This week, Lennard Zinn addresses reader questions about shifting and attaching tubulars with tape.

Mixing SRAM parts

Dear Lennard,
Will SRAM Red 22 shifters work with 10-speed rear and front derailleurs?
— Todd

Dear Todd,
If you mean SRAM 10-speed derailleurs, the answer is yes.
― Lennard

Regarding Santana road/MTB Di2 tandem gearing

Dear Lennard
In response to your answer in the Tech FAQ, we are using the Shimano Road Dura-Ace 9070 levers with the XTR Triple group with the XTR 40/11 Shimano M9000 cassette. We don’t even need an 11 speed cassette body. You were close with your guess of front chainrings. We used a 30/42/52, and manipulated the front derailleur clamp to work exceptionally well. Both front and rear shifting is awesome! This group has a bunch of adjustability. We were the only tandem at Interbike to do this, and Shimano was checking our setup all three days of the show! Just like 2009, we were the first to have a Di2 (7970) group to be installed on a tandem, and surprised Shimano! Shimano works directly with us to test the limits for tandem application.
— Tim Ferreira
Santana Cycles Inc.

Dear Tim,
Maybe I should have had my reading glasses on; that didn’t look like an 11-40 cassette!
― Lennard

Using tubular tape for ’cross

Dear Lennard,
I thought that I should let you know about my experience using the Effetto Mariposa tape with cyclocross tires. You’ve been somewhat positive about the tape’s possibilities, and several customers at our bike shop had been asking about it. I thought that I should test it out on my rig, as opposed to testing on a customer. I’ve been ’cross racing since 1983, and road racing since 1974. I’ve had lots of experience gluing tires, and feel confident that my glue jobs will hold up for myself and more importantly, others. I also feel that I’m capable of following directions successfully.

I followed the Effetto Mariposa directions very carefully. The test glue jobs in question were on new wheels. I sanded the rims and cleaned them with alcohol. Kept the tire inflated at the specified pressures for the specified times. After sitting for two-plus days, I deflated the tire and tried to pull it off the rim. It seemed very well attached. The test ride was warming up for a ’cross race and racing. The tire seemed to be well attached after checking out the course and warming up. Again, I deflated the tire and pulled on it all the way around the rim from both sides. At the end of the first lap while I was in the lead group, the tire popped off on a corner. The tire popped off the same way that the notorious Tufo tape did. Pretty much a complete, clean release. I wrangled the tire back on the rim, rode to the pit carefully and switched bikes, and continued what was now a training event.

When I did a post-race check of that tire, it seemed well attached. But with a bit of force it again popped cleanly off. The tape stayed on the tire, but was fairly easily pulled off by hand.

My next experiment was to try and using the Effetto Mariposa tape as you would with Belgium, CX of Jantex tape. Two layers of glue on both the rim and tire, tape in-between. Again after setting, the tire seemed well attached when both inflated and deflated. The next warm up and race test went much as the same and the first test. Tire seemed well attached after checkout and warmup, then completely released when in third position on the first lap of the race. This time the valve stayed in the rim when the tire detached.

Ruining the brand new tire. The glue stayed on both the rim and the tire. The rubbery Effete Mariposa tape pulled cleanly off both (it partially stayed on the rim and partially on the tire).

I talked with several other cyclists who’ve had similar experiences. Some said it was great stuff for road wheels, but not good for ’cross. In light of my and their experience, I don’t think I would trust this tape while going down a twisty mountain road or into a fast corner in a crit though.
— Tom

Dear Tom,
Thanks for that feedback. It differs quite a bit from my own experience, and I’m trying to figure out why.

I have two cyclocross bikes I’ve been riding for eight months or so with tubulars attached via Carogna tape. I have cornered hard with them at low pressures on pavement and dirt and haven’t had the slightest whiff of an attempt at rolling a tire. I greatly dislike rolling tires, especially on pavement, so it took me a while to build up the confidence to do anything I would do on a glued-and-Belgian-taped tubular, but now I would.

A month or so ago, I had a blow-out during a CX training group workout on a (silk, gasp!) Challenge Grifo held on with Carogna tape. I had a pump, spare tubular and more tape with me, and I wanted to rejoin the group workout, so I tried to get the blown tire off in a hurry. That was not an easy task. That tire had been on there since last April, and it did not want to come off.

I managed to get it started by digging my skewer lever under the tire to pry it off in one spot. Then I was able to pull it off the rest of the way around. The rim was almost completely clean afterward — all of the tape stayed very tightly adhered to the tire’s base tape to the point that I would not want the task of trying to get it off of there. But it was stuck quite strongly to the rim as well. I should note, related to the below comments, that I had trimmed the tape to exactly the rim width, and I had never sanded the rim; I had only cleaned it with rubbing alcohol. I had also let them sit inflated for many days before riding them.

Here is what Effetto Mariposa had to say about your experience:

I’ve been connecting the dots on this and other negative CX experiences, together with the stellar reviews, to start writing a ‘how-to’ for cyclocross. I’ve added this to the Carogna web page, and I consider it a work in progress.

Sanding the rims creates grooves on the surface … a plus with mastic (the glue will fill those ‘valleys’, ensuring a better hold), but a clear minus with tape, where the maximum gluing surface is represented by a perfectly smooth surface.

Carogna tape is a 1mm thick mass of glue on the tubular side; it can adapt to raw cotton and quite uneven surfaces … but on the rim side, to make sure the tape can be removed properly if needed, it’s a very thin layer you’d normally associate with adhesive tape.

Below is the current “CX guide.” Feel free to take what you need.

The big question: Does Carogna work for cyclocross?

Carogna tape works for cyclocross, we’ve had in general very positive feedback. Journalists and early adopters confirm Carogna indeed works for CX. However, as 2015 is the first big CX season for Carogna, we’re also learning a lot from some occasional problems. It turns out that knowing the correct gluing procedure is much more important for CX than for normal road use … similarly to mastic, as an average mastic job won’t survive cyclocross applications.

Carogna glue is “pressure-activated,” so it bonds very strongly when it’s pushed down against the rim by the tubular pressure (for this reason, for road tubulars, we recommend inflating tubulars to their max pressure and allowing some time before riding: adhesion reaches 80 percent of its maximum strength after eight hours, and the optimal value of 99 percent after 24 hours).

The important remarks for cyclocross are the following:

1) AVOID SANDPAPER ON THE RIM: We know this is common practice when gluing with mastic, but tapes are different. Sandpaper will create small grooves on the rim, reducing the effective bonding surface for the tape. A smooth rim bed offers the maximum surface of contact for Carogna: we recommend removing residual old glue completely with Carogna Remover before applying Carogna tape.

2) CAROGNA WIDTH MUST BE THE CORRECT ONE FOR YOUR RIM: If Carogna tape is much wider than your rims (for example Carogna “M”, 25mm, on a 20mm rim) there is tape on the side that isn’t properly glued to the tubular/rim (just because the rim didn’t extend wide enough and the tape couldn’t be “sandwiched” between tubular and rim). That area is a potential entry point from where dirt and mud could get underneath the glued section of Carogna… not immediately, but within your third or fourth weekend of racing. It’s better to trim the excess with a cutter before mounting the tubular (Lennard Zinn shows how in this video).

3) LOWER INFLATING PRESSURE MIGHT REQUIRE LONGER GLUING TIME: As most CX tubulars won’t allow a very high maximum pressure, Carogna might require a longer time before optimal adhesion. This depends very much on the finishing/surface of the tubular base tape. In most cases, this is not needed, but we’ve been reported cases where cyclocross tubulars were not glued after eight hours… but were perfectly glued allowing one more day at maximum pressure.

The quality of the adhesion should be checked by completely deflating the tubular and gently pushing it on the side. If the tubular is still not holding, waiting longer will normally address the issue.

— Alberto De Gioannini
Effetto Mariposa Sagl

― Lennard