Water bottles and bottle cages are something nearly every cyclist owns but often doesn’t put much thought into. While there are a variety of options on the market for both from high end carbon fiber cages to insulated water bottle variations, they are often designed independent from one another. The Fabric Gripper water bottle cage and water bottles is an exception to that, as Fabric has developed the two products to complement one another. Although both the Gripper water bottle and bottle cage are designed around the standard 76mm bottle diameter, together the bottle and cage provide an exceptionally secure hold and easy grip.
If you’ve already got a Fabrics saddle or are looking for a bottle cage and water bottle combination the Gripper products are definitely worth consideration.
|Category||Bicycle Bottle Cage + Water Bottle|
|Retail Price||$8.00 (600ml bottle) / $15.00 (bottle cage)|
|Measured Weight (in g)||68 (bottle)|
|Likes||+ Modern aesthetics|
+ Designed to work well together
+ Easy to clean
|Dislikes||– Push-pull bottle valve|
– Bottle Cage has a tall profile
– Other bottles may not fit flush in cage
|Where to Buy (US)||Fabric|
Fabric packages the Gripper bottle cage on a flat cardboard while the Gripper bottle has a simple tag with the iconic white and light green graphics. The tag on the Gripper bottle is easy to pull off while a simple zip tie secures the bottle cage in place.
In both packages you’ll find:
- Gripper Water Bottle
- Gripper Bottle Cage
Although every cyclist has one, most people don’t put much thought into their water bottles. Nevertheless, there are a number of design details in each water bottle that ensure they are easy to use on a ride and easy to clean. With the Fabric Gripper water bottle, you have the standard 76mm diameter and a simple pull-push valve on the cap. While we prefer the CamelBak Podium’s jet-valve, a pull-push valve has less parts and is easy to clean. Fabric has designed the valve to also be high-flow and we were surprised with how far the nozzle extends when opened. The soft exterior plastic also makes the bottle easy to drink out of as it’s fairly squeezable. While it’s not as soft as the Elite Fly bottle, it is softer than a CamelBak Podium.
Aesthetically, the bottles are also currently offered with two decal options: “Bikes Bikes Bikes” (reviewed here) or “Fabric”. There are also a variety of color and bottle size options as well as an insulated bottle, which let you easily match the bottles to your bike’s color scheme. Another visual detail that Fabric added to the Gripper bottle is the molded textured surface between the grip ring and the cap. The textured surface consists of a grid of raised bumps that help give the bottles their ‘Gripper’ name. It’s also worth pointing out that the grip ring here is rather deep and wide which also prevents the bottle from slipping out of your hand.
GRIPPER BOTTLE CAGE
While the Gripper bottle cages don’t have any exposed carbon fiber or any claims at being the lightest on the market, they have a clean modern design and excellent grip. Constructed from nylon and available in four different color variations, the Gripper bottle cage has a simple two prong style design. The two prongs are quite long as well, which ensures they have more contact with the bottle but also means putting in / taking out a bottle can be more cumbersome. Even on our larger frame bike, we often found ourselves having to pull at a more aggressive angle to avoid hitting the frame which can easily scuff the bottles.
The finish on the bottle cage is matte, the bottle cage has simple straight lines that look great on any bike. To complement the Gripper bottle aesthetics, Fabric has also added the molded textured surface on the upper portion of the bottle cage. Unlike the water bottle, the textured surface on the Gripper bottle cage is only aesthetic. On our scales, the Gripper cage weighed in at a light 36 grams without hardware which is only a few grams more than the much more expensive Elite Prism Carbon cage.
Fabric has developed the Gripper bottle cage and water bottle to be great products on their own but even better when used together. Where a traditional bottle cage has a raised lip near the top to prevent water bottles from falling out, the Gripper bottle cage has a molded lip that perfectly matches the Gripper water bottle’s grip ring. This means the Gripper water bottle fits flush inside the Gripper bottle cage for a very secure fit, making lost bottles a thing of the past. While this integrated design works well together, it may mean non-Gripper water bottles may not fit as well in the bottle cage. We found that bottles without a deep grip ring in the same location as the Gripper do not sit flush and feel less secure.
Overall, we found that the Fabric Gripper bottle cage and water bottle are well designed and easy to use hydration products. The integrated texture on the Gripper water bottle and prominent grip ring make the water bottle easy to drink from and hold. While the push-pull valve isn’t our favorite, the simple construction means the bottle is also easy to clean. The Gripper bottle cage also has clean lines that echo Fabric’s design aesthetics and looks modern. Fabric has added a molded lip on the bottle cage that matches the profile of the Gripper water bottle perfectly. Although this means the Gripper bottle cage doesn’t work as well with some other bottles, it provides a very secure fit with the Gripper bottle. If you’ve already got a Fabric saddle or are looking for a bottle cage and water bottle combination, the Gripper products are definitely worth a consideration.
Disclaimer: The product for this review was provided by Fabric. The views expressed on this website are solely those of the authors and are here to help people make an informed choice before a purchase. The authors or the blog itself does not get any monetary compensation from the product manufacturer or third-party websites/vendor links that are posted here.