Supacaz Super Sticky Kush Bar Tape set
CHARLES LEE | 19th Jan 2016 | PRODUCT REVIEW
The bar tape is an important component on any road bike. Not only is it essential as an aesthetic part of the bike’s overall racing livery, the bar tape is the first contact point between the rider and the bike, even before he or she hops on it. And with the prevalence of road biking, road bikers are wildly spoilt for choice from the bevel of qualities and designs of bar tapes that are currently on the market.
The Super Sticky Kush from Supacaz looks set to be a tough contender when it comes to choosing a well-designed and high-quality bar tape. Supacaz, adapted from the words “super casual”, is a relatively new entity based in California, United States. Founded and formed in 2010, Supacaz is a maker of small bike accessories specialising in bar tapes, grips, bottles and apparels and its product has recently held a grip on the road bike market in the Lion City.
LOOK AND FEEL
The Super Sticky Kush that we were reviewing is in black. If this achromatic hue is not your colour of choice, worry not. The line of Super Sticky Kush comes in a wide variety of colours from pink to green, making colour-customisation easier.
The Super Sticky Kush is visually pleasing and cushy. If one takes a closer look at the bar tape, it will not be difficult to discover that the entire stripe of bar tape has been impressed with faint but distinctive Supacaz logo motifs. Unlike traditional bar tapes where they function merely as tapes, the debossed pattern on the Super Sticky Kush gives a good glimpse of the company’s business strategy to aesthetically distinct its products from the rest in the bar tape segment. The length of the bar tape is considerably long. Hence, riders who own bikes with large-sized drop-bars need not have to fret over the possibility of not being able to cover the handlebar adequately.
The Super Sticky Kush offers a padded feel. Given its elastic properties, the bar tape can be stretched numerous times without losing its form. This bodes well for those who are unable to get things right when it comes to the installation of bar tapes on the handlebars. The tape’s high-resistance to scratches marks and rough handling put another smile on our faces.
INSTALLATION OF THE SUPER STICKY KUSH
Wrapping the Super Sticky Kush on the drop-bar was pretty simple and uneventful, with the installation carried out in the traditional bottom-to-top clockwise fashion. Demanding riders who want their bar tapes to be securely installed will be happy to know that the back of the Super Sticky Kush is lined with an adhesive tape. The disadvantage of it is that the wrapping has to be carried out correctly during the first attempt. Or else, stick marks may appear on the handlebar if repeated attempts to align the bar tape are made.
Plugging the Supacaz Plugs into the end of the drop-bars marks the completion of installing the bar tape. Unlike plastic-made conventional plugs, the Supacaz Plugs for the Super Sticky Kush are made from aluminium. Falling out from the ends of the drop-bar will not happen because each Supacaz Plug is designed with an expanding wedge. Once it is pushed into the drop-bar, the Supacaz Plugs can be easily fastened with a 3mm allen key. We did the same for our test product and were happy that the Supacaz Plugs were neatly bolted without any hint of shakiness.
USING THE SUPER STICKY KUSH
The Super Sticky Kush felt as nice as it looks. We were using the bar tape for over 2 weeks and we are confident to say that each ride felt the same as the first ride. The Supacaz tape offered a squishy feel which felt just right. Many of the bar tapes that we have previously used were either too hard or too rough. In the comfort department, the Super Sticky Kush scored fun marks!
In terms of grip, the Super Sticky Kush features non-slip properties which worked equally well for someone with sweaty palms like me. Though grippy, the Supacaz tape, even when used for long wet rides, did not feel sticky. The Supacaz Plugs lived up to its promise, staying bolted to the ends of the drop-bar without moving a micrometer.
The Super Sticky Kush retails at $40 and we have to say that this newcomer has placed the right cards on the table. On top of offering the right amount of comfort and grip, the Supacaz bar tape sets itself apart from conventional tapes with the integration of bolts in its aluminium plugs. With a wide range of delightful colours to choose from, our take on this product is that the Super Sticky Kush is worth every penny.
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