Specialized SWAT, alternatives- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    Specialized SWAT, alternatives

    I find myself tempted to buy the SWAT Zee bottle cage, EMT tool, and top cap chain tool. Right now, I'm carrying a multi tool, tire lever and pump in one jersey pocket. That's fine on shorter rides, but I think it would be cool to offload all that, particularly if I'm doing an endurance race or long ride with bottles, but really all the time.

    So I'm wondering what people think of this stuff if you've lived with it for a while, and also if there are other systems you like better. The bike is a '13 Kona Hei Hei that places the shock in the vertical orientation, in front of the seat tube, so that spot's not available. The main triangle is a bit cramped, so I have to use a side-entry cage. I do use a seat wedge, but I don't want to go bigger than what I already have.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  2. #2
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    My Santa Cruz Tallboy has bottle cage mounts on the top and bottom of the downtube. Using the bottom of the downtube cage location for a water bottle results in a filth-blasted bottle that I don't want anywhere near my mouth. Even in endurance race delirium. So I do one bottle in the normal top of downtube cage and a second in my jersey pocket. I have a cage installed in the bottom of the downtube location and use a bottle-shaped storage box for my pump, tube, and multitool. I like how this moves these items out of my jersey pockets and onto the bike. I could frame-mount the pump, but it fits in the storage bottle so I keep it in there for protection.
    Amazon.com : SKS Cagebox Storage Container : Bike Water Bottle Cages : Sports & Outdoors
    That's the storage bottle I use. I actually think it is a little flimsy but it works fine.

  3. #3
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    Pretty cool. I have cables routed under the downtube, but they're fully housed. Maybe I can figure out something sneaky...
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  4. #4
    I like turtles
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    Why carry the pump? CO2 and lever with tube under seat either in a small seatbag or Awesome Strap. The SWAT topcap chain room and small multitool on the back of the cage work great.

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    Geologist by trade...bicycle mechanic (former) by the grace of God!

    2018 Niner RKT 9 RDO - enduro AF

  5. #5
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    I didn't have a great time with CO2, then I lost my air chuck. I don't feel comfortable doing CO2 but not a pump. I finally did go tubeless, and it's been a great season in terms of flats. (Knock on wood.)

    The pump alone fits next to a spare water bottle in a jersey pocket okay. So even if I don't find a better place to put it, I'm getting back a fair amount of room.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  6. #6
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    Andrw, a mini pump will be nearly worthless in the event that you get a puncture in a tubeless setup..you will need much more pressure to help seal the hole. I suggest to folks to practice with CO2....I agree it takes some getting used to. You can buy a case of the threaded 16g on Amazon for $30. I have a mini-pump but only carry if I am on an epic as backup.

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    Geologist by trade...bicycle mechanic (former) by the grace of God!

    2018 Niner RKT 9 RDO - enduro AF

  7. #7
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    I don't quite get what you're saying. If I have a puncture that my sealant can seal, shouldn't it seal? If it does, my hand pump can add pressure no problem. If it doesn't, I'd also need sealant, which I also don't have with me.

    I do also have tubes, so if I get a flat bad enough that it won't seal, that's my plan. I did find a pretty nasty cut in the sidewall of the last tire I threw out and the sidewalls on my current rear tire look pretty chewed, so it is something that comes up where I'm riding lately. Anyway, from what I've read, if I do a sidewall, I'm switching to tubes if I want to ride out.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  8. #8
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    If you get a small puncture, yes, the sealant should work (check your sealant often!). What I am saying is that if you get one that takes some work to seal i.e. wheel off shaking vigorously as sealant is spurting out you may not be able to get it inflated with a mini-pump fast enough to be able to get it to seal up because the sealant works be flowing through the hole under pressure. Yes, a tube in this case will fix it and a pump will work fine and if you are good with that, then ride on! Also, if you find yourself in the unfortunate situation where your tire fully deflates from a burp etc. you may need CO2 to get it seat.
    Geologist by trade...bicycle mechanic (former) by the grace of God!

    2018 Niner RKT 9 RDO - enduro AF

  9. #9
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    Yeah, if I start having trouble, I'll reevaluate. But I dragged my feet for a while and I'm now doing WTB rims and tubeless-ready tires, and aside from needing a compressor for initial seating, my wheels and tires have become one of the easiest parts of my bike to own. So I'm not ready to be unable to make a repair and ride off the mountain, but I'm not hugely motivated to optimize for it either.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

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