This is a budget tyre pressure gauge, there is little doubt in that. It comes in a simple plastic formed package which I doubt would protect the gauge from any bumps during transit. Upon wrestling with the packaging for several minutes you feel quite happy with yourself once you proudly have the gauge in your hand and free from its vacuum formed prison.
It is of a simple construction, a relatively small dial gauge with 1psi increments measuring from 3 to 60psi. There are also the normal 1-4bar measurements for those stuck in the pre-metric dark ages.
There is a shock proof rubber outer, surrounding the all important dial which is designed to protect the unit in the eventuality that you have brain fade and drop it. How well this will protect it is yet to be seen as I haven’t had such a moment yet.
The hose is around 1 foot long with a push fit air fitting at the end.
So, is this £8.40 gauge a match for the more higher prices options?
The first thing any user will notice is the lack of a locking mechanism for the air fitting which may at first cause some disappointment, but if we are all honest, the locking devices very rarely work well and we all end up pushing the fitting hard against the valve in order to avoid leaks whilst measuring.
The second missing item is an air bleed button. This is slightly more frustrating, its very difficult to bleed air down to the required pressure without this button. However you can develop a technique whereby you can slightly twist the air fitting away from the valve and thus bleed air very slowly and quite accurately. It is however slightly disappointing that the button is exempt from the assembly.
The dial is large enough and well laid out for easy quick measurements, It's not the clearest gauge out there, but anyone with reasonable vision will manage fine.
But how does it perform I hear you cry! Well we back to back tested the device against the most expensive gauge on the market the Rotax Precision Tyre Pressure Gauge. I was fully expecting a minor difference but one which is significant on track. I was pleasantly surprised that at a range of pressure settings up to 20psi down to 7psi the Kart Parts unit performed brilliantly, it was as accurate down to 1psi. The only reason I cannot comment that it is more accurate than this is because its dial does not measure down to decimals. For a unit which costs so little that is a fantastic performance!
Overall, this is a great buy for anyone on a budget, its compact, rugged, and accurate. What more do you really require? If you need memory or special features on a unit then you will of course have to spend more money. There isn’t a carry case or a large dial or digital read out. This is a low cost, budget, no nonsense pressure gauge. If you pay more, you may get longevity and some useful extra features but it won’t make you go any faster and wouldn’t the money be better spent elsewhere? We will find out when we test other units fully but this gauge is everything you really need, cheap, good quality and accurate.
- Accurate compared to expensive versions
- Less than £10!
- Only measures in increments of 1psi
- Lack of bleed button
- No carry case included