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Digital tire gauge

Old 11-14-22, 08:13 PM
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bonsai171
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Digital tire gauge

Would there be any advantage to using a digital gauge like this

https://www.topeak.com/global/en/product/351-SMARTGAUGE-D2

over the standard analog gauge on my floor pump? Theoretically it would have better accuracy, but would that somehow translate to better performance or comfort while running tubeless?

Dave
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Old 11-14-22, 08:22 PM
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Chuck M 
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I'm taking it you want to use the floor pump and then check the inflation with the digital gauge. IMHO, that is probably not worth the trouble and I don't think for the majority of us that a few psi + or - is going to be noticeable.
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Old 11-14-22, 08:31 PM
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Segal's Law: A man with one watch always knows what time it is. A man with two watches is never sure.

Another gauge will almost certainly give different readings than the gauge on your floor pump. If you already know which psi readings give your desired ride quality with the gauge on your pump, the only benefit of a separate gauge is in case you are filling tires with a different pump; otherwise it just confuses the issue.

If you are still dialing in the best pressures, and esp if you are using a calculator like this one, then sure, yeah, having an accurate gauge may be useful. (Gauges that are built into pumps are usually rather inaccurate.)
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Old 11-15-22, 09:39 AM
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I've got the Topeak digital gauge. I fill my tires past my "set point," then use the gauge to release the pressure to where I want it. I always know what time it is.
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Old 11-15-22, 01:20 PM
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I have a separate (analog) pressure gauge that I use for CX racing. It's handy because it has a release valve that lets me release tiny amounts of pressure to get to a very exact PSI. In CX racing I run very specific tire pressures and a 1-2psi difference can be quite noticeable when you're trying to find the lowest possible pressure. It's also nice because I can toss it in my pocket and easily adjust pressure (down) when I'm out pre-riding a course, without having to circle back to wherever my floor pump is.

For normal gravel and road riding, I just use my floor pump's gauge, which is far less precise or accurate (+/- 5psi variation on mine).
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Old 11-15-22, 08:00 PM
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Originally Posted by msu2001la View Post
I have a separate (analog) pressure gauge that I use for CX racing. It's handy because it has a release valve that lets me release tiny amounts of pressure to get to a very exact PSI. In CX racing I run very specific tire pressures and a 1-2psi difference can be quite noticeable when you're trying to find the lowest possible pressure. It's also nice because I can toss it in my pocket and easily adjust pressure (down) when I'm out pre-riding a course, without having to circle back to wherever my floor pump is.

For normal gravel and road riding, I just use my floor pump's gauge, which is far less precise or accurate (+/- 5psi variation on mine).
I'm contemplating doing something similar. My rides are typically multi-surface, and can have a lot of rough singletrack.
it would be nice if I'm riding some extended rough stuff to drop a few psi (and know how much it is) and maybe even pump the tires up a bit later for road use so the tires don't drag too much. That might sound like a bit much, but I feel like it would be good for really long rides, like a 70 mile one I want to do which will have lots of gravel and singletrack.

Dave
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Old 11-15-22, 08:06 PM
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Purchased an analog gauge recently. Had to check my pumps for accuracy. Oddly the only pump that had a resonable reading on its gauge was the cheap Bell Walmart pump. My vision not being what it used to be I probably should consider a digital gauge...
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Old 11-15-22, 08:14 PM
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Originally Posted by bonsai171 View Post
I'm contemplating doing something similar. My rides are typically multi-surface, and can have a lot of rough singletrack.
it would be nice if I'm riding some extended rough stuff to drop a few psi (and know how much it is) and maybe even pump the tires up a bit later for road use so the tires don't drag too much. That might sound like a bit much, but I feel like it would be good for really long rides, like a 70 mile one I want to do which will have lots of gravel and singletrack.

Dave
I do a few gravel rides with a group and lots of people do this. We have around 10-15 miles of paved riding to get to the trails, so people will start out with higher PSI and then air down at the last stoplight before we hit the dirt trails. Most of the time people are just ballparking it, but occasionally someone will bring a gauge.

I also do this very thing with CX practices. I'll ride paved roads/trails to a park and then do hot laps/practice with a group in the park on grass. I'll leave the house with 40-45psi and then lower to 25psi when I get there (or lower... this is a good way to experiment with where "the limit" is for CX pressures). Some other people usually will drive and meet us there, and usually someone has a track pump that they'll bring out, so I'll use that to air back up before heading back home.
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Old 11-15-22, 09:11 PM
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Originally Posted by bonsai171 View Post
Theoretically it would have better accuracy, but would that somehow translate to better performance or comfort while running tubeless?
Yes, but it depends a bit on the pressures you run. My floor pump gauge gets pretty vague below 25 psi. What shows as 19 might be anywhere from 16 to 22. At those pressures, a pound or two makes a pretty big difference. At 65 psi, not as much.

Bottom line: I've long since forgotten how much I paid for the digital gauge, and I would never go back to only relying on my pump. I consider it a very sound investment if you're running tubeless tires, especially if you have multiple bikes or wheels.
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Old 11-15-22, 09:38 PM
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FWIW, digital does not necessarily translate to accuracy IMHO. While that 95.6 may be easier to read, is it actually 95.6 or is it 93.2 or 97.9? Unless the gauge you are using has a calibration certificate you can't really be sure that it is accurate enough to give you that 1 to 2 psi accuracy. And I don't know that any of these pumps or gauges are that accurate be they analog or digital.

I do know that I like what I feel when I ride one of my bikes at 95 when I inflate using my Bontrager pump with analog gauge. If it is 95 or not I do not know, but for consistency I use that to inflate to before most rides. But I'm not doing what the OP is apparently trying to do by making adjustments during a ride.
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Old 11-15-22, 09:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Chuck M View Post
I'm taking it you want to use the floor pump and then check the inflation with the digital gauge. IMHO, that is probably not worth the trouble and I don't think for the majority of us that a few psi + or - is going to be noticeable.
I don't say this to be a contrarian, but I can definitely tell the difference between 2 psi, possibly even 1, to the point where I spend the extra 30 seconds use the Topeak digital gauge to get it right on rides that are going to be 2+ hours.

Having said that though, if there is an extremely accurate (+/- 1 psi) high volume pump that goes up 40 psi, and doesn't have a screw on chuck (Lezyne) I would definitely buy that product if it's under $100.
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Old 11-16-22, 10:03 AM
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I just got an Accu-gage and it's great... accurate, cheap, and analog. Had a Topeak electronic gauge but it crapped out on me in 6 months.
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Old 11-16-22, 03:54 PM
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Accu-gage is the one I have as well. Mine goes up to 60psi max and has easy to read 1psi increments on the dial. It wasn't very expensive - probably around $15. I like that it's analog - there's very little to break on it and I can leave it in my bag for months at a time and not worry about the battery dying. I've had mine for nearly 10 years and it still works as good as the day I bought it.

Is it accurate? I have no idea. It's definitely precise - I can easily see and set pressure within a half psi. It provides consistent and repeatable measurements and is the only gauge I've used for many years, so the accuracy seems irrelevant. By that I mean that I know that if I set my tires at a number on the gauge that correlates with 27psi,I know exactly what they'll ride like and it's the same every time. Is it actually 27psi, or is it actually 26 or 28 psi? This doesn't matter to me, as long as it's consistently giving me repeatable numbers.

Compare to the gauge on my floorpump - where if I pump up to what looks like 27 on the gauge (which is harder to tell because it goes to 120psi and the increment marks are tiny), the tire will sometimes feel harder or softer than I expect. This is compounded by the fact that there's air in the hose and no release valve on the chuck, so the only way to lower psi in the tire is to pull the chuck. My pump lets out air both when I attach and detach the chuck, so I never really know how much is in there. I compare with my Accu-gage, it'll frequently show readings 3-4 lbs higher or lower than what the floor pump gauge shows, but it's not consistent in either direction. So, it's neither accurate nor precise.
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Old 11-17-22, 12:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Caliwild View Post
I just got an Accu-gage and it's great... accurate, cheap, and analog. Had a Topeak electronic gauge but it crapped out on me in 6 months.
Originally Posted by msu2001la View Post
Accu-gage is the one I have as well.
This. If you're gonna go with a separate gauge, get a Meiser.
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Old 11-17-22, 01:00 PM
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I use the Lezyne digital gauge and find it to be very nice. Of my 2 regular road bikes, one has latex tubes, the other is tubeless. My aluminum bike becomes harsh riding on 25mm latex tubed clinchers at anything above 85 psi front and ~ 88psi rear. With the digital tire gauge I am able to get my pressures right where I want them. The Lezyne digital gauge reads out in 1 psi units (no tenths) but that is OK.
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Old 11-17-22, 02:58 PM
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If you're looking for accuracy to match the predictions of the Silca bike tire pressure calculator, why not get the Silca digital gauge?

Except for the price, of course. I don't need that level of accuracy at that price.
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Old 11-17-22, 09:11 PM
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I’m pretty happy with my SKS digital gauge.

.
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