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  Miesha's Portuguese Tree Cork Grips (Pair)


Made in: Portugal

Availability: ETA May?
product code: GT5


These are totally unnecessary but really good, because they are made in Portugal, which is not famous only for cod and flannel, but cork, too.

Portuguese cork trees make the best cork in the world.

But the Portuguese cork industry is suffering because there's a shift in the wine industry to fake corks. It's hurting the cork-tree-farmers and the lot of cork trees in general, not to mention cork-makers. So, these scrappy, feisty, stiff-upper-lip, ne'er-say-die types contacted us and said you got something you need made out of cork? Talk to us Portuguese cork makers, the world's foremost utmost cork professionals, and test our can-doooooo spirit.

Here's an instructional video showing you how to glue and shellac the cork grips.

How they found us is a mystery, but they did and asked if we needed cork-things. We said yes, we want cork grips. They said "cork" we get; what's a grip?, and we said cork hand grips for bicycle handlebars. They said easy, send us a drawing. We said drawing? They said or a sample, man--something to go by, you know? We said that's better, and so we sent a sample of our current cork grips and of the bars they go on.

After three attempts they nailed the inside diameter (the most critical), and then it was just a matter of the shape. There's no use over-thinking the shape. There is a strong temptation, but it is a circular time-sink. The human hand adapts to anything reasonable, right?

We picked a good shape, they made it, and now we have them. Sometime we may get another variation of this shape, but they'll be fungible, for sure.

You may want to know how they're different from the cork grips we've been selling up to now, besides being made in Portugal, which is famous for its cod and flannel besides cork. It's the difference between a Presto-log and a Log-log, a Presto-log and a Stump. Both work, and the Taiwan cork grips have served admirably forever and always will. I found out about them in the Bstone days when Stella there at Velo told me about them and I wanted to use them on Bstones, but the need to glue killed the deal. She later gave me a Waterford Pen&Pencil Set, maroon it was if I remember, and I lost it two weeks later, no fault of hers.

These grips have rings, like fly rod grips. They are not formed by mixing micro cork scraps with glue and pressing the amalgamation into shape, like a Presto-Log, not that that's a bad thing. It's recycling cork bits, is what it is, recycling cork bits. But the Stump Section/Ring cork, the kind on fly rod grips and wine bottles, shows the natural character of the cork, intact as it is when it is bark on a tree, but then just cut into rings-like-wheels-or-doughnuts, and the rings are glued together.

From a distance you can't tell. Tactically you might be able to tell but you can't honestly prefer one over the other. The aesthetics are different, but aesthetics are a dangerous place to go. ("Aesthetic", like "selfless" and the expressions "sadder but wiser" and "water everywhere but not a drop to drink" and "albatross around one's neck" were first used by Samuel Taylor Coleridge, one of two founding fathers or whatever of the romantic poetry movement, in England, late 1700s.)

Let's not get snobbish over cork, but if you like the idea of buying cork grips made in Portugal, famous for its cod and flannel besides its cork, then pay the extra few $$ and get these (or a little more for the pre-punched and double-grooved ready for bar end shifters). It is the way cork grips would be made if they were made for Kings and Queens with Taste and Standards.

NOW available in "for bar end shifter" style--pre grooved and with the end punched out.

If you get the Miesha's PrePrepped Corkers, you may want to wrap the shifter cable to the grip with twine. Here's a link that shows how to do it. It doesn't show the cork grip, but you can extrapolate.

For 22.2mm (7/8") handlebar grip diameter (which is the standard size for all mt bikey, straight, cruiser non-drop handlebars). Will not work on 23.8mm grip diameter of road drop style bars.

Sold per pair.

Here's a video of the bar-end style being installed.

Average Customer Review: 4.5 of 5 | Total Reviews: 5   Write a review.

  1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
A ring or two of cork too short February 24, 2014
Reviewer: David Brown from Suwanee, GA United States  
I've ridden the Portuguese cork grips for several yrs on my quickbeam. My bike recently fell over on a very cold day and one of the grips shattered. Bummed, but ordered a new pair, along with other Riv goodies. I decided to install a new grip today and completely remove the broken grip ( the other grip was still fine so I left it on there). Got the new grip on (used Gorilla glue for the first time and it was great); however, after installing the grip and pushing it completely on, there was about a 1/2" to 3/4" of space before my brake lever that wasn't there before. Not a huge deal but it did mean I needed to remove the perfectly good grip because there was a noticeable grip difference. I prefer the older model with the longer length. More comfortable and more surface area to move your hand around on. The quality is still great, just passing my 2 cents along.

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  0 of 0 people found the following review helpful:
Awesome January 2, 2013
Reviewer: Paul Eric Rich from Baltimore, MD United States  
I ordered one pair for one of my Raleigh 3 speeds.  I had to trim the grips, but no big deal.  Such a great product to ride with I ordered two more pair.  They did not require trimming to fit the stock bars.  Guess there was an adjusment in production.  The BEST looking grips out there and Hella comfortable.  I get compliments from random people in the elevator (I ride to the office) all the time.  Extremely comfortable.

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  1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
Fine grips. Easy on the shellac November 19, 2012
Reviewer: Marty from Oakland  
The grips are great. I've put 'em on three bikes. A few coats of shellac and they look fine. The new ones are shorter, which is OK w/ me and a lot better for Nexus/Alfine setups.

I'm lazy, so I tried dipping the grips in shellac instead of painting them with a brush. Dipping works better with newer shellac because after ~3 years, shellac can take longer to dry. And it can take longer in cool, damp weather. My grips were still a sticky mess after a week, so I got out the alcohol, scrubbed 'em clean and painted them with fresh shellac. If you're gonna dip, use fresh shellac and wait for a warm day.

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  0 of 0 people found the following review helpful:
Just what I was looking for October 23, 2012
Reviewer: Anonymous Person from Houston, TX United States  
Finally building my wife a mixte, and these are perfect.  I pulled them out of the box, looked at them in awe, and then smelled them, because it felt like the right thing to do.  They smell excellent.

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  6 of 6 people found the following review helpful:
Too Good! October 30, 2011
Reviewer: Frank from New York, New York  
So I build my first frame (fillet brazed, handmade rack, the works...) and I'm feeling very proud. I take it around to show off to my friends and what do they say?

The first thing out of everyone's mouth: "I really like those grips!"


Nice grips, so far though. Definitely don't skip the glue when mounting.

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