Water bottles are a necessity in mountain biking. They keep you hydrated and allow you to cover longer distances without showing signs of exhaustion and dehydration.
They are a must-have for every mountain bike ride. But where is the best place to mount these water bottles? And what are the ways to mount them on your bike?
This article will answer those questions and provide more information on how you can maximize using them so you can enjoy mountain biking even more.
Where is the best place to mount a water bottle?
The best place to mount a water bottle is on the down tube of your frame. The down tube is the tube that is below the uppermost area.
This is connected to the head tube and seat tube. Bottle cages are usually installed on the upper area of the down tube so that you can easily access it while riding. You don’t have to stop your ride, get down, and snatch the bottle.
Simply extend one of your arms downward to reach out to your bottle. It’s best that you reach out using your left arm so you still have control of your rear brakes. Note that the rear brake is usually on your right-hand side.
Using your right hand to reach out to your bottle means that your left hand is still on the bars and is responsible for braking.
That sounds good. But braking with your left-hand means that you use your front brakes. And using the front brakes can make you fall out of your bike and over the bars especially if you immediately pull the lever.
Furthermore, there are many other areas around your bike where you can mount a water bottle.
Alternative Ways to Mount a Water Bottle
Hose clamps are also known as pipe clamps. This isn’t very common, but it’s one of the most widely used alternatives to mounting MTB bottle cages to the bike. This attaches the bottle cage onto the suspension fork.
However, isn’t recommended if you have a carbon rigid fork or if you are into trail and downhill riding because there’s a huge chance that your bottle might hit something and fall off once you go through tight trails.
These hose clamps are measured in diameter so you need to make sure that you also know the diameter of your fork stanchions. If you have a 34 mm fork, just like Fox 34, then you need to get a 34 mm hose clamp.
Also, make sure that you tighten it properly to secure the bottle cage in place.
Zip ties are a must-have for mountain biking. They are one of the most ingenious and practical tools ever invented, which is why you should always bring some with you all the time.
However, this isn’t ideal if you are going on rough trails because the bottle can slip off the zip tie especially if the zip ties are small and thin.
They can also dry rot and wear when used always. Nonetheless, these are very handy and convenient.
They can also be used multiple times. Just make sure that you lock them using the opposite end so that they aren’t permanently locked in place. You can zip tie your bottle on your top tube and down tube, or on bottle cages, whichever you find most convenient and secure.
Voile straps are another nice way to mount a water bottle holder on your mountain bike. They are great if you are going to bolster a large water bottle holder or if you are going to ride on enduro and downhill trails.
But make sure that you are going to strap them on a large water bottle holder. So, this means that you should already have bottle cages installed on your bike frame tube.
How to secure your water bottle cage on mountain bikes?
The bike water bottle holder should be a perfect fit on your bottle cage. This is very important so that it wouldn’t rattle out of your bottle cage and fall off if you ride through rough trails or potholes on the road. Meanwhile, the water bottle won’t also fit if it’s too big for the bike water bottle cage.
The size of the bottle cage is also important. Most water bottles can store up to 750 ml of water if you have large water bottle cages. Large water bottle cages and are a must-have if you are into cross country biking or epic rides.
This depends on your preference, such as ride duration, distance, and water intake, as well as your water bottle cage personal preferences. There are also smaller 500 ml water bottles if you are just going to do short trail and downhill rides with a small water bottle cage.
The texture of the bike water bottle and bottle cage should also be considered. This is important because it shouldn’t be very smooth so that it won’t slip off your bottle cage.
On the other hand, it shouldn’t also be too rough because this can scratch and damage your bottle cage, especially if the water bottle cage is made of carbon fiber.
The terrain you are going to ride on should be considered as well. Is it worth it to have bottle cage mounts mounted on your mountain bike even if there’s a huge chance it will fall?
If you are into downhill mountain biking or if you are fond of aggressive rough trails, then it’s best to not use a water bottle.
Instead, you can have a hydration pack on your back. This means that you don’t have to worry about your bottle falling off your bike in case you do jumps and drops on the trails. Hydration packs have a tube that sticks out of the bag which you can directly sip into.
Water bottles are a mountain biking necessity. There are also many ways you can mount them on your bike. You just need to know the right method and choose the best option for your riding style and mountain biking discipline.
There are also some risks involved in this because water bottles can fall off your bike if you ride aggressive downhill and enduro trails even if they are secured tightly.
Just weigh the pros and cons and assess your riding style. When you do, then you’ll have a much more fun time riding outdoors.