Bar taping



mjw_byrne

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Jan 22, 2004
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Hi all. I've recently noticed that the ergo levers on my new road bike are pointing in different directions - the left one points slightly up and the right points slightly down. It's driving me nuts. Several questions:

1. Whichever lever I wish to move, I will have to re-tape that side of the bars, right?

2. If I re-tape a side of the bars, can I re-use the tape from that side or do I need to buy more?

3. I have never taped a handlebar before. Will I manage it OK or is it really hard?

4. The little bit of tape stopping the bar tape from unravelling near the stem - is this just bog standard black tape, like duct tape, or do I have to use some kind of special stuff?

5. Is there anything else I need to know before embarking on my mighty quest to move one of my ergo levers by 5mm? :rolleyes:

All help very much appreciated. Cheers
 

BaCardi

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Jul 6, 2003
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Originally posted by mjw_byrne
Hi all. I've recently noticed that the ergo levers on my new road bike are pointing in different directions - the left one points slightly up and the right points slightly down. It's driving me nuts. Several questions:

1. Whichever lever I wish to move, I will have to re-tape that side of the bars, right?

2. If I re-tape a side of the bars, can I re-use the tape from that side or do I need to buy more?

3. I have never taped a handlebar before. Will I manage it OK or is it really hard?

4. The little bit of tape stopping the bar tape from unravelling near the stem - is this just bog standard black tape, like duct tape, or do I have to use some kind of special stuff?

5. Is there anything else I need to know before embarking on my mighty quest to move one of my ergo levers by 5mm? :rolleyes:

All help very much appreciated. Cheers



Not a real good idea to retape one side only. You'll find that the other side will just wear out faster and its going to be uneven anyway.

Buy new tape, start it over. Do it right.
- start at the bottom.
- put the tape at the 12 oclock position on both the left and right end. Tape outwards on both sides. That is, tape counterclockwise on the left side and clockwise on the right side (when viewed from the back)
- make sure to put a small piece of tape right behind the brake lever
- you could try a figure 8 loop as you get to the brake lever to help conceal the bare spot right behind the brake lever
finish with tape as you go.

IMO, its important to wrap starting from bottom to top and wrapping counterclockwise on the left side and clockwise on the right side. This serves the important purpose of keeping the bar in place because when you are riding the drops, your wrists have a tendency to rotate outwards. When riding the tops, you hands have a tendency to pull back causing the tape to want to unravel in a downwards direction. Taping like I described keeps the tape taut in the direction your hands try to pull the tape.

One more thing. Pull the tape as tight as you can without breaking it.
 

jstraw

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Jan 16, 2004
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Good instructions from BaCardi...to answer your other question, I finish off near the stem with vinyl electrical tape. It's available in white, red, purple, green, blue and possibly other colors...in case black isn't your first choice...
 

CamB

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Jan 12, 2004
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1. Whichever lever I wish to move, I will have to re-tape that side of the bars, right?

If it's only a few mm, you might as well try and move them and see if it messes up the tape, assuming you can loosen an Ergo bolt with the tape on. The worst you can do is ruin the tape.

On the other hand, bar tape is pretty cheap and relatively easy to apply, plus in my experience (in particular, swapping from nasty pink to black on a second hand bike, but generally any time you have nice new tape) changing it is very satisfying. I used the instructions at Park Tool.
 

mjw_byrne

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Jan 22, 2004
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Cheers for the helpful replies, guys. I guess this is kind of a "suck it and see" situation - worst thing that can happen is I ruin some bar tape I guess. Ta again.
 

davidbod

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Oct 7, 2003
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Originally posted by mjw_byrne
Cheers for the helpful replies, guys. I guess this is kind of a "suck it and see" situation - worst thing that can happen is I ruin some bar tape I guess. Ta again.

Just go for it. You probably won't be 100% satisfied with your first go, but then you'll never learn how to do it until you try it.

A couple of other points. I like tape that has no sticky side on the back. There are several advantages like if you screw up you just unwind and try again. If after many months the tape moves you unwind and fix it. I also like to wrap the tape on and then temporarily tack it at the top with just a little electrical tape. I leave it like this for a couple of hours and then come back, unwind all the way bake to about 3 winds and then re-wrap the bar again. I find when you do this the tape fits much better around the bends and shifters/brake hoods.