Cloth tape, also known as hockey tape, grip tape or athletic tape is a thin, light, tacky, clothy tape that is widely used in weapon construction, both as an adhesive (such as when constructing an arrow) and to cover non-striking surfaces of a weapon, such as incidental padding, pommels, and hafts. Most cloth tape is black, though it is also available in a variety of other colors.
Andover brand hockey tape was traditionally the more superior tape, but in 2009 the original manufacturer went bankrupt. The new version of Andover hockey tape is quite inferior. The tape ranking by quality could be thus described:
- Old Andover - Durable, a heavy 1" width, great adhesive
- Renfrew(black/gold label) - Good quality, a true 1" good adhesive
- Comp-o-stik - Very nice cloth, a thin 1", decent adhesiveness, very little stretch
- Howies - Yellowish hue, thin 1", nice cloth, decent adhesive
- Andover(current) - Heavy 1", durable, QC issues. Has the "string" issue
- Renfrew(blue label) - True 1", decent. Has the "string" issue
Cloth tape can usually be found at either Play-it-again Sports or Sports Authority. At the Play-it-again Sports near me, plain black tape costs about $2.50/roll. One roll is good for wrapping a one inch pipe about five feet.