Project 525 EXC - StompGrip Traction Pads Revisited
Have a nasty habit of shredding your airbox stickers with your boots like I do? Enter StompGrip traction pads, designed to provide you with traction knobbies that help hold you in place when gripping the bike with your boots and knees. The StompGrip traction pads are designed for individual bikes out of a pliable elastomer material with the knobbies molded right in. Since the traction pads are clear you can apply them right onto the airbox over sponsor logos or stickers.
Since I tend to squeeze the bike a lot with my boots and legs I always seem to peel at least one of my airbox stickers back. I decided to give the StompGrip traction pads a try figuring even if they don't really help to hold me in place they would at least protect what is left of my stickers. After trimming away the peeled back portion of my airbox sticker I cleaned the airbox and sidepanel portions of the bike with some rubbing alcohol. The rubbing alcohol will remove any dirt or film that is on the bike and allow the super strong 3M adhesive on the pads to get a good setting on the bike. Once clean just remove the backing on the pads, line them up and press them on.
When riding with the pads I didn't even notice them until sliding back for a whoop section. At that point I felt my boots and knee area of my pants sort of lock in place when they hit the pads. When you feel the pads with your hands they feel like they might be aggravating but this is not the case at all when riding. They just provide a good gripping surface that helps prevent you from sliding around through rough terrain. While this won't make you a superstar it should help you to conserve energy and give you better bike control. At approximately $29.99 I give the StompGrip traction pads a thumbs up for now, but check back to see if I manage to peel them back too!
This is a not so great long-term test report for the Stompgrip traction pads we had previously installed on the 525. Over the period of about five rides our Stompgrip pads started to peel off of the airbox. The left side pad was first to peel and then start to collect dirt on the remaining adhesive. It didn't take but another ride or two before realizing the pad had completely fallen off. After that I wasn't very motivated to keep just one side on so figured I would try one more sheet on the left side. A few more rides and the replacement started to peel again so I just removed everything and am back to stock.
As previously mentioned -I
always seem to have bad luck with airbox stickers in general, even the factory
ones. Despite that fact, I was still a little surprised because the Stompgrip
pads use a strong 3M adhesive. I have seen a lot of the MX guys using this stuff
at the track so maybe they are having better luck than me. All I can say is I
gave them a try, I liked the grip - but it died a rather quick and permanent
death on the 525.