"Glossy" Is Available In Three Colors - Photo Courtesy Bicycling
Bar tape, that stuff most riders take for granted, think very little about, and yet come in contact with everyday. Well, a very good friend of mine recently showed up on a ride with this completely awesome looking, brighter than red tape. It was Fizik Microtex “Glossy” tape. Since I am into all things red, I just had to have some for my trusty Trek 2.3, coffee-seeking, Frankenbike.
Now, this is where emotions took over from reason, as I actually went out and paid full-pop retail for the stuff at InCycle. See, I do have my resources for supplies, and being I am not a trust-fund baby, I have to be careful to get the best bang for my limited “Bike Goodies” bucks. Well, the eBay effect took over, i.e., “Instant Gratification,” and I did the deed – All for $24.99 USD, plus beautiful, ever-escalating, California sales tax. A new box of what Fizik calls “Red Glossy” was finally all mine.
To date, I have tried Bontrager, Ritchey, Profile Design, and now the Fizik brand, world-famous Microtex. Wrapping is indeed a semi-art form, and when done correctly, it can look great, give good tactile control, and really punch up your ride, looks-wise. Fizik was a whole other animal.
The stuff was, in complete honesty, a royal PAIN IN THE ASS to install. The material is thicker and a whole lot less forgiving to work with than any other tape I have used. Oh sure, it looked killer when finished, but going on it was not very forgiving, was prone to wrinkling, and took way more human strength to keep taught than should be necessary. My hands hurt for two days afterwards from the marathon session of the constant application of tension.
And the result?
So far, the tape looks good, feels great, is not slick at all (as some people have inquired), and the best part, other than the looks, is it cleans up sooooo easy! No more one ride and it looks dirty stuff for me. I just hope this product has some longevity to it.
Wrapping a bar is indeed a skill all riders should know how to do, however, if you buy Fizik Mircotex, be prepared for the fight of your life to get it to look right.
Or, you can pay a shop to do it.
It’s a lot less painful if you choose the latter.