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  1. #1
    Senior Member AS Collie's Avatar
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    Cotton bar tape, tips & tricks?

    Hey All,

    A while ago, I went against all the advice (and common sense) and got some cotton bar tape for one of my rides. It was a nightmare. Within two months of putting it on, I had to rewrap both sides (one of them twice), and no matter how hard I pulled on it, I couldn't get it tight enough to stop it sliding around under pressure.

    I like the look of it, and even the feel, but as I actually ride the bike rather than just take pictures of it and roll it down to the bar, I need something that actually ... you know ... works.

    Anyone got any tips or tricks for cotton tape that doesn't involve glue? I've wrapped countless bars, but I admit this was my first time using cotton. Is this something that might be better wrapped (God forbid) top to bottom?

    PS: no doubt playing into the hands of Big Business, I'm going to tell you that when I contacted Cinelli about this, they apologised and promised to send me some more for free, the very same day. If the customer services guys there are listening being nice to people is a great way to advertise, because I'm telling everyone!

  2. #2
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    Run a line of transparent double-sided film tape down the top and bottom of the bar first. Yes, that's pretty much the same as using glue.

    KeS

  3. #3
    Senior Member rootboy's Avatar
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    Cinelli makes cotton bar tape? Go figure. And, it seems, cotton bar tape without adhesive on the back of it. The suggestion above sounds like a great fix. Or you can try Newbaum's , a fairly new brand of tape here, which is great stuff, has a light adhesive on the back, and is easy to wrap.

  4. #4
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    use 2 rolls of tape on each side - comfier too!


  5. #5
    can't member Noah Scape's Avatar
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    Have you considered shellac? Also, I recommend Newbaum's cotton tape. Made in the US of A and comes in lots of colors!

  6. #6
    Senior Member jptwins's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oldmuthariley View Post
    use 2 rolls of tape on each side - comfier too!
    woah, unbelievably, that never occurred to me. such an obvious solution! thanks!

  7. #7
    Veni, Vidi, Bici gridplan's Avatar
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    Soak the cotton tape in water, wring it out and wrap it. The tape will conform nicely to the shape of the handlebars and will remain that way when it dries.
    Big hitter, the Lama.

  8. #8
    iab
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    Senior Member iab's Avatar
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    Tressostar tape has a light adhesive on the back.

  9. #9
    Senior Member wahoonc's Avatar
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    New one on me...never seen cotton tape without some sort of adhesive on it. Been wrapping bars with it for years. I usually start at the top and work down, that way the wrap goes with the flow of my hands. And you cap the loose ends with bar plugs or barcons.

    Aaron
    Webshots is bailing out, if you find any of my posts with corrupt picture files and want to see them corrected please let me know. :(

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  10. #10
    Veni, Vidi, Bici gridplan's Avatar
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    Not all cotton tape has adhesive on it. I took Bob Hovey's advice and bought a 72 yard roll of 1" heavyweight cotton twill tape from twilltape.com. It was cheap, too.

    http://www.twilltape.com/servlet/the...on-tape/Detail

    Just soak it, wring it out and start wrapping. It looks fine when it dries.

    Big hitter, the Lama.

  11. #11
    Senior Member rootboy's Avatar
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    shoot...torn burlap strips would probably look good on that bike ! splendid.

  12. #12
    Senior Member jstewse's Avatar
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    Another +1 for Newbaums. Excellent stuff, shellac it and forget it.

  13. #13
    Senior Member ScottRyder's Avatar
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    I use hair spray on the bars for twill tape that doesn't have adhesive. Seems to work fine.

    Scott

  14. #14
    Senior Member randyjawa's Avatar
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    Just used some Tressostar to wrap the bars on my Maserati and I too hate working with cloth tape. However, the stuff I used did have an adhesive strip all the way through and the adhesive was pretty good. Durability? Not sure yet as I have not spent much time on the Maserati. Just too busy with a host of other things these days. Besides, I love to ride the Junker II.


    I do like the idea of wetting the tape first, but probably not with an adhesive backing.
    Learn how to find, restore and maintain vintage road bicycles at... MY "TEN SPEEDS"

  15. #15
    aka Tom Reingold noglider's Avatar
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    I've used Tressostar, Velox, and a few other brands. This was back when cloth was in, around 1978 - 1983. I guess I developed a technique, because I don't remember it being hard. Pull it taut but not too taut. That's all I remember.
    You don't read my signature anyway, do you?

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  16. #16
    Senior Member AS Collie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by randyjawa View Post
    Just used some Tressostar to wrap the bars on my Maserati and I too hate working with cloth tape. However, the stuff I used did have an adhesive strip all the way through and the adhesive was pretty good. Durability? Not sure yet as I have not spent much time on the Maserati. Just too busy with a host of other things these days. Besides, I love to ride the Junker II.


    I do like the idea of wetting the tape first, but probably not with an adhesive backing.
    That is some nice looking tape! Good job. Those hoods are perfect too, did you get those online or are they original? Off topic for a sec, any good spots on the web for vintage hoods? I'm having awful trouble trying to find a set that cost less than €40 here.

    The Cinelli tape has a gel backing, which is supposed to stick and provide more comfort under the hand. It does neither. But with it, the tape doesn't want to stretch tight. It seems to come loose not long after wrapping. I think I'll try top down this time. As for shellac ... enlighten me, please! Is this another word for varnish, or do you actually mean the stuff they used to make records out of?

    Thanks for all the suggestions, btw.

  17. #17
    Senior Member wahoonc's Avatar
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    Shellac not the same as varnish.

    Aaron
    Webshots is bailing out, if you find any of my posts with corrupt picture files and want to see them corrected please let me know. :(

    ISO: A late 1980's Giant Iguana MTB frameset (or complete bike) 23" Red with yellow graphics.

    "Cycling should be a way of life, not a hobby.
    RIDE, YOU FOOL, RIDE!"
    _Nicodemus

    "Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
    Aluminum: barely a hundred
    Which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?"
    _krazygluon

  18. #18
    Senior Member AS Collie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wahoonc View Post
    Shellac not the same as varnish.

    Aaron
    Ah! It is the stuff they made records from. Beetle resin, if I recall. I'll need to whip out my Italian-English dictionary for this one ... Maybe in an art supply shop?

    Are there any downsides to shellacing? I love this word by the way. New one on me.

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