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The Prime Comfort Handlebar Tape is an excellent way to add a little more comfort to your road bike, while also getting a boost in grip. The tape wraps easily, is perfectly grippy in dry and wet conditions, comes with good finishing bits and seems to be lasting well. The gel back makes re-wrapping easy too.
The big hurdle with new bar tape is the wrapping. Pro mechanics do it in seconds, but I've got friends that actually pay me in beer to do theirs... mostly to stop my moaning about their shoddy, uneven work.
Wrapping this tape is easy. There's good stretch if you like to go a bit thinner, and for my 40cm round bars, there's plenty of length for a closely-spaced wrap for extra thickness.
The gel back is great for correcting mistakes, as while it grips the bar well, it comes away easily too should you notice a gap.
There is a nice piece of finishing tape included, though I always use electrical tape for the actual job of securing the wrap, then wrap this over the top for the neatest look.
Out on the road the comfort is instantly noticeable. The thickness is very much appreciated over less than perfect surfaces, and this tape does an impressive job of smoothing out the road buzz my SL7 can send my way.
Grip is now rather important to me. After having the bars smacked from my hands by a hidden pothole, I'm back to being a fan of grippy tape. Thankfully this stuff arrived for testing just when I needed it – my old tape wasn't ripped in the crash, but it was full of thorns – and I installed this in no time at all.
That grip is there whether or not you're wearing mitts, and it's even pretty good in wet or sweaty conditions too.
I really like the little pile of extras. The end caps are the expanding kind and work well, though the printed logo is laughably easy to scratch off. The finishing tape is fancy-looking knurled stuff, and the little extra piece for covering the shifter clamp matches the print of the main roll of tape.
One issue that can plague these grippy tapes is rapid surface wear. I've put just over a thousand kilometres into this tape though and the surface is holding up well, even in the spots where I tend to see tape wear first.
At just under £20 the price is great when compared to the likes of Lizard Skins DSP V2 at £34 or Fizik's Vento MicroTex Tacky tape at £29.99. I wouldn't say the quality of the bar ends matches Fizik or Lizard Skins, but these Prime ones still do the job.
If you're looking for an upgrade but the price of the fancy tapes puts you off, the Prime Comfort Handlebar Tape is, erm, a prime candidate. It's thick, grippy, easy to wrap and holds up well.
Grippy, thick, easy to wrap and well priced bar tape. There's a lot to love
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Prime Comfort Handlebar Tape
Size tested: Black
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?
From Wiggle: "Delivering fantastic comfort and grip, the Prime Comfort Handlebar Tape is an ideal handlebar tape for racing and training in all conditions and on any terrain."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Embossed Prime logos
Super Anti-Slippery Technology - grippy even when wet
Silicone Gel for added comfort
Anodised alloy screw in bar end plug
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Brilliantly. Grippy and comfortable.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The grip gives an extra secure hold.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
The logos on the end plugs will scratch off.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
As we've come to expect from Prime, the price is a bit better than the competition.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your overall score
It does what more expensive tape does at a lower price.
About the tester
I usually ride: Specialized S-Works Tarmac SL7 My best bike is:
I've been riding for: Under 5 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, time trialling, cyclo cross, commuting, club rides, general fitness riding, I specialise in the Cafe Ride!
Son of a Marathon runner, Nephew of a National 24hr Champion, the racing genetics have completely passed him by. After joining the road.cc staff in 2016 as a reviewer, Liam quickly started writing feature articles and news pieces. After a little time living in Canada, where he spent most of his time eating poutine, Liam returned with the launch of DealClincher, taking over the Editor role at the start of 2018. At the weekend, Liam can be found racing on the road both in the UK and abroad, though he prefers the muddy fields of cyclocross. To date, his biggest race win is to the front of the cafe queue.