Wrapping handlebars is one of those harmless things many people are intimidated to try. New tape is a painless purchase and often reinvigorates a tired bike. Read on to candy cane wrap your bars and put some holiday spirit on your bike, and in your hands.
1. Unroll several inches of the red tape and peel off the backing to expose the adhesive (you can start w/ either color and side - we're starting w/ red and right). Don't remove the whole backing strip yet.
2. Lay the white tape onto the red adhesive, covering about an 1/8 inch, leaving most of the adhesive available for the bars. Make sure the tapes are parallel and stick them together the length of the exposed adhesive.
Pro tip: When you do the other side of the bars you'll overlap colors in the same order, but on the other side of the adhesive. If white is on the bottom to the left (as pictured below), the alternate side should have white on the bottom to right.
3. Combine a foot or two of tape.
You'll naturally twist the bar wrap as you ride, so we want to make sure the wrap direction works to tighten the wrap, rather than loosen it. For bullhorns that means wrapping clockwise, and for drop bars that means counter-clockwise. Remember, we're on the right side, from the rider's perspective.
4. Starting with the right side of the bars, wrap the tape one full revolution around the end of the bar. Leave a 1/2 inch of tape hanging off, it will be folded into the bar later.
5. Angle the tape forward as you continue to wrap and focus on keeping the stripes even. Alternate between wrapping and preparing more double-strip as you run out.
6. Make sure to wrap tight to prevent unraveling.
Pro tip: If you make a mistake, don't panic. Just carefully unwrap the unwanted bit and try again.
7. When you reach your desired end, make a small mark on the tape, then unwind a revolution or two so you have room to work. Holding the tape straight and taught, cut the tape perpendicular to the bar (not parallel - see below). This will create a sharp clean point.
8. At the stem: Bar wrap comes with adhesive strips that rarely work for long. To ensure your wrap stays in place we recommend finishing with electrical tape.
Pro tip: There's no need to tape the wrap to the handlebar, only to itself. Plus, it looks more professional. Wrap the electrical tape so the cut finishes hidden under the bar.
9.At the bar end: Returning to that bit we left hanging over the bar edge, fold it into the bar-cavity and insert the included plug.
10. That's it!
Now that you're done why stop with the bars? Wrap the frame tubes, assemble a gang of merry revelers, and go caroling.
To put the holiday spirit in your hands, grab a red/white tape package here and get wrapping. Once you're done, send us a pic.
Riser / Flat / Café bars?
We've got you covered too. Slide on these peppermint Grip Rings and be jolly.
If you're in San Francisco and short on time Mission Bicycle Company can candify your handlebars for you. Just give us a call to setup an appointment.