thank you for checking out our blog and showing interest in our journey!
It all started in April 2020 when Thomas asked me what I thought about fabric handlebar tapes. I remember saying something like "I’m not so convinced because they are too hard and not so easy to get in Europe". But he kept pushing me explaining several potential advantages, in particular, a better look, and nicer feel. I also saw the potential of being more sustainable if we tweaked some aspects of current cotton handlebar tape. It was also difficult to get a good cotton tape on the European market without overpaying.
From that day forward we started developing our own version of a cotton-based handlebar tape. We started by comparing the ups and downs of synthetic based and current available cotton handlebar tapes. We answered questions like "What are common reasons for replacing the tape?" or "What happens with the tape when I remove it?".
We had some of our own struggles with the tapes we used ourselves. For example, I was never really able to ride synthetic "sleek" tape without gloves because my notoriously sweating hands always started slipping. Synthetic tape was also very sensitive and easily ripped when leaning your bike against a rough piece of wall or light crashes. Existing cotton tape suffered from getting dirty relatively quickly. When to trying to remove it, you still had to throw it away because of the single-use adhesive found on most cotton tape. These and many more struggles pushed us to find a solution that hasn’t been around in the industry so far.
After writing down some initial specifications we started searching for a suitable partner that could help us to develop and manufacture the tape with our values in mind. Eventually, we got in touch with Smålands Band. With an experienced partner at our side, the next chapter of our journey was ready to start...
Cheers and stay save,
Jan & Thomas