Tubeless has been around in mountain biking long enough that many tire and rim combos need nothing more than a short flurry of pumps from a standard floor pump to get seated in place. That said there are still some MTB pairings that refuse to corporate, inconsistencies with evolving gravel bike wheels and tires and super tight-fitting road tires.
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That means if you want to avoid as much hassle as possible, the best mountain bike pump option is to choose one with a pressurized chamber that's able to blast a load of air into the tire in one go and hopefully pop everything in place.
They don't come much fancier than Lezyne Digital Pressure Overdrive, featuring a digital gauge and a premium finish, this all comes at a cost though. With more and more brands bringing out their own options can the Lezyne pump justify its price.
Design and aesthetics
Straight from the box, the Lezyne feels like a premium piece of kit. The full alloy construction, cast base and wooden handle feel luxurious. The wide base offers a solid platform and there are small rubber feet on the underside for grip and to avoid scratching your floors.
The braided hose also feels suitably durable, connecting between the pump chamber and pressurized chamber which should reduce any wear from twisting over time. The hose is a good length too at 118cm and neatly loops over the handle so the chuck can slot into the base to keep it tidy when not in use.
The Lezyne ABS1 chuck itself is a simple screw-on design and can thread onto either a Presta or a Schreader by simply flipping the aluminum head and screwing it into the brass body. Both the brass and alloy parts have grippy sections to help you screw it onto the valve. The metal sections spin in the plastic housing so it's easy to screw on and off. On the back of the chuck is a core remover too which is a nice touch. Lastly, the chuck has a bleed valve, although it's just to bleed air from the pump's system rather than adjusting tire pressures.
The hose can be replaced should you manage to wear it out, although I have never managed to wear out even a cheap plastic floor pump hose, the chuck is also replaceable. The weak point is most likely the digital gauge, but thats also replaceable for $40.99 which is a big plus if your pump lives free range in the back of a van or gets tossed into the shed as your rush out to the trails.
Specifications and performance
The quality of construction translates to a superb experience when in use. The long stroke is very smooth and light and the pump delivers a good deep breath of air whether you're filling the tubeless chamber or tire. The wooden handle is nice to the touch and overall the pump feels very well put together. I thought the handle might get a bit grimy being constantly touched with grubby hands covered in sealant but it's still looking great.
The pump claims to go up to a max of 220psi (15bar) and 180psi for the pressurized tank, which is far higher than I have ever needed, or been brave enough, to blast into a tire. For science and our darling readers, I did take it to the max. It took 64 pumps to get to 180psi and if you dump it all into an uninflated 2.4in 29er tire, the result is 27psi in the tire.
It's not the fastest pump to operate, while the act of screwing the chuck onto the valve is a simple and secure process, it does add a little extra time to tire inflation. So does the fact that if you are just adding a little air to a soft tire, you need to pump a bit to equalize the chamber before it will actually start inflating the tire. The gauge itself is also a little slow, needing a second to settle for an accurate reading.
The above really feels like nitpicking though as the screw-on chuck is extremely secure on the valve so there is no air leakage at all. The fact that it screws on, rather than using a rubber bung or fancy clip or push-on method, should be a big win for usability and durability. There's no wiggle that could quickly lead to worn seals and the secure fit should avoid any valve core damage too. Some Lezyne screw-on pumps have a habit of unscrewing the valve core on removal and undoing your hard work although I have not experienced this with the ABS1 chuck. While the valve core tool on the rear of the chuck isn’t the easiest to use, it's certainly never going to get lost either so if you need one to hand quickly it's always there.
While the digital gauge does take a second to settle, it provides a much more decisive pressure reading than an analog gauge which is a boon for PSI peepers. The positioning on top of the tubeless chamber makes it very easy to see too, as opposed to little numbers on a gauge at floor level.
My only real gripe is that it would be nice if the default setting of the pump was tire inflation, rather than tubeless blasting as I top my tires up with air far more often than I fit tubeless tires.
- Schrader vs Presta valves: Understanding the differences
The Leyne Digital Pressure Overdrive is a lot of money for a pump, even if you opt for the analog gauge version you're still paying $159.99/£119.99. That will be understandably hard to justify for many especially as both Lezyne’s Overdrive tubeless pumps are a bit more expensive than competitors like the Topeak Joe Blow Tubi 2Stage tubeless floor pump.
Ultimately what you are paying for is a high-quality product that should work flawlessly for years. The simple yet effective chuck design assures every PSI is blasted into the tire so seating and inflation are efficient as possible. The pumping action is light and smooth from the box so it feels premium in use and the metal construction and base feel solid in action. The combination of pump and pressurized tubeless seating is very convenient when compared to a stand-alone pressurized tank too - although hard to justify if you already have a good floor pump.
Tech Specs: Lezyne Digital Pressure Overdrive floor pump
- Price: $189 / £175
- Max pressure: 220psi (15 bar)
- Size: 67 x 22.5 x 17 cm
- Weight: 2.49 kg