Track pumps aren’t the sexiest bike product around – not surprising given that they perform the mundane but ultimately vital task of transferring air from the atmosphere into your tyre or tube – so it takes something different to pique our interest.
Specialized has managed that with its Air Tool Compak. When we first saw it we didn’t really get the point of a track pump with a snooker cue-like carry pack, but with foreign flights and small cars, it quickly starts to make some sense. The easily foldable track pump fits snugly into a carry case that can be slung into a bike bag without having to worry that your pump is going to arrive at your destination looking like it’s just done 12 rounds with a hammer and chisel.
On to functionality – the pump does as pumps should do; it inflates tyres with ease. 65 light pumps got our 29×2.2in tyre up to 30psi. The removable handle keys into the main barrel in storage, and holds tyre levers and patches in its ends. The long hose has a built-in pressure gauge, which extends as pressure is added. The pressure gauge goes up to 200psi, so the scale is a bit too long for accurate mountain bike tyre pumping but it’ll give you an idea.
Fold out feet add stability, but unsurprisingly solid feet do a better job. The pump head is a screw on affair, which we have a love-hate relationship with. It’s secure but can take out loose valve cores if you’re not careful. Then there’s the price – not cheap for a track pump.