Rating: 2 / 5
I purchased a Big Agnes Pumphouse soon after they came on the market in the summer of 2007. It is advertised on the BA web site as a "...pad pump, dry sack, stuff sack, pillow, water carrier, backcountry shower and more." http://www.bigagnes.com/str_acc.php
The Pumphouse does make an excellent pad pump. I bought it primarily because I was concerned about moisture from my breath degrading the insulation in my insulated air pad. In addition, blowing up pads (or balloons) makes me dizzy. I also wanted to use it as an inflatable pillow and as a dry sack to contain my sleeping bag.
To use the Pumphouse as a pump, you slip the nozzle end over the pad valve, tighten the cord, gently shake the Pumphouse so it's fully open and then roll up the dry-sack closure, forcing the air trapped in the Pumphouse into the pad. It takes several practice sessions to do this without having the nozzle pop off the pad's valve. I suggest several practice sessions at home before trying to pump up a pad in the field. Since I pump my 48" pad only about half full, it takes about 8-10 bagfuls of air to inflate. With practice, it's a lot easier than huffing and puffing.
The Pumphouse is fully compatible with my POE InsulMat Max Thermo as well as (obviously) with BA pads (I tried it on the Clearview). I have no experience with Exped pads so don't know if it's compatible with them.
The advertised weight of 1.5 oz. is the same as the weight on my scale.
Now the bad:
The Pumphouse fails completely as a dry sack and as an inflatable pillow. First, it's impossible to get the nozzle airtight with the drawstring cord. I had to use a rubber band with "candy cane" closure to seal the the nozzle. I then turned the bag inside out and filled it with water to simulate immersion. Immediately there was considerable leakage through pores in the fabric. The Pumphouse works fine as a stuff sack, but it definitely won't keep the contents dry in case of heavy rain or submersion in water. I therefore will not use the Pumphouse for my sleeping bag without some sort of backup--either a waterproof pack liner or a turkey roasting bag. I am still not decided whether the convenience of the pad pump is worth the extra 0.5 oz. weight of the turkey bag. A 13L Sea-to-Summit Ultra-Sil Dry Sack weighs exactly the same as the Pumphouse--1.5 oz.--and will keep the contents perfectly dry. But then I'd have to blow up my pad.
The same problem occurred when I tried using the Pumphouse as an inflatable pillow--within an hour, the air inside had disappeared. This, again, was with a rubber band closure to seal the otherwise leaky nozzle.
The Pumphouse will work as a somewhat leaky water bag and a trickly sort of shower, although I strongly question the compatibility of these uses with its primary use as a pad pump or sleeping bag stuff sack.
I recommend the Pumphouse only if you really want a pad pump and stuff sack, but use some other method of keeping your sleeping bag dry.