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Silca Pista – A Classic Reimagined

Silca’s modern take of the classic Pista floor pump is now available as part of the brand's main range, giving a new generation the chance to own this iconic heirloom-quality...

Silca’s modern take of the classic Pista floor pump is now available as part of the brand's main range, giving a new generation the chance to own this iconic heirloom-quality design.

The Silca Pista was the go-to floor pump for the pro bike mechanics of the 1960s and ’70s and a design that holds a special place in the heart of many a cycling aficionado. 

Nostalgia for the Pista was one of the reasons that Silca’s owner, Josh Poertner, was inspired to buy the Italian-born brand and in 2017 the company – now based in the engineering hub of Indianapolis – relaunched a limited edition centennial Pista. That pump, made to coincide with Silca’s 100th anniversary, featured the classic Molteni orange barrel and a silhouette closely mirroring its ancestor.

Given the popularity of the limited-edition version, Silca has decided to make the Pista part of its main collection, giving the barrel a fresh coat of red paint in keeping with the brand’s modern colour palette.

While the slim profile of the new Pista means it wouldn’t look out of place in a line-up of its mid-20th-century forebears, it features several upgrades that bring it up to date without losing any of its charm. Most evident at first glance is that the original’s iconic oval Bacolite handle has been reimagined in lathe-turned ash, though it still features the notched guides to secure the hose.

The gauge, now protected in the aluminium base housing, has been upgraded to 3% accuracy while the push-on chuck assembly is now both Presta and Schrader compatible and features a bleed button to more easily attain perfect pressure – up to 220psi if you ever need it. On the inside, Silca has added self-lubricating internal guide surfaces that are smoother and more efficient.

Other the other hand, Silca hasn’t moved away from tradition for the sake of it. The pump still relies on a 3mm thick leather piston washer to drive air down the barrel. As opposed to cheaper rubber designs, the leather polishes the inside of the steel barrel over time, meaning efficiency increases rather than diminishing. Likewise, the dependable solid brass internal valve assembly is largely unchanged from the original and given that both this and the leather washers have been produced in the same factories in Milan since 1947, they’ve certainly proved their worth.

The new Pista is a heady mix of nostalgia, practicality and beauty that's a perfect fit for any cyclist wanting to make the experience of bike maintenance that little bit more special.

The Pista is available soon. View the pump now to register your interest.

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