Considering shock pumps come with any new air suspension equipped mountain bike and with any air shock or fork purchase, most riders that aren’t a pro team mechanic give little thought to an aftermarket pump until the freebie fails.
Should that happen, or your just looking to lighten your load, the Birzman Zacoo Macht is the smallest full featured shock pump I’ve seen, and it’s held up really well to a year of regular use. It’s not only small, but it’s light. And it works great, with well thought out features and shapes that make it a joy to use. Things like their Air-Lock valve head that prevents air loss when threading it on or off, which is more than just an annoyance on other pumps – it can actually hurt performance if you’re not getting it right.
Ready to get pumped?
It has a bit longer stroke than the stock pumps, but the chamber is still pretty small and requires a few more pumps to get the job done. That said, it makes it easier to get the pressure exactly where you want it, too. That’s aided by a pressure release button on the bottom of the gauge. It’s flush with the body, which prevents errant presses that unintentionally leak air, something I do far to often when gripping the stock pumps with that little black button right in the middle of things. It’s also very easy to feather, letting out a little or a lot of air depending on how hard you press it.
Not only is it far more compact than any stock shock pump…
…but it’s less than half the weight, which is great if you routinely carry one in your hydration pack. Actual weight is just 84g, compared to 206g for a stock Fox piece.
And why would you want to keep one with you? Because getting your suspension right is the key to a great ride, and having the ability to fine tune it on the trail (especially if you travel to new areas where the riding is unlike home) opens up new worlds of fun.
Another nice feature is the all alloy build. It still feels stable and smooth after using it to set up many, many test bikes over the year. I even bring it with me to some press events so I can fiddle with the bikes on my own, and all that travel hasn’t put a scratch on it.
The gauge measures to 300 psi (20 bar) and hasn’t seen any moisture collect despite riding in all manner of temps and humidity levels.
Shock pumps may not be a common purchase, but if you and I are on the same page about buying one nice thing that’ll last instead of a bunch of cheap crappy ones, the Zacoo Macht is worth a look. MSRP is $50.