Sunday, July 15, 2007

Review - Grip Puppies



The MV Agusta has a high frequency buzz that is invasive at certain rpm. All inline fours I have ridden buzz a certain amount as V-twins all seem to pulse and shake at low rpms. The fours tend to buzz more as the rpm's rise is to me this more invasive as the twins seem to smooth out after a few thousand rpm.

The Brutale's engine buzz is unfortunately the amongst the worst I have experienced as some members of the press have also noted. A few bolts have have vibrated loose and fallen off - I expected that on my Buell but not on this bike nor the odd metalic clatter sound it makes at idle almost like worn tappets on an old inline six car engine.

Anyway it's something I am stuck with so I already replaced the bar ends with heavier weights which helped a little, the next thing I was going to do was replace the grips with foam ones. While looking for foam grips I was on a touring bike forum reading threads about handle bar vibration reduction ideas and came across Grip Puppies.

These are foam tubes that slip over your existing handle bar grips to give extra comfort and reduce vibes without the need to alter your factory grips. A simple idea that sounded great.

I order a set and they arrived promptly just one week later downunder without excessive postage charges - thats good service. Here they are fitted.

(Update: the company I previously ordered from no longer ships via regular air-mail - like many retailers in the USA they choose to now only ship International Express which makes the shipping 6 to 10 times what it should be if just sent air-mail , look on amazon instead)



You simply wet inside with some soapy water and slide on - takes all of 2 minutes start to finish and mine do not slip at all once fitted.

On the road they do help to slightly reduce the buzz like the heavy bar ends. They certainly made the MV more comfortable than standard rubber grips.

These will not suit everyone - you do need to adjust to a thicker grip, small hands may not be able to, but if you really have a serious comfort issue with vibration then for a few dollars these have got to be worth a try. Look on eBay to buy a set.

Update: Now 1 year into use and I can recommend them for buzz without hesitation. You will take a few rides to adjust to the extra thickness but they do reduce the vibrations.


Update 2: Still going fine, now fitted to my Buell in 2010  but perhaps not really needed on the twin.

Update 3: No longer using them, my Honda is very smooth and thus these are not needed. Still in good condition and could be used if needed so long lasting items.




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25 comments:

  1. Thanks for the review. Grip Puppies sound wonderful. Where can I buy them?

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  2. Reasonable postage to downunder?

    California Sport Touring want $45 US for postage!

    Have ordered them from http://www.sportouring.com/ who are much more reasonable.

    cheers

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  3. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  4. Your right My Anon, they no longer send by regular post and only offer USPS Express Mail International.

    This is becoming an unfortunately common thing with US retailers who seem to care not much for their customers.

    Mine came in a plain brown envelope with a old lick and stick stamp, total shipping was about $4 if I recall correctly. Now $29.70(US) for same thing as delivery times vary no more than one day to here between air-mail and express mail.

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  5. Well, if you did give us their names and Web address, we could avoid doing business with them. As it is now, we have no idea who thay are, and maybe we ARE unknowlingly doing business with them.

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  6. I've just got mine, ordered through a mate who was getting his from Sportouring also. They feel good but a bit strange with the extra thickness. Hope I'll get used to them. Cheers.

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  7. They will feel odd for a few days then you adjust to the slightly thicker grip. From then on regular grips feel odd!

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  8. Hi

    A tightass mate of mine found some tubing at Bunnings which look like Grip Puppies and feel like them for a fraction of the cost...

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  9. Good tip! The stuff used to insulate air conditioner pipes on split systems is similar but not sure if it would work.

    I have wondered if the stuff used for the same purpose on racing bicycle handlebars would fit but seems a lot thinner.

    Other idea I had was buy a set of the common replacement foam grips and see if they can stretch over the original grips, again might be too thin but then might work and they are just $5 or so.

    I used to always remove and replace my grips with those foam grips to get the same sort of comfort as the slip on grip puppies. The other is a lot of work hence why I like the slip on sleeves.

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  10. I bought some of the cheaper slip on ones and they split mid installation

    I didnt want to cut off my existing grips so I have now ordered some Grip Puppys from ebay

    Will let you know how I get on!!

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  11. Didn't think of eBay - good tip Don.

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  12. Right... eventually got my grip puppies for my ducati st4, fairly easy to install with some warm soapy water and a bit of patience but no longer than a 10 min job really. went for a fair ride of about 150 miles and the numbness to the fingers was greatly improved!! still had a slight numbness to the thumb but nothing compared to what I had before!!

    The increased grip size was strange to start with but soon disappeared after 5 - 10 miles riding and the foam helped for some light finger exercise while riding.

    I would definitely recommend you get some of these if you are having the numb fingers and dead thumb syndrome!!

    hope this helps

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  13. A clone of Grip Puppies goes by the name of Grab On Grip Covers. They look identical and are available on Amazon.com for $9.27

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  14. Same Grab on Grips are on eBay, but at higher price and more expensive postage.

    The foam used in mine is different to that in alternative stuff mentioned above found in hardware stores or bicycle shops so while I am sure it is being purchased from China at 5c a piece I am yet to find a viable alternative off the shelf so for $10 they still represent good value for comfort in my mind.

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  15. Can they be used with heated grips

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  16. Not sure, would be same as foam grips but maybe ask the retailers

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  17. tip pump a full tube of silicone sealant into the bars

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    1. I actually tried to do this and it is very hard to get more than a little silicon onto the bar before it wants to come out the bar end. Good idea in theory but actually achieving it is another matter.

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  18. I ordered a grip puppies on the 26th March and paid immediately. Despite many emails to the fact they never arrivec, I have never received the item or response. I am disappointed as this waa a gift for my very disappointed cousin. Be very careful when ordering.

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    1. Oh that is a shame - perhaps you could share with readers who you ordered from as there are a number of places retailing these things.

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  19. Item never replied though when I ordered I have receipt number. No response. Its now ovwe two months.Lost around $50 australian. Be very careful when ororderi.

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    1. Thanks again Christine. Did you try phone the company? When I have a issue with an order or booking I usually make a call via Skype.

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  20. I have a mild buzz with my current FJR1300, but I actually threw out my Grip Puppies when I moved to Japan not having had a need for them after selling my MV Agusta. I think just switching to foam grips, i.e. removing standard grips and putting foam grips on would achieve exactly the same thing at less money since foam grips can be purchase for a few dollars. I did that on my ZXR750 in the 90's and it made a huge difference to comfort not only reducing the buzz but offering some cushioning to the hands since you have your upper body weight on them with a sports bike. I really only tried these slip on foam tubes because they were simple and cheap to obtain at the time.

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