A refresh for the Kona Kapu: New Saddle, Seat Post, Bar Tape and Stem.

Having had the Kona Kapu a couple of weeks now I'm pretty pleased by the way it rides however the way it looked was not the most easy on the eye, and a few simple tweaks could refresh it substantially.  The parts I wanted to switch out were seat post, saddle and bar tape.

Kano Kapu before
Seat post and saddle before
My cousin back in the UK does a lot of road riding and he is constantly raving about the company Planet-X and they ship to the US.  I headed across to their website And picked up their sportive ultra saddle and also an On One seat post (their MTB brand, but fits pretty well with Kona).

Seat post and saddle after
Bars and stem before

The first step was to remove the tired old red bar tape.  When installing new tape I always gravitate towards black as no matter what color your bike it will always look good and not show up dirt easily.  One thing that had been bothering me about the Kapu is that the previous owner had routed the cables at the back of the bars which made it pretty uncomfortable when riding and holding the bars at the top.

Cables routed at the back of the bars
The bars that came with the Kapu had grooves in both the front and back for cable routing, making it easy to switch the cables to the front.  Its always good to be generous with the electrical tape here as it won't be seen once the bars are freshly wrapped and you want to be sure that the cables won't move around.


Cables re-routed on the front of the bars
The final step was to wrap the fresh bar tape, this is something that is pretty easy to do however I would always recommend that you take your time, and if something doesn't quite look right, do it again.

I like to start right at the bottom of the bars, overlapping as I go, ensuring that its a tight wrap.  When you get to the levers pretty much all packs of tape will come with 2 small sections that will stick across the back of the levers, this ensures that when you are wrapping this area there's no gaps (you may notice that with the old red tape this hadn't been done and you good see the bars at the levers).  Try to get the tape to end at the same point in the center of the bars on each side and secure with some electrical tape.  The final stage is to pop in the end plugs.  I opted to toss the silver ones that came with my tape and use some black ones I had lying around to keep with the theme.

The final result
Overall I'm really pleased with the new look and for such a minimal spend it really shaves a few years from the look of the bike and sets it up for the next 1000s of miles.