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I have a couple of commuter bikes with bullhorn handlebars. When I replace the tape on them, I always have heaps left over, since the bars are much shorter overall than standard drop bars. There's never enough to do both sides of the bar with a single roll though, so I end up throwing out a lot of tape.

Can I get tape in a continuous roll, rather than pre-cut sections? I assume workshops would buy their tape in longer lengths, but I can't find any sources for it.

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Hockey tape comes in long rolls -- enough to do 10-20 handlebars. –  Daniel R Hicks Nov 20 '12 at 23:22
    
Hockey tape (I've done it on beater bikes) would only do 10-20 rolls if you only did 1 layer. And 1 layer isn't sufficient for padding. –  Kibbee Nov 21 '12 at 13:29
    
I generally put it over the regular wrap, once it begins to slide around or deteriorate. And add a fresh layer every year or two, as the old stuff gets grimy. –  Daniel R Hicks Nov 21 '12 at 17:14
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2 Answers

up vote 3 down vote accepted

I manage the workshop in one of the busier shops in the world. There is not, to my knowledge, any way to obtain cork or neoprene bar tape which is not pre-cut to length. Usually, in my experience, though, one roll is enough to do both sides of a bullhorn bar.

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Thanks for the answer. I suspected that might be the case, but it's such a surprise. It seems so obvious to provide tape by the roll to shops. –  Mac Nov 21 '12 at 4:23
    
@Mac - There is the point that on some bars, particularly drop bars with external cables, even a small roll is hard enough to maneuver, and a big roll would be impossible. –  Daniel R Hicks Nov 21 '12 at 12:58
    
I imagine that one would measure and cut it off the larger roll before trying to wrap it around the bars. Also, I can't believe that bicycle assembly lines would have thousands of individually cut pieces of bar tape and wouldn't just simply have a large roll which they cut the right amount off when they need it. –  Kibbee Nov 21 '12 at 13:28
    
I'm sure the assembly lines order it in pre-cut pieces, to precisely fit the bike. –  Daniel R Hicks Nov 21 '12 at 17:14
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With some Googling, I was able to find this bulk bar tape. However, at $156 for about 10 bars worth, it doesn't seem like you get much of a deal. Plus the site looks really shady. But if you aren't wasting so much, it might end up as a net positive for you. But it does confirm that such a product does exist. Try to look for a reputable retailer to sell you bulk tape.

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