I have ridden the Lizard Skins DSP Bar Tape 2.5 for 22 hours/400 plus miles over the last two weeks. I usually don’t like to ride padded saddles, padded bar tape, padded gloves or unconventional insoles. Why? I don’t know, I simply haven’t found the need for them. I believe most hand numbness, aches and pains can be attributed to a poor fit. Any attempt to pad one or any of your three contact points (hands, feet and fanny-the exception being a good pair of bib shorts) with the bike might actually be masking a more serious issue…either the wrong size bike or an improper fit on the correct size bike.
I have my favorite saddles. That’s right saddleS. I am not tied to any one saddle in particular. I am fortunate enough to ride almost any quality saddle. I have my favorite shoes. And now I’ve found my favorite bar tape LIZARD SKINS. It is by far the most comfortable bar tape I have ever ridden!!
If you are new to my blog, I am an Ultra Cyclist. What does that mean? Well my training rides are centuries (100 miles) and my shortest events are double centuries (200 miles). While some people train all year to prepare for a century I prepare all year with centuries (weekly) for my goal event of the year. In some circles, a double century is still not an Ultra because it doesn’t go beyond 24 hours. I am one of those riders. Depending on the amount of climbing, I finish most double centuries sub 13 hours. Additionally, my perspective is a little skewed 😉 My main event of the season is the Furnace Creek 508. It is a 508 mile non-stop Ultra Cycling event through the Mojave and Death Valley deserts, traversing 10 mountain passes with a cumulative gain of 35,000 feet of climbing my personal record being 37 hours and 34 minutes (yes 37 hours without stopping).
The Furnace Creek 508 will be the perfect proving grounds for Lizard Skin bar tape. I don’t usually wear gloves until the last couple of hundred miles of the event. The roads on the last 100 miles are some of the worst roads I have ever ridden on a road bike. I can’t wait to use Lizard Skin bar tape. The tape is soft to the touch, comfy on the palms, and non-slip (think sunscreen and sweat dripping down your arms to your hands in 100 degree heat) and comes in great colors. The only downside I see right now is cleaning the tape isn’t that easy. The very thing that makes it comfy, the soft gumminess, makes it a little harder to clean. I will experiment with a few different cleaners, and towel options and update you in the future. Thus far I have used Simple Green and a white shop rag and it takes a little effort. I believe this is important to point out based on its $34.99 list price. I don’t imagine a rider changing his bar tape once a month. A rider WILL get great life out of the tape density though. However, after cleaning there is just a little grey left behind. And you know roadies, they are quite fastidious about pristine looking bar tape…among other things 😉
In the meantime I’ll keep training in comfort with my Lizard Skins DSP 2.5. I’m currently using the green tape because I am a member of the Simple Green/Bike Religion Cycling Team and I love my Swiftwick socks and cycling kit too 😉
As a bonus it was lighter than the bar tape I had been using PRO black.