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Skateboard Grip Tape: What is it, how to apply it and maintenance

If you are just getting into skateboarding and having a hard time doing tricks, it’s probably because your board doesn’t have a grip tape. The grip tape is an after market product that is applied on top of your skate board to give you better grip and secure footing. Before going into the details, you might want to look into Jessup skateboard grip tape as a first choice for its quality, ease of use and aesthetic appeal.

What is Grip Tape Exactly?

Grip tape looks a lot like sandpaper and is designed that way to provide friction and resistance between the bottom of your shoes and the deck of your skateboard. It is made out of silicon carbide which provides sufficient friction needed to do tricks including catching air with your skateboard.

Not all grip tapes are the same. There is a variety of graphics, prints and colors to choose from to match your personality and taste.

The standard product is available in 9 X 33 inches which should fit your skateboard. If your board is longer or wider than normal ones, there are also larger sheets available for use.

You may see ultra-rough grip tape which can be tempting. Unless you are a professional skateboarder, this product is not necessary. Rougher surface means more friction but also means faster wear and tear on the soles of your shoes.

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How to Apply Skateboard Grip Tape

The grip tape works just the same way as applying wallpaper. Just be sure to do it slowly to avoid air bubbles. There are products specifically made to avoid air bubbles all together (anti-bubble tape) in case you are unsure of your DIY skills. Either way, you can make a small cut in the air bubble to let the air out in case you encounter this problem. Applying grip tape is very easy and straightforward or you could ask a friend with more skateboarding experience to help you.

Maintaining your Grip Tape

Like most things in life, there will come a time when your skateboard grip tape is too worn to be useful. If you notice that your tricks don’t go quite as smoothly as they initially did, the grip tape is probably worn. Another common sign is the grip tape is smooth to the touch.

Replacing is a simple and straightforward process. Simply blow hot air onto the old tape with a hair dyer to loosen the adhesive. Peel it off and replace with a new one.

If you are making a natural progression to doing tricks on your skateboard, grip tape can make a world of difference. Make sure you get the right brand otherwise you are wasting money on a product that doesn’t work.