Syncros can help you move a few items from your back to your bike with this sturdy, glass-reinforced Nylon bottle cage that incorporates a slim, slide-out drawer containing a folding wrench and a chain breaker. Alongside the cage, a high-volume mini-pump is securely attached with a pair of C-clips and an elastic rubber closure. Anticipating the additional 13 millimeters of height that the tool compartment adds may create clearance issues, Syncros designed the cage to allow side-entry for the bottle and made it available in either right or left-hand options. It’s called the MatchBox Tailor HV1.5 and it can be had for around $69 USD.
Matchbox Tailor HV1.5 Details:
• Material: glass fiber reinforced Nylon
• Integrated multi-tool storage drawer
• 14 tools: chain breaker; 2 spoke wrenches; magnetic quick-link holder; T10 and T25 Torx keys; Phillips and flat screwdrivers; and 2, 2.5, 3, 4, 5, and 8mm Allen keys
• Multiple mounting positions, fits most frames
• Side-entry cage: left or right-hand options
• High-volume pump with retractable hose
• Weight: 340 grams
• MSRP: Around $69 USD
• Contact: Syncros
Features and Function
Bottle cages with adjoining carriers for inflation devices have been around for decades. The addition of an integrated tool box, however, is a more recent development, one that came to fruition after enduro riders abandoned hydration packs and embraced the 1980's retro racing style, swigging from water bottles and binding essential tools and spares to their frame tubes with black electrical tape.
The secret drawer latches in place when stowed.
The contents normally remain on the cassette when not in use.
The MatchBox Tailor HV1.5 replaces much of that electrical tape with a slim, two-compartment sliding drawer below the water bottle cage that also incorporates a high-volume mini-pump. Slide the tray out and all of your essential tools are organized and at the ready. One drawer houses a well-made folding tool with the basic Allens, Torx and screwdriver bits. The other tool is a chain-breaker with two built-in spoke keys (splined and standard), an 8 mm Allen adapter, and a magnetic quick-link holder. When working on the bike, the tools you don't need stay on the tray - not strewn in the dirt or lost in a pack pocket next to a sticky, half-empty gel shot.
The pump has a retractable hose with a lever-type inflation head, and it addresses two nagging problems that plague tubeless tire owners in the field. Unless you are careful, it's easy to break or loosen Presta valve stems where they enter the rim using a pump with a fixed head; and screw-on inflation fittings often unscrew the valve core while the head is being removed. In use, the HV1.5 pump delivers a healthy measure of air with each compression, so you can quickly air up a flat tire without looking like a hopeful, pre-pubescent male.
Two magnets retain a quick link on the chain tool.
With a retractable hose, pumping requires less effort.
A number of mounting holes are provided to help position the cage where its contents will be most accessible, and they are elongated perpendicular to the downtube, so the cage can be offset to the right or left as needed. The offset comes in handy, either to minimize the overhang of the pump or to enhance access to the side-entry bottle cage. As mentioned, MatchBox Tailor bottle cages can be purchased with right or left-hand exits.
Offset holes let users position the cage to optimize access.
The side-entry cage grips the bottle tenaciously.
Hanging a mini-pump alongside your water-bottle cage exposes that slim aluminum tube to take a bashing. In practice, however, I have never damaged a cage-mounted pump to the point where it was not serviceable. If it can happen, eventually it will, but Syncros offers the HV1.5 pump a-la-carte for around $30 USD should you need a replacement.
Missing from the otherwise comprehensive tool kit is the six millimeter Allen key, which is often required to remove non-quick-release through axles. Another concern is that some frame designs will not tolerate the additional 13 millimeter (0.5 inches) stack height that the tool cassette imposes on the cage. The side-entry bottle design mitigates this to a large degree, but it wouldn't hurt to measure what's overhead of your existing bottle cage before dropping 70 bucks on the Syncros upgrade.
An 8 mm hex adapter is included to attend to loose crank bolts and pedals, but Syncros does not include the 6 mm Allen key needed to remove many through axles.