Topeak Road Morph ‘G’ Frame Pump
Topeak Road Morph ‘G’ Frame Pump
I’ve always followed the rule of the 7P’s (Proper Prior Preparation Prevents Piss Poor Performance) and wouldn’t even think about traveling anywhere without a device to inflate my tires should they become punctured of leak. Ever heard of Murphy’s Law?
I found the Topeak Road Morph G at the local bike store on the wall with a variety of other “mini” pumps. What struck me as being unique, is that the pump “expanded” to turn into a larger pump, to allow for better control, leverage and flexibility while inflating.
Constructed of a combination of rigid plastic and aluminum this light weight (220 grams) pump’s inflation hose uniquely expands after loosing a small threaded cap so that it doesn’t have to be wedged up against your wheel while inflating, the handle unfolds into a “T” allowing your hand to transfer more force, while a small rectangular piece of plastic unfolds to be used as a foot pedal giving you additional stability and force.[singlepic=17,400,300,right]
Frame mountable, it is small enough to fit in a variety of locations. They recommended the top bar, yet I was able to squeeze it behind the vertical bar, parallel with my seatpost, giving me more room to hold bottle cages, and frame bags. The pump snaps into the holder, while a velcro loop securely fastens it in.
By default, it comes ready to inflate tires using Presta Valves, however for those who use the well known Schraeder valve (commonly seen on Mountain Bike tires not to mention Automobile tires) one must simply unscrew the nut end of the pumps inflation hose, turn the end piece around 180 degrees and replace the nut in a matter of seconds.
Understanding what PSI your tires are inflated at is very important, for overall ride quality and load carrying abilities. The pump comes with a fairly basic gauge that allows you to pressurize your tires all the way up to 160psi. I’ve yet to pump my tires up to anymore than 70psi, but when I was constantly inflating due to my WTB Slickasaurus failures, I found it quite easy and effortless to get them to the desired pressure within a minute.
One thing I did find, is that it did not come with a manual. I sat and scratched my head a bit at how to get the pump to come back together, first not realizing the entire pumps potential based on their ‘Morph’ technology. The branding and writing on the barrel of the pump quickly wore off with usage – and I fear the inflation hose will collect water if I am riding in the rain. To combat this I will carry a few finger cots, to ensure long life.
A recent discussion on a web forum related to the foot pad hinge breaking after repeated use – while I have yet to see this occur on mine, Topeak has gone and replaced the broken parts for the affected owners without issue. This shows Topeak is committed to the quality of their components and customers. You’d be hard pressed to find a better pump at such a reasonable price and quality than the Road Morph G, so this is highly recommended for usage not only for long distance touring, but commuting and leisurely bike rides.
Update: 2011-04-15 - I used my road Morph pump perhaps 15 times since this review was originally written. Towards the 12th time I noticed that the pump could no longer keep pressure and remained very hot to the touch after inflating a tire even to 60psi. I soon found out that the O-Ring required lubrication, so I dropped a bunch of Phil Woods grease down the shaft which helped it a bit, although it didn’t help with the pressure issue. The pump shaft had bent at the top causing this seal to break. I’ve since bent it back, replaced the O-Ring and all is working well again.
Update 2011-07-30 – What’s too good to be true is too good to be true. The air inflation hose seperated itself from the pump itself and the shaft bent yet again making the pump unusable. I had tried to Contact Topeak 3 times prior to this to get an idea on where to get a rebuild kit as I couldn’t seem to source one, yet in distirubtors product guides one existed. After the third try I finally receieved a response from Topeak, stating that “I shouldn’t have been looking in the books anyways, and I should just buy a new pump.” Based on that type of attitude I won’t be supporting them for any of their products anymore. Instead I’ve moved to a Filzer Pump from Canadian Retailer MEC whhich has done me fine for 2 years and also has available rebuild kits at a low price. Sorry, Topeak – maybe one of your CS Reps was having a bad day, but I’ve been turned off forever.