Cotton bar tape question

Mandobob

Dirt Disciple
I remember at school in the 1960s we used to put multiple wraps of cotton tape so the bars became really thick and cushiony, apparently just like the pros (or so I was told). Does anyone else remember that technique?
 

dirttorpedo

Senior Retro Guru
I remember at school in the 1960s we used to put multiple wraps of cotton tape so the bars became really thick and cushiony, apparently just like the pros (or so I was told). Does anyone else remember that technique?
No, cycle racing wasn't talked about in the towns I lived in as a kid (Canadian Prairies in the 70's) - I don't even know if there was a racing scene. I think the first pro racer I heard about was Lemond. Heck we were so clueless that we'd wrap bars in hockey tape.
 

non-fixie

Retro Guru
I remember at school in the 1960s we used to put multiple wraps of cotton tape so the bars became really thick and cushiony, apparently just like the pros (or so I was told). Does anyone else remember that technique?

If you look closely at pictures of Jacques Anquetil's bikes you'll notice that the bottom halves of his bars were always pretty heavily padded:

bar tape.JPG
 

Nabeaquam

Retro Guru
If you look closely at pictures of Jacques Anquetil's bikes you'll notice that the bottom halves of his bars were always pretty heavily padded:

View attachment 623170
This isn’t cotton, but the concept might work for padding under cotton bar tape. I have ridden this gravel bike anywhere from 75 to 120 miles. I used fairly thick double sticky back foam insulation tape wrapped around the bars. I then put bar tape on top, compressing the 1/2 to 3/4 inch soft foam down under the top wrap. It’s a little difficult to do but for me it works wonders. I’m 76, had carpel tunnel repairs, and I can ride this arraingement all day. I use soft foam top tape to add a little extra. It’s not that thick and is as soft as foam grips. I only use this on my two gravel bikes, the chatter bumps rise heck with my hand comfort without this.0B20B294-5B5B-4384-A9C2-6AA30AD45233.jpeg
 
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non-fixie

Retro Guru
This isn’t cotton, but the concept might work for padding under cotton bar tape. I have ridden this gravel bike anywhere from 75 to 120 miles. I used fairly thick double sticky back foam insulation tape wrapped around the bars. I then put bar tape on top, compressing the 1/2 to 3/4 inch soft foam down under the top wrap. It’s a little difficult to do but for me it works wonders. I’m 76, had carpel tunnel repairs, and I can ride this arraingement all day. I use soft foam top tape to add a little extra. It’s not that thick and is as soft as foam grips. I only use this on my two gravel bikes, the chatter bumps rise heck with my hand comfort without this.View attachment 623194

Excellent! Anything that makes you enjoy the ride more is good in my book. 👍

And Jacques Anquetil was 25 years old in that picture. Just sayin'.
 

finbar

Retro Guru
Resurrecting this thread to ask where UK retrobikers are buying shellac from please, and what you're using as a solvent?

(I have acetone and white spirit already - would one of those do?)
 
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