Hydration is one of the crucial components of a successful race or training day, as we all know. There are so many different options to carry liquids on your bike that it’s often hard to decide where to start.
The most basic option, of course, is cages with standard water bottles. You can also mount your bottles on the back of your seat using a system like the Profile Design RM1 that we reviewed earlier.
Today, we’re going to look at one of the systems we used during our IM training, the Profile Design Aquacell system. The Aquacell mounts between your aerobars and provides 40oz of fluids in two chambers.
The total kit weighs 310 grams and is compatible with most aerobars, either as packaged or via the Aerodrink Bracket. We used the Aerodrink bracket for our application.
Testing the Aerocell Hydration System:
The Aerocell is designed to mount on your aerobars and provide hydration through a dual straw system. We had a bit of trouble mounting the system to our aerobars. The included instructions are vague at best and the Aerodrink Bracket instructions aren’t much better. We expected the installation to take 10 mintues, but it took about three times as long to get a stable installation.
Once mounted, however, the Aerocell Hydration System is dead simple. We chose to remove the caps and use the poly covers to allow quicker refills. Just a personal preference.
When used on a road bike for testing, we did have to stretch a little to reach the straws, but our seat position is a bit behind what most people use, so we don’t think this is an issue.
We used the Aerocell for dozens of rides, short and long distances and never experienced a problem with the performance. A small complaint is that the Aerocell is a bit tough to clean well, especially if you use a thick mixture in the smaller cell.
Overall Impressions of the Aerocell Hydration System:
Mounting problems aside, this is a good hydration system. Depending on your hydration needs, this system can carry all you need for shorter races and only needs to be filled once or twice for IM or HIM races. We eventually decided against carrying a different mix in the smaller cell, opting to use HEED in both cells.
The design is sleek and didn’t have any impact on our times. We did notice a bit of a change in the balance of our bike when fully loaded. This didn’t impact our riding, but we noticed the additional weight on the aerobars.
We would recommend testing this system with your current setup before purchasing. Make sure you’re comfortable leaning that far forward to get your hydration. Not a problem if you’re aero’d out most of the race, but if there’s a lot of climbing, you might not like the positioning of the Aerocell system.