The History of Sure-Grip
SURE-GRIP International, previously known as SURE-GRIP Skate Company, was founded in 1936 by John L. Wintz. SURE-GRIP was first known for its rubber inlay wheel it invented for conventional roller skates in 1937. The wheels were manufactured from gear fiber called phenolic, a common material used in the mechanical industry where an abrasion resistant material is needed. The fiber gave the wheels long wear and the rubber inlays gave them grip. It revolutionized the skating industry by replacing the often slippery wooden wheels. Therefore, SURE-GRIP became an appropriate name for the company and the wheel as it literally gave the user a “Sure Grip.” The wheels were so successful that it gave the company its introduction into an industry in which it would later prove to become an innovative leader.
In 1945, the first SURE-GRIP skate was manufactured. This skate was a far cry from the many models that we have today. Throughout the years innovations in design and engineering, such as the use of lightweight aluminum, titanium, and magnesium allowed SURE-GRIP to become a leader in the research and development of new materials to not only continuously improve its products, but to also bring the public the finest quality products at a reasonable price. You will not find a better roller skate plate than a Sure-Grip skate plate, guaranteed.
In the middle to late 1970s, SURE-GRIP saw a dramatic change in the skating industry. The country was turning to leisure time activities and roller skating was becoming a large part of those activities. This was when SURE-GRIP introduced, for the first time in the history of skating, an outdoor skate that was mounted on a running shoe. SURE-GRIP called this skate the “Jogger.”
The “Jogger” swept the country from California to New York and was a tremendous success and propelled SURE-GRIP to a new high. In the same year, the SURE-GRIP engineers designed a roller skate with ski bindings, adaptable to any ski boot, hence the skate was called the “Roller Ski.”
With the rise of roller hockey in 1992 and the public cry for quality roller hockey products, SURE-GRIP again came to the fore front and began manufacturing roller hockey frames or chassis for players use. The H-400 hockey frame, created in early 1994, represented a radical departure from the standard plastic frames that players had. This chassis set the standard by which all future chassis were to be judged.
The H-400 was the very first chassis to be made using a double voided, 7000 series aluminum extrusion. In addition, the computer enhanced designed frame was the first to have left / right contoured mounting platforms for performance and comfort. Each year, SURE-GRIP has continued to improve upon its hockey frames by using advanced and exotic materials, such as Carbon Fiber (as used in the H-605-CFTM) in their products and new innovations in design to create the best roller hockey frames on the market.
In the early 2000′s the emergence of the 1970 sport of Roller Derby has once again sparked the creative mind of SURE-GRIP. The sport has evolved from banked track to flat track, with close to 200 leagues across the country and some in other countries. In the past few years SURE-GRIP introduced its new line of speed boots, the XL series, which has shown promise in the speed skating market and is now progressing toward the Roller Derby market. This year SURE-GRIP introduced its new line of specially designed Roller Derby speed boots, designed by Roller Derby girls for Roller Derby girls; “The Rebel.” The shoe is all leather and is slightly lower in the back for greater flexibility.