Sunday, September 11, 2011

We Will Fix It With Glue, Glue, Glue

About 5 days after I got The Bat, it was knocked down by a drunk woman in the Mission. The fall managed to crack one of the hand grips, and over the next few weeks, it completely fell apart. After looking around at options for replacement (I hated the "ergo" grips it came with ) I decided upon the cork grips they sell at Rivendell. I really liked them because they were not the composite cork grips you find in most places. Rivendell cork grips are made in rounds and glued together to form the grip.

Why don't I want composite cork grips? Because, when they get smashed they turn to little bits of fly away powder. There is nothing to do but replace them. In my case, that would mean replacing them fairly often as the Bat gets blown down in the wind all the time. I would have to order them by the case. This seems silly to me. With the Riv grips the only part that gets broken is the ring that gets hit, and if it gets hit right you can fix it!

Complicated Processes 1

So, as you can see here above, the end of my grip was completely knocked off when it smashed into the ground (my front rack was bent, too). The end piece came off cleanly so all I had to do was glue it back on.

Complicated Processes 2

All I had to do was glue the ends that would make contact with one another. I use Super Glue. Never use Gorilla Glue. It expands as it dries and makes things all wonky.

Complicated Processes 3

All you need to do after that is press the two pieces together for a few minutes and then let it dry.

Complicated Processes 4

Now my grips are pretty disreputable right now. They get smashed and scraped all the time. Sometime soon I will sand them down a bit and re-shellac them. They will look completely new with about 15 minutes worth of "effort".

Complicated Processes 5

This is the third time I have repaired this grip. The other side has been put back together many times, too. I have only had to replace one of them once but that was after a bicycle that was hanging from the garage ceiling fell and crushed it.

You don't always have to buy something when a part breaks. If you chose the right things you can make them last a good long time, usually with a little bit of glue.


  1. It was brought to may attention a while ago that there are people in this world who think that when a shirt loses a button it is "broken" and needs to be replaced.

    I am totally unable to grasp this way of thinking.

  2. Thanks for the info on the Rivendell grips! I also repair my grips, however, I use Barge rubber cement. It is made to repair leather and cork. It gives a little and therefor doesn't crack over time. I did lose a chunk of cork last time my bike fell over. Next time I am going to get my grips at Rivendell.

  3. If your bat is blowing over /all the time/ would it be a good idea to look into a different kickstand solution? I'm all for repairing instead of replacing grips (and everything really) but if replacing a dysfunctional stand with a functional one could save all the other troubles... Just a thought :)
    Thanks for the helpful posts!

  4. KFG- that thinking is what makes my local thrift shop such a wonderful place!

    Mary- I will have to try that glue next time. The super glue has been fine thus far, mostly because grips are pretty static.

    Philip- I have a heavy duty center stand that is fantastic. It isn't the stand, it is the insane wind we have here. Even when I park with the wind direction in mind, there is always a gust from the side you can't predict. I had the same problem when it had a really great kickstand. You get used to it when you have been here for awhile. Sometimes I actually have to lock my bikes to something to keep them from being blown over : )