In reply to Jayhigh: I have used self amalagamating and skateboard decking. The latter being like sandpaper and as grippy as you'd expect but cold and also peels or chips off quite easily (so I wouldn't bother and am not sure why I mention it really). I think there was a thread a while back discussing the merits of various makes of SA tape.
DMM have their own branded stuff. I don't need the grip with my gloves, but it really helps in sub zero temps when the shafts are freezing and you need to dagger up slopes. The cold comes through most of my gloves on contact still.
Grippy as skate tape, but not as brittle and stronger than SA tape (which nicks, peels and rolls easily). Leave it on a warm radiator for half an hour before applying as otherwise it doesn't stretch much when wrapping around bends.
or I have heard good things about plastidip, but never tried it myself
In reply to Jayhigh: I have the Petzl stuff on mine, I remember it being a bit pricey, but have to say that it has worked very well and hasn't shown any real signs of peeling or cracking. That's not to say cheaper alternatives aren't as good though. One roll of the Petzl stuff should be enough to add extra grips to a pair of axes, about the same size as the existing bottom grips.
> (In reply to Jayhigh) Bike inner tube works quite well if you can get it on your axe
I thought of something similar, but won't it roll up when plunging? My issue is that it's my mountaineering axe, and on long days spent plunging (Mont Blanc, alpine 4000ers etc), it was rolling up, and the creating an obstruction to self-belay.
I cut off the loose, leaving the bottom inches bare, but it just happened again.
As I said, I used skateboard stuff off my sons, but I'm not confident.
In reply to JohnnyW: There's already stuff on my handles so when I used it it was just to cover higher up the axe. I eperimented with wrapping the tubes round it last year and it felt great but peeled off on one during a long daggering session. I might try and glue it on this year.
In reply to Jayhigh: I have tried loads of things to tape my axes. I primarily use it so that I can bit my axes, but I also like it being a little bit soft to hold on to.
Squash/badminton tape is rubbish. It just slips down and isnt very hard wearing although it is good to bite/hold.
Bike handle bar tape is good. Its not as soft as the above but it is still pretty good. I did find it abit slippy though, but im sure this varies between makes.
Finger tape is ok but isnt soft and does look a bit dirty after a while. It doesn't get slippy when wet, although it isnt very stick to begin with.
I currently have plasti dip on my axes, which I dont like. It is pretty hard and is heavy and slippy. I have made some cuts in it now though to give it a bit more friction but I cant recommend it.
I think I will go back to finger tape when I find a way to remove the plasti dip.
I hope that helps.