A good hand pump can make the difference between finishing a ride, or hiking back to the trailhead. There are a lot of options out there, but they each have their own pros and cons to take into account. CO2 inflators are solid for race use, but having the reliability of a hand pump is ideal.
I tested three mini pumps, each with a digital pressure gauge, to see how well each would inflate a 27.5×2.8 Maxxis Rekon tire and a 29×2.25 Maxxis Ardent tire. I also compare the readings from the gauges with an SKS Airchecker digital gauge. Each of these pumps is definitely worth checking out.
The Klic HV is the smallest and lightest pump that I tested by far. At 186 grams and 260mm long, it seamlessly blends into any bike. The Klic HV features a magnetic quick connect system similar to the one on the Klic Floor Pump. The hose is hidden inside the handle, and works with both presta and schrader valves. When ready to use you simply slide it out, click it into place, and you are good to go. There is also a handy CO2 inflator head hidden in the handle, that can help for quick fill ups or resetting stubborn tubeless tires. The hose has an analog gauge and is all backed up with a five year warranty.
In use, the Klic was extremely reliable and simple to use. The included water bottle cage mount is very sleek, and keeps the pump away from your frame to prevent paint rub. The Klic was the slowest pump I tested, but the simplicity, size, and features made up for it. The Klic took about 187 seconds of pumping to get a completely flat, 27.5×2.8 tire to 18 PSI, and 124 seconds to get a 29 x 2.25 tire to 24 PSI. The magnetic connection for the hose always felt solid, and the pump never got too hot during use. The gauge was usually 1 to 3 PSI off when compared to my digital gauge, which is perfectly acceptable in my book.
At $56.99 the Klic is the most affordable pump I tested. For all of the innovative features that the pump has, it is a steal for what you get. The magnetic connector, gauge, CO2 inflator, and secure mount makes the Klic stand out among the competition. If you want a compact, reliable pump to help get you back home, the Klic will not steer you wrong.
The Topeak Turbo Morph Digital makes an immediate impression once you open the box. It is massive! Weighing in at 305 grams and measuring 350mm long, it is a very large pump. The Turbo Morph has a hose that works with both presta and schrader valves. It also has a foot peg to keep the pump in place during use, and a flip down digital gauge with a large LCD screen that uses a single CR2032 battery. The pump works well with mountain bike tires, but is also rated to a max pressure of 160 PSI so it would work well on a road bike as well.
The Turbo Morph inflated tires faster than anything else in the competition. It took about 98 seconds to inflate a 27.5×2.8 tire to 18 PSI, and 75 seconds to inflate a 29×2.25 tire to 24 PSI. The pump head is very similar to the ones found on Topeak’s Joe Blow pumps. The gauge reading was exact when compared to my digital gauge. The pump looks very much like a miniature floor pump, which makes it easy to use, but also makes it very cumbersome. The included mount doesn’t allow you to mount a water bottle cage on top of it, which I found to be a bit annoying. The hose, while simple to use, was a bit too short and requires the valve to be at six o’ clock to reach.
The Turbo Morph Digital runs $74.99 which is more than many full size floor pumps, but it also performs very much like a full size floor pump. The reliable gauge and solid construction make the Turbo Morph a solid option. I would recommend carrying the pump in a hydration pack, as the included mount takes up a lot of valuable frame space, and it is a bit too large to mount on the bike. If you want the ease of use of a floor pump while on the side of the trail, Topeak’s Turbo Morph Digital is the pump for you.
The Lezyne Micro Floor Digital Drive is very similar to the Turbo Morph Digital, in that it shares many features with a traditional floor pump. At 208 grams and measuring 300mm, it is a good bit smaller than the Turbo Morph. It has a fold down foot peg, works with presta and schrader, and has a digital gauge inline on the hose.
In use, the pump took 168 seconds of pumping to get a 27.5×2.8 tire to 18 PSI, and 110 seconds to get a 29 x 2.25 tire to 24 PSI. The folding foot peg does a great job of keeping the pump in place while in use. The best feature of this pump is the length of the hose, at 575 mm it is over double the length of the other hoses in the test. It allows you to position the valve in many different spots, and also prevents any strain or damage to your valve. The inline digital gauge worked perfectly, and read accurately compared to my digital gauge. The included frame mount also keeps the pump secure and away from your frame to prevent damage.
The Micro Floor Digital Drive was by far my favorite to use. With the longer hose, accurate gauge, elegant frame mount, and size it has every feature I am looking for in a mini pump. At $84.99, it is also the most expensive pump tested, but is worth every penny IMO. Any time I was riding with a group and someone needed a pump, I would loan it to them, and everyone wanted to know where they could get one. It perfectly packs the best features of a good floor pump into a portable size. Lezyne also makes a slightly larger XL version for use with fat bike tires. If you are looking for the best mini pump for trail riding, look no further than the Micro Floor Digital Drive.
After extensive testing of each pump, I was impressed with different features from each one. They all passed the most important test, which is to easily and efficiently inflate my tires. Also, if having a gauge isn’t important to you, each pump in this test is available at a slightly lower pricepoint, sans gauge.
The Crankbrothers Klic HV Gauge + CO2 is the most affordable pump, while also packing in a ton of innovative features. It is incredibly sleek, and looks the best when mounted to the bike.
Topeak’s Turbo Morph Digital pump is pretty massive, but was also the fastest to fully inflate a tire. The mount replacing an entire bottle cage was a bit frustrating, but that was soon forgotten when inflating a plus tire on the side of a trail.
Lastly, the Lezyne Micro Floor Drive Digital pump offers the perfect compromise between size and performance. It is a bit pricey, but the quality of the pump is immediately apparent.
Each hand pump has its own pros and cons to consider, but I see no reason why anyone would be unhappy with using any of these pumps on the trail.
All of the pumps in this test were provided by the respective brands. No additional compensation was received by Singletracks for inclusion.