Togoparts Editorial Team | 5th Dec 2016 | PRODUCT REVIEWS
Birzman and Innovation
Birzman, although relatively unknown to local market, it is an established Taiwan manufacturer of bicycle tools and pumps. Their products are sold across America, Europe and Asia region. Now the brand has arrived in Singapore too, exclusively distributed by Bike31.
Birzman is a serious contender in the business right from the beginning. They made its foray into the bike scene in 2009 when it scooped its first gold at the EUROBIKE Award 2009. A year on, in 2010, they clinched an iF Award and two Reddot Awards for three different products. Birzman never fails to impress the cycling industry with devices that are ever so innovative and simple to use. Their high-quality air pumps are so popular because of their revolutionary technology, the Snap-It Apogee and Controlled Air Discharge, that built into these products.
The concept of simplicity remains as the core principle of Birzman’s pumps. Being passionate cyclists themselves, designers and engineers at Birzman understand too well that many riders out there are spending too much time fiddling with bike accessories and components. To achieve more “riding time”, Birzman created a quick-shifting valve, which it called the Snap-It Apogee.
Unlike conventional pumps, the Snap-It Apogee features a specially-designed valve adaptor which can alternate between a Presta valve and a Schrader valve with just a simple twist of the outer chamber. The valve connection is secured even at high pressure, ensuring that no damage will be done to the valve cores when disconnection takes place. The Snap-It Apogee takes versatility to the next level with its integrated Air-Lock technology, making the pumps suitable for front fork suspension systems.
Birzman’s Controlled Air Discharge (CAD)
The CAD technology utilised in Birzman’s floor pumps ensures that tyre pressures remain at optimum levels. With a single press of a CAD button, an appropriate amount of air can be released, effectively reducing the likelihood of a blown tyre and making the ride more enjoyable.
Birzman’s Air Pump Line-Up
In this edition, with much credit to Bike31, we have laid out 11 of Birzman’s pumps – a combination of floor pumps and hand pumps – and this article provides a good pack of insights into each of them. Pumps, while not the most important thing in people’s minds when purchasing a bike, makes the whole difference to the riding experience. Meddling with a cumbersome pump before a ride, or killing your arms trying to inflate a flat on the roads is definitely not a pleasant experience.
Under Birzman’s line of products, there are a fair number of floor pumps. Bike31 brings in the most popular and commonly used models for our local consumers to choose from. They are the Maha-Apogee II, Maha-Apogee V, Maha-Apogee MTB II and Tiny Tanker.
The first thing that really makes the Birzman floor pumps stand out from any other floor pumps are their aesthetically-pleasing designs. Constructed from CNC-machined aluminium, the pumps, on their own, are minimalists. The metal surfaces of the pumps are intricately polished., even the quick-connecting head is made of anodised metal. The finishing is almost perfect.
Physical-wise, the Tiny Tanker Apogee, which stands at a height of only 51 centimetres, is the smallest and most compact floor pump you will probably find in the market. With its very small footprint, it is very handy for travels, especially overseas races, as it can even fit in a general backpack.
The Maha – Apogee V featured above
The Maha-Apogee II and Tiny Tanker Apogee are configured to pump up to a maximum of 220 psi while Maha-Apogee V is 160 psi. These three road-specific floor pumps can satisfy the most hard-core roadies. The Maha-Apogee MTB II, being purposely built for mountain bike tyres, focuses on pushing large volumes of air into the tyre. Those who are into plus-sized tyres will adore the Maha-Apogee MTB II floor pump, which can achieve a maximum of 120 psi. In a notable review by international online publication Bike Rumour, it took the Maha-Apogee MTB II only 20 strokes to achieve the first 10 psi for a 4.7-inch fat tyre.
The Maha-Apogee II featured above
If you take a closer look, you will notice that the barrel of three floor pumps are towering at a slightly-slanted angle of 5 degrees. The adoption of a non-perpendicular angle enables the user to execute the pumping strokes ergonomically reducing fatigue.
But perhaps, the selling point of the four floor pumps is the Snap-It Apogee valve adaptor that is designed into their connecting heads. A simple turn of the Snap-It Apogee outer chamber will transform the pump into a Presta- or Schrader-compatible pump. This means that the user need not have to go through the hassle of purchasing separate types of pumps to fill their Presta and Schrader tubings.
The Snap-It Apogee is as inituitive too. For Presta-type tyres, it is as simple as pushing the connecting head into the receiving head and executing a single turn. The user can simply pull the connecting head out once the desired air pressure is pumped. For Schrader-type tyres, push the connecting head into the receiving head and thread the adaptor in the standard clock-wise direction. After air is pumped, simply pull back (this will lock the valve to prevent any air leakage) and thread the adaptor in the standard anti-clock-wise direction.
Bike31 is currently offering six variants of Birzman’s hand pumps. They are the Velocity-Apogee RG (for road bikes), the Velocity-Apogee MG (for mountain bikes), the Inifinite-Apogee Road, the Infinite-Apogee MTB, the Mini Apogee and the Macht Shock Pump. On top of that, there is also Roar 16g Set, a CO2 cartridge inflator that comes with 16g CO2 cartridges in a pack.
Featuring the Velocity – Apogee RG above
The Velocity-Apogee RG and the Infinite-Apogee Road are designed to squeeze up to a respectable air pressure of 160 psi. The Mini-Apogee fared nicely too, pumping up to 120 psi of air pressure for any road tyre.
The beauty of mini pumps lies with their portability. Amongst the six models, the 80-gram Mini-Apogee clinched the top spot as the lightest mini pump.
Featuring the Mini – Apogee above
Every Birzman’s mini pump is fitted with the Snap-It Apogee mechanism. Hence, you can be assured that the quality of your ride, whether on Presta-type tyres or Schrader-type tyres, will not be compromised.
The CO2 cartridge inflator needs no further introduction. An effective substitute for hand-pumping actions, compatible with Presta- and Schrader-type tyres, it is designed to inflate a completely-flat tyre within a few seconds with the CO2 cartridge. While not exactly a pump here, this is a good option for cyclists looking to save precious time and weight especially in a race. The Birzman Roar 16g set includes a CO2 inflator and three 16g CO2 cartridges in a single convenient pack.
If you do like to have a demo on the Birzman pumps or other related products, please feel free to approach Bike31for more details.