Easton has offered bar tape for some time, and even though their Velotape was good, it wasn’t exactly a stand out. Not only has Easton introduced a new line of bar tape, but they are expanding into the mountain bike grip market with a very nice pair of lock-ons. The new grips are impressive not only because of their design, but because of their claimed durability – see for yourself after the break.
Instead of making the grips from Kraton rubber which is common with many mountain bike grips, Easton used Elastomeric Polyurethane instead. During testing they installed one grip that was Kraton, and one that was the EP on one of their pro’s bikes to see how they would hold up. The results were always the same with the Kraton rubber grips looking like the grip on the left, and the EP grips looking worn, but not destroyed.
Grips will be offered in two thicknesses, 30 and 33mm diameters. The 30mm grips are shown here on the scale at 105g. Each grip includes a full aluminum end plug that doubles as one of the locking clamps, which are carbon friendly. In order to make a really nice feeling grip with no hand to metal contact, there is grip material covering each clamp that is easily pulled back to bolt the grips to the bar. The internal clamp structure has several cut outs with matching tabs in the grip material to keep it from turning. We have to give Easton credit on the clever packaging as well as each grip swings up to form a mini mock handlebar so customers can “feel” what they would be like on the bar.
Grips should be available in June.
Not to be left out, Easton has redesigned their bar tape as well with a Microfiber and EVA foam version.
Both versions of the tape have sublimated Easton logos, with the Microfiber version getting a little more texturing. Each has an adhesive backing, while the Microfiber tape featuring a 3 piece design with a dual density foam center, and adhesive gel backing. One of the best parts is that the EVA foam tape will stay around $10, with the Microfiber retailing for a bit more.