Developed in collaboration with Brendan Fairclough, the Deathgrip has been in DMR's catalog for a couple of years, but the number of different versions continues to increase. All of the models have the same basic grip design, with three-quarters of the surface covered with a knurled pattern with a waffle print on the underside. The inner quarter of the grip has a ribbed pattern for extra thumb and forefinger comfort.
There are flanged or flangeless options, along with three different rubber compounds – hard, soft, or 'Race Day', which uses a super soft, super tacky rubber. There's also a veritable rainbow of color choices, everything from fluorescent yellow to snow camo. The grips use a single clamp lock-on design, with a tapered internal plastic core for additional security against slippage. MSRP: $24.95 USD.
• Single clamp lock-on, tapered inner core
• 134mm length
• Soft or hard rubber compound
• 29.8 (thin) or 31.3mm (thick) diameters available
• Multiple color options
• Weight: 100 grams
• MSRP: $24.95 USD
Installing a set of lock-on grips isn't exactly rocket science, but the Deathgrips do require one additional step that you might not be used to – they need a few taps from a hammer, or any blunt object, to slide them all the way onto the handlebar due to the tapered core. Skip this step and there's a good chance you'll have inadvertently increased the width of your bars by a couple centimeters on each side. Once they're in place it's still possible to twist them to get them exactly where you want, but it takes a little extra effort compared to lock-ons without a tapered core. Performance
My hands are permanently covered in callouses from all of the hours of riding I put in, but that doesn't mean I'm fine wrapping them around any old grip. I prefer thin over thick, and soft over hard, and I don't really see the need of an inner flange, which are the exact options I picked when selecting my set of Deathgrips: thin, soft, and flangeless.
The pattern is like a mash-up of all my favorite grips over the years, and it works extremely well. It's the inner ribbed portion that really puts the Deathgrips on top when it comes to comfort, especially if you're spending a lot of time on rough descents. I've had grips rub the inside of my thumb raw, but there wasn't even a hint of that happening with these. They're nice and comfy with or without gloves, and there's plenty of traction even on days when it's pouring rain. I've ridden with them in the wettest conditions imaginable and never had any trouble with my hands slipping or sliding out of place. The grips themselves never budged an inch either, but that's not really too surprising – I can't think of the last time I had a set of lock-ons move on me. Pinkbike's Take