Pump It Up

Yes, we can go for a bit of Elvis Costello, but this isn't a music review, it's about a different kind of pressure.

The localcycling.com news staff has been in need of an easier way to insert air for some time. Part of the staff has struggled with some wrist/elbow injury and another staff member believes that most floor pumps have a gender bias.

With Time Trials on the calendar, solving the difficulty of attaining road pressures without multiple hands and effort was of critical concern.

Enter the Specialized Airtool HP.


The hang tag indicates "30% easier to pump high pressure". We are unsure what pump or pumps the hang tag was comparing too, but the localcycling Service Course has plenty to measure by. The Silca track pump as well as other branded similar designed pumps, plus some modern dual head designs have not been a satisfactory experience of late.

The Airtool HP has a noticeably thinner body. But other than that it appears unremarkable. Steel base, dual chuck (presta or schrader), comfortable handle are features of a lot of pumps.

But there is a remarkable part. It works very, very well. Of course the 30% better figure is subjective. Based on being able to pump a disc wheel up to 120psi one handed, might lead us to believe, compared to some other pumps, the advantage may be higher.

Why one handed test? With a Silca disc adapter (the little thing that looks like it should be illegal) needed to inflate a disc, one hand has to hold the adapter, while the other pumps if you're solo. It was quite easy for one staffer. For conventional applications it was a breeze. Another nice plus was a grippy locking head that worked well, even on short valve stems.

If we gave stars for our ratings (we don't), this would get a bunch. Specialized Airtool HP Recommended.