The Indianapolis 500 has been held each Memorial Day weekend at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway since 1911. The Indiana capital is now home to Silca, maker of the world’s finest bicycle pumps and, surrounded by so much auto racing heritage and culture, it’s no surprise that their modern offerings resemble Indy car components.
Silca itself was founded in Italy in 1917, making it fractionally younger than the Indy 500. The company was run by the same family for three generations until it was sold. Although it is now an American brand, their pumps uphold the same level of quality, and the latest in their catalog is the Impero Ultimate Frame Pump.
When Claudio Sacchi, the last CEO of Silca, was diagnosed with cancer, he decided he wanted to sell the business to someone who would maintain the standard his family established. The brand was bought by Josh Poertner, then technical director at Zipp, who knew the Silca brand as they supplied many of the small parts on Zipp wheels.
The pumps look and operate better than ever: domestically engineered, US-milled parts, lab-quality gauges and the same hoses that are used in Indy cars. The internal leather washers are produced by the same Milanese handbag maker since 1947. Silca pumps have been highly regarded for so long for a reason; they are ultra-reliable, well-made and beautifully designed. Typical Italians.
From the press release: The new Impero Ultimate frame pump is built from nearly 100 years of experience and carries forward the original hallmark of full aluminum construction while merging high tech modern materials and manufacturing in order to bring a significantly stronger, smoother and more durable pump to the market.
The Impero Ultimate is manufactured in the USA using Alcoa Aluminum extrusions, bar stock and integrates a 19mm leather piston custom manufactured by the same supplier in Milan since 1947. A Silicone bumper on the main barrel protects paint, eliminates vibrations and noise while acting as a compression lock against the pump handle to keep it from moving.
According to Joshua Poertner, SILCA President, “The Impero Ultimate pump signifies the next phase of SILCA. It’s built from the same vision and ideals that Felice Sacchi had when he started the company, yet it is constructed using the finest modern materials and technologies. The Impero is a special one for our team as it is not often that you have the opportunity to re-engineer and bring back one of the true iconic products from the history of our sport.”
FlexWing Technology: fits tube size between 1″ (25mm) and 2.5″ (60mm)
Silicone bumpers for secure fit and ultimate paint protection
Most efficient inflation of any portable pump: (112 strokes = 100psi; small size)
2 stage sealing advanced elastomer head: no fussy lever to mess with
100% full metal construction: no plastic parts to break, bend, slip or rattle
Weight: SM 256gm | M 267gm | L 278gm | XL 289gm