An ant's jaw. Huh? That's what Arundel reckon their Mandible bottle cage is like. It's strong but light. Like an ant's jaw.
At 28g, the Mandible is certainly light. They manage to make it so light because the core is foam. I hunted around the garage and weighed a bunch of other bottle cages. A standard alloy cage is about 48- 56g (who knew?) so chances are you'll be saving a few grams here. If you run two bottle cages, and swap to two of these, you might save 50g or something like that. In the overall scheme of things, that's not a big deal but if you're a weight weenie and every gram counts, well, here you go.
Obviously, that foam core affects the strength? Well, no, not in a bad way. Those arms that look so delicate grab your water bottle in a bear hug and hold it firm. Combined with the lip at the top, they'll keep the bottle in place over rough roads or even off-road trails. I tried it on some dodgy old tracks skirting Salisbury Plain where I've lost bottles before and it was absolutely fine.
So, it's lightweight and it works, and that's yer lot. Oh, and you get the choice of two different mount positions. And it looks cool whether you go for this matte version, the gloss black or the white. In terms of price, it's not out of line for what you'd expect to pay for a carbon bottle cage. As a comparison, the Blackburn Camber I tested last year has a list price of £39.99 and was virtually the same weight. However, we're guessing that if you are already in the market for a carbon cage, a fiver either way isn't going to make much difference to your choice. Weight, looks and grip are; and the Mandible certainly scores well on all of those.
Very lightweight carbon cage that holds your bottle ultra-secure
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Make and model: Arundel Mandible Bottle Cage
Size tested: Black
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
Well, it's for people who want to shave off every gram possible.
Arundel say, "You don't have to ride 5 hours a day to qualify to buy a Mandible cage, but it's designed for those who do."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
There's not a great deal of technology in a bottle cage but Arundel have made this with a foam core to keep the weight as low as possible without sacrificing strength.
It's a hard one to mark. With a bottle cage, it either holds your bottle firm or it doesn't. This one does whatever the surface/terrain.
It's so strong that you'd have to try really hard to break this thing.
I have a Blackburn Camber carbon-fibre bottle cage that's the same weight, but this is about half the weight of a standard alloy cage.
Most carbon bottle cages are £35 and upwards. This is among the more expensive although it's also incredibly strong.
Of course, if you're just after the best value you can get, you can use a cheap alloy cage for a fiver. That's fine. But if you feel like indulging yourself with something that works very well, this is a good option.
Plus, I think it looks cool. I like stuff that looks cool.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Does the job well while being very lightweight.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Lightweight, strong, looks cool.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Possibly
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes, if they're after something strong and light and are willing to pay for it.
Age: 41 Height: 190cm Weight: 75kg
I usually ride: My best bike is:
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, club rides, sportives, general fitness riding,
Mat has been in cycling media since 1996, on titles including BikeRadar, Total Bike, Total Mountain Bike, What Mountain Bike and Mountain Biking UK, and he has been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. Mat has been road.cc technical editor for over a decade, testing bikes, fettling the latest kit, and trying out the most up-to-the-minute clothing. We send him off around the world to get all the news from launches and shows too. He has won his category in Ironman UK 70.3 and finished on the podium in both marathons he has run. Mat is a Cambridge graduate who did a post-grad in magazine journalism, and he is a winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer. Now pushing 50, he's riding road and gravel bikes most days for fun and fitness rather than training for competitions.