If you know this type of pump, you’ll remember they have the hose that slides into the top of the pump handle. If you follow my blog, you know that this past December I purchased an old “F” frame Moulton. The Moultons of this vintage came equipped with a small, color coordinated pump of this style that mounted on pegs under the rear rack. Nicely compact and tucked away.
Recently, I had a bicycle in my repair stand and needed to inflate the tires. I could not reach the valve stems with the floor pump so I grabbed an old Raleigh Roadster pump from my "pump-bucket". I switched out the Schrader pump hose with one of the Presta hoses I purchased on eBay. I screwed the hose on to the valve stem and proceeded to pump up the tires. I have to say, it worked pretty well!
Now, it has been some time – decades really – since I’ve used this type of pump. But I instantly became fond of the flexibility of the hose. If you’ve ever used a frame pump with the fixed head to pump a Presta valve, you know you’ve got to hold the pump pretty stock-still to avoid breaking the stem. I can’t remember breaking a Presta stem, though I’m sure I have and blocked out the experience. And I’ve seen it demonstrated more than a few times.
Meanwhile, the bendable Presta hose on the old-style frame pump is pretty forgiving. I’ve got a frame pump that I picked up a few years ago and it has a flexible hose with a built-in pressure gauge and a handle that flips out perpendicular to the pump. It is really a small version of a floor pump. It works really well but it’s complicated and bulky with lots of pieces that create points of potential failure.
So, in a moment of infatuation with the old style frame pump, I installed one on my Surly Long Haul Trucker. I'll let you know how it if my infatuation fades after I repair my first flat.