Monday, February 11, 2013

Craquelure Handlebar Tape

Follow-up post on the shellac and twine experience

Went out for a quick test ride to try out the fit and adjustment of the new saddle. I plan a more in-depth and detailed post about the saddle after I have it dialed in, and have ridden it for a few months. All details then, for now, let's just call it "the new leather saddle."

While out in the bright sunshine, I noticed my shellacked handlebar tape from back in December was starting to show a fine craquelure, similar to old paintings. Also, the sisal twine that I used doesn't look any better after some usage, although it actually feels fine. Next wrap will use hemp, not sisal, for a smoother overall result.

Close-up of the craques. Looks interesting, a little rough, but feels great. I'm sold on shellac. Cloth tape next time?

I like the feel of this shellacked cork tape a lot. The look of the craquelure changes depending on the light. Bright sunlight like this shows the craques the most, while clouds and night cover up the variations. At night the shine on the black tape is hard to describe, but just makes me want to touch it, run my fingers over it.

Leather in the sun. Told my wife I put in on the yellow bike because the color matched.

First impression of the saddle was positive. I rode home, made some adjustments, will continue road testing for a few weeks and then go into much more detail.

And I like it! Does this mean I have to color match the bar tape and tires?


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