Here’s an unusual Made-In-USA story: SILCA, a manufacturer of bicycle pumps and assorted tools, was founded and operated in Italy until the death of its founder, at which point the new owner brought it to the United States. More specifically, he brought it to Indianapolis. I’ve heard so much about SILCA’s stuff, and all of it good, so when they put a few items into a scratch-and-dent sale I figured I had no choice but to pull the trigger.
The SILCA hex head wrenches look to be absolutely bulletproof. Anniversary edition toolsets, like the one I purchased, come in an American Walnut heartwood box.
I also bought the SuperPista pump. The photo I took of it came out really blurry so here’s a link to the product on the SILCA site. It’s rebuildable and should last forever. Over the past couple of years I’ve had a few Blackburn pumps literally disintegrate on me so this should be a welcome change.
This stuff is obviously a bit over-the-top. I raced bicycles for two decades using cheap-ass Craftsman allen keys that were periodically lost and broken without much regret. You have to be a bit of a tool yourself to think that you need your tools to come in a custom walnut box. So here’s an American Alternative for one-tenth the price: color-coded Bondhus allen wrenches. They’re made in the USA and I can personally attest to both their strength and their durability.
If you want an American-made floor pump, however, you will find that SILCA’s $125 Pista, which is made using components from Italy, Taiwan, and the USA, is your cheapest bet. Look at it this way: I rarely get more than two or three years out of $45 Blackburn pumps. If a SILCA lasts ten years before a rebuild, you’re ahead of the game!