Muddymoles mountain biking in the Surrey Hills and Mole Valley

Pro FRS Double Lock Ring Grips review

Posted by Tony | September 16, 2010 | 9 comments so far

Pro FRS Double Lock Ring Grips
Lock on grips are one of those “doh why didn’t I think of that” products. They are now so ubiquitous that people who have recently taken up MTBing probably don’t realise that we have suffered years of potentially lethal slipping grips before the arrival of lock-on grips.

Lock on grips basically use a hard plastic core, covered in a softer rubber grip and clamped onto the bar via the core to stop the grip moving. Genius, it couldn’t be simpler!

After rotating the grips on my Trek 2 or 3 times to get the most wear (I must be riding plenty!) it came to the point were it was obvious that they needed replacing.

A quick search of the web found a rather natty pair of black Pro grips with matching gold hardware to compliment the rest of my Trek. A couple of days later and the the grips were fitted.

They had many good points. They were super long, thin and soft, covered in small dimples. Just the way that I like my grips.

Fitting them was slightly different to the ODI grips that I’ve used before. Instead of having a split alloy ring that holds the grip in place when pinched up, the Pro used two grub screws that tightened onto a small plates which in turn compressed the hard plastic core onto the bar. The bar end covers are incorporated into the outside clamps.

It certainly wasn’t as elegant a solution as the original ODI method and was much harder to get the grip tight. I guess that ODI hold the patent and Pro (part of Shimano) used an alternative clamping method to get around the patent.

You can probably imagine my disappointment when I lost one of the bar end clamps on the first ride out, leaving the jagged plastic of the grip sticking out and a potential safety hazard. I put this down to the poor clamp.

So unfortunately this is a negative review. The Pro has many good features but the clamping method just lets them down and I can’t recommend them. The grips have been replaced by cheaper (although shorter and not quite as comfy in feel) Superstar grips which use the original clamp arrangement.

It looks like ODI got it right first time, don’t mess with the design.


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  1. Dave says:

    The On-One grips use the same method so I guess they come out of the same factory. Can’t say I’ve had any issues with mine in terms of slipping.

    Superstar use the same method as ODI though so I’m not sure it’s a patent issue. Having said that, if you have the Superstar bar ends then they too use the grub screw, pinch method, being a solid piece of metal.

    Given the colour range Superstar have and the price, why you would you go elsewhere!! ;oP

  2. Matt says:

    Tony, you beat me to it!

    I’ve just bought some Superstar grips and was planning a review. It might still do so but there’s no much more to add; but black with lime green anodised ends makes a nice picture!

  3. StevenD says:

    @ Matt, please do the review on the Superstars. As my grips are beginning to wear I am considering their soft compound option.

    @Tony, if the grips are fine and it is just the bar end maybe consider the drinkers option…Mucky Nutz Bar Ends ? They work well with Bonty grips that have just the one lock-on. The other end was closed, but after wear & tear I just cut-off the ends.

  4. tony says:

    Thanks for the comments.

    I had a look at the On-One website and their grips look different in that the outer locking isn’t also the end cap as is the Pro. The main issue is getting the Pro outer cap on far enough to pinch securely and not be knocked off. Hopefully the On one are better designed.

    Steve. Thanks for the Mucky Nutz bar end suggestion. I ‘ll have a look at the remaining plastic sticking out and se if I can cleanly hack it off and then put a bar end in. I’m not convinced it will hold but I might use it on my old MTB.

    Matt don’t let this review stop you writing your review! Tell us about the Superstar longevity and colour combos!

  5. Dave says:

    Actually I was wrong. While the inner ring on the Superstar is split like the ODI ones the end cap is the same as you describe here. However, have just had to use GT85 to get one of them on I’m not expecting it to come off any time soon. Time will tell.

  6. paul901 says:

    I’ll have to have this all explained to me on a Sunday as I only get some of it and it never occurred to me that the grips wear.

    My first thoughts were stick to the Lock On with the colour you particularly want and then add some Hope Grip Doctor bar ends in matching colour. I expect I am missing something in this though.

  7. tony says:

    Maybe you just aren’t holding the bars Paul 🙂

    Supersoft grips wear particularly quickly, which isn’t a problem in the dry. In the wet however……

    Providing the internal lock on collar/ring can hold the grip in place, a Hope grip Doctor would be fine. Although they are just fancy bar plugs and just stop grips sliding off, not stopping them rotating.

    Debbie has Grip Doctor on her Orange and given how quickly they scuff up I think Mucky Nutz are a better option. Scuffed bar end? – damn I’ll have to open another beer.

  8. paul901 says:

    It’s my Padawan MTB knowledge again Tony, I thought we were supposed to have ‘soft’ hands and grip no tighter than we need to. I am not looking forward to the trails when I have to grip holding on for sheer life!

  9. TurnerGuy says:

    I am guessing that the light grip advice comes from pro riders who probably have strong grips and so don’t have to grip tight – a bit like pro golfer telling you to grip light, but you try pulling the club from their hands and you will see that their grip is strong, unlike an amateur.

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