Blister’s Measured Weight: 336 g
- 2, 2.5, 3, 4, 5 mm Hex Wrenches
- 8mm Hex Wrench via detachable bit
- T10, T25 Torx Wrenches
- Flat and Phillips Screwdrivers
- Chain Tool
- Square and Splined Spoke Wrenches
Bolted to: Evil The Following, Trek Remedy 9 RSL
Test Location: Montana, Utah, British Columbia
Test Duration: ~4 Months
I avoid wearing a backpack whenever possible. They’re hot, and I don’t really like riding in one. So I’m a fan of water bottles. And given the lack of a pack, I pretty frequently end up riding with a multi-tool and a small pump in my pocket.
The Tailor Cage makes riding without a pack a bit easier, incorporating a bunch of tools and a mini-pump into a bottle cage. The Tailor Cage is offered in a few different options, including one without a pump, one with a more traditional pump, and the HV 1.5 I tested.
The HV 1.5 version has a high-volume pump that works better for mountain bikes, and the head is attached to a short, retractable hose that makes it a lot easier to avoid torquing the valve stem while pumping.
The pump worked nicely for me on the few occasions where I needed it, and the hex wrenches are long enough to work on recessed areas like Sram’s derailleur mounting bolts. Of course, that length also means that they’re tricky to squeeze into some brake lever reach adjustment screws.
And the bottle cage itself worked well — I never lost a bottle, even on super rough descents.
The tools aren’t super high quality, but for basic trailside repairs, they get the job done just fine.
Really, there are three main downsides with this system, none of which I see as deal breakers. First, there’s no 6 mm wrench on the tool. That’s an increasingly uncommon bolt size these days, but lots of pedals and some suspension linkages use 6 mm bolts. I’d happily forego the T10 wrench (since I’m generally not doing trailside brake bleeds) in favor of a 6 mm.The second issue is that there aren’t any tire levers. It seems like it’d be pretty easy to incorporate some levers that clipped on to the side of the cage. Instead, I’ve just been wrapping a couple levers into a spare tube that I keep strapped under my seat.
The third, possibly more significant issue, is just that the cage necessarily takes up more space than a traditional bottle cage. To fit the tool, the cage sits about 10-15 mm higher than a “normal” cage. The cage does have three mounting points, so you can shift it forward or backward a bit. But if your front triangle is already tight, it might be a squeeze to fit the Tailor Cage in there with a full-sized bottle.
There are a bunch of companies producing clever ways to carry tools on your bike, and some companies like Specialized are actually incorporating those features into their frames. The Tailor Cage accomplishes more or less the same thing via a pretty clean-looking bottle mount that will work with most bikes. There are a couple areas where I can see room for improvement, but they’re pretty minor. And what matters most to me is that the Tailor Cage lets me go for a ride without having to worry about stuffing my pockets with tools, which is fantastic.