This starts with wanting some fancy grips for my new handlebars for my new runabout bike. I really like the look of the Brooks plump handlebar grips, the problem is they are very expensive–about $150 plus tax if I were to get them locally. That would be more than my bike is worth and just wasn't in the budget for a basic runabout.
So it was off to Google to see if I could do it yourself and make my own grips.
I found a good starting point at instructables.com (sorry I can't find the link anymore), but that guy had used the leather off of some junky chair he found in a dumpster. Frankly that was a little too cheap for me. All I could imagine was if bedbugs could infest my bike.
Essentially the Brooks style grips are a series of leather washers that are stacked.This is a view of the nearly finished result and you can see how the pieces of leather are 'stacked' one on top of the other.
the (nearly) finished product
The interior hole needs to be the same diameter as the handlebar, the exterior needs to be around 30 mm or 1 1/4 inches.
So went on to Amazon and looked for leather, I didn't find much that would ship to Canada I did find a place called Tandy leather and they had some smallish pieces on sale. I ended up getting a half shoulder that was 6 ounces of weight for a total 0f $25 plus shipping.. That's pretty thick leather, around a quarter of an inch. On Amazon I was able to find a set of hole punches they aren't the best quality but they're not bad. They did require some sharpening before use. The key deciding factor in picking this particular set was a punch sized at 20 mm and one at 32 mm.