Bell Skin for more gripper power
A Bell skin (silicone condom catheter) can be used to enhance the grip of the DTR or tug bell
The bell skin does not replace the gripper. It is used with the gripper. The foreskin in placed on top of the bell skin and the gripper is used to hold the skin in place as always.
First, I’m using a 36 mm silicone condom catheter. It probably doesn’t make a difference what brand you’re using as long as its silicone it should be the same.
After removing the catheter, you don’t need to unroll the bottom section since it’s not going to be needed.
Taking a pair scissors I am cutting the tip of the catheter off leaving some of the tapered top.
Now it’s time to remove the bottom section. More of this will be cut later but for now this will be good.
The end result should look like this.
These things can stretch quite a bit so don’t be afraid to pull on them. I noticed that the inside of the condom catheters seems to have a better gripping surface than the outside. So if you place the condom catheter as shown when you work the catheter onto the DTR Bell you will be inverting the catheter . This will automatically turn the catheter inside out.
Just keep working the catheter with your fingers over the bell collar.
The easy way to do this is to take one finger as shown in the picture above and turn your finger clockwise, as if you were trying to circle the DTR bell with your finger.
Now that the catheter is now on the neck of the bell like so, you can work the catheter down by just pulling it as if it was a tight glove.
The condom catheter will act like a silicone skin, I will just keep pulling on the catheter until everything is smooth out and fits the bell like a skin.
This is what it should look like
Now I’m going to trim with a pair of scissors most of the excess material. I will leave about an eighth of an inch overhang since the condom catheter is much thinner than a gripper the little bit that overhangs will not be felt when it is worn.
It doesn’t have to be perfect because the material is soft and thin. This will not be felt when it is worn and I’d rather have a little long then have it too short.
This is what the neck will look like. Notice how the silicone creates a turtleneck on the Bell. When the gripper is in place it will sit inside this ridge. This creates a great seal when you’re using direct air and is a better alternative than using two grippers.
Here I have a solid no hole gripper on the DTR Bell sitting inside the ridge. Basically the gripper goes on the DTR just as it normally does.
Here you can see the gripper is rolled down onto the DTR bell with this silicone skin on the underside.
When the skin is sandwiched in between the gripper and the silicone skin it creates a nonslip surface. This is great for someone new to restoring and doesn’t have much skin to work with. This will eliminate the double grip method and also eliminate using two grippers with direct air
I originally came up with this idea for guys that wanted another way to create an air seal when using direct Air. It ended up also being a good way to enhance grip on a DTR or TugBell if needed. They can be washed and removed and re-used for a very long time.