There's nary a company more passionate about cycling than Silca. The Italy turned USA-based company is one of the longest running in the biz, so what happens when you take all that spirit and expertise and give them free reign to design the perfect floor pump? It turns out that the result is an altogether awesome creation indeed. Combining the finest-quality materials with obsessive attention to detail, the Silca SuperPista Ultimate makes airing up your tires a surprisingly emotive experience, one that you'll be able to enjoy for a lifetime to come.
Its first impression is nothing less than striking, with a multitude of elegant silver finishes conveying the pump's array of metal choices, then the warmth radiating from a hand-turned rosewood handle whose ergonomics are inspired from fine Japanese cutlery, and finally the bold licorice red urethane finish that covers the smooth-bore hose. Upon handling, the SuperPista Ultimate's satisfying heft is immediate. At 7 lbs, it's the heaviest and most stable floor pump ever made according to Silca. The cast zinc base plays a large part in that, providing a robust platform that, in a prime example of the level of attentiveness paid to its design, has been optimized not to feel squirrelly beneath your cycling cleats.
Mechanically, you'll be hard pressed to recall a smoother feeling action, save perhaps for that of your suspension fork from which the workings of the SuperPista Ultimate's PTFE impregnated piston rod moving through a high-precision igus® bushing got its inspiration. The piston pushes Silca's famously reliable 741 leather washer down the bore of aluminum barrel overbuilt with 2.5 mm thick walls, a measure that Silca took to ensure it won't dent as normal pumps do. Before the air travels through a 12,000 PSI braided-steel hose made originally for race cars and aircraft brake lines, it passes through a laboratory-grade pressure gauge that reads up to 160 PSI with an accuracy of ±1% versus the ±5% accuracy of typical industrial-grade gauges. Silca wanted an extra durable hose that still flexed with ease, and in their search they discovered the root of the problem for most hoses was at the fittings, so they custom-machined parts that allow infinite rotation for unhindered manipulation from either end, even while pressurized.
This all culminates at one of the most iconic chuck designs of all time. Silca's presta-only pump head is based on the old brass version, only now it's made from 17-4 stainless steel for greater longevity. The domed shape of the gasket is key to its lever-less simplicity, using the principles of the Roman arch to further increase its bite on valve stems as air pressure goes up. The 242 gasket is made from a synthetic elastomer instead of regular black carbon rubber to increase its lifespan five-fold, and you'll appreciate the lengths Silca went through to hone in the chuck's perfect knurled texture, one that, at the request of WorldTour mechanics, permits ample grip without shredding your hands if you're pumping up an entire team's worth of tires.
The Silca SuperPista Ultimate Floor Pump is assembled with pride in the USA, and with such meticulousness that it carries with it a 25 year hard parts warranty. Maximum pressure is 160 PSI. Claimed weight is 7 lbs.
Also available with a low-pressure gauge that specs the same ±1% accuracy up to 60 PSI for off road applications.