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View Full Version : What's the best leather grip?


Original 6.0
03-06-2006, 02:01 PM
I dunno if this is the right section to put this in, in any case, what would be the best leather now that the Fairways by Balmforth are impossible to find around?

Samperer
03-06-2006, 03:02 PM
Ive tried the Babolat, Wilson and Volkl leather grips. I liked the volkl's better than the others, didnt care too mjuch for the babolat's too much but the wilsons were also decent.

Marius_Hancu
03-06-2006, 03:04 PM
Only used Prince and Wilson from the new ones.

I think Prince is nicer, Wilson seems to be a bit on the rough side. Also, they are very long, which I enjoy.

Cruzer
03-06-2006, 03:47 PM
Babolat and Volkl are both very good. I prefer the Babolat grips slightly over the Volkl. I have not tried the Wilson or Gamma leather grips.

christo
03-06-2006, 11:10 PM
The Pro Kennex grips are wonderful, they could sell a ton if they were available, soft and tacky, light years ahead of the rest.

bcaz
03-06-2006, 11:35 PM
Volkls are supposed to be very good. I've had Head (original equipment), Wilsons and Babolats (replacements). I use them under overgrips, so I detect little if any difference -- the Wilson may be a little thinner and lighter than the Bab.

tennisadict
03-07-2006, 12:18 AM
i just bought volkl leather grip @ Pacific live open. The guy "Dan" showed me the grip. i wil give it a try

diredesire
03-07-2006, 12:35 AM
I hear the new lux grips are also pretty great, I only hear good things about the volkls. I've used head calfskin, Wilson leather, Prince leather, PK leather, Fairway (black and normal), as well as plenty i'm sure i'm leaving out.

I liked Head's calfskin, i could tell it was of a very high quality, but i've never been able to find one in an extended length (I usually have longer handles). The fairway was fine, but i only had one, so in order to match my racquets i fell back on what i knew best, the PK leather grips. I think these are great, plenty long, TW used to have them for a very reasonable price, too!

If they had more, i'd probably stock up on a few, just in case ;)
*hint, tw, hint*

AndrewD
03-07-2006, 01:53 AM
The two things I look at when buying a leather grip are weight and tac.

Some grips, like the Prince, get slippery very quickly and their coating rubs off within a week. Fine if you're using an overgrip but useless if you don't. Babolat are nice, hold their finish quite well but they are heavy. The ones I've got are about an ounce in weight so, if you're going to use them to replace a synth grip you need to take that into account. Volkl is very nice, holds its finish for longer than the Babolat and is a good width. Wilson is quite good, a bit thinner than Babolat but a bit narrower.

Ezekiel
03-07-2006, 02:39 AM
Im currently using 20 year old Yonex (black) leather grip which i stole from my dads Yonex RX-32.
I use it on my RDX 300. Without an overgrip over it, it somehow fully absorbs my sweat and makes the grip sticky/tacky. Does the new leather grips do that?.

LeCiel
03-07-2006, 03:49 AM
The Babolat leather grips kind of gave me that "oily" feeling after couple of games. Maybe it's the natural leather oil coming out of it? My hands/palms don't really sweat that much, almost dry, so that could also contribute on my feeling. Felt nice holding my racquet after installing that grip. Wilson's leather grip was kind of ok to me. Very tough and hard feeling to my taste. Haven't tested the Fairway's in a very brand-new condition yet, but saw it on some websites that it's one of the most comfortable leather grips out there. Now I'm curious... :mrgreen:

LeCiel
03-07-2006, 03:55 AM
I own a used PC600 that the previous owner changed the original Head leather grip to that Fairways grip. It was kind of icky (very darkish leather coloured) so I decided to put a Babolat VS overgrip, works fine. As a bonus, the owner also threw me an open-packaged new Fairway grip. Is it me or the brand new Fairway grips has this funky smell wood-like thing on it? :confused:

goober
03-07-2006, 05:25 AM
I like the luxilon leather grips- have them on all my racquets :)

georgeyew
03-07-2006, 08:20 AM
I noticed that the Wilson leather grips stain very easily from the sweat...even with a overgrip. I have a Fairway that I've used for 7 years and there are no sweat stains. I am currently trying the Gamma leather to see if it is "stain" proof.

OnyxZ28
03-07-2006, 09:20 AM
I hear the new lux grips are also pretty great, I only hear good things about the volkls. I've used head calfskin, Wilson leather, Prince leather, PK leather, Fairway (black and normal), as well as plenty i'm sure i'm leaving out.

I liked Head's calfskin, i could tell it was of a very high quality, but i've never been able to find one in an extended length (I usually have longer handles). The fairway was fine, but i only had one, so in order to match my racquets i fell back on what i knew best, the PK leather grips. I think these are great, plenty long, TW used to have them for a very reasonable price, too!

If they had more, i'd probably stock up on a few, just in case ;)
*hint, tw, hint*

There is one vendor on the net that has the XL calfskins (well, they're not XL, but thicker than standard calfskin grips), but they want an arm and a leg for it. I think TW's been asking Head about possibly stocking them.

DANMAN
03-07-2006, 09:24 AM
I really liked the Head Calfskin, the Volkls are my favorite of the current offerings.

bluedevilinnj
03-07-2006, 03:24 PM
I like the luxilon leather grips. Wasn't a fan of Wilson's.

john cheng
03-07-2006, 04:20 PM
I like both the luxilon and volkl. Fairway seems to be of the same quality as the volkl leather.

michaellashan
01-17-2007, 07:44 PM
I like the luxilon leather grips. Wasn't a fan of Wilson's.

Where did you and Goober buy your luxilon leather grips? TW used to sell them. I order one and fell in love with it......two weeks later they were off of the site. Please let me know where I can order some more.

Thanks

:-D

pow
01-17-2007, 08:11 PM
Do you guys actually play with the leather? My friend tears his fingers up when he uses just leather with nothing wrapped over it.

Duzza
01-17-2007, 08:17 PM
I'm using Head Calf Skins they are pretty good but my favourite was Wilson.

chair ump
01-18-2007, 08:27 AM
when I use leather grips, Gamma is my choice.

Tennis Man
01-18-2007, 09:47 AM
Fairway is by far the best leather grip if you can find one :)

!Tym
01-18-2007, 11:13 AM
Fairway is by far the best leather grip if you can find one :)

I have several Fairways. They've got the most solid, beefiest feel to them, but in my opinion are not for everyone. I find them a little on the thick side, and it's also a wide grip, so I feel that I lack bevel definition underneath. Rackets with Fairway leather feel like they have fatter, more rounded handles in the hand and I don't like that. My favorite is the Prince leather grip that comes on the Graphite Mid. Really nice bevel definition with that, a great feeling of sharp edges underneath, good solid feel, not as cushioned feeling as the Fairway as it's a bit thinner. Very slippery surface though, since it's definitely a leather grip where you must have an overgrip on. The Head calfskin leather grip from the older Made in Austria Prestige Classics is also fantastic. If it were still available today, it'd be my choice. It's not as wide as a Fairway, so that when you wrap it, it creates more of a ridged feel underneath, and gives me a more secure feeling grip. It was also rock hard which I loved about it, tremendous raw ball feel with that one. The newer versions of the grip are not as good for me as they're softer and more flush feeling underneath, very substantially, noticably so. With that said, I still prefer them to Fairway, as again I don't like how wide the Fairway's are for their thickness. Just creates too round of a feel in my hand, I never feel like I'm getting a solid or secure a grip as I could on the racket.

In short, I really wish Head and Prince especially would make their leather grips available for sale to the public.

Note: If you like Fairways, the closest equivalent these days is the Volkl leather. I also am not a huge fan of that as again it's a wide grip that's fairly thick = rounded edges, not enough bevel definition for me. Unfortunately, unlike Fairway, Fairway at least gives you a bit of a special feel underneath as far as ball contact as concerned, the most solid feeling response of all the leather grips I've tried. The Volkl in that regard is just o.k., which it'd probably be near my last choice in a leather grip today.

thejuice
01-18-2007, 11:18 AM
If anyone is interested, I know a guy that sells Fairway and Balmforth grips on the net. He claims to have bought all of the remaining stock they had before they stop making grips. I've been in his shop here in Atlanta and he showed me hundreds of them. The only thing is he charges a nice penny for them (he justifies the price by reminding you that they are rare yet in demand). He told me he sells at least three or four a week. I want to say that they are around $30 per grip (plus or minus $5). If anyone would like to know how to get in touch with him, just send me a private message and I will give you his website (TW would sensor it and I don't want to get in trouble for even trying to put it on here).

BiGGieStuFF
01-18-2007, 11:32 AM
when I use leather grips, Gamma is my choice.

I like the gamma. It's not too tacky. Have you tried the volkl yet? can you compare the two? I have the volkl on my other frame but haven't tested it yet because of all this nasty weather.

meh
01-18-2007, 02:02 PM
Where did you and Goober buy your luxilon leather grips? TW used to sell them. I order one and fell in love with it......two weeks later they were off of the site. Please let me know where I can order some more.

Thanks

:-D
They were discontinued after Wilson began to distribute Luxilon string. Too bad, they were my favorite leathers too. I'm stuck on Gamma now because it's cheap, and plays fairly well.

Klipper leather, indicative of the cost, is really a poor quality grip. I'd get cuts on my hand from playing with these. They're incredibly thin, as well.

I'd like to try the green Pacific leather, as it would clash horribly with my racquet paint.

Field
01-18-2007, 02:58 PM
I really like Babolat Leather + Yonex Super Grap overgrip.
Just give it a try.

Field

Rabbit
01-18-2007, 05:00 PM
I agree with !Tym, the best of the best of the best is Fairway. The closest thing to them that I've found are the Volkl leather grips.

MrBluefin
01-18-2007, 09:21 PM
I really like Babolat Leather + Yonex Super Grap overgrip.
Just give it a try.

Field

That's my setup on a Storm and a MW200G. I mainly use the leather for the weight and the Super Grap for the feel. Nice and firm base with what I feel is just enough cush with the Grap.

chair ump
01-18-2007, 09:28 PM
I like the gamma. It's not too tacky. Have you tried the volkl yet? can you compare the two? I have the volkl on my other frame but haven't tested it yet because of all this nasty weather.

Funny you mention Volkl leathers, because that's my 2nd fave...they feel very similar to the Gammas, but a bit more pricey.