Gorilla Tape

The Gear Junkie: Gorilla Tape
By STEPHEN REGENOLD

Duct tape has long been a personal panacea for me in the outdoors, patching torn Gore-Tex, padding blisters, and performing a litany of ad hoc operations on the trail.

So last fall when a new adhesive product called Gorilla Tape came on my radar claiming superiority to duct tape, I was immediately game to put it to the test.

Gorilla Tape, made by The Gorilla Glue Company (www.gorillatape.com), is about 2 inches wide and comes in 105-foot rolls. It goes for a premium price of $10 to $12 per roll, depending on the retailer.

Gorilla Tape Roll - 1.jpg

Like duct tape, Gorilla Tape is marketed as a universal salve for quick fix-ups. In the outdoors this means repairing broken poles, patching punctured tarps, mending backpacks, and serving as surrogate first-aid in times of dire need.

But Gorilla Tape is a different animal, so to speak, with a beefier build that includes a rubbery top skin, reinforced fabric backing, and an adhesive layer that’s purportedly applied two to three times thicker than the sticky stuff found on duct tape.

Indeed, The Gorilla Glue Company has called its tape the toughest on the planet.

In my tests, the tape performed as promised, sticking to nearly any type of surface I could find. For example, in lieu of stitching, I put a strip of the thick black tape on a tear in a down jacket and let it be the whole winter long. The tape never budged, keeping the jacket’s fluffy down insulation inside its face fabric as I skied and hiked for two months.

There is little stretch or give to Gorilla Tape, which is a disadvantage for certain applications where an exceedingly tight wrap of tape is essential.

For blister repair, Gorilla Tape is not optimal. Instead, I will still rely on duct tape, as a thin sheen of the silver stuff adds zero resistance inside a sock.

Overall, Gorilla Tape is undeniably stronger than duct tape, though it’s much thicker and heavier too. It has a place in the outdoors, but for me the gorilla will not soon replace the duct.

(Stephen Regenold writes The Gear Junkie column for eleven U.S. newspapers; see www.THEGEARJUNKIE.com for video gear reviews, a daily blog, and an archive of Regenold’s work.)

Posted by Ice - 05/10/2007 01:00 PM

I absolutely love this stuff – we’ve been experimenting with riverboard designs for several years and duct tape has worked well, but the Gorilla tape does not budge. While I have to retape boards made with regular duct tape after every couple runs down the river, with the Gorilla tape it’s a long-term solution. You’re right that it doesn’t stretch but for me that means it doesn’t stretch in the sun or in the water and work loose, so that’s great. My only complaint about this stuff is it’s twice as expensive as the normal duct tape. It WORKS though.

Ice

Posted by Shawn - 04/21/2008 11:06 AM

I don’t think it will replace duct tape either but it is some strong sticky stuff. I used it to stick a GoPro camera to a brick that I dropped through a hole I drilled in the ice above a 99ft. spot in lake Calhoun. I wanted to see if the camera case really was waterproof at that depth and the tape held even in the cold winter water.

Posted by tom - 08/28/2008 10:26 AM

I’m a woodworker and have to secure some irregular shapes for a period of about 24 hours. An advantage of Gorilla tape ove duct tape is that, when removed, it doesn’t leave as much glue residue. I still rely on duct tape for other applications because it is less expensive.

Posted by Tevr Zinlindale - 08/09/2009 06:29 AM

Tapes like these tend to leave unattractive sticky residues when peeled off or not peeled off. Because of this I only use JB-weld because it is stronger and is more professional.

Posted by Kilroy - 06/20/2010 11:53 PM

i love this stuff
if you go over it real quick a couple of times with a torch, it will “seal” the glue, making it last longer

Posted by Chuck Hembree - 05/23/2011 07:13 AM

I’m looking for a tape that has very long life. I mean like say ten years or so.

Posted by David - 06/28/2011 04:34 PM

If you’re looking for a tape that will last a long time, try Hurricane Tape. It’s white and looks and feels like tarp (I think it is tarp). I’ve had a piece outside for over 3 years and it hasn’t peeled off, dried up, or decayed. It also doesn’t tear by hand, you have to cut it, meaning you can wrap the tape with a lot of tension for a strong hold.

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