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Future Of Rating Grippers!


mightyjoe

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climber511

Joe – I said I wish I had your setup when I was rating grippers – not making a criticism of your device at all.But

  • I don’t believe your system is inherently more or less accurate than an RGC – I certainly think it’s a bunch easier to use though and that could yield better results if one did want to plot out a total closing force picture or account in some way for the variable Wade talks about.
  • I don’t know how others get weights down to the hundreds but I do know how I did or do. I weigh my plates at the PO and get a number in pounds and ounces. When I convert the oz to tenths of a pound (tenths are what was agreed on to use years ago) – it gives a number to several places. I don’t round the results off but use them as is. This was also what was discussed back in the beginning of the RGC use process. I built the first ever RGC (after the original of course) after talking extensively with Greg and Dave on the phone and in person. I also made many of the RGCs in use today by various people. The methodology and numbers I and most use is the one agreed upon clear back in the beginning by the inventors and in talks held on the GB since then. I still think the device gives an incomplete picture and it appears many others do as well as several people have made similar but different devices in an effort to do better - you must believe so as well - hence the new device. As far as I know though no one measures anything except total closing force and that’s the problem.
  • I believed a graph of closing force would tell us more – as it turns out this has been tried by Wade and the explanation is probably of a different source so I was wrong there. I have no idea how to measure and/or account for this variable but it (or something) exists and is big enough to be noticed in the hand by many people. As you know I’m the guy who doesn’t want grippers in contests at all because of the problems rating them – well that and the fact I just dislike grippers :sleeping: . I still believe a better test of crushing strength can be developed. What that will be I have no idea – I know Aaron is working on one as am I just for my own satisfaction.
  • Options might be a set of “competition” grippers like the MM set – and all major competitions would be done with them. A machine of some sort can possibly be developed that cannot be cheated and that could be duplicated for use anywhere if specs were made public. I’m welding up a rough “test” one tonight and I know Aaron is working on an idea he has as well. So many people see the problem and are working on it – including yourself. I think Wade is on to something – there is “something” besides total closing force that needs to be accounted for going on. That’s what I mean by my “better mousetrap” comment. That variable needs to be accounted for somehow in our process.
  • A lot has been said about my 185 gripper – Eric asked and I sent it to him not long ago – you are more than welcome to run it though your device after Eric does to see what you get with your new set up. It has been rated several times by me (with witnesses) over the years. It’s an extreme outlier for whatever reason – but there are many less extreme cases of hard number – easy close and easy number - hard close out there on tables at competitions everywhere with grippers calibrated by different people or by the same person in many cases..
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You really need to go to more comps and close more rated grippers with different numbers then. At comps in the past and then at Nationals this year (and several of us since then) have had (and are cu

The future of gripper rating is going to mean a graph of gripper strength done every mm etc to create a graph showing force needed throughout the close from start to finish. I have no idea what it wi

Good idea Joe. I've also dreamed up many other ways to streamline the process, or take weights out of the equation, etc. Thank you for experimenting with this. I'm saving my money for a computerize

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climber511

@wade: interesting thoughts although i am not sure i understand it. i certainly agree that there is more to a gripper than it's rgc rating.

@joe: your idea is great. i think what chris may be eluding to is the fact that experienced guys may skip over a brand of gripper with a lower RGC rating for another brand rated higher because they know that higher rated gripper is going to be easier to close because of some unknown characteristic. they may even do this despite the fact that the lower rated gripper is right where they would like to make the attempt.

i believe grippers used at nationals should be rated by one person the week before and not touched till the meet.

This is true - COC - Tetting - GHP - etc all feel different in the hand and seemingly people like the feel of one brand over another in a competition setting. Guys will do exactly as you say in a comp - competitors even talk about "try that X one - it's easier than the Y gripper next to it with an easier number - happens all the time.

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acorn

Chris, my digital hanging scale base RGC has been in use for nearly a year and a half. I will eventually do another revision to refine further but it is very functional and very much faster to rate the grippers. I can send you a link to a vid of it if you like, as I did for Joe. Just let me know. I agree with Wade about the secondary forces they make the event more interesting.

Also, yes I am working on a design for a gripper type device that will take the secondary forces out of the equation but still have a similar ramp up in force to the grippers. Maybe after the new baby is born any day now I will be able to get back to some building. Been stuck on house projects getting ready for the new kiddo for too long.

- Aaron

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climber511

Guys I think the new designs you guys have mde are great - much easier to use and "maybe" more accurate - but I will always believe that we need more than just total closing force.

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mightyjoe

Joe – I said I wish I had your setup when I was rating grippers – not making a criticism of your device at all.But

  • I don’t believe your system is inherently more or less accurate than an RGC – I certainly think it’s a bunch easier to use though and that could yield better results if one did want to plot out a total closing force picture or account in some way for the variable Wade talks about.
  • I don’t know how others get weights down to the hundreds but I do know how I did or do. I weigh my plates at the PO and get a number in pounds and ounces. When I convert the oz to tenths of a pound (tenths are what was agreed on to use years ago) – it gives a number to several places. I don’t round the results off but use them as is. This was also what was discussed back in the beginning of the RGC use process. I built the first ever RGC (after the original of course) after talking extensively with Greg and Dave on the phone and in person. I also made many of the RGCs in use today by various people. The methodology and numbers I and most use is the one agreed upon clear back in the beginning by the inventors and in talks held on the GB since then. I still think the device gives an incomplete picture and it appears many others do as well as several people have made similar but different devices in an effort to do better - you must believe so as well - hence the new device. As far as I know though no one measures anything except total closing force and that’s the problem.
  • I believed a graph of closing force would tell us more – as it turns out this has been tried by Wade and the explanation is probably of a different source so I was wrong there. I have no idea how to measure and/or account for this variable but it (or something) exists and is big enough to be noticed in the hand by many people. As you know I’m the guy who doesn’t want grippers in contests at all because of the problems rating them – well that and the fact I just dislike grippers :sleeping: . I still believe a better test of crushing strength can be developed. What that will be I have no idea – I know Aaron is working on one as am I just for my own satisfaction.
  • Options might be a set of “competition” grippers like the MM set – and all major competitions would be done with them. A machine of some sort can possibly be developed that cannot be cheated and that could be duplicated for use anywhere if specs were made public. I’m welding up a rough “test” one tonight and I know Aaron is working on an idea he has as well. So many people see the problem and are working on it – including yourself. I think Wade is on to something – there is “something” besides total closing force that needs to be accounted for going on. That’s what I mean by my “better mousetrap” comment. That variable needs to be accounted for somehow in our process.
  • A lot has been said about my 185 gripper – Eric asked and I sent it to him not long ago – you are more than welcome to run it though your device after Eric does to see what you get with your new set up. It has been rated several times by me (with witnesses) over the years. It’s an extreme outlier for whatever reason – but there are many less extreme cases of hard number – easy close and easy number - hard close out there on tables at competitions everywhere with grippers calibrated by different people or by the same person in many cases..

Thanks for your response and input Chris. I will think about what you and others have said respond later

this evening. Great input here from very experienced individuals!

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Josh O'Dell

So there are grippers with lighter ratings that feel harder than higher rated grippers, Are they the same kind of gripper ? That don't make sense to me, but im also new and have only rated 11 grippers of my own none the same.

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jchapman

So there are grippers with lighter ratings that feel harder than higher rated grippers, Are they the same kind of gripper ? That don't make sense to me, but im also new and have only rated 11 grippers of my own none the same.

I have a #3 rated at 147lbs that is harder for me to close than another #3 I have that is rated at 150lbs.

I have a Super Master rated at 138lbs that is harder for me to close than a Grand Master I have rated at 141lbs.

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Josh O'Dell

That is interesting

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climber511

So many things enter into closing a gripper. The spread, tightness of the spring winding (different brands use different specs) - knurling - and the strengths of the individual compared to the gripper. Some people have a strong spread strength - others struggle with the set and are stong at the close and everything in between. When using clokers - much of this is eliminated and the RGC numbers seem to work out better compared to the feel in the hand. For what is seemingly this dirt simple poeve of bent steel device - grippers are pretty hard to evaluate.

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Chris, the best way I could think of implementing your method would be to somehow rig an Instron extensometer (or something similar) to the gripper or apparatus and have it output the change in displacement to a MATLAB file for plotting. The tricky part would getting the weight output as well, as you couldn't use that scale directly unless you manually took the data in very small increments, in which case you still wouldn't have nearly as many points as that for displacement. You'd then have to figure out a way of getting both data vectors to have the same length so you could actually plot it. Depending on how meticulous and patient you were you could probably get it close enough to see what your looking for though.

I do agree that an overall graph of the sweep would be more useful than just knowing the weight at the close.

Lastly, I've never heard anyone at a grip comp say they wonder what the strength curve was of that gripper they just closed.

You must admit that the majority care about max force to close the gripper.

Did I seriously just read this?

Edited by Magnus
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Actually, come to think of it, it would probably just be easier to measure the distance of the handles manually with a set of digital calipers for corresponding weights and then plot it in whatever you want.

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climber511

Chris, the best way I could think of implementing your method would be to somehow rig an Instron extensometer (or something similar) to the gripper or apparatus and have it output the change in displacement to a MATLAB file for plotting. The tricky part would getting the weight output as well, as you couldn't use that scale directly unless you manually took the data in very small increments, in which case you still wouldn't have nearly as many points as that for displacement. You'd then have to figure out a way of getting both data vectors to have the same length so you could actually plot it. Depending on how meticulous and patient you were you could probably get it close enough to see what your looking for though.

I'm smart enough to see the problem but not smart enough to see a solution. To me - the process as is - is good enough for individual training purposes. But when faced with a table with perhaps 40 or more grippers on it in a contest setting - of various ratings - brands - models - numbers etc - it isn't proving out to work as well as I think we all want it to. The reasons for that are seemingly complex and well beyond this country boy. My solution of one is that I will not have TSGs in my personal Gripmas contest this year. While that may cut down on attendance, I can live with that. I would be OK with using RGC ratings as they are except so many people have commented on the issues recently. My dislike for TSGs in general may be a factor here but I am not the only one talking about this. Nationals was full of this discussion this year as have the last few contests I attended.

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Cannon

Let's say you have two graphs. Would it really be possible to look at them and say for sure, "Oh, that one will feel harder in the hand."

I mean, the graphs would have to be used in conjunction with something like an RGC "pounds at the close", right? You could theoretically have a #1 and a Grand Elite with similar "strength curves" or "deflections" (I don't know the lingo) but obviously they wouldn't feel anything alike in the hand. Just curious. All this is over my head.

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jchapman

Let's say you have two graphs. Would it really be possible to look at them and say for sure, "Oh, that one will feel harder in the hand."

I mean, the graphs would have to be used in conjunction with something like an RGC "pounds at the close", right? You could theoretically have a #1 and a Grand Elite with similar "strength curves" or "deflections" (I don't know the lingo) but obviously they wouldn't feel anything alike in the hand. Just curious. All this is over my head.

I assume the graphs would include units of measure.

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The main benefit would be comparing the sweep of two grippers. At least that's what I think Chris was shooting for.

That would actually be interesting, come to think of it. If you plot a graph of two different grippers, you could use MATLAB to best fit the data for each and then integrate the function of each to see which gripper actually requires more work to close.

Edited by Magnus
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Cannon

Let's say you have two graphs. Would it really be possible to look at them and say for sure, "Oh, that one will feel harder in the hand."

I mean, the graphs would have to be used in conjunction with something like an RGC "pounds at the close", right? You could theoretically have a #1 and a Grand Elite with similar "strength curves" or "deflections" (I don't know the lingo) but obviously they wouldn't feel anything alike in the hand. Just curious. All this is over my head.

I assume the graphs would include units of measure.

Right, but even with all that information, are you really going to be able to tell? In other words, I think you'd still have the same problems about the generalizations that are made from RGC ratings. In either case it seems like you're learning more about one gripper, not grippers in general. So you'd have graphs mapped for multiple grippers and you're still left trying to make sense of how they stack up. I don't see how that's much different than having a 147 GM and a 148 #3 and trying to decide which will be harder based on feeling the knurl, looking at the spread and mount, and giving it a squeeze. I'm kind of only thinking out loud here. As I said, most of this is over my head and I don't feel like I understand what is possible.

What makes sense to me is to use more data to come up with some kind of formula. The math is beyond me, but maybe there is a way to "give credit" for a graph that represents a tough sweep, work in something about the travel of the handle, plus pounds at the close, and then give an indication of deflection (or whatever the relevant variables would be). I'm totally rambling here. It's obviously an interesting topic to me.

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What makes sense to me is to use more data to come up with some kind of formula. The math is beyond me, but maybe there is a way to "give credit" for a graph that represents a tough sweep, work in something about the travel of the handle, plus pounds at the close, and then give an indication of deflection (or whatever the relevant variables would be). I'm totally rambling here. It's obviously an interesting topic to me.

As far as a "formula" goes, I suppose you could use the angular form of Hooke's law and integrate it to find the overall work required to close the gripper. You'd need to find the spring constant of the gripper though.

Edited by Magnus
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Cannon

I'm talking like the NFL's QB ratings. Aren't there a ton of stats that ultimately make up the rating?

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Cannon

Lol I have no idea. I'm a total football newb.

I am too, I Googled it:

a = (((Comp/Att) * 100) -30) / 20

b = ((TDs/Att) * 100) / 5

c = (9.5 - ((Int/Att) * 100)) / 4

d = ((Yards/Att) - 3) / 4

a, b, c and d can not be greater than 2.375 or less than zero.

QB Rating = (a + b + c + d) / .06

You see what I mean though?

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jchapman

Let's say you have two graphs. Would it really be possible to look at them and say for sure, "Oh, that one will feel harder in the hand."

I mean, the graphs would have to be used in conjunction with something like an RGC "pounds at the close", right? You could theoretically have a #1 and a Grand Elite with similar "strength curves" or "deflections" (I don't know the lingo) but obviously they wouldn't feel anything alike in the hand. Just curious. All this is over my head.

I assume the graphs would include units of measure.

Right, but even with all that information, are you really going to be able to tell? In other words, I think you'd still have the same problems about the generalizations that are made from RGC ratings. In either case it seems like you're learning more about one gripper, not grippers in general. So you'd have graphs mapped for multiple grippers and you're still left trying to make sense of how they stack up. I don't see how that's much different than having a 147 GM and a 148 #3 and trying to decide which will be harder based on feeling the knurl, looking at the spread and mount, and giving it a squeeze. I'm kind of only thinking out loud here. As I said, most of this is over my head and I don't feel like I understand what is possible.

What makes sense to me is to use more data to come up with some kind of formula. The math is beyond me, but maybe there is a way to "give credit" for a graph that represents a tough sweep, work in something about the travel of the handle, plus pounds at the close, and then give an indication of deflection (or whatever the relevant variables would be). I'm totally rambling here. It's obviously an interesting topic to me.

Okay, I get what you are saying. You are kind of suggesting that we measure a bunch of variables (RGC rating being just one of them) that determine how hard it is to close a gripper. Then, use like a regression analysis to come up with an equation that we could plug in the variables of any gripper and be able to predict (or label) how "hard" the gripper is to close. I guess the only problem is coming up with an original set of grippers that will be used as data points, and ultimately having to assign an initial value of difficulty to each of these grippers. It might have to come down to a few experienced guys squeezing grippers and saying that one is harder than another, and by how much. And by that time we have come full circle!

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Josh O'Dell

None of this will matter when i get certed on the coc 3 cause i can't change how that gripper is rated, in other words it is what it is because no matter what you do that big gripper is still going to be a pain in the A#@ to shut, I blacksmith and spring steel is great but its not perfect i like the fact the one three is harder than the next if they was all the same it would suck. And far as the way you rate your gripper i would have to say why not digital its 2013 its accurate its spot on im with Joe on this one because in the long run its just a ideal of what your up against its still gonna be a pain to close no matter what your rating system does.

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mightyjoe

Chris, the best way I could think of implementing your method would be to somehow rig an Instron extensometer (or something similar) to the gripper or apparatus and have it output the change in displacement to a MATLAB file for plotting. The tricky part would getting the weight output as well, as you couldn't use that scale directly unless you manually took the data in very small increments, in which case you still wouldn't have nearly as many points as that for displacement. You'd then have to figure out a way of getting both data vectors to have the same length so you could actually plot it. Depending on how meticulous and patient you were you could probably get it close enough to see what your looking for though.

I do agree that an overall graph of the sweep would be more useful than just knowing the weight at the close.

Lastly, I've never heard anyone at a grip comp say they wonder what the strength curve was of that gripper they just closed.

You must admit that the majority care about max force to close the gripper.

Did I seriously just read this?

Yes! You just read this!

I have never heard anyone at a grip comp say that they wonder what the strength curve of said

gripper was that they just closed or didn't close. Not once! So now you've read it twice. ;)

Why does this surprise you or are you being sarcastic? I could read meaning into your question but I won't.

You tell me what you meant that way it's from the cows mouth so to speak. :)

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mightyjoe

None of this will matter when i get certed on the coc 3 cause i can't change how that gripper is rated, in other words it is what it is because no matter what you do that big gripper is still going to be a pain in the A#@ to shut, I blacksmith and spring steel is great but its not perfect i like the fact the one three is harder than the next if they was all the same it would suck. And far as the way you rate your gripper i would have to say why not digital its 2013 its accurate its spot on im with Joe on this one because in the long run its just a ideal of what your up against its still gonna be a pain to close no matter what your rating system does.

Agreed and well said!

No one has yet to explain how this data would matter one bit in a contest!

How would this look on a scoring sheet? Bottom line is the highest number force closure wins!

There's no way around it folks! Just accept it! What seems to matter from my estimation of what's being said

is that an accurate, repeatable method of rating grippers is needed. What me and Aaron are testing is a huge

step towards this direction. You can graph strength curves all day long but when the scores are counted at a contest

(Nationals or not) the highest rated gripper close will be what counts! I would challenge anyone to explain differently

or how on earth a strength curve could be calculated into the scoring. Please! Be my guest! Can't wait to read it!!!

I will go ahead and give a bow in advance to the challenger for even trying! :bow

LOVE this thread!!! :rock

As they say in the UFC, LET'S GET IT ON!!! :devil

COME ON WITH IT!!!! :D

REMINDER TO MYSELF :calm

Edited by Mighty Joe
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mightyjoe

just wanted to weigh in here.. but before i do, id like to make it known that i have no idea what everyone is talking about with the variable sweeps and graphs and charts and rotational mitations, etc. of a gripper.. hehe. but i can say this- to me, sweep data (if at all possible to even accurately acquire) wont really make much of a difference.. even in comps. reason is, i highly doubt anyone could ever actually find a rated gripper that is harder to sweep (poundage wise) than it is to make the handles touch.. and if it were possible, and you could find one that takes more pressure to sweep than it does to close, it will likely be due to some sort of wear-notch or debris in the spring that hangs up mid-close. ..which would then be grounds for it not being suitable for comp purposes due to it being some sort of defect in the equipment.

another thing about the sweep concerns, yes, i agree that 2 tsg's that have the same exact rating, and same exact knurling, etc. can be different in the sweep. yes i agree that one could/can/has been in the past, have a harder sweep than the other based off characteristics of a spring, left hand/right hand close, etc... but, in my opinion, it shouldnt make a difference anyways unless we are closing from a no-set, or a CCS where the sweep is actually part of the performance. ..did that sound retarded?.. lol, sorry if it did..

what i mean is, in most comps, MMs or block set is how things are done.. and when i (and im pretty sure most folks) do a MMs or block set, i pretty much smash through the sweep with my off hand and chest anyways.

all in all, Joe's RGC setup seems pretty fresh. id really like to see how it stacks up against another RGC that uses cal'd plates off a postal scale. that said, Joe, have you tried just lifting dead weight with it to see how accurate it is?.. like, calibrated plates loaded up on a pin? cuz my only concern would be is it as accurate as calibrated plates.. (i tend to be from the stone age and usually dont trust electronics :rolleyes)

Thanks for weighing in Tommy!

Yes! I have a certified scale accurate to +/- 10 grams and I have the certificate of calibration and like I said

in my original posting I already tested sample grippers rated with weight plates like most people that rate grippers

are currently doing. The results were within a pound on 1 gripper and less than that on the remainder (19).

After weighing the plates on the scales I then hang then from the digital dyno. Same results within 10 grams.

Does this answer your concern/question Tommy? If not, just speak up brother!

I weighed all my RGC (now DDM) plates on my scales. There's no need to go to the post office when one has scales that are

within the same regulations as the Olympics and every powerlifting fed/org. Within 10 grams should suffice. If anyone

disagrees please explain why. if you can't afford the scales (they're not that expensive) then by all means go to the post office or UPS.

They're scales are under the same regulations and accuracy. Just choose one!

You and Eric or anyone else are always welcome to come to my place and test these things for yourself. You know this buddy

but it goes for anyone! I encourage testing and retesting when it comes to things of accuracy and repeatability.

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