Monday, April 11, 2011
Handlebar Tape - More Important Than You Think!
Bar tape may not be such a big deal to you, but this is a key contact point with the bike. This is where your hands make contact with the bike and this is where you control much of what your bike is doing. It's a more important bike accessory than you think!
Call me obsessive, but I have always wanted the bar tape on my bikes to be just so - not too thick and not too thin. The Fizik line of Microtex bar tape strikes that fine balance for me. As an added HUGE bonus, if you prefer white as I do, it's much easier to keep clean, and in my case white (see more key info on color, below)! Almost all the other white "cork" or "foam" bar tapes start to go gray and dirty after one ride. If you have to change a tire on a ride, or fish a greasy black chain back on with your hands, you'll then have a real mess on, not just your hands, but your nice white bar tape as well - not so with the Fizik Microtex. It resists a lot of dirt and grime in the first place and then wipes clean easily with soap and water when you get home from a dirty ride.
I opted for the new glossy version of the white Fizik Microtex tape, that seemed to match up well with my glossy white Cervelo R3!
Putting on handlebar tape on a road bike may seem like a big mystery, but it's an easy DIY task and done right can make your bike, even an old bike, look fantastic and much newer. There are easy to follow instructions to do this on the Park Tool Web site.
Finally, a note on color. According to the The Rules (#8), your bar tape is supposed to match your saddle color and can be any color you want as long as it's black or white! Apparently there is no arguing or variations on this what-so-ever!
How's your handlebar tape looking/feeling?
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