Chris Chavie, MN Navigator
I like to take my smartphone along on all of my rides for navigation, ride tracking, taking photos and to listen to my favorite podcasts and music. Usually I would just stash it in my jersey pocket, Though the problem with that is, anytime I needed to check the map or change what I was listening to I would have to stop and grab it. After seeing the Quad Lock Bike Kit on the web, I wanted to give it a try and see if it would do the trick to put my smartphone within easy view and hold it secure whether I was mountain biking or road riding.
One of the key features of the Quad Lock Stem/Bar mount that I liked was the dual action locking mechanism that would allow me to easily attach or remove my phone from the bike. This would come in handy for taking photos during a ride or taking my phone with me when parking my bike.
I ride in all types of weather, so keeping my phone dry while still having access to it mounted on my stem would be necessary. The Quad Lock Bike Kit comes with a rain-resistant cover called a Poncho that works fine.
The next question. would the Quad Lock Bike Kit hold my $600 smartphone securely to my stem on rough terrain? I would put this to the test on three bikes (fatbike, mountain bike and road bike) covering a variety of road and trail conditions and the answer is yes. See video link below.
Installation of the mount took only seconds and could be mounted with o-rings for easy removal or zip ties for a more permanent fixture. The case for the kit (Galaxy S4 for this review) is made of a polycarbonate core and a soft TPU outer material that made it easy to slip onto my phone.
On the fatbike and mountain bike, it held my phone securely on everything from bumpy gravel roads to singletrack scattered with rocks, roots and log crossings. The position of the phone on the stem made it easy to see where I was using Google maps or other cycling apps.
On my road bike is where I really came to love this mount kit. Many times when I head out for a ride I don’t have a route plan and will navigate using Google Maps on Strava. With the Quad Lock Bike Kit, I no longer have to stop to see where my next turn might be. I simply turn on my phone’s display and take a quick glance to see where I’m at.
Phone removal and attachment from the bike mount is quick and can be done using only one hand. Push down on the blue collar and twist to remove – Twist until the lock snaps into place to reattach. This lets me get a quick photo or two without fumbling around with the mount.
The rain-resistant Poncho cover slips onto the case with a little maneuvering providing a pretty good seal against rain, sweat and dust. While it keeps your phone dry during the occasional rain, this cover can make pushing the power, home and volume buttons a little more difficult. Touch screen functionality works ok, but sometimes, especially near the edges of the screen, a little more pressure is required. Since the Quad Lock Bike Kit doesn’t provide any screen protection without the use of the Poncho, a screen protector such as Zagg InvisibleShield may be necessary to protect the glass. There are no access ports on the Poncho so to use it with headphones or a charger, a paper punch can be used to make the necessary holes though. Use some tape to cover these holes when not in use so water or humidity wont get in.
The Quad Lock Bike Kit sells for less than $70 and is available for an iPhone 4/4S, iPhone 5/5S, iPhone 5C, Galaxy S4, Galaxy S5. There is also a Universal Bike Mount Kit (no Poncho) for almost any device with a smooth, flat surface.