Fork mounted bottle and/or dry bag cages are an ideal way to increase a bike’s load capacity.
We have had Blackburn’s Outpost cage on long term test over numerous trips.
Out of the box
In hand, the cage feels sturdy and well made, constructed of 6mm alloy tubes. To back up confidence in their product, Blackburn offer a lifetime warranty! Durability wise, this Anything cage has nothing to prove.
Welds are clean and well executed and the metallic sand paint job is discrete enough to be forgotten about.
The Outpost Cage weights 175g, roughly the same as the non-recyclable plastic Salsa Anything cage, which only holds 3kg vs. the 4kg max weight for this Blackburn version.
The cage has a generous number of mounting holes, so its position can be fine tuned on any standard cage fittings, be it on the forks, under the downtube or in place of a standard bottle cage.
The strap holes are perfect for zip ties too, for people like me who have forks with only a single eyelet. Taping a piece of foam between the cage and the fork leg protects the paint, then fill it with gear!
On the trail
After two years of bikepacking use and riding to the boulangerie, I needed a tougher challenge for this cargo cage! Wanting a little more than water at the end of each day across the 700km of the Torino-Nice Rally, a bikepacking event linking Turin to Nice along some of the old salt roads, I carried a bottle of Jack Daniel’s across the route’s demanding gravel and rocky tracks.
I am more of a Scotch drinker than Bourbon, but the square bottle fitted perfectly, so it was the natural choice. A couple of pieces of foam to absorb vibrations and I was set.
Even the straps are well thought out on this cage, their underside sewn with rubber threads that prevent the load from sliding around (which was my main concern). With the bike bucking over the rocks and stones, the bottle never moved an inch!
Catching some air, an over tightened zip tie snapped on landing, which I promptly replaced with 2 smaller ones and the bottle made its way down to Nice absolutely intact, but somehow less full.
Carry the strange
The motto of this cargo cage is “carry the strange“.
It is usually used to strap on a sleeping bag, a bivvy bag or a drybag. But…
Will it really carry the strange?
A simple way of reducing waste is to invest in items that are covered by a longer warranty.
Business is business
When a product has a 5-year warranty, it is clear that the manufacturer has commited to exchange it if faulty. Bargain.
But this costs money… It is in the interest of the manufacturer not to have to exchange it! So if a product is covered by a warranty, it clearly was designed to last at least this long.
So before making a choice, a quick check can often save both your wallet and some waste!
- Material : 6mm alloy tube
- Max load : 4kg
- Weight : 164g incl. straps
- Mount : Double eyelets
- Dimensions : 102*203mm
- Available colours : Black, sand
- Lifetime warranty
- Discrete look
- Non-slip straps
- Excellent value for money
For a mere 20€, this is a durable and well designed product that works perfectly.
Less bulky than the plastic Salsa Anything Cage HD, half the price of the titanium King Many Things Cage, the Blackburn Outpost Cargo Cage is reliable and functional.
Highly modular, excellent value for money and a minimalist design, it is fast becoming the go-to cargo cage for bikepacking rigs.
The only question is, what will you carry in yours?
Read more on Blackburn‘s website