Installing handlebar grips 

As is well known - because I keep telling everyone - there being no other evidence - I am a Genius. And therefore I am going to grace this Blog with a Fantastic Tip.

The hardest things in bicycle maintenance are always the smallest. There are no exceptions to this rule. And the hardest thing of all is to install foam handlebar grips, which we elderly folk like because we are not interested in impressing eager young athletes but are interested in not having tingling fingers.

The Instructions on foam handlebar grips are these:

Velo Grips are made to the highest standards and feature a wide assortment of quality, race-proven materials.

(This is bollocks of course, and we both know it.)

Due to the importance of proper installation and setting, and for your safety, Velo recommends having the product installed by a professional bicycle dealer.

Not all that helpful, but passing the buck to a professional bicycle dealer is I suppose a step forward because in the Olden Days we were told to apply soap or meths as a lubricant, and the grip rotated thereafter or fell apart. A professional bicycle dealer - Jim or Lenny - is no doubt expected to have an airline these days, and will blast compressed air under the foam while sliding it in place, but neither you nor I have access to airlines so we have to Make Do. And since I have an Evil History and invented a great many very naughty things to do with compressed air, my natural instinct is to apply Evilness to foam grips. You attach a length of inner tube to the handlebar with a binding of rubber cut from the remainder of the inner tube. You seal the other end of the inner tube with two blocks of wood and a clamp. You attach pump to valve, daughter to pump, and get her to gently pump air into the handlebar while you apply the other foam grip. Air seeping past allows everything to go on smoothly. The plug-bar-end of the grip is removed, and half an inch of handlebar under the foam exposed; inner-tube re-applied to t'other end; and the second grip goes on smoothly too.

There! Now I'm going to write to Blue Peter to see if they'll give me a job as a Presenter, which they might well do unless they happen to google to find out what else I get up to with compressed air.


Tuesday, May 4, 2010 11:19:53 PM Categories: compressed air
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