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SKS Puro Pro road pump's diminutive size will appeal to racers determined to shave every last gram from their bikes without forgoing a basic toolkit. However, while a tangible complement to Co2 inflators and with build quality to the brand's usual high standards; you'll need arms like Popeye and the patience of a saint to restore everyday 23mm training rubber from flaccid to 125, let alone 144psi as claimed.
Measuring 19.5cm and weighing a feathery 89g, (claimed weight is 80g) thanks to extensive use of high quality plastics (there's a carbon version too), the Puro feels reassuringly solid. To use it's simply a question of rotating the top cap clockwise so it aligns with the circle to free the barrel. SKS make efficient use of available space here too, employing a clear Perspex tube with pressure gauge in both bar and psi inscribed in black for easy reference against the orange. Twisting the handle when pressed close releases the nifty plated presta head ready for action. To retract simply press down using your thumb and lock the pump closed. The hinged carry bracket mounting to the frame's bottle boss is extremely well designed. Serrated closures allow a custom fit- loose for quick draws or pinched tight to prevent unwanted ejection over the pav.
These small details certainly count and perhaps I'm being harsh but common to the pint sized breed of mini pumps, performance is a relative term. Latching the head on to the valve requires care my second attempt claimed the first casualty, shearing the tip forty-two strokes in. Proceeding gingerly and assuming a smooth, rhythmic motion brings 25psi to a 25mm tyre in around 40 strokes/seconds. However, nudging past thirty-five psi things become an uphill struggle. 380 strokes and five minutes later I wheezed up to eighty Psi, biceps burning with lactic acid. Achieving a further twenty-five pretty much consumed my will to live - ours locked out at a commendable 110. The song remained much the same with common or garden 23mm training rubber save for an extra 10psi getting that up to a pretty impressive 120. Eventually.
Well made but for emergencies only since reaching realistic road pressures without using a Co2 inflator as well is extremely difficult
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Make and model: SKS Puro Pump
Size tested: Black
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
"Puro Road- cool outside, controlled power inside. With the Puro SKS has given free rein to their passion of high-pressure pumps, cleverly integrating everything: the valve connection and the pressure gauge. At the very first stroke, the eye is drawn to the integrated pressure gauge. Thanks to the integrated concept all parts of the pump are completely dirt protected. The Puro smoothly builds up the pressure until the scale approaches the 140 PSI mark". Great looking pump with some nice details and a smooth action but common to the type, realistic road pressures take some doing.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
■Material: Plastic or Carbon
■Valve connector: Presta
■Length: 192 mm
■Max. pressure: 10 bar (144 psi)
■Weight: Plastic 80gms - Carbon - 82gms
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Bijous dimensions, a smooth action, integral pressue gauge and nifty carry bracket are definite plus points but inflationary prowess is no match for traditional frame-fit types and care has to be taken to avoid bending/snapping presta valve ends.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Sharp styling, smooth action and nice detailing.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Tendency for the head to damage presta valves and poor inflatory prowess.
Did you enjoy using the product? No
Would you consider buying the product? No
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Not unless they punctured infrequently and carried Co2 inflators
Age: 37 Height: 1m 81 Weight: 70 kilos
I usually ride: Rough Stuff Tourer Based around 4130 Univega mtb Frameset My best bike is: 1955 Holdsworth Road Path and several others including cross & traditional road
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: cyclo cross, commuting, touring, fixed/singlespeed, mtb,
Shaun Audane is a freelance writer/product tester with over twenty-eight years riding experience, the last twelve (120,000 miles) spent putting bikes and kit through their paces for a variety of publications. Previous generations of his family worked at manufacturing's sharp end, thus Shaun can weld, has a sound understanding of frame building practice and a preference for steel or titanium framesets.
Citing Richard Ballantine and an Au pair as his earliest cycling influences, he is presently writing a cycling book with particular focus upon women, families and disabled audiences (Having been a registered care manager and coached children at Herne Hill Velodrome in earlier careers)