Which pump works best - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 01-31-2010   #1
 
Durango, Colorado
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Which pump works best

Back in the day when I was guiding, the Carlson floor pumps were all I ever used. Now, after years away from rafting, I need to purchase a pump for the new family raft. I know the Carlson pumps are still great pumps, but they don’t necessarily agree with the checkbook. The Carlson pumps are also big and take up quite a bit of space. I have not yet seen the K pump in person but I am looking at the K40 or K400 pumps. The double stage pump seems like a good idea and they appear to stow very easily. I plan on trailering the boat so I shouldn’t need to inflate the entire boat on a regular basis. Can anyone attest to the K pumps?

jima

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Old 01-31-2010   #2
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If you are just topping off, get the K-200. Small, less expensive than the 4 series and, I think, for topping off, the 2 stage is over kill. But then if you have a boat that leaks a lot, maybe you want the 2 stage.
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Old 01-31-2010   #3
 
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Boise, Idaho
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I like using an NRS floor pump (not quite as spendy as the Carlson) for most of my topping off, but I also own a K-200 to take with me on overnighters for topping. The K-200 is very reliable.
Seems like I never have a good spot to store the floor pump on the raft...
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Old 01-31-2010   #4
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Eastern Slope, Colorado
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jima View Post
Back in the day when I was guiding, the Carlson floor pumps were all I ever used. Now, after years away from rafting, I need to purchase a pump for the new family raft. I know the Carlson pumps are still great pumps, but they don’t necessarily agree with the checkbook. The Carlson pumps are also big and take up quite a bit of space. I have not yet seen the K pump in person but I am looking at the K40 or K400 pumps. The double stage pump seems like a good idea and they appear to stow very easily. I plan on trailering the boat so I shouldn’t need to inflate the entire boat on a regular basis. Can anyone attest to the K pumps?

jima
I can tell you that when you look at that K pump on the internet it looks sweet, and it is, it's as well made as a Carlson. But it won't pump as comfortably, especially when you have a boat docked on the beach and you realize the actual angle of pumping (leaning over the side, trying not to fall in the mud, pumping 2 PSI with your arms in an awkward position vs. standing on your cooler, box, or decking and pumping while you smoke your cig). Using your body in the pumping position is easier, and IMO worth it. Throw down on the 4" Carlson, a nice mesh zipper bag for it, and rig it so it's hanging off your frame behind your seat, right on top of the gear pile. It'll be sweet for topping off, you'll pass it around to your friends to top off during the rigging part of the morning, and you can put it away right as you float off.

I'm just convinced that you're going to hate pumping with your forearms. Plus when you have to fix your boat sometime, or someone on your trip forgets a pump, you'll be glad that you brought a real pump. And the 4" Carlson is basically the same size as the big K-pump. It just has a T handle and a hose, which is what you want.
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Old 01-31-2010   #5
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Baytopia, Colorado
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NOT K PUMP! they fail so easily. Carlson (full size) or whitewater designs (for a mini).
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Old 01-31-2010   #6
 
the fort, Colorado
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i have one of the 6" floor pumps from NRS - a bravo or something like that. like you, i keep my boat trailered and only need to top off when launching. it works money for me, and the price is def. right. i don't like the K pumps for the same reason as randaddy. they're awkward to use.
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Old 01-31-2010   #7
 
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at my house, Montana
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I love my K-pump. It packs so well, and works so well, I'll never go back to a hose pump. I can't relate to needing any contortionist skills to reach my valves, not sure what's different, maybe I'm more flexible. I hate the hose pumps, it seems like they always need someone to hold the hose and a firm surface to set the pump, and I prefer to be able to just take care of it myself. And they are so flipping big.

The kpump is less appealing blowing up a completely deflated boat. I carry a battery powered pump for that, and if I blew a tube on river I'd just have to suck it up and deal with it. For as rare as that would be, I'm happy with my little K.

They did have some oring problems, but once I get the replacement ones it's been bomber. And now I know how to deal with it if it starts to leak again (stretch the orings) until I get a replacement in. I've gone a whole year after oring replacement, and no problems yet. I also had a barrel pump (not carlson) fail on a trip once, the inner plastic shaft broke and pretty much was worthless.
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Old 01-31-2010   #8
 
Richmond, Virginia
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I love My K Pump

Just got it and I love it.
I have a Puma and it is the best top off pump. I have a one of K Pump. It is sized between the K100 and K200. So Its about 27". I love it. It is so much better than my POS Wonder pump (Obviously). It pumps VERY easily and I would think it would be much easier to fill and empty raft with then my Wonder pump was. Storage bag is great easy to attach to a frame or thwart. I love it. I am sure the K40 or K400 would be just as nice and reliable. Give Jim a call and talk to him about his product or send him an email. You will correspond with him and he is pretty quick to get back to you. Just my .02
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Old 02-01-2010   #9
 
thornton, Colorado
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Which ever pump you pick, they all will fail or break at some time or another. I carry a spare foot pump in my repair box. Plus you should maintain your pump by cleaning it of sand and dirt. Lightly oil rubber seals and moving parts. You should be able to take your pump apart and put it back together before you take it on a trip. As you know your pump better you will know which spare parts to carry and tools to carry to make field repairs.
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Old 02-01-2010   #10
 
Salt Lake City, Utah
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Get the K pump. I've had mine for four years now. Never a single problem. Everyone uses my pump now if they need to top off. And as far as it failing, all you need is a couple of O rings in a repair kit in the event that it does fail. Very simple, bomber, stows easily. Plus chicks dig the Popeye forearms. How can you go wrong with that?
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