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Goodbye Floor Pump?

Old 12-05-22, 04:10 PM
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Eric F
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Goodbye Floor Pump?

My current floor pump (mediocre quality, mostly plastic, and been around for a while) is starting to have issues, so it's time to replace it. One of my needs is a gauge that can provide fairly accurate readings for low pressure (MTB and gravel) as well as high pressure (road, trainer, and tubeless booster), which reduces the options to digital or dual-stage dial gauges. I'm finding that most better-quality floor pumps have a 0-220psi gauge (even if the pump is only rated for 160psi) that provides terrible resolution for the ranges I use. I'm not looking for the cheapest option, but one that will suit my needs best. Silca tends to be the standard by which all others are compared, and are well-proven to last nearly forever. Lezyne seems to make some pretty decent classic-style pumps, too. There are some good contenders from Topeak, Specailized, and others.

While poking around researching floor pumps, I came across an idea on another discussion forum - a cordless inflator. The wood shop side of my garage already has a family of Ridgid 18V cordless tools, and a bunch of batteries. Ridgid also makes an inflator in the same family with a capacity of 150psi. It has a digital gauge with the ability to automatically stop at your pre-set pressure.


Replace the end with a swanky Silca Hiro presta chuck, maybe with a longer hose, and this might be a nice little device for use in my home shop.


Is this unnecessary? Definitely. A decent floor pump has worked just fine for for a whole lot of folks, for a whole lot of years, and the classic track pump is part of the tradition of cycling. I had thought about going the route of a small (1-2 gal) compressor, but I think I like this cordless idea better. A couple of downsides is that it isn't very quiet, and it cuts out pretty much the only upper-body workout I get, besides bringing groceries in from the car.

What ya think? I'm not asking what floor pump you use, or which one you think I should buy. I am curious about your thoughts on using a cordless inflator.

Last edited by Eric F; 12-05-22 at 05:28 PM.
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Old 12-05-22, 04:38 PM
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...I've never used something like that, which is small and portable. I have, in the past used a portable Hitachi twin tank compressor, when it was out and not stored under a workbench. With the compressor, since I had to wait for it to pressurize the tanks, it turns out easier and just as fast to top the tires off with a track pump, and I can get a little higher pressure with the floor pump than I can with the compressor. I inflate some tires to 130 psi.

I think I'd try to find out how long it will take to get up to the tire pressure you have in mind, before I bought one.
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Old 12-05-22, 04:48 PM
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For well over 10 years I’ve been using a Husky 1.5 gallon small compressor and hand held gauges.
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Old 12-05-22, 04:49 PM
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I've always worked in car garages since my teens, so it's compressed air for me always. It's so much faster and predictable with compressed air coming from a tank.

Tankless inflators are great for things like matresses and basketballs, but since they take a long time to inflate anything, it's easy for you to get distracted while it is filling anything, next thing you know, pop.

The smallest compressor on a tank is all you need, these often go on sale anytime the year because they are the least useful. They can only drive small things like nail guns. There are even more available used as folks often want bigger ones to run bigger air tools or paint, but big units are not required for tyre inflation which only needs seconds of delivered air.

The tanked air compressor will also open your eyes to the many other wonderful things you can do, the biggest being able to use it to dry bikes quickly as it blows air out of places that can take hours to evaporate.

This is also the reason why there is a Park Tool INF-2 Shop Inflator, they don't make a tankless inflator.

Last edited by soyabean; 12-05-22 at 04:52 PM.
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Old 12-05-22, 04:53 PM
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Originally Posted by 3alarmer View Post
.
...I've never used something like that, which is small and portable. I have, in the past used a portable Hitachi twin tank compressor, when it was out and not stored under a workbench. With the compressor, since I had to wait for it to pressurize the tanks, it turns out easier and just as fast to top the tires off with a track pump, and I can get a little higher pressure with the floor pump than I can with the compressor. I inflate some tires to 130 psi.

I think I'd try to find out how long it will take to get up to the tire pressure you have in mind, before I bought one.
I found this comparison.
It's a little longer, but not a lot. Getting a tubeless charger/booster tank up to max might be a different animal. Most of my pump use is just topping off before I ride.

Last edited by Eric F; 12-05-22 at 11:36 PM.
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Old 12-05-22, 04:55 PM
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Originally Posted by soyabean View Post
I've always worked in car garages since my teens, so it's compressed air for me always. It's so much faster and predictable with compressed air coming from a tank.

Tankless inflators are great for things like matresses and basketballs, but since they take a long time to inflate anything, it's easy for you to get distracted while it is filling anything, next thing you know, pop.

The smallest compressor on a tank is all you need, these often go on sale anytime the year because they are the least useful. They can only drive small things like nail guns. There are even more available used as folks often want bigger ones to run bigger air tools or paint, but big units are not required for tyre inflation which only needs seconds of delivered air.

The tanked air compressor will also open your eyes to the many other wonderful things you can do, the biggest being able to use it to dry bikes quickly as it blows air out of places that can take hours to evaporate.

This is also the reason why there is a Park Tool INF-2 Shop Inflator, they don't make a tankless inflator.
"Pop" is not a real issue. It seems that the auto-off at the preset pressure is pretty standard for this type of device.

I haven't completely abandoned the idea of a small compressor. Is waiting for the tank to charge much of an issue? The cordless would be much more mobile in my space, however.

Last edited by Eric F; 12-05-22 at 05:08 PM.
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Old 12-05-22, 05:07 PM
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I have one of these that I take on trips with me when flying with my bike, a Fumpa USB rechargeable mini-pump. A track pump is additional weight that I'd rather not carry in my bike box.



https://www.fumpapumps.com.au/

Is it totally unnecessary? Yes. Is it kinda cool? Yes.

Do I sometimes get lazy and use it at home instead of my track pump? Yes... 😂
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Old 12-05-22, 05:10 PM
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Originally Posted by tempocyclist View Post
I have one of these that I take on trips with me when flying with my bike, a Fumpa USB rechargeable mini-pump. A track pump is additional weight that I'd rather not carry in my bike box.



https://www.fumpapumps.com.au/

Is it totally unnecessary? Yes. Is it kinda cool? Yes.

Do I sometimes get lazy and use it at home instead of my track pump? Yes... 😂
Oh! I didn't know about these!! Hmmm....You might have just thrown a wrench in my plans.
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Old 12-05-22, 05:20 PM
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I have a Silca Pista pump purchased new in 1986 and it is still working. Costs nothing to use and is rebuildable when it needs it. To date only two plunger leathers have had to be replaced, and just this year the rubber gasket in the pump head wore out. Pumps to 150psi all day long, and the gauge is only off by 10psi after all these years.

I can guarantee that Rigid compressor will not be working 30 or 40 years from now, and will be taking up space in a landfill with the battery leaking crap that is not healthy for man nor beast. Why add such complication to an easy menial task? What is so time consuming or difficult about topping off a bicycle tire with 10psi of air using a well proven and effective design such as a manual floor pump?
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Old 12-05-22, 05:25 PM
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The older I get, the more attractive e-assist for both cycling and pumping become.
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Old 12-05-22, 05:29 PM
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When I rode dirt bikes I used a compressor which plugged into the car. I did have a floor pump as a back up. Never had any problem with the compressor. I did always use a separate low-pressure gauge because I ran 9 psi in the front.

I use floor pump for the bikes but also use a low-pressure gauge for the mtb. I run 15 psi in the front and I don't know how accurate the pump gauge is at the low end. I would think the digital gauge on the new compressors would be pretty good.
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Old 12-05-22, 05:40 PM
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Originally Posted by TiHabanero View Post
I have a Silca Pista pump purchased new in 1986 and it is still working. Costs nothing to use and is rebuildable when it needs it. To date only two plunger leathers have had to be replaced, and just this year the rubber gasket in the pump head wore out. Pumps to 150psi all day long, and the gauge is only off by 10psi after all these years.

I can guarantee that Rigid compressor will not be working 30 or 40 years from now, and will be taking up space in a landfill with the battery leaking crap that is not healthy for man nor beast. Why add such complication to an easy menial task? What is so time consuming or difficult about topping off a bicycle tire with 10psi of air using a well proven and effective design such as a manual floor pump?
All your points are totally valid, some of which I acknowledged from the start. I never said anything about a floor pump being time consuming or difficult. In fact, the cordless seems that it is slower in a head-to-head shootout. However, if I'm filling a tire from 0, I can set the pressure, hit the switch, and go do other things while it's filling. A floor pump is very selfish and demands your full attention.

Admittedly, I have an attraction to gadgets. I also have an attraction to well-made simple devices like the Silca Pista Plus...in red, of course. However, it bumps up against my issue with gauge resolution. The new Silca Terra solves the gauge issue, but is limited to 120psi, which isn't always enough pressure in a tubeless booster to seat a tire.
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Old 12-05-22, 06:44 PM
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I use a Silca Pista Plus with a Hiro chuck. Iím pumping to high pressures so the gauge works well for me. But I also have a compressor in the garage.
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Old 12-05-22, 06:45 PM
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You should just get a proper air compressor with a tank. It's much better for seating the bead on a tubeless tire. The tankless thing will not give you that blast of high pressure air to seat the bead.
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Old 12-05-22, 06:59 PM
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No question about it, tubeless requires a huge volume of air to seat the bead, and therefore a compressor is needed, and one with a tank is recommended. Fortunately I do not have a need for tubeless tires, thus the standard floor pump works beautifully for my applications.

I do have a pancake compressor used for car and motorcycle tires as well as air tools that I use every so often. Simply don't use it on the bicycles.
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Old 12-05-22, 07:58 PM
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...I use the inflation of my bike tires as part of my standard warmup routine. If I stopped doing it with a floor pump, I'm sure I would hurt my back, or something else, on the ride.

Interestingly, I have both a couple of older Silca track pumps, and Newer one I bought from Performance, when it was on sale and I needed one. I had to rework that one using some Loctite on the barrel threading after a few years. But I use it the most frequently, because it moves a larger volume of air per stroke than either of the Silca pumps.
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Old 12-05-22, 08:18 PM
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https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Works perfect, just set the psi you want and forget about it. Don't run tubeless so dunno there.
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Old 12-05-22, 09:25 PM
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Originally Posted by icemilkcoffee View Post
You should just get a proper air compressor with a tank. It's much better for seating the bead on a tubeless tire. The tankless thing will not give you that blast of high pressure air to seat the bead.
That's the route I went down when going tubeless.

I looked into those special tubeless track pumps, but an air compressor was only $30 or so more and can be used for other things.
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Old 12-05-22, 10:20 PM
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How quick is it, and how long does it run before it needs recharging?
Originally Posted by tempocyclist View Post
I have one of these that I take on trips with me when flying with my bike, a Fumpa USB rechargeable mini-pump. A track pump is additional weight that I'd rather not carry in my bike box.


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Old 12-05-22, 10:42 PM
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we have a number of pumps including two Silca pumps - but only use the pumps to partially inflate a tube when mounting bike tires

other than that - always use a small portable inflator to inflate bike tires

also use an inflator to top off car and truck tires

primarily use a DeWalt inflator ... also have a smaller Worx inflator but rarely use it

the DeWalt inflator is one of the 'handiest' tools we have

( note : we have a small air compressor (30 gallon tank) that I have not used in years )

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Old 12-05-22, 11:07 PM
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Originally Posted by icemilkcoffee View Post
You should just get a proper air compressor with a tank. It's much better for seating the bead on a tubeless tire. The tankless thing will not give you that blast of high pressure air to seat the bead.
I already have an Airshot canister for help when my floor pump doesnít get the job done. A compressor is still a consideration, but the lack mobility (or needing to deal with stashing a long hose) has me a bit hesitant to go that direction. Iím also not sure where I would put it.
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Old 12-05-22, 11:25 PM
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Originally Posted by TiHabanero View Post
No question about it, tubeless requires a huge volume of air to seat the bead, and therefore a compressor is needed, and one with a tank is recommended. Fortunately I do not have a need for tubeless tires, thus the standard floor pump works beautifully for my applications.

I do have a pancake compressor used for car and motorcycle tires as well as air tools that I use every so often. Simply don't use it on the bicycles.
I have an Airshot canister that has gotten the job done for seating tubeless tires when my floor pump doesnít. That isnít changing. A large majority of my pump use is just topping off tires before I ride. Depending on which bike, and how long itís been Iíve ridden it, it might be a few lbs, or it might be 20+. Iím not installing new tires on a weekly - or even monthly - basis.

I agree that a floor pump would probably do what I need just fine, and Iím not saying that a cordless inflator is superior. The idea caught my attention, and Iím thinking of giving it a try.

Last edited by Eric F; 12-05-22 at 11:31 PM.
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Old 12-05-22, 11:28 PM
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Originally Posted by t2p View Post


we have a number of pumps including two Silca pumps - but only use the pumps to partially inflate a tube when mounting bike tires

other than that - always use a small portable inflator to inflate bike tires

also use an inflator to top off car and truck tires

primarily use a DeWalt inflator ... also have a smaller Worx inflator but rarely use it

the DeWalt inflator is one of the 'handiest' tools we have

( note : we have a small air compressor (30 gallon tank) that I have not used in years )
This is encouraging. I would stick with Ridgid because thatís the family of my existing cordless tools.

What type of chuck are you using with the DeWalt inflator?
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Old 12-05-22, 11:35 PM
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Originally Posted by big john View Post
I use floor pump for the bikes but also use a low-pressure gauge for the mtb. I run 15 psi in the front and I don't know how accurate the pump gauge is at the low end. I would think the digital gauge on the new compressors would be pretty good.
There is an assumption that a digital anything is more accurate than analog anything. This isnít necessarily the case. Just because the digital readout gives you a number doesnít mean that the digital readout is reading the value correctly. Every measuring device made has an level of error associated with it.

Something else to consider, if there is an error in the analog gauge, the amount of the error isnít going to be all that great. Itís not like you pump it up to 15psi and itís actually 5 psi. Ī2psi is a probable error range.
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Old 12-06-22, 12:07 AM
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Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
There is an assumption that a digital anything is more accurate than analog anything. This isnít necessarily the case. Just because the digital readout gives you a number doesnít mean that the digital readout is reading the value correctly. Every measuring device made has an level of error associated with it.

Something else to consider, if there is an error in the analog gauge, the amount of the error isnít going to be all that great. Itís not like you pump it up to 15psi and itís actually 5 psi. Ī2psi is a probable error range.
I always use the analog low pressure gauge on the low pressure tires. I wouldn't think a digital readout was more accurate just because it's digital, more that a new compressor might have a good gauge on it.
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