Race Face Release New Chester Lock-On Grips

Nov 29, 2023
by Jessie-May Morgan  
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Race Face has updated the Chester MTB grip with a softer, tackier rubber compound and a new shape said to enhance comfort and control on the trail. It employs a 20A rubber compound, as measured on the Shore A hardness scale. The lower the number, the softer the rubber. That's pretty damn soft, given that some of the softest, tackiest downhill tires have a Shore A hardness of around 40A.

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Perforations on the sleeve reduce the hard contact surface area between the plastic and the handlebar

It is no long the BMX-inspired push-on affair of old, a design that was popular amongst riders who valued the added damping. Now, the Chester has a plastic sleeve running underneath the rubber, with a single lock clamp at the inboard edge. However, not seen is the fact that the sleeve is perforated along its surface. Race Face say that has reduced the hard contact area to the bar by 29% (versus a continuous core), allowing them to increase the average thickness of the rubber underneath the rider's palm.

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Surface texture is new, too. The region that interfaces the rider's palm is ribbed, said to help wick away moisture. Then, where the finger tips wrap, the ridges are deeper to give a better purchase. The outboard edge is much thicker, with taller ribbing at the inboard edge increasing effective diameter where the rider's thumb wraps.



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The Race Face Chester has an overall length of 136mm. Prospective customers have the choice of a 31mm or 34mm diameter option, and the choice of 10 clamp colors. Choose from black, blue, purple, turquoise, kashmoney, forest green, orange, silver, red or gum with a black clamp.

All have an MSRP of $27 USD / $32 CAD.

Author Info:
jessiemaymorgan avatar

Member since Oct 26, 2023
40 articles

75 Comments
  • 30 0
 Got some during the Fromme giveaway. They've got a really nice, tacky rubber, and I really like the profile on the thick version. They're one of the better thick grips I've tried, and the price is better than an ODI rogue.
  • 19 0
 Thanks for joining us out there!
  • 11 1
 @raceface: I went Sunday and unfortunately you had shut down already. Rats. Still want to thank you for this as a ton of people I spoke with were absolutely stoked on their new grips. Some even let me touch them. Lol.
  • 2 0
 @raceface, and idea where the diameter measurement is measured? Looking at the profile it seems there could be a few mm difference between the inside edge against the lockring, and the narrowest part.

@jayacheess

Any chance you've ridden the 33mm SDG Thrice, and can compare the two?

I'm a thick grip fan, and 34mm is right about where I like them. And this seems to include the ribbing from the DMR Deathgrip, with something that approaches the "half waffle" for the fingers, this looks like it could be great.
  • 3 0
 @ocnlogan: I haven't, no.

On the profile: I kind of like that the Chester is slightly wider near the lockring, and then slightly smaller along the rest of the grip - except that there's a kind of raised outer flange right on the end. Ergon's GA2 fat grips do kind of the opposite, where they start small near the lockring and then gradually get larger toward the end. Same with RaceFace's Gettagrips, which I ran for a while, but was happy to change.
  • 2 0
 @raceface: the old push on Chester was among the best out there (and the ones I'm using at the moment), too bad you don't offer push ons anymore.
  • 2 0
 @ocnlogan: We measure at the centre, so the grip diameter grows at the flanges.
  • 24 0
 My favorite color is ham
  • 13 0
 oooh nice, theyre ribbed.
  • 4 1
 'for your pleasure Wink
  • 1 0
 @thebradjohns: he likes getting ribbed
  • 3 0
 These look great, well ribbed so super comfy and I like how the ridges underneath seem subtler than most, I find the half waffle on most grips of that ilk too aggressive and just don't feel good under your fingers, these look spot on.
  • 5 4
 Shore hardness / durometer is great but the real magic in those tires is the low rebound knob response. Picking a tire (or grip) off hardness is like buying a bike based off its head tube angle; it's a single measurement rather than a complete picture of the performance.
  • 3 0
 Thinking that your grips shore rating being +/-5 of some other grips shore rating has any affect whatsoever on the performance of your bike is peak consumerism.
  • 1 0
 Picked up some 34mm Chester grips from the Fromme vending machine. Just rode them for the first time and I was really impressed. I’d been getting a bit of hand cramp on descents and I didn’t at all with these. I wasn’t sure at first whether they would be as tacky but they felt pretty good.
  • 5 1
 $32 CAD? Wow some realistic grip pricing. Nice!
  • 2 0
 normal price used to be 25 CAD, 50 for fancy shit... ah bring me back to 2019 prices Big Grin
  • 2 0
 Would love to compare these to the ODI Reflex. I have a pair of Reflex's now and they are great. Gotta try these vs Reflex vs my current fave Dread Lock
  • 2 0
 I have been really liking the 31mm size. One thing though is that they add a LOT of length to your bars. They added 6mm on each side over my previous lock-ons.
  • 3 3
 After trying cheap but grips for 8€, I feel bad for paying over 30 euros for previous grips. The performance is the same. And also the quality. Just find cheap brand that found the good Chinese manufacturer.
  • 2 0
 A replacement for my DeathGrips, perhaps? Always looking for something chunkier and those 34s might scratch that itch.
  • 2 0
 Got some at the vending machine. Review tomorrow
  • 2 0
 glad to see more folks making girthier grips for us ham fisted types.
  • 2 0
 These grips are so fun to ride with, and the price is good!
  • 2 0
 Just picked up a set 31mm to go along my ghetta grips...
  • 1 0
 bring back double lock-ons or barends.... those one collar grips don't handle well crashing.
  • 2 0
 Not a fan of double lock ons. No grip toward the end of the bar, and they end up looking like crap pretty quickly if they're anodized/painted.
  • 1 0
 @jayacheess: my current lock ons have a lip on the outside end. I wonder if a second lock could fit under that so you wouldn't feel and still have grip to the outside edge.
  • 1 0
 We offer that with the Grippler!
  • 1 0
 I'd be interested if they were not lock on. We need more slide on options for MTB.
  • 5 5
 Thought they would be cheaper being the Chester line. Look good otherwise and nice color options
  • 18 1
 $27 is expensive? not compared to the majority of grips I see on the shelf.
  • 12 1
 This will be sold by Fooker in about 2 weeks
  • 2 0
 Price is right!
  • 1 0
 Grips? Wow, super stoked Wink
  • 2 0
 Baby Dinosaur please
  • 1 0
 These look pretty good
  • 1 2
 How much did Race Face pay for this ad? Seems like every bike website has this same article/ad at the same time.
  • 1 0
 That’s kind of how this whole website thing works.
  • 2 4
 Fooker grips : 5$ free shipping worldwide
  • 1 0
 Won't be on AliExpress for another month or two.
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