Skateboarding is an exciting sport that requires a lot of skill, balance, and focus. One of the essential components of a skateboard is the grip tape. Grip tape is a rough and abrasive material that is applied to the top of the skateboard deck to provide a non-slip surface for the rider’s feet. Without grip tape, skateboarding can be dangerous and difficult.
In this article, we will take a step-by-sheet guide on how to apply grip tape to your skateboard deck. With the right tools and techniques, you can apply grip tape to your skateboard in a few easy steps.
The Tools You Need
Before you start applying grip tape to your skateboard, you need to gather the following tools:
- Grip tape: You can purchase grip tape in different colors, designs, and textures. Choose a grip tape that matches your style and personal preferences.
- Razor blade: You will need a razor blade to cut the grip tape to the right size and shape.
- Ruler or measuring tape: You need a ruler or measuring tape to measure the deck and determine the size of the grip tape you need.
- Spray bottle filled with water: You will use water to wet the deck and make it easier to apply the grip tape.
- Clean cloth or paper towel: You will use a clean cloth or paper towel to clean the deck before you apply the grip tape.
Preparing the Deck
- Before you apply the grip tape, you need to prepare the deck. Here’s what you need to do:
- Clean the deck: Use a clean cloth or paper towel to remove any dirt, dust, or debris from the deck. Ensure that the deck is completely clean and dry before you start the next step.
- Measure the deck: Measure the length and width of the deck and use the ruler or measuring tape to determine the size of the grip tape you need.
- Cut the grip tape: Use the razor blade to cut the grip tape to the right size and shape. You can use the ruler or measuring tape as a guide.
- Wet the deck: Fill the spray bottle with water and spray the deck. This will make it easier to apply the grip tape and remove any air bubbles.
Applying the Grip Tape
Once the deck is prepared, you can start applying the grip tape. Here’s what you need to do:
- Position the grip tape: Place the grip tape on top of the deck and align it with the edges. Make sure that the sticky side of the grip tape is facing down.
- Apply pressure: Use your hand or a hard object to apply pressure to the center of the grip tape. This will make it stick to the deck and remove any air bubbles.
- Trim the edges: Use the razor blade to trim the edges of the grip tape. Be careful not to cut too deep, as you don’t want to damage the deck.
- Smooth out the surface: Use your hand or a hard object to smooth out the surface of the grip tape. This will ensure that the grip tape is flat and even.
- Check for air bubbles: Look for any air bubbles that may have formed and use the razor blade to carefully pop them.
Maintaining Grip Tapes On A Skateboard
Grip tapes are essential for a skateboard, as they provide traction and stability for the rider. To maintain grip tapes on a skateboard, here are some steps you can follow:
- Clean the deck: Before applying the grip tape, make sure the deck is clean and free of dirt and debris. Use a cloth or paper towel to wipe down the deck, and remove any sticky residue that might interfere with the grip tape.
- Apply the grip tape: Start at one end of the deck and carefully apply the grip tape. Use a sharp blade to trim the edges and cut out the holes for the trucks.
- Smooth out bubbles: As you apply the grip tape, be sure to smooth out any bubbles or wrinkles. Use a credit card or a rubber roller to press the tape down firmly and eliminate any air pockets.
- Protect the grip tape: To extend the life of the grip tape, it’s important to keep it protected from moisture, dirt, and other elements. Store your skateboard in a cool, dry place and cover it with a protective cover or blanket when not in use.
- Replace the grip tape: Over time, the grip tape can become worn or frayed, reducing its effectiveness. When this happens, it’s time to replace the grip tape with a new one.
In conclusion, applying grip tape on a skateboard is a relatively easy process that requires a few tools and some patience. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can achieve a smooth and professional-looking grip tape application that will enhance the overall performance of your skateboard. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced skateboarder, it’s always a good idea to take your time and be meticulous when applying grip tape to ensure that the tape is evenly distributed and securely attached to your board. With a little practice and some careful attention to detail, you can have a perfectly griped skateboard that is ready to hit the streets and show off your skills.