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Silca vs. SKS

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Silca vs. SKS

Old 06-07-15, 09:26 AM
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Silca vs. SKS

In 1986 I bought a Silca floor pump and have been using ever since. I have put 2 leathers in it, and 2 grommets for the pump head. The pump, even when the leathers were worn out, would still get to 120 psi, and the pump head grommet, if held down when worn, always seal. The check valve has never needed service. Really an amazingly good pump for 45 bucks in 1986!
A few years ago I won an SKS Airbase pro. It has been sitting idle all this time as the Silca still functions perfectly. Yesterday I had occasion to use it for the first time, not because the Silca failed, but because I decided it was time. Very pleasantly surprised at the quality of this pump. It functions quite well, the pump head is considerably easier to use than most new type heads that are the clamp on type for presta valve. The pump weighs a ton due to the cast base, and it moves a larger quantity of air than the Silca. Although I did not pump to 150 or more psi, it achieved 120 psi without trouble. Good pump and considerably better than the big name brands like Topeak, Specialized, Lezyne, etc., all of which I have been able to use at one time or another.

If the Silca ever dies, I know the SKS will respectfully replace it, and in 30 years, I will report on its reliability, too. I just wonder if it can be rebuilt like the Silca, when needed.
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Old 06-07-15, 09:37 AM
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My Silca floor pump died. The tube to base connection leaks. No repair has worked.
I had a cheap Rampar for decades, a Japanese made pump imported by Raleigh.
Got stolen.
What I really wanted way back was a Hite pump, simple, no pressure gauge, good end, replaceable parts, long tube, oak handle.
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Old 06-07-15, 10:03 AM
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What??? Only 2 wheels?
 
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A friend gave me a Silca for a b'day present a few years ago. I've used it a lot. Putting grease on the "leather" plunger has kept that part in good shape. The chuck seal finally broke last year but a new "improved" seal from Silca fixed that. The check valve leaks a little sometimes but I'm going to try some oil as per some other BF member's recommendation. The seal of barrel to base is a simple grommet, easy to lose or mis-assemble, so re-attaching the barrel must be done carefully. Otherwise the pump has been a treat to use. It pumps to 120psi easily and I've use it to 140 on my sew-ups and the high-end clinchers.

The most convenient pump however is a Slime automotive battery-powered pump with gauge, attached via a Presta/Schrader adapter. I plug it into a portable jump-start battery and within 30 sec I have all the psi I could ever want in a bike tire.
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Old 06-07-15, 10:07 AM
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It's nice this thread came along- I was seriously just looking at floor pumps. I'm going to be sending my Planet Bike floor pump to our son- it's a great pump- but he rides a lot less than I do. I had decided I wanted to get a fancy Park pump- but reading the reviews... The PFP-7 and 8 sound like poor pump heads.

Do you have the SKS Rennkompressor like this:





Does it work well for Schrader and Presta?

I was also considering the Serfas pump...


You know the Germans always make good stuff...
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Old 06-07-15, 10:36 AM
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No experience with above, this PB model works great, since 2011.

Spin Doctor Bike Care Kit
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Old 06-07-15, 10:56 AM
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The Golden Boy, the SKS I have is called the Airbase Pro. It is silver with a cast aluminum base and has a presta valve only head. Apparently SKS considers this a track pump or suitable for bike shop duty, and has provisions for screwing it directly into the floor as a permanent fixture. The air chamber is teardrop shaped to hide an internal tube for the top mounted air gauge. The Park pump is good, but this one is seriously better. The Serfas pump is good as well, but does not match the SKS in performance. Honestly, I have used dozens of pumps, many of them freebees given to me by sales reps, and I kept going back to the Silca. The SKS was a prize for my competitive prowess (uh-huh, lol) and I just had no need for it because the Silca has been bombproof. The closest to this I have come was a pump given to me by Giant at the same time I acquired the SKS. The pump itself was excellent, and the double walled construction came in handy at the shop when a large dent found its way into it, without affecting the internal tube where the compression took place. The pump head on the Giant was no different than every other brand, and it was less than satisfactory for me. I believe the Rennkompressor is a consumer based product, but being SKS it is probably superior to its competitors. Their fenders are exactly the same way, and I have also recently found that the tire levers included with their multitool, which is exceptionally clever, are exceptionally excellent. Honestly, I am very impressed with their goods. I also have their sweet seat pack that is quick release that was won in the same event. If you remember the Presto bags, this takes the evolution a couple of steps further and the thing is, again, excellent. I'm not a fan of German stuff as I burnt out on them years ago, but SKS is impressive.
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Old 06-07-15, 01:38 PM
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What??? Only 2 wheels?
 
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All those other pumps are nice but do they also offer their own brand of coffee? Silca does. I have not tried any. I am tempted though. But it would be extravagant, now wouldn't it?
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