Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Classic & Vintage
Reload this Page >

Best of new and old Pumps: Silca vs Lezyne

Notices
Classic & Vintage This forum is to discuss the many aspects of classic and vintage bicycles, including musclebikes, lightweights, middleweights, hi-wheelers, bone-shakers, safety bikes and much more.

Best of new and old Pumps: Silca vs Lezyne

Old 01-11-12, 07:12 PM
  #1  
WJV
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
WJV's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Laramie, Wy
Posts: 184
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Best of new and old Pumps: Silca vs Lezyne

About a month ago my dad asked if I had any ideas for a Christmas present for my mom. I knew she was looking for a nice floor pump and subsequently did some research on the best pumps available. I came down to the new Silca Pista or the Lezyne CNC. My dad is a shade-tree machinist and I thought he would appreciate the CNC’d pump so I recommended the Lezyne. I never thought that he would pick up on it, but I dropped a subtle hint that someday I would like to own one too.

After looking into all the nice pumps, I felt self-conscious about my garage-sale Blackburn cheapy. I remember hearing about the legendary old Silca Pistas with the cast iron base and posted in the WTB thread. I intended to rebuild it over the holiday break. Nlerner responded and was awesome enough to send me one for the cost of shipping.

As soon as the pump came in I tried it out to see what it needed. Other than a cracked gauge, the most obvious problem was a leaky check valve. I decided to pretty much rebuild the whole thing and even splurged for a new wood handle. I think the total cost, including shipping, was around $45.00.

Replaced parts include:
Handle
Leather plunger
Check valve
Gauge
Pump head o-ring
Pump head valve-stem constrictor

So I thoroughly cleaned the pump and replaced everything. I took around fifteen minutes to clean and around twenty to replace everything. Afterwards, the pump worked great, although the pump head is still a little fussy and doesn’t always want to seal tightly.


Replaced Parts

Well Christmas came and Santa left two Lezyne pumps under the tree. Turns out, ol’ Dad is not as oblivious as he acts sometimes. So I now have two pretty nice pumps. I thought it would be fun to compare the best pumps of their time (arguable) side by side.

The Silca: There is something nice about the Silca. If the casting on the bottom is the date, this pump was made in 1988. The weight and the feel of the steel give it an aura of quality. The replacement wood handle is much nicer feeling than the old plastic handle. Also the stroke feels solid both on the up and down traverse. There is no rattle or loose feeling like I anticipated. The new gauge is stylish but is as functional as the original. By far, the largest drawback to the pump is the hose and head. The hose is too short and can make head placement awkward. The pump head, despite being rebuilt, is finicky. The brass is nice but the head continued to want to jump-ship around 100psi. It took several frustrating tries before I could pump to 120psi without loosing engagement on the valve stem. Last, the one side foot stabilization is a weak design. It doesn’t seem to be an issue when actually pumping, but when not in use, the pump falls over easily from the slightest agitation.


This is a replacement gauge. The original went to 240psi, but it was cracked and not near as cool



The Lezyne: This pump feels like a piece of precision machinery. The quality fit of the pump and forethought of the designers is evident throughout. Manipulating the pumping motion feels like gliding an oiled ball bearing. The long hose meant I could reach a couple of bikes without having to move the pump. I also appreciated the thread on pump head; it provided a seal that I knew was not going to slip at any pressure. The details of this pump really stand out. There are small rubber feet on the bottom so the pump doesn’t slip on slick surfaces. There is a hook on the backside of the base to secure the pump head. A small button on the head releases hose pressure so no air escapes when removing the head. In addition to the polished finish, these little things really make the pump shine. My only gripe about the pump is the base. For a pump that claims every part is CNC cut, the cast aluminum finish disappointed me. It is a completely superficial, vane complaint, but the duller and imprecise lettering detracted from the overall appearance. I expected the most ornate part of the pump to be sweet CNC’d billet.






Overall conclusions. Both are fine pumps. The Silca feels warm and full of character but I cannot get over the crappy pump head and instability. The Lezyne is gorgeous and works flawlessly but feels slightly industrial when compared to the Silca. I’ll keep the Lezyne in the shop and use it frequently. The Silca (after replacing the head) will go in my car and will be used when someone forgets to pump up before a ride.




The button on the right side of the Lezyne releases the pressure



Silca
Construction Material: Steel
Height: 23.75"
Weight: 3.43 lb
Hose Length: 32"
Tube Diameter 1.19"
Gauge max pressure: 200psi/15bar
Strokes to 120 PSI: 86
Date: 1988

Lezyne
Construction Material: Aluminum
Height: 25.5"
Weight: 2.99 lb
Hose Length: 50"
Tube Diameter: 1.19"
Gauge max pressure: 220psi/15bar
Strokes to 120: PSI 33
Date: 2011

I’d like to thank nlerner for his generosity. Feel free to ask any questions.

WjV

Last edited by WJV; 01-11-12 at 07:17 PM.
WJV is offline  
Old 01-11-12, 07:27 PM
  #2  
Full Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: seoul korea
Posts: 462

Bikes: 3Rensho SuperRecord Export, Bridgestones MB1 RB1 XO2, Colnago Super, Medici GranTurismo, Schwinn Paramount, Olmo Competition, Raleigh Portage, Miyata 1000, Stumpjumper, Lotus Competition, Nishiki Maxima, Panasonic DX6000, Zeus Criterium

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 31 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 89 Times in 37 Posts
i recently got a lezyne classic floor drive off craigslist to replace my leaky park floor pump. its incredibly good!

also got the lezyne slip chuck from the LBS and it is also really great. i highly recommend it. saves a lot of time if you're pumping up a lot of tires in succession and doesn't slip / blow off like other pump chucks.

Last edited by brooklyn_bike; 01-11-12 at 07:34 PM.
brooklyn_bike is offline  
Old 01-11-12, 07:34 PM
  #3  
Full Member
 
Kanegon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Portland Maine
Posts: 364

Bikes: Topstone, Chisel, 930, Facet

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4 Post(s)
Liked 4 Times in 2 Posts
I have no problems with modern design when it's executed like the Lezyne. instant classic.
Kanegon is offline  
Old 01-11-12, 08:04 PM
  #4  
Senior Member
 
champion city's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Edmonton
Posts: 151
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I've got a lezyne pump myself, and it's the best pump I've ever owned. They even make a model with larger air displacement (bigger barrel) to pump MTB tires faster. Perfect for lazy slobs like me!
champion city is offline  
Old 01-11-12, 08:37 PM
  #5  
Rustbelt Rider
 
mkeller234's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Canton, OH
Posts: 9,105

Bikes: 1990 Trek 1420 - 1978 Raleigh Professional - 1973 Schwinn Collegiate - 1974 Schwinn Suburban

Mentioned: 20 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 261 Post(s)
Liked 372 Times in 177 Posts
Yeah, those lezyne pumps sure are sweet looking. I can see myself buying one someday but it's just so over the top. Granted, a floor pump is the tool that I use the absolute most.

My park tool pump is very unsexy, but it's never ever given me trouble.
__________________
|^^^^^^^^^^^^^^| ||
|......GO.BROWNS........| ||'|";, ___.
|_..._..._______===|=||_|__|..., ] -
"(@)'(@)"""''"**|(@)(@)*****''(@)

Last edited by mkeller234; 01-11-12 at 09:09 PM.
mkeller234 is offline  
Old 01-11-12, 09:06 PM
  #6  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 2,698
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
I guess I'm really spoiled because of the fitting on my Silca. It's a very simple lock-on pump head and makes pumping even my track tires extremely easy.

Of course, there is a rubber grommet that sometimes needs replacing, but past that...beauty.
DRietz is offline  
Old 01-11-12, 09:25 PM
  #7  
"Chooch"
 
ciocc_cat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Prairieville, Louisiana
Posts: 1,659

Bikes: Late 1990s Ciocc Titan

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 2 Times in 2 Posts
I have a Silca Pista pump that I purchased in the early 1980s. I replaced the head in 2009 and it still easily airs up my tubulars in a just few pumps.
ciocc_cat is offline  
Old 01-11-12, 09:50 PM
  #8  
missing in action
 
Chris_in_Miami's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 4,483
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 42 Post(s)
Liked 49 Times in 29 Posts
Thanks WJV for sharing your experience with these! I have a Lezyne Micro floor drive that I love, it's always a hit on group rides when someone needs to borrow it

Silca pumps seem to be drawn to me, I found a mint pista at the Goodwill, another at a flea market, as well as a super pista. The Silca screw-on replacement chuck is a bit better in my experience than the standard unit as pictured above.
Chris_in_Miami is offline  
Old 01-11-12, 09:56 PM
  #9  
Iconoclast
 
rat fink's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: California
Posts: 3,176

Bikes: Colnago Super, Fuji Opus III, Specialized Rockhopper, Specialized Sirrus (road)

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I currently have three different Lezyne pumps. On the only one that ever had problems, (after I sold it to a riding buddy), he called to see about a leak it was having. They said this was a known problem, and that they would send him a new hose, but they ended up sending him a new pump instead! This was even after he informed them that he was not the original owner. The great service is a perk, but I would buy their stuff even if they didn't have good service. The product is that good.
rat fink is offline  
Old 03-18-12, 06:28 AM
  #10  
Senior Member
 
rootboy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Wherever
Posts: 16,748
Mentioned: 92 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 556 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 133 Times in 79 Posts
Nice photo story WJV. Very informative and helpful.
rootboy is offline  
Old 03-18-12, 06:53 AM
  #11  
Fat Guy on a Little Bike
 
KonAaron Snake's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Posts: 15,944

Bikes: Two wheeled ones

Mentioned: 42 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1254 Post(s)
Liked 345 Times in 174 Posts
This is far more thought than I've ever put into a pump. I push the handle on my Specialized Air Tool Comp and it pumps the tire. I don't know if it feels warm, industrial or cool - I push the handle down and the tire inflates. The Specialized pump takes less pushes to fill a tire than some others I've had, so I like it. It sits off to the side and out of site, so I don't worry much about what it looks like. The end.

Last edited by KonAaron Snake; 03-18-12 at 06:56 AM.
KonAaron Snake is offline  
Old 03-18-12, 07:02 PM
  #12  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 428

Bikes: 2003 Lemond Zurich; 1987 Schwinn Tempo; 1968 PX10; 1978 PX10LE, Peugeot Course; A-D Vent Noir

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
I love my Lezyne Floor Drive (non-CNC model). The valve stem connector takes some getting used to (it's reversible for either Presta or Schrader stems). Also, I had to return the first one I bought to the LBS because the connector leaked while pumping. There was a manufacturing error involving either the threads or the rubber seals on the Presta side of the connector. The LBS exchanged it and the replacement works fine. IMHO you can't find a better floor pump for $60...
neurocop is offline  
Old 03-18-12, 10:06 PM
  #13  
WNG
Spin Forest! Spin!
 
WNG's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Arrid Zone-a
Posts: 5,956

Bikes: I used to have many. And I Will again.

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 11 Times in 10 Posts
Nice comparo of two premium pumps, vintage and modern.

The early 80s Silca I have since then has continued to serve me well. Don't see a need to replace it. If anything, I found a cheap 2nd Silca that's barely used, as backup. The floor pump gets tossed into the trunk of my car when I may need it away from home. These days, I'm a bit lazy and simply use my air compressor in the garage.
WNG is offline  
Old 03-18-12, 10:21 PM
  #14  
Senior Member
 
cyclotoine's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Yukon, Canada
Posts: 8,759
Mentioned: 13 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 113 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 16 Times in 14 Posts
The one flaw of the lezyne is that the threads were out on the head (they are aluminum) but this is in a shop. We wore out the cheep one in less than 6 month. I still think it is a good pump and better than the cheep blackburns out there though I think they redesigned their whole line. I still prefer my topeak joe blow pro over the lezyne, the pumping action and build quality is far superior. It does like to tip over because the gauge is at the top but I like that I can read it more clearly. I am only 31 but my eyes are just starting to tell me that I am getting old.
__________________
1 Super Record bike, 1 Nuovo Record bike, 1 Pista, 1 Road, 1 Cyclocross/Allrounder, 1 MTB, 1 Touring, 1 Fixed gear
cyclotoine is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Thread Starter
Forum
Replies
Last Post
TiHabanero
Classic & Vintage
6
06-07-15 01:38 PM
krazygl00
Bicycle Mechanics
24
05-10-14 05:34 PM
renton
Road Cycling
72
02-25-12 03:33 AM
FormerFF
Classic & Vintage
53
12-05-11 12:25 PM
rbart4506
Road Cycling
6
09-26-11 02:58 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service -

Copyright © 2024 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.