The grip is the only contact the golfer has with the golf club, period. A properly sized grip will feel comfortable in the hand and will help with that individual concept of feel. Many places will offer regripping services but will not provide the attention to detail needed for a properly installed grip. To start the shaft butts outer diameter must be known, and the internal diameter of the grip, the core of the grip, must also be known. Using the proper grip tape and build up tape will go a long way in providing properly sized grips. Finally, how does a grip’s weight influence the balance of a golf club.
An example of inattentiveness in gripping is, putting an M58 core onto a .600” diameter shaft butt. The M stands for Men’s and the 58 stands for the internal core diameter of the grip. The 58 is short for .580”. So you can probably see where this is going. When a grip has a small core diameter it means that the grip is thicker so when installed a standard men’s size grip is achieved. Conversely, when the core is larger, there is less grip material to achieve a men’s standard size grip. When the smaller core is placed on a larger shaft butt the grip size will be larger than standard size and when placing a larger core on a smaller shaft butt the grip size will be smaller than standard size.
Then there is the issue of altering the size of a grip using build up tape. What is the standard men’s size grip measured 2” below the grip cap? That would be stated in decimal form as .900”. The size increases are as follows, .915”, .930”, .945”, .960”, and 1.025”. The equivalent fractional sizes are as follows, +1/64”, +1/32”, +3/64”, +1/16” and +1/8”. This may seem a little complicated but necessary in understanding that there is more to installing grips than cutting one off and putting one on. So the buildup tape’s diameter needs to be .015” per layer otherwise the installer will never achieve the correct size required by the golfer.
Now that we know how to identify a standard grip and how to create it and how to create different sizes, what effect does the size and weight of a grip have on the balance of a golf club. There is no standard weight for a grip. A standard for calculating how a grip impacts club balance will be 52 grams. As you may suspect, many standard sized grips are around 52 grams so using that weight as a starting point works well. Every 4 grams +/- will alter the swing weight of a club by 1 swing weight. If a golfer changes grip size from a std. 52 gram grip to a 60 gram grip, the swing weight will change by – 2 swing weights. If a club has a swing weight of d-2 after the grip install, the club will have a swing weight of d-0. Likewise if you install a 44 gram grip the clubs swing weight will change to d-4. Also, the addition of extra buildup tape produces the same effect.
To conclude, I hope I have shed light on this seemingly simple activity of installing grips. Getting the correct grip size will enhance your feel of the golf club and with better feel, your chances of producing a better swing will increase.