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Cork Tape
Posted by: Bob Ginther (162.245.179.---)
Date: October 02, 2021 10:36AM

I have been reading the archives for info on using cork tape on rod handles. I see two types of tape available, 1/16" thick and 1/8" thick. Other than the difference in weight and the added diameter between the two thicknesses, are there any other things to consider in deciding which thickness to use?

Also, some prior threads have discussed using rubbing alcohol as a lubricant on the blank to allow you to slide the applied tape to eliminate seam gaps, etc. Is this the recommended way to apply cork tape?

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Re: Cork Tape
Posted by: Tom Kirkman (Moderator)
Date: October 02, 2021 12:05PM

If you'll do a test fit over the first couple inches to sort of dial in the right angle for laying the tape, you shouldn't have to shift it around on the blank. Once started, you just use a little hand pressure to keep the seams nice and close/snug. It's really not at all hard to do.

We did an article in the magazine in the past year or two about how to get it started at the right angle. But it's not hard. Do it with the backing still in place and scribe or draw a long at the correct angle against the tape. Then start the actual wrapping/adhering process.


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Re: Cork Tape
Posted by: Norman Miller (---.lightspeed.jcsnms.sbcglobal.net)
Date: October 02, 2021 12:13PM

They both work, it’s just a matter of how much you want to increase the diameter of the handle. I normally use the 1/16” tape. Never heard of using rubbing alcohol for applying cork tape. I really don’t think it is necessary, since wrapping cork tape onto the blank is quite simple and straight forward. Some people will use contact cement on both the blank and tape before winding the tape onto the blank. This just makes the wrap more permanent and harder to remove, and in my opinion also not necessary. I use a small piece of shrink tubing at both ends to keep the wrap from unwinding. You can also do the same thing using a thread wrap.

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Re: Cork Tape
Posted by: Jeffrey D Rennert (---)
Date: October 02, 2021 02:36PM

Norman Miller where do you live? I want to come and do an internship with you!!!!!

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Re: Cork Tape
Posted by: Mark Talmo (71.147.59.---)
Date: October 02, 2021 03:11PM

I use cork tape covered with X-shrink tubing for almost all my salt builds = very durable in-and-out of rod holders, grippy surface when wet, easy to clean and, although I haven’t had to, easy to replace if ever needed. I have used both the .062in and .125in thick versions but do not like the .125in because it starts to get surface cracks in it when bending around a blank; the smaller the blank the worse the issue. If a larger diameter is preferred, simply apply another layer of tape but it is a very good idea to wrap it in the opposite direction as the previous layer. No need for alcohol; carefully pushing the edge of the new course of tape into the preceding edge will produce a virtually seamless grip.
Cutting the initial, starting angle is easy. With the backing side to the blank, tightly “spiral”wrap the tape around the blank slightly more than one rotation with the two edges butting against each other (side-by-side). Place a mark across the seam onto both pieces. Remove the tape from the blank and lay it out flat and use a straightedge between the two marks to cut the angle with a razor blade.

Mark Talmo

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Re: Cork Tape
Posted by: Robert A. Guist (---.res6.spectrum.com)
Date: October 02, 2021 03:28PM

Hello All.

Here is where to find the article Tom spoke of:

Vol/Issue Title Author page
23/5 Cork Tape Techniques By Capt Mike Ballard. 16

Tight Wraps & Tighter Lines.


New Bern, NC.

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