Secure your phone with just a quarter turn and you’re ready to ride
Let’s face it: Your smartphone is one of your most versatile and expensive personal devices: internet, email, camera, calendar, GPS, eBook, entertainment centre, oh, and you can talk on it! All that in one little box, it almost seems worth the large amount of money you dropped. So, when it comes to mounting your phone to a motorcycle, it seems foolish to cheap out on a holder.
And that’s where Quadlock steps up. In 2011, the Australian company began making mounts for cyclists and soon branched into the automotive and motorcycle sectors, followed by marine and even fitness applications. Its marketing department has been working overtime, and by now you have no doubt seen their ads on social media. It was time to have a look.
To address such a variety of uses, the kit is built from a list of components. On their website, quadlockcase.ca, I chose from among the following:
Case: Right out of the gate, let’s deal with what I consider to be the only annoyance: proprietary phone cases. The Quadlock requires its own case, which is made specific to most, or all, phones on the market — for me, an old Galaxy S10. On the upside, the case is slim and rugged, can always be kept on my phone, and is included in the price of the mount. It can be positioned vertically or horizontally. Mounts for the car are also available, so you don’t have to switch cases. These vary from $39.99 to $59.99.
Mount: You have the choice to mount your phone on the handlebar, mirror bar, fork stem, or two more just-released options: a brake reservoir mount and brake/clutch mount. Each base is unique. I chose the handlebar mount over the mirror mount as it seemed my phone would be better protected behind the windshield. On the fork stem mount, my phone would be hidden by my tank bag. The mount comes with several spacer rings to accommodate different bar sizes. There is also a choice between the standard mount, which is made of nylon for $94.99, or the Pro, which is made of anodized aluminum and retails for $124.99.
Both appear quite sturdy. Again, the case is included in this price.
Vibration Damper: Much attention has been given to the dangers of lashing your phone to a motorcycle, and for good reason. The high-frequency vibration can damage the image stabilization in the camera. Quadlock provides a list of motorcycles for which this is a known issue, but to be safe, it seems worth the $24.99 for the damper. It features a suspension system with precision-engineered silicone grommets that reduces 90% of the vibration. This alone is worth the price of the kit.
Weather Protection: The “Poncho” ($29.99) is designed to keep your phone’s screen and ports safe from mud, dust, and rain. I found the poncho added a white opacity that limited visibility in sunny weather, and I took it off. In rain, it may be helpful, although my Galaxy claims to be water-resistant on its own.
Charging: There are two options: An integrated USB Cable ($44.99), or a Wireless Charging Head ($109.99). I chose wireless as it makes removing my phone one step quicker.
Adapter A: A single-pivot knuckle adaptor allowed me to adjust — and perfect — the angle at which my phone is held. ($14.99)
Adaptor B: There is also a 12-volt to USB cable available for $49.99. It runs directly to your battery and integrates a switch that prevents battery drain. As my bike has a USB port on the dash, I didn’t need this.
Adaptor C: An alternative to the bar mounts, there is also a ram-style ball mount.
The kit arrived within a few days of ordering. I found installation to be a little tricky only because I was keeping my Garmin mounted as well, for comparison’s sake. Getting everything positioned so I could still see beyond them to the dash display was a bit of a challenge. Otherwise, it would have been a breeze.
I love how quickly the phone can be attached to the mount. Just a quarter-turn of the phone and the four “Quadlock” tabs on the mount click into the back of the case. Safe and secure. Press the tabs on the mount and twist again to remove. It’s that simple. Perfect for when you want to grab your phone at a stop to take a photo — or play Wordle.
If you use notification banners on your phone, you will want to disable them. Lord knows we don’t need another distraction while riding. The only other caveat I can think of was shared by another rider who said her mount had been stolen. I had never worried about this with my Garmin. Just remove the unit and go — without it, the base is useless. But everyone has a phone. All they need is the Quadlock mount — which is easy to remove. Hopefully, Quadlock will come up with a security feature that makes removal much more difficult. (And in the meantime, hopefully, thieves do not read this review.)
In summary, there is a lot to like about this system. Quadlock is solid, easy to install, versatile, and convenient. Expensive? Perhaps, but a good investment if the alternative is watching your phone-computer-camera bounce down the highway at speed. As a frugal shopper, I have spent too much money replacing cheap gear. This is one category where I refuse to skimp. I expect to use my Quadlock for a very long time.