March 07, 2021
To harness the power of an air compressor and connect it to the presta valves on your bicycle, an adapter is needed.
This adapter (often called an "inflator" head) connects to your air compressor's 1/4" I/M pneumatic lines and offers a presta valve fitting plus a trigger to dispense the compressed air into your bicycle tire or tube.
Inflator heads range from basic to deluxe and sell for about $30 - $150, depending on features. These models all feature trigger control, so you can vary the amount of air dispensed, and use the common 1/4" I/M air compressor fitting.
The cheapest presta inflator adapters for air compressors start at $36.95. Prestacycle's Prestaflator Mini has no extraneous features, but offers an all-metal design that can be operated one-handed. It doesn't have a pressure gauge built-in.
If a built-in gauge is desired, the Prestacycle Prestaflator Eco adds a built-in pressure gauge for a couple extra dollars and works great for casual use.
Two popular mid-range inflator adapters for air compressors sell for about $60. These tools are an excellent balance of price and performance, great for most home mechanics.
If you only want to work on bikes with presta valves, check out the Arundel Shop Inflator. It has a reliable gauge and simple design that can be used one-handed, which is convenient.
Prestacycle's Prestaflator Professional inflator offers the ability to handle both schrader and presta valves, plus includes accessory tips, handy for inflating pool toys.
Deluxe, high-end presta valve inflator adapters offer additional features and functionality. They are ideal for heavy use, shops, teams, and enthusiast home mechanics who want to get the most out of their tools.
The two most popular inflators in the deluxe category are Prestacycle's Prestaflator Digital and Park Tool's INF-2. The Digital model from Prestacycle offers the same features as their professional model, but adds a built-in, backlit digital PSI gauge, which is nice to read in dark garages or basement workshops.
May 07, 2021