US$450 is a heck of a lot of money for a pump, but it's plain to see where the money has gone on Silca's new SuperPista Ultimate floor pump — what appears to be the most highly engineered and obsessively constructed bicycle floor pump ever made.
The new SuperPista Ultimate is a gorgeous piece of mostly stainless steel hardware with a cost-is-no-object approach to design and construction. The brains behind the project is former Zipp technical director Josh Poertner, who bought the storied company last September and brought the assembly of the new pump with him stateside to Indianapolis, Indiana.
The new Silca SuperPista Ultimate floor pump may be expensive but it's also utterly beautiful
With a claimed weight of 3.2kg (just over 7lb), the SuperPista Ultimate is substantial, thanks in part to a stainless steel main barrel with stout 2.5mm-thick walls, a big (but thin) investment case stainless steel base, and a slick CNC-machined aluminum 'surfboard' near the bottom. That piece houses a 160psi gauge on one end that Poertner claims is accurate to within +/- 1 percent – five times better than the industry standard, he says. On the other end is a magnetic dock that secures the stainless steel chuck, which longtime Silca fans will undoubtedly recognize as a faithful but modern redesign of the old classic.
Though timeless in appearance, Poertner infused the SuperPista Ultimate with a good deal of high-tech features. The main shaft is made of hard anodized aluminum and impregnated with PTFE (more commonly known as Teflon), and it slides through an Igus bushing up top – similar to what's used in many mountain bike suspension forks – for silky smooth operation.
The anodized aluminum shaft is impregnated with PTFE and runs through an Igus bushing
Meanwhile, the urethane coated stainless steel hose is apparently a Silca-exclusive piece with a claimed 12,000psi burst strength and fittings that easily rotate 360 degrees even when pressurized. Keep in mind that Poertner's goal here wasn't to keep the hose from rupturing. According to Poertner, the hose is thoroughly overbuilt so as to yield essentially zero expansion when inflating a tire and supposedly makes for a very noticeable effect at the handle – sort of like when switching from standard brake cable housing to compressionless stuff.
Speaking of the handle, even that by itself is quite the work of art with hand-turned rosewood grips sandwiched between three investment cast stainless steel lugs. The coup de grace, however, is that hidden away inside the fully serviceable design is the same leather washer that has graced Silca floor pumps for decades so it'll be easy to maintain and replace when needed.
The CNC-machined 'surfboard' houses the 160psi gauge and magnetic chuck dock
As if the substantial appearance of the pump itself wasn't enough to install confidence in its quality, the new SuperPista Ultimate will also come with an impressive 25-year warranty for all 'hard' parts.
Is the new Silca SuperPista Ultimate overkill? Without a doubt, the answer is an emphatic yes. But we still want one, and we have a feeling there will be plenty of well-heeled, quality-minded buyers out there who will be more than willing to fork over the cash.
Expensive? Yep. Lustworthy? Absolutely