Thanks Tip ...
We have been using the Burnt and Burl cork for grip assemblies for nearly 15 years now, some partial grips, and some total ... And we have found this material to actually hold up better then the finest Flor grade conventional cork rings.
We build proprietary rods for a couple of camps in BC and Russia, and they specifically ask for entire composite grips for their camp rods because of their durability and unique look.
But like most good things there is always a trade off: When using cork composites, you will find that their use may add a few tenths of an ounce of additional weight to the finished grip assembly ... And it's appearance is (to some) non-traditional.
Overall we have found most two handed anglers do realize that a bit of additional weight at the butt section of the rod will actually assist in swing balance, and do like using this material for that reason. This especially true of the longer, more powerful two handed rods.
We do always offer the use of composite cork rings in the grip assemblies as an option to the more traditional full Flor grade cork grips to our clients, and most will opt for composites in their grip assemblies.
At the end of the day, we have found that the use of Burnt and Burl cork rings in grip assemblies is not for everybody <> But we have also found them to feel great in hand either dry or wet, and will definitely be more durable then even the best conventional Flor grade cork rings.
Beakers Dad ... (Beaker was my favorite ... You should be proud !!!)
The "Black" is Burnt cork ... It looks this way when wet or with sealant.