How to Wrap Bicycle Handlebars

How to Wrap Bicycle Handlebars
Handlebar tape is both functional and visually appealing, so it's important to keep a fresh wrap on your bars. Check your bar tape for fraying, loose wrap and general wear, and replace it as necessary. Or you can change the wrap purely for a cosmetic effect. Whatever your reason, wrapping your bars is an essential part of bicycle maintenance, and though it takes some practice to master, should be a part of your basic skill set.


Difficulty: Moderate

Things You’ll Need:
  • Handlebar tape Electrical tape Scissors
  • Handlebar tape
  • Electrical tape
  • Scissors
Step 1
Remove the old bar tape from one side of the handlebars and pull out the bar end plug. Remove any dirt, grime or tape adhesive that clings to the bars.
Step 2
Make one wrap of fresh tape at the bar end, leaving 1/2 to 1 centimeter of excess tape over the end of the bar. Secure the very end of the tape with a small piece of electrical tape before making the wrap.
Step 3
Wrap the tape upwards from the bar end, making tight turns and overlapping each wrap with 1/2 to 1 centimeter of tape. Continue wrapping until you near the brake hood.
Step 4
Pull up the brake hood cover to reveal the handlebar and clamp. Cut a small piece of bar tape and adhere it across the clamp on the inside of the handlebars. The tape should cover the clamp and wrap up to the hood covers on either side.
Step 5
Wrap the bar tape up to the very bottom of the brake hoods, making sure to keep tight turns. Take the tape and tightly wrap it under and around the hoods and up to the top section of the handlebars. Make a few wraps on the top, then pull down the brake covers to check for exposed handlebars. Re-wrap if necessary.
Step 6
Finish the handlebars by wrapping as near to the stem as you desire. Secure the end of the wrap with electrical tape.
Step 7
Insert the bar end plug. The plug should catch the excess tape from Step 2 and pull it under and into the bar end, securing the tape.
Step 8
Repeat Steps 1 through 7 on the other side of the handlebars.

Article Written By Greg Johnson

Greg Johnson earned his Bachelor of Arts in creative writing from The Ohio University. He has been a professional writer since 2008, specializing in outdoors content and instruction. Johnson's poetry has appeared in such publications as "Sphere" and "17 1/2 Magazine."

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