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Which Duct Tape Brand is the Best? Let’s find out!


So when I was growing up one of my favorite TV series was called MacGyver. MacGyver was a former Special Forces operator who seemed to solve just about any problem he encountered with duct tape or all-purpose tape. Occasionally he’d throw in a little bit of bubble gum or baling wire, but the number one tool of choice was always duct tape. Anyway, many of you have asked me to test duct tape to see if there is a name-brand… …that’s better than the rest. What’s interesting about this to me, though, is in the past we’ve tested threadlocker as well as some epoxies we’ve discovered some of the lesser-known name brands came out on top- so, today, will it be an underdog that comes out on top regarding the strength and the quality of these various types of all-purpose tapes? Anyway let’s go and get this project underway and find out which one of these, if any, is the best. The first test we’ll be doing today is [to] determine how well these tapes will stick to a surface. The surface I’ve chosen is an artificial laminate–This is an old table. But this surface is very good as far as- different adhesive products sticking to it So this seems to make good sense. Also the temperature in the room of between 70 and 75 degrees today I do have heat in the shop, so that’s one factor that makes a big difference when it comes to how well a tape will stick. So to make this a fair test I want to make sure that the– each tape has a fair chance to stick to the surface In order to do that I need to somehow apply an equal amount of force on each tape. So I’m going to use this appliance dolly– these wheels. I [went ahead] and cut this up for the purpose of this test but what I’m going to do is flip this over… And apply 25 pounds of downward force directly on top of this set of wheels. Now what I’m going to do is roll this across the tape several times to make sure that every tape has the same amount of downward force applied to it So to measure how well these tapes stick what I’ve decided to do is… take this container, add a funnel to it. Gradually fill this with water, until the tape lets go. Then we’ll weigh how much this container weighs to see how well these products stack up against each other I added a total of 4.7 ounces, and you can see that’s when it started to give So Gorilla Tape weighed over 5 pounds before it started to slide Okay so the T-Rex held… just in wrenches alone over five pounds I’m holding a couple of clamps in my hand because the max on this scale is five pounds, so I get an error message when I go over so that’s over five pounds. I’ll weigh these in a minute So that’s four pounds 15.6 ounces And we add these two clamps in we get another 3 ounces or 3.2 ounces And right at 5 pounds of water so all totalled, T-Rex held over 10 pounds Up next we’re going to measure the tensile strength of each of these tapes This device that I put together includes two pipes and a hinge. This moves freely so what I’m going to do is apply a layer– a solid layer of tape all around both pipes… and then we’re going to apply weight on the first red line which is six inches out from the pivot point. And we’re going to keep applying weight- until the tape breaks. and this will give us a fairly accurate tensile strength measurement. So we want to know how much downward force this system is going to apply. So what I’ll do is, measure how much downward force takes place As you can see it already has weight on it just from the weight of the bar, and there’s quite a bit of force that’s being applied at this point here And so what I’m going to do is just take the 25 pound plate measure the amount of downward force right at the base and then each one of these pieces of tape all the way out to the end to see how much total force we get. So far in our testing. We’ve measured the ability of these all-purpose tapes to stick as well as how much strength they have- lengthwise now we’re going to measure the strength width wise. So what I’m going to do is use this little gadget here that I’ve put together… to… apply this tape and then I’m gonna apply a downward force and we’re going to measure how much force it takes to rip the tape at this gap I really learned a lot during this video I had no idea that brand made a big difference. What we saw here, though, was varying levels of elasticity, tackiness, and strength with each of these brands. Now a lot of you guys have asked me to provide my opinion on these different products and I really don’t want to do that. I really want you guys to decide for yourself which products you would buy. Um… one of the reasons for that is I’m not trying to influence a purchase I am not sponsored by any of these companies, so if you choose to buy these products, that’s fine It doesn’t help me financially if you choose not to Again, it doesn’t hurt me financially. What I’m trying to do is though just to provide you with information to help you make a brand choice or make a purchase choice. Another thing that I’m interested in doing with these videos though, is to put a little pressure on the underperforming brands to improve the quality of your products. To me, a lot of consumers go in and they buy a product, and because they don’t have the time or the resources to- compare qualities, they–they continue to stick with a certain brand even though it may be a terrible product. So videos like this expose the weakness of these products and force manufacturers either to improve their game, or to lose market share. Anyway, thank you so much for watching the video. I hope you’ll like, share and subscribe. Please take care, and I look forward to seeing you next time.

100 Comments

  1. J Anderson Author

    That's pretty good testing, coming from a guy who develops new tapes. Your tensile test is more of a tear test though considering it isn't straight. One thing you didn't cover would be static shear holding power. Many applications require shear holding power of the tapes, more so than peel adhesion. Unfortunately, this is typically a long test (on the order of weeks to complete) so I understand why you didn't test it. Another test is longevity, as duct tapes are rubber-based tapes which have very poor oxidative and UV resistance and so are very poor for outdoor applications but will also turn very brittle indoors after 1-2 years.

    Reply
  2. lexwaldez Author

    I've tried and been unhappy with Duck and Scotch. I replaced with Gorilla and I was very happy. I didn't know about TRex but Gorilla hasn't let me down.

    Reply
  3. Stephen Lord Author

    Fantastic as usual, love all your tests but don’t think I’ve commented before. I know time has passed but you could also do a wet test like with the construction adhesives vs marine. I found t-Rex by accident… (it being on promo at the hardware store) to be fair I was of an opinion brand wasn’t so important. The specific use I bought it for was converting MTB tires to tubeless after which it sits in a latex sealant for a long time..
    The T-Rex beat gorilla hands down it sticks to damp rims .. but more important it keeps sticking when it’s immersed on and off for a year.

    Reply
  4. seker7 Author

    I would put adhesion over strength – cause in most cases that's what your looking for – and if that fails – the whole thing fails…

    Reply
  5. Just Me Author

    Another test which would be very difficult to do here is a longevity test. How long do the materials and adhesive last over time.

    Reply
  6. Michael Bender Author

    You talked about putting pressure on under performers. You should also put pressure on companies providing lower value. Not sure where to suggest things. But I think you should test water filters for appliances. Samsung filters are $50 for their fridges but other brands that fit the same fridge can be as low as $10. Is the $50 filter worth a 5x premium?

    Reply
  7. Carl Rest Author

    My dad still has a roll of duct tspe left from the 70s. Powerful tape. Better than any of these brands or anything I have seen. It appears to me that it isn't made the same.

    Reply
  8. Peter Kay Author

    Your comment at the end is spot on, way to show a company to stop selling based on your name (such as 3M or scotch) I personally thought 3M was going to be up there with the best and actually it didn't perform all that great. Thanks again for another great video… Keep em coming

    Reply
  9. gork57 Author

    Enjoy the attention to detail in your testing videos. It's an unfortunate fact that consumers have few objective sources to go to for information on products they use on an everyday basis. Your videos provide that.

    I'm 61, and have used many different brands of duct tape over the years. Gorilla is the best I've found for my needs up to now. It has thick fiber construction with good adhesion. Your testing shows T-Rex is of similar composition and is very good overall as well. I'll have to compare prices and go with whichever one is the least expensive from here on.

    Reply
  10. novicenova Author

    What about Shurtape. I've used it for year's in pressure washing of houses for covering exterior outlets and also use it in the restuarant kitchen exhaust cleaning industry for holding plastic up. It would be interesting to see the same test performed on it as well.

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  11. Frying Pan Author

    The colored duck brand tape is weaker then the original and in fact the have several levels of strength. Good test, would love to see a 2nt test with more tape!

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  12. Kellie R Author

    There are reasons to use different brands.
    The weaker ones you'd want for minimal strength and short, lasting hold. Easy off.

    The stronger ones you'd want to for repeated hold against force or long lasting hold that's not too gummy.
    I'm currently using gorilla tape to hold up a fender on my car. I hit a deer and the car was minimally damaged but the fender popped partially off and was dragging against the tire. 3 strips of gorilla tape holds it up nicely, even on a dirty surface. I tried one strip, which held for a few months, then had to add 2 more.

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  13. Pqrst Zxerty Author

    I come across " Elephant " tape which has metal wire instead of string on plastic sticky "duct" tape. Also how about the Flat roof emergency repair tape as the gumminess of the sticky and thinkness of tape may have value other than roofing repairs.

    Reply
  14. blk77sunshn Author

    I really can't agree more with your testing session closing argument statement. These companies need to be more accountable for their quality in their products after all THEY are the ones with all the money. :- Thanks again for another awesome video.

    Reply
  15. GD Blackthorn Author

    Amazing though how Macgyver was afraid of guns; for a special forces operator, I always thought it was stupid to throw away a gun and then get yourself in a mess because of it and then have to resort to strange and sometimes phony answers to his problems. I learned to really dislike the show because of his apprehension of guns!

    Reply
  16. David Miracle Author

    This guy is thorough and goes to a lot of trouble to test a wide assortment of things. If you're interested in finding out the best things on the market, his video blogs are for you (and for me).

    Reply
  17. Jay is Jay Author

    I saw an ad for this double sided tape called NanoTape. The companies website sells it at a cost of about $1 per foot. At that cost I would expect it to perform well above other types. I had never heard of it, and I'd like to see a review on it. It is said to be reusable. It is shown holding multiple bricks to a vertical brick wall with only a six inch piece of tape.

    https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=661650497637973

    Reply
  18. Andrew Theis Author

    Well. One note to consider here: roughest and tackiest are not necessarily the right tool for the job. I use Trex on wood and concrete jobs where I just need it to stick and stay. But if I need to tape a painted doorway, I don’t dare use Trex, as it’ll pull the paint. 3M is my go to for gentle purpose. Duck is just hot garbage. Thanks so much for all of these awesome vids!!!!

    Reply
  19. in the dirt Author

    I've used duct tape to seal between the top of the windshield and the fabric top on my Jeep for several years and T-Rex is by far the best. It will stay on at speeds over 90mph. Gorilla is second best, but it would always blow loose at just over 70mph. And Duck came loose every time I got above 60. These are the only 3 I've tried. Since T-Rex has never blown loose I see no reason to try any others.

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  20. Joseph Kool Author

    Gorilla tape was the only duct tape I could find that sticks to concrete barrier wall. Everything else failed when the sun hit or when it rained, but I never tried T-Rex tape.

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  21. Mountain Bear outdoors Author

    so I love gorilla tape until its hot outside, I tried using some and the adhesive was so sticky that when I tried to tear some off the roll the backing came off and left the adhesive on the roll! haha tough stuff

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  22. M D Adams Author

    NASHUA 557 expensive but will stick to any clean surfaces peals off reasonably clean sticks even better when "warm" up to 200 f at least It is what us NASCAR guys use

    Reply
  23. The Cynic Author

    I would have thought duck or gorila would have been the best. But now i know if i want to duct tape someone up T-rex is probably the way to go. Lol

    Reply
  24. Dany F Author

    What I like about your experiments is that you test them with nothing scientifically proven but you test it in the way I might use it. Really like your channel. ☺

    Reply
  25. Ryan Johnson Author

    Another test that would be nice is to see differences in performance at different temperatures. I saw a big difference between taping on my side mirror of my car in the summer sun with Scotch brand vs Gorilla. The Gorilla almost seemed to have a melting effect and wasn't lasting but the scotch didn't have that issue.

    Reply
  26. Matthew Hancock Author

    You should do a compression test of expandable spray in foam for insulation, and plugging leaks. This should test for reusability over a long period of time. It should test for effectiveness in a variety situations. Is it fire proof for instance. What brand provides the best bang for your buck?

    Reply
  27. Troy Tuckwell Author

    Its not fucking duct tape its gaffer tape .duct tape is a foil backed tape for ac ducts hence the name. And Nashua gaff tape is the king.

    Reply
  28. MWB Gaming Author

    Last week you changed my brand of duct tape from the generic servo duct tape to T-Rex brute force, I have never seen a duct tape where 1 strip can withstand literally hundreds of kilograms of force

    Reply
  29. DADSGETNDOWN Author

    At this moment 1.7k Thumbs down. I am very curious to have ty least 1 share their reason for the thumbs down, I will help you, Video/Audio, the Tests, Brands ? Serious go ahead I really do want to know, I find it gives information and knowledge.

    Reply
  30. DADSGETNDOWN Author

    Mr. Farm. : ) I for one also really like your conclusion on which you would use for which purpose, I get you don't want to seem like, sound like, look like you are paid etc and so on, but it does help some of us alot, and it might ad influence for the "others" to step ip their game. And I think you should always include which is more bang for the/our buck in each of these tests, probably alot more time and work….

    Reply
  31. Chaplin Author

    I respect the logic on why you don't give your opinion but I think you give it too much credit over someone's buying decision. The test speaks for itself, it just comes down to cost and how important strength is to the buyer. Plus… you give plenty of opinions on other product tests so why stop here?

    Reply
  32. Rich Rigney Author

    For me one of the main purposes of Duct Tape is for adhesion. The winner there is clearly the T-Rex brand. It was also second in the Tensile strength test with more than enough tensile strength for most applications. If a tape doesn't stick very well, then the other measurements could be made useless depending on how it is applied.

    Reply
  33. Shawn Barczak Author

    I enjoy seeing how thorough you are in regards to testing certain products. This video shows me it is all about what you need the tape to do in regard to the use. Thanks for an informative video.

    Reply
  34. Bearpaw Timber Author

    Howdy brother. Because of my Off Grid lifestyle for many years, I am now just reconnected to the Google Machine and YouTube. Haven't been a sub for very long, but love this channel and appreciate your service and dedication to this community. Doubt I will ever catch up on all of your videos, but I'm trying my damnedest. Look forward to all new content you provide us with.👍😁🇺🇸

    Reply
  35. Earth Observer Author

    I bought a roll of T-rex tape. Then I discovered this video. Before I even watched the video, I knew T-rex tape is the best. I'll never buy another kind.

    Reply
  36. callijah61 Author

    I soooo appreciate this video. Thanks for taking the time and putting forth the effort of so many different types of tests. Super informative video on a very important topic. The test rocks you rock and thanks so much!

    Reply
  37. Tony McClelland Author

    As a former 3M production operator I try to steer clear of anything they make that’s not sandpaper. 3M is good at making lesser versions of products, wrapping them in colorful packaging then charging a premium.

    Reply

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