ISC RacersTape – Bike Protection Tape

Pro Reviews

Installation:


Using the tape is fairly simple and requires either razor knife or a pair of sharp scissors for cutting the material. Just unroll the tape and cut it off to the required length. Further shapes can then be cut as needed for wherever you will be placing the tape. A multitude of shapes can be created to fit any sort of frame or placement that might be required. Some pretty exotic patterns can be designed.

Once the tape is cut to the length and shape that’s required, separate the backing from the tape and then place the tape in it’s designated spots. Don’t press it down hard

yet until you have it where you want it, that makes it easier to pull the tape back up and maneuver it around. If you pull up the tape to many times you will need to start with a new piece.

Once you have it in the proper spot, press hard and smooth the tape onto the surface, making sure to get out any air bubbles. It conforms to undulations fairly well so just roll it into those spots, and it will stay. When doing long or large pieces start at one end and slowly lay down the tape, re-lift it as needed to maneuver it around while you press the tape along it’s length? The tape also has a good resiliency and stretches when needed for bends and undulations.

The tape comes in a variety of lengths and widths in either 8mil or 14mil thickness. I prefer the 8mil in the 2 inch width for most bike applications. The 14mil was the original helicopter tape format, and it is for extreme conditions, it’s very tough but a bit harder to use and not as conformable.


When the tape gets old or gouged up, simply replace that piece. I suggest that you should make sure the bike and tape are in a fairly warm place before you do any removal. If the bike has been cold for a period the tape adhesive can pull up the clear coat or paint. This is a rare occurrence, but it can happen. A simple hair dryer to warm everything up will do the trick.

In high usage area that get a lot of dirt such as the inside of the rear triangle, dust and dirt will creep in behind the tape, and it will need more frequent replacement.

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About the author: Brian Mullin

Brian has been part of the Mtbr team since 2007, where he has become an integral member of the review and test staff, specializing in technical articles. He likes to push the limits in all the sports he obsesses in, whether it's mountain biking, whitewater kayaking, extreme skiing, or sport climbing. He takes those same strengths and a good dose of insanity to his reviewing and writing on mountain biking products, creating technical, in-depth and hyperbolic articles. Whenever he's not on the bike, he might be found watching MotoGP racing, otherwise look for him out on extremely technical singletrack.


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  • Jason says:

    Crankskins.com cheaper, better quality and all the decals are available in sweet colors and designs

  • Marc says:

    As the owner of a Titus Carbon Racer X, I have the exact same concerns.

    The combination of my tire setup, a Kenda 2.35 Blue Groove DTC and a Nevegal 2.1 DTC and the decomposed granite on the trails that I ride equate to sandblasting my frame every ride.

    My initial use of frame tape proved inadequate to the task, however.

    While I DO have frame tape on the back of the seattube, the BB shell and the bottom of the downtube, my primary protection consists of the following:

    An SKS Shockboard front fender and a Planet Bike mud guard downtube fender(reverse oriented w/cutout for chainrings) to protect the downtube and BB area.
    Protecting the seattube was much more problematic, as there are no aftermarket fenders that specifically address this concern — yet.

    So, I constructed my own. I cut off the rear portion of the front fender, cut notches in the side to fit between the seat stays and glued/duct taped on an extension.
    Small weight penalty with HUGE protection. No more chips and dings — ANYwhere.

    As for cable rub locations, I also found frame tape to be woefully lacking as well.
    I am using carbon cloth chainstay protector, from Lizardskins, cut to size. While nothing lasts forever, due to it’s thickness it will be MUCH easier to check wear and relace BEFORE it is worn through. I tried doubling the frametape in these locations and found that it was a negligible improvement and it was still VERY difficult to determine if it had worn through…..

    I think that for a lot of folks, frame tape is adequate, especially for roadbikes.
    In highly abrasive conditions and in cable rub locations it is not up to the task, I’m afraid. Unless you want to totaly replace it every 200 miles or so, I’d recommend some fenders.

    Happy Trails,

    Marc

  • pastajet says:

    With regards to crankskins:
    Not sure about being cheaper, since I can cover around 2 bikes and have some left over for around the same money. Crankskins do come in colors and patterns and this stuff is clear, and I am not sure I want any patterns or colors, I want it to be invisible and let the frame shine through. I can’t say if the quality is better or worse, since I have not done a comparison, but this tape is pretty bomber, and I have never had any issues with it. If a helicopter rotor and a race car going to 200mph use it without any issue is pretty decent in my opinion. I also couldn’t tell what thickness the crankskins were, their site doesn’t mention it. Is it 8mil? Fishboy (a forum person over on the Mojo forum) makes a great tape kit made specific to the Mojo for around $70, not sure, but I would imagine a crankskins entire generic kit would be close to that price?

    With regards to tape issues:
    Sorry to hear you have found the inadequacy of the tape, I have used it for 2.5 years and have had no real issues, my cable housing are Alligator i-Links which are aluminum, so I have metal rubbing on my carbon bike and in the current 11 months and countless miles it doesn’t show any major wear. I did have it doubled up. I have used the lizardskins patches and they are great and can recommend them also. Like I said in the previous answer it takes 200mph race car abuse.

  • Fishboy says:

    Some protection is better than no protection, and my Frameskin kits have been protecting bikes for a couple of years now. Custom kits are available for a select range of bikes at present – Mojo, Mojo SL, Anthem X, Trance X, Cannondale Rush and Rize, Pivot Mach 4 and cost about $35 each – This model list grows when I have spare time. Frameskin offers excellent protection… and I expect the generic versions I do may be a good option if other products aren’t living up to your expectations. Preparation is the key to good adhesion, and best results. I’ve done a lot of trialling of various tapes to get one of the best wearing tapes out there. I am yet to wear through it with cable rub.

  • Steel Is Real says:

    Whatever happened to the good ole days where we had steel bikes with quality paint and didn’t need to worry about frame protection. All this fancy CF stuff seems to be just for show.

  • pastajet says:

    Not sure if you noticed, but the main bike in the picture is Titanium. And I have had steel bikes with paint and after a period of time the rear triangle gets chewed up. The tape is just to take care of any bike, whether it’s steel, Ti, Al or CF.

    Peace.

  • Cantitoe Road says:

    Looks like I’m a few years late to this conversation, but we have a product called Shelter. Shelter is an impact absorption medium, which contains 50 layers of a visco-elastomeric material-like a memory foam that absorbs energy before it gets through to the frame. It’s also clear so it doesn’t hide your bike.

    This is a video we shot showing how Shelter works, by using it to protect a fluorescent bulb from hammer impacts:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ynlxj7X86Nw

    Learn more about Shelter on our website:
    at our website http://www.CantitoeRoad.com/Shelter

  • nwforager says:

    they make clear electrical tape and clear duct tape for like 2 bucks .

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