Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Review: PDW's Dapper Dans

Speaking of classing up your bike, I've been riding around the last few weeks with some Dapper Dans ergo grips from Portland Design Works. Wow, these things are plush!

I mounted the grips on my Surly Steamroller turned English 3 Speed (the bike has been through many transformations). Prior to the Dapper Dans, I was rocking some shellacked cork grips, my old standby.

I have to say, prior to the Dapper Dans, I wasn't a particularly big fan of ergo grips because they always end up looking so techy/goofy. Like, whoa, your handlebar has a swollen lymph node or aero handlebar grips. You get the picture. However, these Dapper Dans really make the whole ergo thing a lot more palatable.

Functionally, they have two constricting bands that you tighten with some pretty standard allen wrenches. The bands work well to keep the grips from moving around. It's a pretty basic feature, but is nice nonetheless. When compared to shellacked cork grips, which take all sorts of voodoo to make them stay still, the constricting bands are a blessing. Similarly, they're a lot more elegant and easy to put on then say your typical OURY rubber grips.

They fit my hand really well. The fat fleshy part of my palm rests perfectly on the flat fleshy part of the grip. The leather has a real nice tactile texture that is pretty non-slip. The contrast stitching is a nice decorative touch.

There isn't a whole lot to find fault in with these grips, other than that they are a bit longer than your average ergo grips. On my Surly with the swept back Tourist bars, they ran a little long and I ran out of handlebar bar for the grips (about an inch). Still, even with one constricting band, the grips are pretty solid.

So if you are planning to use this with bar-end shifters, be sure to measure your bar to make sure you can slip them high enough on the bar before hitting a bend. Otherwise, another work around would be to get some Paul shifter pods for your bars.


-Super nice looking. I feel like I have to wear a tie when I'm rocking these grips.
-Very tactile and pleasing to the touch (though obviously not vegan friendly).
-Constricting bands make for easy installation and removal.
-Ergonomic design truly ergonomic.

-A little on the long side and may not work with some handlebar/bar-end shifter setups...use a ruler to confirm.



bmike said...

oh no! you used 'rockin'!

RussRoca said...

i know i know...i felt a little spry when riding the review

Doohickie said...

They look great and I was thinking maybe I should get some but... I only paid twice that for my WHOLE BIKE!

;- )

Unknown said...

I've got Ergon grips on my Xtracycle and love them. These look like a great alternative for my Schwinn Continental restoration project.

I like the lighter tan version they show on the website though I'm not sure there's a Brooks saddle that matches.

P.S. I'm thinking we need some full shots of that bike!