How to rebuild a vintage Silca floor pump

Words and photos by Chris Klibowitz.

While much of our society is focused on affordable—and unfortunately disposable—products, there are many within the cycling community still producing high-quality, heirloom pieces. It’s no surprise that the revitalized Silca—a brand rescued from Italy and relocated to Indiana—fits that bill, as most of us have one of their old floor pumps in the garage. While they are making some of the nicest and most expensive pumps in the world, they also remain committed to their heritage by continuing to offer everything needed to refresh that vintage pump and save it from the landfill.

Silca Rebuild 1
1. Slowly notice that it gets harder and harder to inflate tires.
Silca Rebuild 2
2. Keep browser tab open for new $500 Silca floor pump for two months while you deal with increasingly more difficult to use pump.
Silca Rebuild 3
3. Have a baby. Close browser tab for new $500 Silca floor pump.
Silca Rebuild 4
4. Purchase parts to rebuild old Silca pump, and put them in tool box. Don’t ride again for a year.
Silca Rebuild 5
5. Have a few beers during the Packers vs. Giants playoff game. Decide today is the day to rebuild the pump.
Silca Rebuild 6
6. Wildly dig through tool box. Quickly disassemble pump into pile of dirty parts.
Silca Rebuild 7
7. Stare at pile while holding bags of new, clean parts. Try to remember what went where. Refuse to look on internet.
Silca Rebuild 8
8. Eventually reassemble pump to what you think is correct. Realize you don’t have crimping tool to attach new hose. Go to bed.
Silca Rebuild 9
9. Find dirty pile of pump pieces next morning. Drive to Harbor Freight to buy cheap hose clamp crimper.
Silca Rebuild 10
10. Return home and crimp hose clamps. Pump tires. Revel in your success. Have a few beers.

Cost to rebuild:

  • Inner valve assembly $9
  • Nut/washer kit $9
  • Hose w/clamps $20
  • Leather washer $11
  • Hiro v.2 presta chuck $110 (this wasn’t necessary for the rebuild but holy crap is it nice)
  • 10″ Nippers $7 (not the “correct tool” but worked well for a fraction of cost)
  • Total cost $166 (or $56 without new chuck)