Original Free Range didn't start out as a company. It started out as a simple solution to problem that has plagued MTBers since when Fat Tires first rolled on the scene: How to carry a beer on a bike and keep it cold?
Cold was the hard part, especially here, in the Arizona desert. The easy answer was just wrapping the beer in a cloth and shoving it in a backpack, which for a hot ride, isn't optimal. So, we went to work on how to move it to the bike. A cheap neoprene koozi is too thick to go into a bicycle bottle cage and without a top, your beverage quickly loses it cool. So, with some wetsuit neoprene, we went to work sewing our own koozi to fit in a bottle cage and still keep that beer cold for an hour or more of riding.
As expected, we found what worked best was to place the beer in neoprene with a shape similar to a koozi but fully wrapped. What we didn't expect, was that the fully enclosed "koozi" we created was a really great alternative to a traditional saddlebag.
And so, the Original Tube Beanie was born. The neoprene we were using worked perfectly to protect the ride essentials (spare tube, tools, CO2, etc.) we normally carried, and it kept everything dry and rattle-free. It was a dream material for carrying gear on the bike and our simple design meant we had quick access to our stuff, a form fit and no chance of busting a zipper.
Neoprene has some drawbacks. It is notoriously hard to sew and our premium CR grade neoprene costs about 3x more per yard than other high-end fabrics like X-Pac, but we felt those negatives are vastly outweighed by the stretch and protection it provides.
Since creating the Original Tube Beanie in 2018, we've continued to expand our lineup with ride related products that all have a unique spin and minimalist design. So welcome to the Range and hope you find something that'll make your future rides even better.