Tubular tires have persisted in both road and cyclocross circles thanks to their enviable ride quality, generally fantastic cornering ability, and the fact that they can safely be ridden at extremely low pressures or even completely flat. Nevertheless, many riders simply don’t want to deal with the hassles of installation and removal: the multiple layers of glue, the noxious fumes, the sticky mess, the raw thumbs… Effetto Mariposa’s new Carogna tubular tape, however, promises to make living with tubulars nearly as easy as clinchers.
Carogna is a special dual-sided adhesive tape that at least in concept, is somewhat similar to the tubular tape that Tufo has offered for years. You simply apply one side of the tape to a clean rim, peel off a small tab of backing, mount the tire and pump it up slightly.
Once you’re satisfied with the position of the tire on the rim, you simply remove the backing stripe by pulling on that tab, pump up the tire to fully compress the glue, and then wait a few hours for the glue to cure.
However, where Tufo tape doesn’t adhere the edges of the tire to the rim very well and is very thin, Carogna secures the tire across the entire width of the rim. Carogna is also thicker and notably softer on the tubular side so as to fill in any space in between the casing and rim when the mating interface isn’t absolutely perfect (which it rarely is). According to Effetto Mariposa founder Alberto De Gioannini, this makes for a more secure bond.
“Tufo tape is thicker in the center and thinner on the sides, and it’s quite stiff,” he told BikeRadar at the Taipei Cycle Show. “It only relies on the adhesive to keep the tubular there. My concept is different. On the rim side is a semi-structural glue that bonds to the rim surface. It’s very hard to remove – but you can remove it, and the glue will stay with the tape.”
“On the tubular side, there is a 1mm thick mass of glue that has been developed for underwater applications. When you inflate the tubular, the glue squeezes so it provides an optimal adhesive surface covering. It gets to 90 percent of its maximum adhesion after eight hours.”
Moreover, De Gioannini says that Carogna provides a more even bond layer around the entire circumference of the rim than traditionally hand-applied adhesive since the tape is the same thickness throughout. And best of all, Carogna will supposedly peel off the rim almost perfectly, leaving a clean surface behind that’s already nearly ready to have another tire glued on.
“On the tubular side, the glue is permanent so you won’t be able to remove the glue from the tire. Part of the glue will stay on it but you can remove it and you will end up with a thin layer of glue. So it’s similar to what you get with mastic but it’s even.”
De Gioannini also says that Carogna will retain its adhesive strength up to 180°C for brief periods and extended stretches up to 150°C. On the other hand, De Gioannini claims that even a good traditional glue will start to soften at around 120°C.
Accompanying the Carogna tape is the rather misleadingly named Carogna Remover gel solvent, which isn’t actually used to remove tape residue but instead old traditional tubular glue to help prep the surface for taping.
Carogna Remover isn’t designed to remove tape residue but rather old traditional glue so as to create a clean surface
“You have to spread it on the rim, and if you have a thick layer of mastic, it needs some time – two hours, eight hours, sometimes more. After a while, you will feel that the mastic is soft and you can use an old rag or plastic tire lever. The result is that the rim will be like new – even with old mastic.”
Retail price for a 2m roll (enough to mount one tire) is US$20 for the narrower 16.5mm size and US$25 for the 25mm width. A 16m shop roll costs US$100. International prices are to be confirmed. Regardless, Carogna isn’t cheap but for some, the added convenience might well be worth it.
Will Carogna live up to the hype? We’re certainly eager to find out and are bringing samples back from Taipei to begin testing immediately.
For more information, visit www.effettomariposa.eu.