When you feel like you're losing your grip on your golf swing, it may be just that - your club(s) may be in need of a regrip. A golf club grip in poor and deteriorated shape, especially in damp playing conditions, could be costing you both self-confidence, and strokes. Your first inclination may be to have the task done by a professional. If you’re the least bit handy, however, it will probably be a project you can take on by yourself. Let’s go through some of the materials and techniques you’ll need to be familiar with, and have ready, in order to regrip your golf clubs.
Materials You Need to Regrip a Golf Club
New grips - these are the replacement grips that go on once the old ones are removed
Double-sided tape - your new grips are not self-adhering. The double sided tape formulated for golf grips goes on the shaft before you install your new grip.
Mineral spirits (also known as White Spirit) - this solvent is required to prepare the surface of your shaft for the new grip. It will strip away and clean any residue from the old grip. As well, it acts as the premier, prior to sliding your new grip onto the double-sided tape.
Sharp Knife - you’ll need a blade such as a Stanley utility knife, or something similar, in order to assist in removing the existing grip, cutting your double-sided tape and removing any excess material that results from the re-gripping process.
Cloth - for applying mineral spirits to the shaft as part of the preparation of the blade for the new grip. A typical clean work cloth or rag should be fine.
Tray or receptacle - to catch excess mineral spirits as you apply it. The tray or receptacle will need to be at least as long as the grip length, or you will be making a mess on the floor with the liquid.
Vice - to hold the shaft steady during the regrip process. Be sure to have some sort of protection for your shaft between it and the vice jaws, so it doesn’t get damaged by the squeeze.
Preparation for the Regrip
Remove the Existing Grip
Use your blade as necessary to loosen and remove the existing grip. This may take some effort, depending on how long the grip has been on and how firmly it was bonded to the shaft. You also need to be careful not to damage the shaft of your club with the blade, whether steel or graphite - the latter being more delicate. In either case, be careful, for the sake of the club and your fingers; the blade motion should always be away from you, not the other way around. Use your mineral spirits to get rid of any remaining fragments of existing grip and double sided tape, so that you have a proper, clean substrate to work with for the new grip installation.
Apply Double-Sided Tape
There are two ways you can do this step:
- Wrap your strip of double-sided tape down the shaft starting from the butt end, being careful not to overlap, especially the lower you go.
- Use double-sided tape in sheet form, and install it lengthwise, down the shaft.
Leave the cover on the top side of the tape; you’ll be removing it just before application of the new grip.
Install the New Grip
Here’s where a vice will come in handy. Place the club in the vice, taking care to protect it from damage by the vice teeth. When it is set, take a new grip and coat the inside of it with mineral spirits. This is best done by covering the little hole on the butt end with your finger and then pouring some of the spirits into the open end. Keeping both ends covered, swill the spirits around, inside the grip, so that it is thoroughly coated with them. Uncover one side and allow the spirits to drip out onto the freshly uncovered double sided tape. This is the part where you should have your tray ready to catch dripping mineral spirits coming off the club shaft.
So now you should have the inside of the new grip coated with mineral spirits, and the uncovered double-sided tape the same way. It’s time to slide your new grip on. You’ll have to be fairly quick to set into place, with the label or address position correctly centred. It will not take long for the tape and the grip to adhere permanently, so do this part without delay. Also, importantly, do make sure the new grip is placed all the way onto the shaft of your club, right to the butt-end.
All you need to do now, once the new grip is set in place, is trim any excess newly installed double-sided tape or existing, old debris from the original grip on the shaft of your golf club. Other than that, the job is complete - for that one club, of course. If you’re doing more clubs, or an entire set, repeat all of the above steps, until the last club is done.
It’s a good idea to leave your newly gripped club(s) to sit for several hours, to allow full curing of the adhesive, before taking them out onto the links. The grips should be fully set before use.
Properly performing grips are a vital part of your arsenal of sticks. Trying to golf without a proper, reliable connection between your hand and golf club shaft is a difficult task indeed. We hope that in the steps above, we’ve demonstrated that the task of regripping is well within the bounds of the average person’s capabilities. Now then, onto the links, and mastering that swing.