Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Bicycle Mechanics
Reload this Page >

Removing handlebar tape residue

Notices
Bicycle Mechanics Broken bottom bracket? Tacoed wheel? If you're having problems with your bicycle, or just need help fixing a flat, drop in here for the latest on bicycle mechanics & bicycle maintenance.

Removing handlebar tape residue

Old 09-02-14, 05:32 AM
  #1  
Airburst
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: England, currently dividing my time between university in Guildford and home just outside Reading
Posts: 1,921

Bikes: Too many to list here!

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 4 Times in 2 Posts
Removing handlebar tape residue

I just pulled the old handlebar tape off one of my bikes, as it was worn out, and it *really* didn't want to come off. It's left a lot of glue residue on the bars and there are quite a few chunks of tape that kind of peeled off as I unwound the tape. Before I try and remove it, I figured I'd ask those with more experience than me what the best way to go about cleaning it off would be. I assume some sort of solvent exists that'll help me get the glue off?
Airburst is offline  
Old 09-02-14, 05:50 AM
  #2  
cderalow
Senior Member
 
cderalow's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Potomac, MD
Posts: 776

Bikes: 2012 GT Transeo 3 2014 Cannondale CAAD 10 105

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 26 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by Airburst View Post
I just pulled the old handlebar tape off one of my bikes, as it was worn out, and it *really* didn't want to come off. It's left a lot of glue residue on the bars and there are quite a few chunks of tape that kind of peeled off as I unwound the tape. Before I try and remove it, I figured I'd ask those with more experience than me what the best way to go about cleaning it off would be. I assume some sort of solvent exists that'll help me get the glue off?

goo gone

mineral spirits


next time, use a hair dryer to help loosen it up
cderalow is offline  
Old 09-02-14, 06:22 AM
  #3  
Airburst
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: England, currently dividing my time between university in Guildford and home just outside Reading
Posts: 1,921

Bikes: Too many to list here!

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 4 Times in 2 Posts
Originally Posted by cderalow View Post
goo gone
I've seen Goo Gone recommended for removing the marks left after removing decals and stuff too, I don't think it's available in the UK though. Is it an acetone-based solvent?
Airburst is offline  
Old 09-02-14, 06:50 AM
  #4  
Kopsis
Senior Member
 
Kopsis's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: St. Pete, Florida
Posts: 1,258
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 83 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Goo Gone is not acetone-based. It's key ingredients are d-Limonene (i.e. citrus based) and tripropyleneglycol methyl ether.
Kopsis is offline  
Old 09-02-14, 07:47 AM
  #5  
HillRider
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Posts: 31,755

Bikes: '''96 Litespeed Catalyst, '05 Litespeed Firenze, '06 Litespeed Tuscany, '12 Surly Pacer, All are 3x8,9 or 10. It is hilly around here!

Mentioned: 34 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1258 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 89 Times in 76 Posts
Mineral Spirits, WD-40 (same thing but with a bit of oil) or Kerosene should all work. Acetone will detackify the adhesive and let you rub off the residue.
HillRider is offline  
Old 09-02-14, 08:29 AM
  #6  
Airburst
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: England, currently dividing my time between university in Guildford and home just outside Reading
Posts: 1,921

Bikes: Too many to list here!

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 4 Times in 2 Posts
I have a bottle of nail polish remover which apparently contains acetone, I'll have a crack at it with that. Failing that, there's a very good hardware shop near me, the guy there ought to know what to use - there must be something available that's similar to Goo Gone.

And next time I'm taking tape off, I'll get the hair dryer on it first, thanks for the tips!
Airburst is offline  
Old 09-02-14, 09:45 AM
  #7  
cderalow
Senior Member
 
cderalow's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Potomac, MD
Posts: 776

Bikes: 2012 GT Transeo 3 2014 Cannondale CAAD 10 105

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 26 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
you may be able to find an adhesive, gum & graffiti remover at your local halfords
cderalow is offline  
Old 09-02-14, 11:09 AM
  #8  
fietsbob 
coprolite
 
fietsbob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: NW,Oregon Coast
Posts: 41,396

Bikes: 8

Mentioned: 188 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6950 Post(s)
Liked 257 Times in 211 Posts
3M also makes an adhesive solvent.
fietsbob is offline  
Old 09-02-14, 12:33 PM
  #9  
linnefaulk
Senior Member
 
linnefaulk's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2014
Location: florida
Posts: 1,844

Bikes: 1990 Trek 820, 1995 Trek 1220

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Liked 5 Times in 4 Posts
Lifehacker has some DIY method to make Goo Gone.
linnefaulk is offline  
Old 04-03-19, 12:14 PM
  #10  
CraigMBA
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2019
Location: Santa Maria, CA
Posts: 108

Bikes: 1988 Specialized Stumpjumper Monstercross Touring Rig, and a couple of others

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 44 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
I sprayed the bar to saturation with goo gone, wrapped it in a plastic bag, waited an hour, and it all came off with minimal fuss.

The Goo Gone bottle? Not so good. The pump never worked past the second squirt.

Sorry for the zombie bump.
CraigMBA is offline  
Old 04-03-19, 12:43 PM
  #11  
jadocs
Senior Member
 
jadocs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2018
Location: USA
Posts: 1,107

Bikes: Litespeed T2 Disc, Fondirest P4 Carbon, Fuji Cross 2.0, Specialized Fatboy

Mentioned: 18 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 463 Post(s)
Liked 153 Times in 116 Posts
Acetone has worked just fine for me in the past.
jadocs is offline  
Old 04-03-19, 12:50 PM
  #12  
le mans
Steel is real
 
le mans's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: Australia
Posts: 757

Bikes: Raleigh Grand Prix 1977. Custom - Record Vortex 8 spd Nexus & Mistral Le Mans 3 spd Shimano. Upgraded Wheeler Crossline

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 151 Post(s)
Liked 14 Times in 11 Posts
Threads given me a good tip to use a blow drier, removing the bar tape was fine, but underneath they completely wrapped it in sticky tape, strewth almighty
le mans is offline  
Old 04-03-19, 01:15 PM
  #13  
NoWhammies
Senior Member
 
NoWhammies's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 1,061

Bikes: Argon 18 Gallium, BH G7, Rocky Mountain Instinct C70

Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 452 Post(s)
Liked 88 Times in 59 Posts
I'll throw my hat in the ring for Goo Gone. Awesome stuff.
NoWhammies is offline  
Old 04-03-19, 01:25 PM
  #14  
caloso
Senior Member
 
caloso's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Sacramento, California, USA
Posts: 38,498

Bikes: Ridley Excalibur, Gazelle Champion Mondial, On-One Pompino, Specialized Rock Hopper

Mentioned: 61 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2028 Post(s)
Liked 456 Times in 253 Posts
I will peel off any chunks of tape with a thumbnail, but if I'm going to rewrap the bars I don't bother cleaning off the tape residue. For the same reason I don't clean off the old glue when I install new tubulars.
caloso is offline  
Old 04-03-19, 01:34 PM
  #15  
ThermionicScott 
hungry
 
ThermionicScott's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: CID
Posts: 19,397

Bikes: 1991 Bianchi Eros, 1964 Armstrong, 1988 Diamondback Ascent, 1988 Bianchi Premio, 1987 Bianchi Sport SX, 1980s Raleigh mixte (hers)

Mentioned: 81 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2468 Post(s)
Liked 363 Times in 265 Posts
Old thread, but I always clean the bars with alcohol before installing new tape. I figure it's my best opportunity to remove built-up salt on the aluminum handlebars.
__________________
Originally Posted by chandltp View Post
There's no such thing as too far.. just lack of time
Originally Posted by noglider
People in this forum are not typical.
RUSA #7498
ThermionicScott is offline  
Old 04-03-19, 01:49 PM
  #16  
79pmooney
A Roadie Forever
 
79pmooney's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 7,344

Bikes: (2) ti TiCycles, 2007 w/ triple and 2011 fixed, 1979 Peter Mooney, ~1983 Trek 420 now fixed and ~1973 Raleigh Carlton Competition gravel grinder

Mentioned: 95 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1832 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 214 Times in 161 Posts
Careful with acetone. It goes right through your skin like it isn't there and takes anything dissolved in it to your liver. I lived a small hell for 30 years after building polyester fiberglass boats until I went through a liver cleansing. (A 90 day mini chemo.) I go to Supercuts for haircuts where many of the women working there used to make much more money in salons and can no longer because of that acetone.

Ben
79pmooney is offline  
Old 04-03-19, 03:21 PM
  #17  
delbiker1 
Senior Member
 
delbiker1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: Sussex County, Delaware
Posts: 1,097

Bikes: 2003 Lemond Poprad, 1991 Ochsner steel frame, 2002 Airborne Zeppelin titanium, Schwinn DBX SS aluminum, Orbea MD 40 carbon fiber

Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 295 Post(s)
Liked 121 Times in 85 Posts
The spray pump is my only complaint for Goo Gone. Everyone I have had works for a very short time. The product itself works fine.
delbiker1 is online now  
Old 04-03-19, 03:50 PM
  #18  
sdmc530
Heft On Wheels
 
sdmc530's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: South Dakota
Posts: 2,172

Bikes: Specialized,Cannondale

Mentioned: 12 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 583 Post(s)
Liked 118 Times in 90 Posts
I use a butane torch. Seriously works awesome. Do it outside and you don't need torch the bars but quick high heat and just rubs off with a towel after heated. I have used the wife's hairdryer too but the little torch is much quicker!
sdmc530 is offline  
Old 04-04-19, 10:21 AM
  #19  
ThermionicScott 
hungry
 
ThermionicScott's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: CID
Posts: 19,397

Bikes: 1991 Bianchi Eros, 1964 Armstrong, 1988 Diamondback Ascent, 1988 Bianchi Premio, 1987 Bianchi Sport SX, 1980s Raleigh mixte (hers)

Mentioned: 81 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2468 Post(s)
Liked 363 Times in 265 Posts
Originally Posted by delbiker1 View Post
The spray pump is my only complaint for Goo Gone. Everyone I have had works for a very short time. The product itself works fine.
Wow, I had no idea the stuff comes in a spray bottle as well, that's odd. I just use the regular bottle, pouring a bit onto a folded-up paper towel.
__________________
Originally Posted by chandltp View Post
There's no such thing as too far.. just lack of time
Originally Posted by noglider
People in this forum are not typical.
RUSA #7498
ThermionicScott is offline  
Old 04-04-19, 11:22 AM
  #20  
Eric S. 
Senior Member
 
Eric S.'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Posts: 837

Bikes: '04 LeMond Buenos Aires, '82 Bianchi Nuova Racing, De Rosa SLX, Bridgestone MB-1, Guerciotti TSX, Torpado Aelle, LeMond Tourmalet 853, Bridgestone Radac

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 63 Post(s)
Liked 13 Times in 12 Posts
I got some Cinelli 66 bars cheap on eBay a few years ago. I guess nobody was interested because of all the crud on them. I had some Rust-Oleum Aircraft Remover on hand and everything wiped away in seconds.

Eric S. is offline  
Old 04-04-19, 01:34 PM
  #21  
Jon T
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Location: West Orange County, CA
Posts: 1,099

Bikes: '84 Peugeot PH10LE

Mentioned: 16 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 391 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 40 Times in 30 Posts
Depending on where you live, if MEK (Methyl Ethyl Ketone) is available, that's your problem-solver. Just be sure to use it outside and wear rubber gloves. I use it to strip gun stocks. Gets 'em clean down to the bare wood without all the elbow grease.
Jon
Jon T is offline  
Old 04-04-19, 01:44 PM
  #22  
Koyote
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Posts: 936
Mentioned: 13 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 491 Post(s)
Liked 187 Times in 112 Posts
Skip the chemicals. Get all the stuff off the bars that you can with your fingernails, and then rewrap 'em. You will never know that there are little tape bits under the new stuff.
Koyote is offline  
Old 04-04-19, 06:59 PM
  #23  
Sy Reene
Advocatus Diaboli
 
Sy Reene's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Wherever I am
Posts: 5,105

Bikes: Merlin Cyrene, Nashbar steel CX

Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2461 Post(s)
Liked 122 Times in 98 Posts
Lots of chemical suggestions.. Maybe its own thread topic, but is CF impervious to chemicals? I always had the layman impression that CF is some strong stuff held together by glue; goo/glue-gone.. it's not going to dissolve or weaken a set of CF bars?
Sy Reene is offline  
Old 04-04-19, 08:01 PM
  #24  
WizardOfBoz
Generally bewildered
 
WizardOfBoz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Eastern PA, USA
Posts: 2,295

Bikes: 2014 Trek Domane 6.9, 1999 LeMond Zurich, 1978 Schwinn Superior

Mentioned: 19 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 846 Post(s)
Liked 105 Times in 82 Posts
Originally Posted by Sy Reene View Post
Lots of chemical suggestions.. Maybe its own thread topic, but is CF impervious to chemicals? I always had the layman impression that CF is some strong stuff held together by glue; goo/glue-gone.. it's not going to dissolve or weaken a set of CF bars?
Carbon Fiber Reinforced Plastic (CFRPs) have carbon fibers (duh) and a resin matrix. The resin matrix can be one of several things. Epoxide, unsaturated polyester, vinyl ester, and polyamide imide resins (Torlon(R) is a pretty cool example) are used. There can be additives such as rubber. Some of these matrices (e,g, epoxides) are pretty resistant to everything (excepting stuff like hyrdrobromic acid and other strong bases or acids). But without knowing, it's probably good to avoid stuff like acetone or methty-ethyl-ketone or gasoline.

On alloy bars, goo-gone followed by min spirits to rinse followed by soap and water. Let dry and wrap pristine bars.

On CF bars, golly. I think I'd try warm soap and water and a credit card to scrape the stuff ollf. Check with the mfr?
WizardOfBoz is offline  
Old 04-04-19, 08:02 PM
  #25  
WizardOfBoz
Generally bewildered
 
WizardOfBoz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Eastern PA, USA
Posts: 2,295

Bikes: 2014 Trek Domane 6.9, 1999 LeMond Zurich, 1978 Schwinn Superior

Mentioned: 19 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 846 Post(s)
Liked 105 Times in 82 Posts
Originally Posted by Eric S. View Post
I got some Cinelli 66 bars cheap on eBay a few years ago. I guess nobody was interested because of all the crud on them. I had some Rust-Oleum Aircraft Remover on hand and everything wiped away in seconds.

Does the solvent help a lot in removing aircraft?
WizardOfBoz is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

Copyright 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.