Sadly, water bottle cage development has not kept pace with the relentless pace of bicycle product development--until now. Meet the Fabric cageless water bottle mount, the system nobody asked for and nobody will want now that it's here:
Yes, say goodbye to the arduous days of simply grabbing a bottle, taking a swig of your beverage of choice, and returning it to the frame of your bicycle without so much as shifting your gaze from the road. Now you've got to line your bottle up perfectly with a pair of mounting studs:
In either case, the bottle is easy to grab with one hand, just as you would with a normal bottle and cage. The return trip is bit tricky, however, and takes some getting used to. We struggled to get the bottle back on the studs without looking down each time, even after several weeks of using the system.
Sounds great! In fact, I just installed new smoke and carbon monoxide detectors on my ceiling over the weekend, and interestingly this appears to utilize the exact same mounting system. And sure, I don't mind doing that once every ten years, but having to deal with a pair of mounting studs every time I want to take a sip of water is patently ridiculous. Just ask ace bottle marksman Mario Cipollini:
("Yes, is very silly design. In la casa di Cipollini, stud mount you!")
And there you have it.
By the way, they didn't just screw up the mounting system. The bottle itself is also designed to choke you:
The lid secures tightly to the bottle and the nozzle opens and closes by pushing or pulling up on it. Inside the nozzle is a soft silicon flow fitting that regulates the flow of water in and out of the bottle. On one of our bottles, this piece detached from the nozzle and we nearly swallowed it mid-gulp. It’s tough to get this piece securely back in place so we had to replace the lid with a new one to keep the bottle functioning properly.
So basically if you don't crash trying to put your bottle back then you'll certainly go down when that chunk of silicon gets lodged in your esophagus--all to save like 30 grams! Perhaps this is part of a conspiracy to rid the cycling world of Freds and weight weenies once and for all--though ostensibly it's also useful for cyclocross:
We found the cageless design to be especially useful for cyclocross practice and racing when we wanted to carry a bottle with us on warm-up laps but didn’t want to race with a cage. Instead of installing and removing a normal water bottle cage for each race, Fabric’s cageless system allowed us to carry the bottle when we wanted it and then remove it on the start line, leaving plenty of room in the bike’s front triangle for shouldering our bike.
Back when I was riding the cyclocross we used to just stick a bottle in our jersey pockets--or, you know, live life on the edge by riding our 10-minute warm-up laps without carrying water with us. (And yes, of course true Cyclocross Freds wear skinsuits without big pockets, but you're supposed to wear a regular jersey over them while warming up, I mean come on.)
And the lowly water bottle cage isn't the only commonplace item being "disrupted" into oblivion. Now you can also help fund a 40-function hooded sweatshirt!
Rest assured at least a small handful of these functions are cycling-specific. Fore example, it emits an ambiguous neon halo around your head that does nothing to communicate which direction you're traveling in:
It also has turn signals for drivers to ignore:
Which double as warning lights when you're on foot so you don't get hit by one of those pesky cyclists:
Then there's the armpit ventilation system, which I'm assuming is bicycle specific since he's wearing a helmet, though maybe the sorts of people who wear "smart jackets" also wear helmets while running:
For best results, pair with some "smart pants" featuring a similar crotchal ventilation system.
Or, if you decide "fuck bikes" and hop in an Uber instead, it's equipped with both a neck pillow:
And a sleep shade:
Really, the only thing it's missing is an airbag:
Though it does work as a TV remote control, so there you go:
Lastly, here's a new video from Specialized explaining their new Fred bike suspension system:
Hey, whatever happened to that new suspension stem on Kickstarter?
Looks like a feasting insect.