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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Well, there we were, Tim and I, just riding along in the middle of Carrizo Plain minding our own damn bidness. All of a sudden my rear tube blew up. While we were fixing my flat the nail in his rear tire pretty much let all of the air out.

Continuing with the theme of "Great minds screw up stuff alike", my pump got my rear tire up to 38psi and popped the bead on and then went "Wheeee!" making a lot of noise but putting out no air. Tim's pump got his rear tire up to the high 20s and then sort of ran out of steam and went "Errrrg".

Tim's pump is the slim Slime, while mine is the more portly Slime 40019.

I've had mine for several years and have used it a whole bunch and abused it a whole bunch. I've also taken pretty good care of it by periodically disassembling it for a good cleaning and lubrication. A post-mortem revealed that the hose had simply popped off the barb from being hard and dried out and that the case was pretty well shot and needs to be held together with zip ties now. Easy fix; it's now retired to the trunk of the Forester.

We both felt that something better in the way of a pump should be a part of our kit and the first thing we thought of was the CyclePump. They've made loads of them, the thing has been used around the world and nobody says they are horrible.

The price is a bit high, but I've spilled more beer than that at Mark's techdays and it seemed like cheap tuition so I bought one. First, though, I looked around for a comprehensive review and all I could find was reviews that said it was bitchin' and it pumped up tires pretty good and it was nice and slim and it came in a nice pouch and it seems rully, rully, like, cool. Nobody took one apart and poked at it. I've voided whatever warranty I might have had by drilling out the rivets that hold the case together and completely disassembling it. What follows is my review and, of course, is my opinion only. That and a buck seventy five will get you a Vente at Starbucks.

Here's what comes in the package:


The pouch is big and well-made and will hold extra stuff. The wiring covers SAE connector, Powerlet plug, cigarette plug, and direct to battery. All very well done. The pump itself is in a pretty tough aluminum case with some wee legs on it and a long Velcro strap to hang the thing from something so it doesn't have to sit in the dirt.

The hose chuck is a thing of beauty:


It attaches easily to the stem and grips the stem solidly:


Unfortunately, the clamp on mine was improperly installed and there is a leak between the hose and the chuck. On a spendy unit stuff like this shouldn't happen and I'm not too pleased or impressed. It won't be hard to fix, but I shouldn't have to.

After drilling out the pop-rivets the cover came off easily:


The compressor is a pretty standard unit and is very similar to the compressor in the Slime as we'll see in a bit. Right off I noticed the rubber bit between the motor and case. It seems to be both a seal and a bit of a shock absorber. It covers a fitting that the motor's shaft runs in and is packed with grease. The bottom of the case is smeared with grease which should trap most of any dirt, dust or grit that gets inside the case. The wiring is pretty adequate. The switch looks pretty solid, though it's a Chinese switch.

The compressor is (and if I do say so, I'm a bit of a connoisseur of these things) what I consider to be a good one. I'll show you a crap one later.

The crankshaft has flats milled on it and the large gear fits on those flats and is held in place with a C-clip, while the head bolts have standard threads going into tapped bosses.


This is what a crap compressor looks like:


The big gear is pressed onto the end of the shaft and the head bolts are self-tapping into the bosses. This makes it almost impossible to disassemble for cleaning and lubing more than once. All the inflator compressors are made in China, but some are much better than others. This unit is truly a throw-away, while the units in the Slime and CyclePump are both serviceable. The crap pump has other shortcomings in construction and quality.

...to be continued...
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
I've read claims that this pump has been built up to withstand the rigors of adventure motorcycle use. I went looking for them and was expecting to find that some of the things I've done to my Slime had been done to this pump's compressor. Alas, I think I've already found all of the features.

The crank shaft had a shimmer of oil on its surfaces:



While my preference is to have a bit of medium grease on the shaft and wristpin:


The stock air intake is open:


While I prefer to cover it with a bit of open-cell foam with a drop of oil on it:


And when re-assembling a dab of Loc-Tite allows a bit less torque and strain on the head bolts and crankcase:


Closing up the end of the crankcase would help keep things cleaner; I've got to find a suitable screened plug:


Is doing these things imperative? Nah, but I think that they prolonged the life of my Slime. It has inflated countless motorcycle tires and has been used to air up more than a few car tires. It's gone over it's duty cycle lots of times. The case is falling apart, the hose rubber is a bit crunchy, but the inside of the compressor is in very good shape. The CyclePump will obviously work very reliably for a long time as it is, but I was a bit surprised that the premium price didn't include a bit of work on the compressor.

All in all, was I happy with what I got for what I paid?

There are things you can afford and things you will afford and there's what things are truly worth.

Honestly, the CyclePump is not the best value in inflators. It's not worth five times the price I paid for my Slime. However, it is something I will afford to have because of the closed metal case, the decent wiring, the variety of connections, the decent compressor, the brilliant chuck, and even the wee legs and it's Velcro strap. In other words, the whole package makes me willing to afford to pay more than it's really worth.

And I could have easily wrapped it in a nasty letter and gotten my money back for it being useless due to the leaking hose when I got it. Instead, I'm keeping it and will fix it myself and will use it and rely on it.

"All in all, not a bad pump", Tom said in a compressed tone.

Tom
 

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Excellent review! Very detailed and informative. Thank you!

Now I'll have to disassemble my Slime unit and make a few improvements.
 
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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Tom, how does the compressor work on your inflatable, anatomically-correct life-sized mannequins?
"On the mannequins? Oh, it's the bee's knees!" Tom responded in a bumbling manner.

Tom
 

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Thanks Tom for the excellent detailed review, I have been looking at this pump for a while, thinking I should have one, but no one had one I could see up close. I may keep looking given the price.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Just a quick word on the customer service. In less than twelve hours the owner and I have exchanged a handful of e-mails.

He's out on a ride but made the effort to get to a place where he could get internet to see my video of the leak. Once he understood the problem he immediately acknowledged the issue and offered to fix it or send me a new clamp to do the job myself.

He was surprised by the failure, but owned it and was apologetic.

In today's world I'm impressed by that.

Tom
 
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