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Griptape 101


A dialed-in griptape job is crucial to every setup, regardless of riding discipline. Griptape is the connecting point between you and your board, and like the rest of your setup, should be dialed- in to fit your personal riding style. Here’s the basic info on some common griptape styles and gripping techniques:

Fine Grit Example-001Fine grit is the standard griptape style that has been used for decades, most commonly on street and pool setups. The grit of the griptape reflects the size of the sand-like pieces (usually silicon carbine) making up the surface of the griptape. Fine grit grip is typically thin and light- weight with very small silicon carbine pieces. It provides an adequate grip to help you stay on your board and is ideal for Ollies and flip-tricks. Here is a board gripped with Flypaper Griptape

Course Grit Example-001Course grit griptape is made using larger pieces of silicon carbine, creating a rocky surface. Some course grit grip manufacturers cover the surface of their grip with a resin to prevent the larger pieces of silicon carbine from flaking off. The sharp, rocky surface of course grit grip makes it ideal for downhill skating and freeriding, by keeping your shoes locked-down even with strong sideways forces when cornering or sliding. However, many skaters find course grit grip too sharp for Ollies and flip-tricks because it tears up shoes too quickly. Here is Madrid Thumbcutter Griptape which comes with a band-aid in the packaging

Edge Grip Example-001Beside grit selection, there are many other ways to customize your griptape job to your riding style. Many skaters like to wrap the rails of their skateboards at key points. This is helpful when grabbing rails or to obtain greater leverage when throwing your board out sideways. Here is some Gangster Grip wrapped around the rail of a Madrid Kraken

Creative Grip Example-001Stacking griptape can also be used to create reference points for your feet or to provide extra grip in specific areas. Grant Kiessling added this strip of Gangster Grip to the tail of his Madrid Havoc to get a little more grip for his toeside slides: Lastly, griptape provides a great opportunity to express your personal style and add a unique touch to your board. Everyone appreciates a badass griptape job, so get creative with it and keep it fun!


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