Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Product Review: FuelBelt FuelBox

The bike rides are getting longer which means it's getting more and more difficult to carry everything that is needed--gels, salt tabs, phone, identification, kitchen sink, etc. I used to use a Bento Box (pictured below), but I hated that thing because it always folded to one side and scraped up my legs. (My bike fit is really tight and my knees nearly touch the elbow pads of my aero bars.)

Dave's Bento Box on Charlie Brown.

Recently I purchased a FuelBelt FuelBox (large) to try out and see if it was any better than my Bento Box.

Hello beautiful bike.

I used it on my long ride and put my EFS gel flash, a little tube of sunscreen, chapstick, salt tabs, and driver's license. On this ride I liked the new fuel box. It held all my stuff. It didn't chafe my legs. I liked the zipper. And because it has an inner plastic liner, it was easy to clean up from all the goopy gel.

But then I used it on a ride on Tuesday and that day I did not like it so much. Tuesday I was carrying three gels, a key, a driver's license, and my iPhone. It all came down to the phone. My tiny, tiny phone, I guess, weighs too much and is a little too wide. Because it was on it's side and leaning one direction that meant that the whole fuel box leaned in one direction. And therefore chafed my knee. Halfway through the ride I got fed up and took my phone and jammed it as best I could to lay flat on the bottom of the box. It didn't quite fit, but the box was no longer leaning to one side. In addition, I tightened up the velcro pieces around the handlebars.

Overall, I like the FuelBox a lot better than the Bento Box. My only wish for something they could change is I'd like to see one with a zipper going the other direction. For me, I'd rather have the box sit at the back of my top tube along the seat post. But because the zipper goes the wrong direction I think it would be hard to open and close.

The Saucony sports bra review has been delayed as the size I got was just a little too small (hard to believe, eh?). So I sent it back and ordered a size bigger. Hopefully there will be a review next week.


M said...

ugh - i hate using my bento box too for the exact same reason. no matter what i did, i could never get rid of the "lean" and the subsequent knee scrapping.

thanks for the post - i am going to have to try this one.

Jamie said...

I have the same issues with my bento box. I hate it. It get the job done (sorta) but is annoying and very floppy. I've been looking at getting that same one, but didn't think of the weight of my iPhone. Good call. I'll have to keep looking too...

Andrea said...

Does your jersey not have pockets in it? Put your phone in a plastic baggie with your keys, and stuff it into your jersey pocket.

Gels go in my sports bra or under the elastic on my shorts on top of my thigh.