blaster. It's a little spendy ($29 at REI), but I think it works great, and I have several friends that agree. It's a mini pump, but it has a telescoping tube, so you get twice the air with each stroke. The head (allegedly, cause I haven't tried it) fits both valves automatically, and it has a pistol-grip handle. It also has a little secret compartment in the handle that hides some glueless patches, it comes with tire levers that attatch to the frame clip. It's also small enough that I can stuff in in a jersey pocket for races. But, it does not have a pressure gauge, so it might not be the best choice for your purposes.


Summary (since that was an awful lot to digest): For a floor pump, I'd go with the Joe Blow Sport. It works great and it is inexpensive. For a frame or mini pump with a gauge, I'd recommend one of the Topeak Morph pumps. Though I don't own one, I've heard a lot of good things about them, and several people here seem to agree.


Wow. When did I start talking like a commercial?
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Old 02-05-02, 08:48 PM   #13
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for a floor pump I use joeblow pro. it has a large pressure gauge
with a red dot to mark the pressure. which I have to use with this
pump. ( over pressurized two tube) I found that five pumps and
the tube is at max 120psi. I also love the smart head it fits any tube just slap it on an pump
I'm still looking for a mini pump. I hear good things about the morphs.



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Old 02-05-02, 09:03 PM   #14
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Silca floor pumps seem to last forever, mine is from the early 80's and still going strong.

Zefal frame pumps also have been good for me. I have a HPX3 and a old HP both still working fine and serving 4 bikes.

Last edited by Louis; 02-05-02 at 09:08 PM.
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Old 02-05-02, 09:10 PM   #15
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My main pump is a Wrench Force floor pump, I have no problems getting to 110psi, i picked up this pump at the LBS for $25. On the bike, er, in my camelbak, i have a blackburn MP-2 ($19); Its a pain to get over 70psi with this minipump, but it works great while on the road.
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Old 02-05-02, 09:21 PM   #16
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Just for the record, in addition to my Morph pump, my choice for at home use is the Joe Blow Pro, it's a great pump for both types of valves.
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Old 03-31-02, 10:34 PM   #17
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Here's a tale about a floor pump NOT to buy...

I bought a Specialized floor pump two years ago (and as this goes to print, I forget the exact model, but I think it was called "Air Force"
Anyway within 6 months, the cheesy plastic handle cracked in the center. Guess what, my LBS told me I couldn't buy just the handle and wouldn't replace it. I nursed it along, pumping with half a handle (imagine for a second how awkward this feels).

Before the whole handle broke off, though, I remembered an old pump that was laying in the garage. I took its handle off and taped it directly on top of the old handle. I had kept the broken piece from the Specialized one. Now, thanks to a bit of duct tape, I now have an "ergonomically corrected" pump, with a handle that actually feels better than the first one did. The taped-on handle acts like a splint and the Specialized pump is now a tad better built than the day I pulled it out of the box.

The moral: don't ignore the pump handle when you're buying a new pump. It sees the greatest concentration of stress in the whole unit and is easily broken if not properly designed.

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Old 03-31-02, 11:30 PM   #18
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I have been using my old Schwinn 1500 floor pump since the 80s and I just can't break it. God knows I have abused the heck out of it but it just won't break.

On the road I have gone through several Zefals and am currently using a ToPeak Einstein. I only inflate the mtb tires to a max of 50 psi so it is just fine.
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