I’ve begun to suspect that floor pumps have something in common with saddles and political affiliation: Some folks just don’t like some stuff. I recently had a friend notice that I was still using a Silca floor pump. I won’t repeat what he said here, but he would react similarly were I to write in Teddy Roosevelt’s name in an election for any office.
He complained that his 50-year-old eyes couldn’t see the gauge, that he had to bend over too far to fully depress the plunger, the base was too small, the hose too short, the rubber seal wore out too quickly due to the threaded valve stems on his preferred tubes, the chuck didn’t accept the Schrader valves on his mountain bike and the handle was too small for his increasingly bony hands.
I may be outspoken in my views, but I do endeavor to be fair, even handed. I reasoned there must be others who don’t share my love of the Silca and I ought to see if there are pumps out there better suited to their needs. I did some checking around and found a pump that answered each of his criticisms; when I ran it by him, he liked it better than what he was using.
Enter the Torelli Amalfi floor pump. It has a small-diameter barrel to make it easy to achieve 8 bar, a 38-inch long hose, a self-converting pump head, a bleed-off button in case you overshoot your chosen pressure, a large base easy to get a foot on, a gauge placed at the top of the pump rather than the bottom for easy reading, a large and soft handle. Oh, and the barrel is a full two inches longer than that of the Silca, meaning that not only do you not have to lean over as much, it takes fewer strokes to reach your chosen pressure.
The suggested retail price for the Amalfi pump is $79.95. Serfas, to be fair, offers a very similar pump with a different base, handle and no bleed-off valve. Finding this pump, or one like it, shouldn’t be too hard, but I have a high level of trust that Torelli dealers will have replacement parts in stock.
Much as I love my Silca, I’ve used some wheels lately that had rims just a bit deeper than normal, leaving average-length valve stems protruding from the rim less than normal. The Torelli pump was handy for securing the head to the shortish valves; and while it may seem like the thing to do is buy tubes with the proper length valve, I do that for my own wheels; on review bikes and wheels, I only replace flatted tubes. The Amalfi made my life a little easier.