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Cannondale KnurlTack Bar Tape



Get the fitting right and you are in for a comfortable ride with plenty of grip
Comfortable feel
Grip in the wet and dry
Moves on the handlebar if not pulled very tight

At every product is thoroughly tested for as long as it takes to get a proper insight into how well it works. Our reviewers are experienced cyclists that we trust to be objective. While we strive to ensure that opinions expressed are backed up by facts, reviews are by their nature an informed opinion, not a definitive verdict. We don't intentionally try to break anything (except locks) but we do try to look for weak points in any design. The overall score is not just an average of the other scores: it reflects both a product's function and value – with value determined by how a product compares with items of similar spec, quality, and price.

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Cannondale's KnurlTack Bar Tape gives plenty of grip whatever the weather and stays looking like new for a long time. The adhesive isn't that sticky, though, which means the tape has to be pulled really tight for it to remain in situ. Whether it's the best bar tape for you will depend on your needs, but it's certainly pleasant to use thanks to its 3mm thickness, which gives cushioning without being over the top and muting feedback from the bike. And because of its slightly tacky nature, even bare hands can grip well in the wet and dry.

Fitting is simple enough as it has a decent amount of stretch, so you can make it conform to tight bends and when wrapping it around the brake levers.

2022 Cannondale KnurlTack Bar Tape Fitted 1.jpg

At a metre in length for each roll there is also plenty to go around. You won't find yourself trying to stretch it out to reach the central section even on the widest of road bars.

2022 Cannondale KnurlTack Bar Tape Fitted 3.jpg

It's handy that it is long, though, as the back of the tape isn't that sticky, so you will need to wrap it tightly with a fair amount of overlap from start to finish, otherwise it can easily slip while you are riding, causing gaps.

I didn't allow for this on my first pass, so when trying to rectify it and adding more overlap after a couple of weeks of riding, the tape ended up too short. Hence why in the photos you can see that it is fitted to my daughter's Islabike. That is one advantage – the tape is reusable.

Being fitted to a nine-year-old's bike means it has seen plenty of abuse, like when the bike gets crashed (lightly, so far) or gets dumped on the handlebar as her attention span diminshes and she runs off to play with whatever else shiny has caught her eye.

The KnurlTack tape has stood up to its countless interactions with the ground admirably, with no signs of scuffs or wear.

So, to recap – concentrate on your fitting, getting plenty of overlap, and you won't be disappointed.

2022 Cannondale KnurlTack Bar Tape Fitted 2.jpg

Comfort-wise, it's great, with an impressive amount of grip, though I'm not sure it's worth £25.

Prime's Comfort bar tape was highly rated by Liam in his review, and as I use the gravel version on my gravel bike, I second his findings. It's the same thickness as the KnurlTack and offers great grip levels, plus it doesn't move once fitted. It costs £19.99.

Saying that, though, most bar tapes aren't exactly what I'd call value for money these days with many costing north of 30 quid.

Ergon's Road bar tape is £29.99, and while Suvi in her review found it comfortable, grippy and durable, it is thinner than the Cannondale at 2mm. There is no stretch to the Ergon either, so it's harder to fit.


Overall, if you get the fit right then there is little to fault the KnurlTack tape as I was impressed with the comfort on offer and the grip. There are cheaper options out there that do a great job, though.


Get the fitting right and you are in for a comfortable ride with plenty of grip test report

Make and model: Cannondale KnurlTack Bar Tape

Size tested: OS

Tell us what the product is for and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?

Cannondale says:

"More comfort, more control.

Advanced three-part construction is used to create a supple, durable tape with excellent vibration damping properties and a tacky all-weather finish.

Where it thrives

The open road, up and down hills

What it's built for

Comfort, control"

I agree - it gives a comfortable ride with plenty of grip.

Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?

Cannondale lists:

Lightweight EVA foam with a QuellGel silicone gel-layer provides an effective barrier against road-buzz for extra comfort

Thin polyurethane upper and knurled pattern provide grip in all weather / Includes: 2x tape rolls, lever strips, bar end-plugs, and finishing strips

Thickness: 3mm, length: 200cm, weight: 112g

Rate the product for quality of construction:
Rate the product for performance:
Rate the product for durability:
Rate the product for weight (if applicable)

Cannondale says it weighs 112g; we weighed it at 70g.

Rate the product for comfort (if applicable)
Rate the product for value:

Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose

A comfortable and grippy handlebar tape.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

Plenty of grip.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

It can move on the bar.

How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on

It's not overly priced when you look at the majority of the bar tapes we've recently tested, most of which are £30 and over. There is some steep competition out there, though, like the offering from Prime mentioned in the review.

Did you enjoy using the product? Yes

Would you consider buying the product? Possibly

Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes

Use this box to explain your overall score

Apart from the backing allowing it to move around on the handlebar there is little to find fault with here. Wrap it tightly enough that it doesn't move and it's a good choice.

Overall rating: 7/10

About the tester

Age: 44  Height: 180cm  Weight: 76kg

I usually ride: This month's test bike  My best bike is: B'Twin Ultra CF draped in the latest bling test components

I've been riding for: Over 20 years  I ride: Every day  I would class myself as: Expert

I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, club rides, sportives, fixed/singlespeed,

As part of the tech team here at F-At Digital, senior product reviewer Stu spends the majority of his time writing in-depth reviews for, and ebiketips using the knowledge gained from testing over 1,500 pieces of kit (plus 100's of bikes) since starting out as a freelancer back in 2009. After first throwing his leg over a race bike back in 2000, Stu's ridden more than 170,000 miles on road, time-trial, track, and gravel bikes, and while he's put his racing days behind him, he still likes to smash the pedals rather than take things easy. With a background in design and engineering, he has an obsession with how things are developed and manufactured, has a borderline fetish for handbuilt metal frames and finds a rim braked road bike very aesthetically pleasing!

Add new comment


Secret_squirrel | 1 year ago
1 like

I believe from notes elsewhere that this is Fabric Knurl tape rebranded. 
It may have been a manufacturing defect in mine but my Fabric tape lasted less than 1000 miles.  The kurled surface delaminated from the white backing tape.  YMMV of course.

cdamian replied to Secret_squirrel | 1 year ago

I love my Fabric Knurl tape, so I'll give this a go too
I think mine lasted a lot longer. At least a year or somewhere between 5000 and 10000 km.

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