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Handlebar tape refresh

Old 09-24-18, 07:48 AM
  #1  
metropical
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Handlebar tape refresh

I suppose not really mechanics, but seemed like the best place.
In any case, are all Perforated polyurethane handlebar tapes more or less the same?
My OEM is starting to look tired. The end caps look to be plastic. Re-use or change?
I'm a casual rider, perhaps 20 mi/ride, 3-5 days/wk.
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Old 09-24-18, 08:58 AM
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Maybe look into the more traditional cloth or leather wraps? The end caps are more of an appearance item; a cut-down wine cork would serve as well.
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Old 09-24-18, 09:05 AM
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hmm, dunno what my OEM is. 2009 or thereabouts CAAD 9. Perhaps it is leather..........?
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Old 09-24-18, 09:14 AM
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wash it off?
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Old 09-24-18, 10:15 AM
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metropical
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nah, it's peeling.
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Old 09-24-18, 10:40 AM
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Most bar tapes come with a pair of replacement end plugs if you decide to replace. I generally don't replace plugs unless they're starting to look ratty
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Old 09-24-18, 11:04 AM
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there are some differences on the underside of the tape ..

a release paper covered adhesive, you peel off
as you wrap the tape around the bars,

a gel that also aids slip resistance, typically,
though too thin to act as much of a cushion..

and nothing..

also in aftermarket are expanding screw tightened bar end plugs,,
that can go in straight, or drop bars..

base wrapping cotton/friction/hockey tape
and wrapping your nice comfort tape over that works too

and there sre Gel pads you add to bare bar and tape over it..

I have used Fizik's , as a pad/tape set the tape is black,
the 4 gel pieces can be bought in a package, separately, if you want another tape color..






.....
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Old 09-24-18, 12:16 PM
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What is the difference between Tacky and Classic in Fizik?
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Old 09-24-18, 01:05 PM
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I really like Fizik's tacky bar tape and just re-wrapped my bars with some last week.. I can't tell you what Classic is like, but the tacky has a rubberized finish that I really like the feel of and doesn't slip when my hands get wet or slippery.
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Old 09-24-18, 01:41 PM
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You can leave the OEM wrap on if not too far gone and wrap over it-- a double wrap has been my preference for a while. My 2015 wrap went to heaven a ways back and I replaced it with a Cinelli cork wrap and went over that with a gel wrap.

The gel wrap started looking a bit tacky so I removed that and put some gel pads on the pristine-looking cork wrap before going over it again with another gel wrap.

I like the additional thickness. It never gets too comfortable for me...

But, to your question, having plugs that can be tightened with a screw is what you want. Also, some finishing handlebar tape takes the pressure off.

Best advice I've gotten (and, there's plenty of it on innumerable YouTube videos) is to break it up--e.g., start at the end of the bars (cut off the old tape at the end of the bar if doing a double wrap), begin the wrap-- THEN, put in you plugs... spend whatever time you need to get that squared away then continue with wrapping up to and around the brakes, stopping long enough to pull down the brake hoods and confirm you have what you wanted and, then continue to the finish to the end up by the stem (or clip-on bars).

I just finished this last wrap a week ago so... don't tempt me or I'll post a pic

Last edited by McBTC; 09-24-18 at 01:45 PM.
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Old 09-24-18, 04:18 PM
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Most OEM handlebar tape is some kind of synthetic cork. There's all kinds of replacement types, styles, colors, Etc. I personally like tape that's a grippy or tacky type. Obviously you can buy it cheaper online, but it's good to go by your LBS and see what's available, as there are lots of options these days. They can even tape it for you if you're unsure how to make it look nice. If you're a heavy sweater, it's a good idea to install new tape frequently. I've seen more than a few handlebars broken from sweat corrosion. Every year or two is probably good for the average bike rider and it's a good time to replace the cables as well.
I made a video several years ago of the method I like to use for wrapping bars, which is pretty much how I still do it.

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Old 09-24-18, 05:12 PM
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thanks for all the good info. I like the idea of a double wrap. I agree, you can never be too comfy. Good vid.
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Old 09-24-18, 10:12 PM
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Originally Posted by metropical View Post
What is the difference between Tacky and Classic in Fizik?
I have not tried Fizik's Tacky wrap, but last month I installed their Classic on one of my bikes, and it's REALLY NICE. It looks and feels a lot like real leather. It seems quite tough. Moderately thick. Available in many colors. It has lengthwise stitching that makes it look, uh... classic. It was not the easiest wrap I've ever installed, but not bad. On taking it out of the package, I wasn't too impressed. It reminded me of those perforated rubbery steering wheel covers that were popular in the 1970s and '80. But once I got it on my handlebar, I was really happy.
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Old 09-25-18, 12:02 PM
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thanks for the further on Fiziks
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Old 09-25-18, 01:24 PM
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I've used the Planet Bike gel handlebar pads - as with other methods these pads provide a larger 'grab' diameter and cushioning - cost about $13 plus shipping - good product.

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