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Tire Tape Recommendations

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Tire Tape Recommendations

Old 07-20-20, 05:26 PM
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chobbs77
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Rim Tape Recommendations

I got a flat on a ride today and think I need to replace the tire tape. The tape is so crusty and is probably from the early 2000s. Any recommendations on brands and what size do I need?

Last edited by chobbs77; 07-21-20 at 08:19 AM.
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Old 07-20-20, 06:09 PM
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Do you mean rim tape for a clincher rim or adhesive tape for gluing tubular tires to a rim?
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Old 07-20-20, 06:20 PM
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Originally Posted by nomadmax View Post
Do you mean rim tape for a clincher rim or adhesive tape for gluing tubular tires to a rim?
rim tape for a clincher
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Old 07-20-20, 07:17 PM
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If it's an old-school single-wall rim, you'll want a super-narrow strip that sits nicely within the center channel. Some of the cheap "rubber band" rim strips that LBSs carry are good for this, or you can get some super-narrow cotton cloth tape like 10mm Velox.

For double-wall rims, it's usually appropriate to use a tape that covers the entire rim bed, from one rim sidewall to the other. Historically people tend to use cotton cloth tapes like Velox, but tubeless tapes can arguably create a more reliable smooth covering of the rim bed.
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Old 07-21-20, 02:39 AM
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I usually prefer cloth rim tape, just wide enough to cover the spoke nipple holes without extending up toward the inner rim channel edges. That's as narrow as 11mm on some of my skinny older rims.

I've tried plastic and rubber rim strips but only cloth seems to prevent tubes from splitting after extruding into the holes. Inadequate support of the tubes over the spoke nipple holes is what leads to those mysterious flats with the "puncture" on the part of the tube facing the rim rather than the tire.

Lasts for years too. A couple of my wheels appear to have come with the original cloth rim tape from the 1980s and '90s. Brand doesn't matter, Velox, Nashbar, whatever, they all seem to hold up well for many years.

Some of the tape intended for tubeless may offer enough support so consider those too.

Anything is better than those rubber bands used on some wheels. I suspect those are used to cut costs for material and labor. A cheap rubber band strip can be applied in a couple of seconds, while even a fast, skilled worker might need 15-30 seconds per rim to apply cloth rim tape, up to a minute to get it straight without wrinkles. Takes me a few minutes because I plan to do it only once.

Cool thing about cloth rim tape is the tacky adhesive can be reapplied so you have plenty of opportunities to practice and redo it to suit yourself. The adhesive is like Post-It Note tack or Silly Putty, not gummy like electrical tape or duct tape. It'll stay tacky for months after the first application. After many years -- a decade or so -- the adhesive will dry out so it can't be reused as easily. But it's very forgiving stuff for beginners to play around with, no worries if you don't get it perfectly straight the first try. And it resists shifting under load, even with low pressure, so there's very little risk of the tape squiggling aside and leaving the tube exposed to contact with the rim holes.
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Old 07-21-20, 05:12 AM
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Velox Rim tape is what I use if I can. Its a cloth type. The plastic rim strips can stretch and cause issues eventually.
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Old 07-21-20, 06:05 AM
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I've been using Newbaum's tape lately and like it a lot. Velox is good as well.
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Old 07-21-20, 06:29 AM
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I have used electrical tape in the past, FWIW.
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Old 07-21-20, 06:51 AM
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Thanks guys. Im using electrical tape until I can order rim tape or go to the lbs.
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Old 07-21-20, 07:30 AM
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Originally Posted by chobbs77 View Post
Thanks guys. Im using electrical tape until I can order rim tape or go to the lbs.
I don't think electrical tape is going to have the PSI strength necessary. I recently had problems mounting modern foldable 700c tires on the wheels of an older bike that I obtained. They had Velox tape on them that was in good condition. But there was no way the tires were goin on. I came to the BFs for recommendations. Several people commented that the Velox tape is too thick, and takes up too much space to allow the bead to mount. They suggest using "Kapton tape"...which I'd never heard of. It's intended use is mostly in electronics. It's got a high heat tolerance (which doesn't really matter in a bicycle wheel application), has a high tinsel strength and is pretty much stretch resistant, and doesn't leave a residue. So I ordered a roll of appropriate width and have used it on a couple of bikes (it's less expensive than bike-specific products). And sure enough it allowed the extra space needed to mount the tires. It's been a couple months now and so far no problems with blowouts.

https://www.amazon.com/Mil-Kapton-Ta.../dp/B006ZFQNT6

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Old 07-21-20, 03:49 PM
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I think I read that 3M # 8898 strapping tape works well if you can find a roll width that suits.
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Old 07-23-20, 09:00 AM
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Originally Posted by chobbs77 View Post
I got a flat on a ride today and think I need to replace the tire tape. The tape is so crusty and is probably from the early 2000s. Any recommendations on brands and what size do I need?
Two wraps of 1 mil Kapton tape. 16mm (5/8") for classic thin rims, 19mm (3/4") for contemporary wide.

It makes tire installation easier than any other rim tape, weighs less, and costs less (except for Scotch filament tape which is double the thickness).

It's easily removed, although if you wanted to replace a nipple you could just punch a hole then tape over it with two layers.
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