First published on BreachBangClear here.
Many thanks to the Mad Duo and team for adding me as an auxiliary ... 'roo's on the barbie any time you rock up ...
My first item from a bundle of goodies from Propper that I am going to cover is their nicely branded "Limited Edition" Liberty Bottle. I've seen these good looking bottles in the past, but so far, had stuck to either my much loved but slightly unreliable 1L SIGG or the very reliable widemouthed 1L Nalgene.
The Propper Liberty Bottle makes a very nice addition to my collection, and let me tell you why.
Made from 100% recycled metal aluminium, with 100% recylcalable materials in the cap and bottle, the Liberty Bottles are both light, strong and friendly to the environment. Like the SIGG bottles, the Liberty bottles are formed from billet plugs, giving a seamless construction and are lined with a flexible and food grade coating, which ensures no flaking or chipping when the bottle itself is dinged and dented (as may happen with the hard wear some of us are guilty of putting our hydration systems through.
This coating exceeds FDA requirements and provides a non-toxic and non-leaching surface that ensures no heavy metal leaching or porous surface are present for bacteria to build up on, keeping them sanitary for longer.
The bottles are independently lab certified to by 100% BPA free, for those worried about that kind of thing.
The fact that that coating is white means that visual inspection of your bottle for both fullness, and skunge buildup is a lot easier than if it were a darker colour. I really liked this.
Three locking lugs on the rim of the bottle are not obtrusive enough to be a bother when either filling up the bottle, or drinking directly from the lip.
The taper of the bottle also acts to smooth out the pour, much like a wine bottle, all part of the design
The sports cap that came with my Propper Liberty bottle has some very nice design features too. The all-around silicone rubber plug fits both into the neck and also against the lip of the bottle giving a really good seal. I've had not a single drip from the neck once I worked out the "click" feel that indicated a full seal. The three inset channels take the locking lugs, and feature a slope and notch type system to hold the lugs snugly in place, with a 1/4 turn being all that's required to open and close the bottle securely.
At 700ml (24oz) this is a good sized bottle for me when I don't feel the need to carry a whole liter around.
That sports cap has a couple of other neat features. The circular dome just offset from the straw port is a vent. This means that the negative pressure put on your bottle by sucking on it doesn't pull that back through the mouth-piece (and your back-washing mouth...) further adding to the longevity of the contents, as well as making drinking much easier and more free. The straw itself is removable, and can be left out entirely, if you don't mind the "tilt-back" drinking style.
The silicone rubber nipple fits snugly against a ridge on the cap to keep it crud-free, and covers the vent hole when depressed. The lever also acts as a carry handle, and the whole assembly can be broken down to clean all the parts.
The only drawback I've found is that if I've let a cold drink warm up, or hold the bottle around any air-space, the heat of my hand can expand the air inside enough to make it spurt my drink up out of the straw when I flip the top.
Liberty Bottles cutting-edge cylindrical printers have done a great job on Propper's design, laying down graphics you can feel. I really liked that tactile diamondplate addition, and the surface material has taken a few drops and knocks already with no sign of wear.