Oxford Heated Grip Teardown - Wrist Twisters
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post #1 of 8 Old 12-15-2016, 02:01 PM Thread Starter
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Oxford Heated Grip Teardown

Figured you guys would find this interesting. Had to evaluate a pair of these for work. Tried to convince them to let me do non-destructive testing so I could use them afterwards but had no luck...

My thoughts: The wire wrapping is obviously done by hand, very inconsistent, and hand staked into the plastic. While I don't like the process and it looks ugly it likely will have no bearing on the effectiveness of the product.

The controller unit is really well done. I was pleasantly surprised. Well sealed on the face (although I would have liked to see some sort of fastener holding the parts together rather than a snap fit) and they seperated the strain relief from the seal on the wires coming into the unit, so strain won't affect the seal and you're unlikely to ever have issues with water in the control box. Board is pretty simple with a pair of nice feeling tactile switches.

The only big issue I had with these units is I had one burn up on my desk. The wires melted right through the inside of the handle. To be fair, I was running them on my desk without being installed on a bar. But the one that melted through was the throttle side grip, so rather than having a large piece of metal underneath acting as a heat sink like you'd have on the passenger side this one is relying on a plastic throttle tube as a heat sink. It started smoking after a minute or two on full power (although I'd been ramping up to full power so it was fairly warm.) I'd be interested to install a pair on a bike with a thermocouple underneath to see how much heat is actually dissipated by the throttle tube and if being in open air really made that big of a difference. I'd also be curious to see if anyone has ever tried to uninstall a pair before. With that much heat I'd be worried about it fusing to my throttle tube.

Let me know if you guys want any more info/pictures/have questions. I also played with a couple pairs of the cheap amazon/ebay flex circuit wraparound heated grips and they actually worked decently well for what they were. The lack of heat control is something I'd need to remedy if I installed them on my bike though.
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post #2 of 8 Old 12-16-2016, 06:48 PM
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Originally Posted by badmoon692008 View Post

The only big issue I had with these units is I had one burn up on my desk. The wires melted right through the inside of the handle. To be fair, I was running them on my desk without being installed on a bar. But the one that melted through was the throttle side grip, so rather than having a large piece of metal underneath acting as a heat sink like you'd have on the passenger side this one is relying on a plastic throttle tube as a heat sink. It started smoking after a minute or two on full power (although I'd been ramping up to full power so it was fairly warm.) I'd be interested to install a pair on a bike with a thermocouple underneath to see how much heat is actually dissipated by the throttle tube and if being in open air really made that big of a difference. I'd also be curious to see if anyone has ever tried to uninstall a pair before. With that much heat I'd be worried about it fusing to my throttle tube.
Nice write-up and pics. I don't have the manual handy right now, but I recall that it said several times in big bold letters "do not operate unless installed on a bar, it will overheat and melt" or something to that affect. So you proved they weren't lying!

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post #3 of 8 Old 12-17-2016, 08:34 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Supernintendo View Post
Nice write-up and pics. I don't have the manual handy right now, but I recall that it said several times in big bold letters "do not operate unless installed on a bar, it will overheat and melt" or something to that affect. So you proved they weren't lying!
That was definitely in the manual...lol I just can't believe that a plastic throttle tube would act as enough of a heat sink to keep the temp down. Apparently it must otherwise we'd see more complaints online.

I did test some heated grips from other suppliers and some aftermarket add on ones as well that got just as hot or hotter externally with no melting internally. So it can be done

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post #4 of 8 Old 12-17-2016, 01:45 PM
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Yes, thanks for the write up. I tried a set of these for about two weeks winter 2014 and then tossed them into a box in the garage where they are today. I never did a resistance check to calculate the actual amp draw but it was substantially more than my heated glove liners. And even on the high setting with big honking insulated bar muffs they did not warm my fingers nearly as well as the gloves did.

I was looking for a way to cut a few minutes off winter iron butt fuel stops. Donning and doffing gloves and liners was frustrating. It was the infernal Oxford heated grips that gave me the idea of sewing the liners into the gloves.

I know folks gravitate to heated grips to avoid having to be tethered to the bike with all that wiring but IMHO it's well worth it. Gloves are the way to go.
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post #5 of 8 Old 12-17-2016, 06:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Ken Phenix View Post
Yes, thanks for the write up. I tried a set of these for about two weeks winter 2014 and then tossed them into a box in the garage where they are today. I never did a resistance check to calculate the actual amp draw but it was substantially more than my heated glove liners. And even on the high setting with big honking insulated bar muffs they did not warm my fingers nearly as well as the gloves did.

I was looking for a way to cut a few minutes off winter iron butt fuel stops. Donning and doffing gloves and liners was frustrating. It was the infernal Oxford heated grips that gave me the idea of sewing the liners into the gloves.

I know folks gravitate to heated grips to avoid having to be tethered to the bike with all that wiring but IMHO it's well worth it. Gloves are the way to go.
Have you ever tried using both gloves and grips together? I have some older gerbings gloves that I use with the heated grips. It heats the area of my hand that's not heated with the gloves. I can feel the heat through the gloves. Works out well for me

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post #6 of 8 Old 12-17-2016, 10:45 PM
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Originally Posted by redline919 View Post
Have you ever tried using both gloves and grips together? I have some older gerbings gloves that I use with the heated grips. It heats the area of my hand that's not heated with the gloves. I can feel the heat through the gloves. Works out well for me
In my experience, once you wire up a nice pair of heated gloves, the heated grips become inconsequential. I rode several hours in rainy 35 degree weather and my hands were 100% fine the whole time, using the Sedici heated gloves from Cycle Gear. This was without heated grips. If you're willing to deal with the wiring hassle and the bulkier gloves, yeah they are a lot nicer. If you are just jumping on the bike for a quick blast, twice a day, day in and day out, heated grips fit the bill.
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post #7 of 8 Old 12-18-2016, 11:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redline919 View Post
Have you ever tried using both gloves and grips together? I have some older gerbings gloves that I use with the heated grips. It heats the area of my hand that's not heated with the gloves. I can feel the heat through the gloves. Works out well for me
I make my own heated gloves so they're better insulated and substantially warmer than what's on the market. So for me, the gloves and hand guards to block some wind are more than sufficient. The additional amps required to run two sets of heating elements serve my needs better dedicated to auxiliary lighting.
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post #8 of 8 Old 12-18-2016, 12:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Ken Phenix View Post
I make my own heated gloves so they're better insulated and substantially warmer than what's on the market. So for me, the gloves and hand guards to block some wind are more than sufficient. The additional amps required to run two sets of heating elements serve my needs better dedicated to auxiliary lighting.
Yea the gerbings gloves aren't that great that I have. I've been meaning to upgrade. The jacket and pants however work amazing. I may get with you in the near future for a pair of your gloves
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