Pocket sized pump with trackpump features.
How many times have you wished to have a track pump stuffed away in your pack, after spending the last ten minutes wondering whether an asthmatic mouse might fare better than your current pump for inflating your flat tyre? Giant has taken a leaf out of the big book of Transformers and created the Control Mini Combo pump. The idea isn’t a radically new one though, the Topeak Morph has been around for years. But what Giant has done is created a fully loaded pump for a bargain price.
Pocket sized performance
At 30cm in length it just about fits in most hydration pack pockets but is around the limit to justify itself as a ‘pocket’ sized pump. Giant does supply it with a bottle cage mount for those riders who like to let the bike be the pack mule. The main body of the Control Mini Combo is made of aluminium whilst majority of the construction is plastic. This is an obvious cost and weight saving saving measure and does sadly decrease the perceived quality of the finished product.
Trackpump like features
The pump has a folding footrest that pivots from the main body. This also incorporates the small but relatively easy to read gauge measuring both psi and Bar. A t-handle folds out to give a more comfortable handhold. The long (37cm) hose makes wheel positioning a little less crucial. It also incorporates a reversible screw down metal air-chuck to accommodate presta and schraeder valves. Of most interest to mountain bikers is the ability to telescope the shaft to push double the volume of air, which is handy for bigger tyres. Talking of inflation, it took 140 strokes to inflate a 29″x 2.4″ Onza Ibex tyre from completely flat to 20psi. This might seem like a bit more than some pumps, but as the action involves you pushing down on the pump akin to a plunger, those 140 strokes take very little muscle effort.
There are a couple of areas in which the Control Mini Combo falls down a little. The gauge is not the most accurate, over-reading by 2-3psi. Also the t-handle feels very loose and flimsy when in place and under use. For a pump that will be used occasionally, and at under twenty quid, these are gripes you can live with.
Giant's Control Mini Combo manages to combine function and value well. It might not be the smallest or lightest hand pump on the market but it helps take the effort out of inflating tyres on the trail.