Last week we reviewed a minimalist CO2 pump. This week we check out a pump at the opposite end of the spectrum.
The Topeak Road MasterBlaster pump is a modern take on the traditional frame pump. As expected, it’s long, skinny, and spring-loaded so that it rests snugly against the underside of your road bike’s top tube. Like its predecessors, it is best used on low volume, high pressure road tires. That is the extent of the similarities, however.
Older frame pumps were seldom able to reach the PSI rating claimed by the manufacturers. With the Road MasterBlaster, that is no longer a problem. Using an aluminum barrel and smartly engineered internals, now you can actually inflate your tires to the fullest and do so with less effort. Other smart features include a locking pump head and the ability to inflate both presta and schrader valves.
Compared to CO2 pumps, frame pumps are a reliable, one-time purchase. Mount one to your bike, and you can be confident it’ll be ready and waiting when you need it. It might not be as quick to use as a CO2 pump, but no more will you open your seat bag only to discover that you forgot to replace the CO2 cartridge you used on last week’s ride.
GBL Last Word: The Road MasterBlaster is a simple, reliable pump that will offer you peace of mind. At only $25 and available in four frame sizes, it will please everyone except the most minimalist, always-in-a-hurry cyclist.