Gear Review: Lezyne Alloy Drive Pump
We’re beginning a really in-depth series of gear reviews of stuff we’ve tried over the years. So check the site every few days for a new review!
When we switched from Long Haul Truckers to the Bromptons we had to change pumps as well. I was using the Park Adjustable Frame Pump, which worked well with the Surly LHT but was too large for the Brompton. I wanted something small, not too heavy, well built and had a flex hose to reduce the chance of snapping off a bicycle tube valve.
After trying out a few pumps before our trip, I settled on the Lezyne Alloy Drive Pump. It fulfilled all the criteria I was looking for. It is small enough to fit in the side pocket of the Brompton Touring Bag without getting in the way of things. It is made of CNC-machined aluminum that gives it a nice metallic finish and inspires more confidence than a pump with plastic bits. It has a flex hose that nests inside the body of the pump when not in use. To deploy the pump, you unscrew the flex hose and pull it out of the body and screw it on to the business end. To connect it to the tire tube you screw the whole thing on to the valve of the tube, then pump away.
The Lezyne Alloy Drive Pump is suppose to work with both Schrader and Presta valves, but we’ve only used it with Schrader tubes and have been impressed with how well it holds the valve. Because the pump is connected to the valve with a securely locked hose, you can really pump hard and with some body English without worrying about tearing off valve stems. It’s merely a “nice” feature to have during your daily commute, but is elevated to greater importance when you’re on tour in remote places. Tearing a valve stem in the bush with nary a bike shop around is not good. The problem is greatly exacerbated when you ride a bike with non normative size tubes like the Brompton. The screwing and unscrewing of the flex hose adds a little more time to the whole process of inflating a tube, but on tour I think its worth it.
The Lezyne is a joy to use with a nice fluid action and a thick handle to get a good grip. Some will be quick to mention that the Brompton already comes with a frame pump so why should you need another? Simply put, the included Brompton pump works best as an emergency pump in our opinion. It’s a small frame-style pump which will get the job done, but you do have to pay special attention to keep it from wrenching off a valve stem.
We’ve used the Lezyne Alloy Drive pump on our last two tours with the Brompton. During that time its been used heavily and has managed to survive the elements since we keep it in an outside pocket.
Recommendation: Highly Recommend
-flex hose prevents snapping of valves
-well made, nice pump action
-a little spendier than other pumps
-screwing of hose adds a little time to process
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