About Rifle Tape Design

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Rifle Tape Design- Less is More

A friend of mine, Antonio Carreras, asked for some advice for his rifle tape design. This first picture is what he had accomplished:

Rifle Tape Design

In the picture above you can see black and red tape in horizontal stripes on a white stock (this is the Glendale DrillAmerica 1903 replica rifle- the only rifle available with a white, black or brown stock). This is a great color combination on a white background. Blue would also work well. A lighter color like yellow might work, but only if it has tape of a darker color on either side and even then it may not work all that well with the larger white background.

On with the critique of the picture above I wrote, consistency in tape design would work better. The red-in-black on white is very eye catching. A sling is a must- a sling completes the look of the rifle.

As you can see in the tape design in the first picture, the inconsistency of the design looks a bit confusing. While having the red-in-black in the middle of the rifle, one may be able to pick up either single color in a place here or there, but if it is too far away from the middle, the color use may be lost and look confusing.

Rifle Tape Design

For the second picture I suggested that Antonio may want to remove the tape at the upper sling swivel (less is more). But for him to see what it looks like when spinning, it may be too much color. The key here is seeing what the design looks like when spinning.

School Colors
Many replica rifles come in black and this is the perfect palette on which to create a design. The Army JROTC unit that I’ve worked with on Merritt Island has school colors of gold and black. Yellow tape was perfect for the black Daisy Drill rifles that the male cadets use and the black DrillAmerica Parade Rifles (also available in brown and white) that the female cadets use.

A Spinning Design
Creating a design that looks different or actually reveals a recognizable image during spinning can be a challenge, but it has been accomplished! Eron “Spinsane” Fayson, I friend of mine for a number of years, created the design pictured below. The tape design on the rifle at the bottom of the picture reveals a the number “5” when the rifle is spinning fast enough.

Rifle Tape Design

When Eron developed this design and revealed it to the drill world we were all amazed at how the “5” appeared. It was a first back then, a few years ago, and now needs to be further explored. Notice how the tape is minimal (again, less is more) and works well.

Horizontal stripes all over the rifle don’t necessarily work all that well. Vertical stripes really don’t work at all unless they are strategically placed on the rifle and specifically part of a design. However…

Night drilling?
Do I have an idea for you! A friend of mine works an odd schedule with school taking up most of his time, so he mostly works on his drill routine at night. But he has a black Daisy Drill Rifle. It’s difficult to see. Until now:

Tape a Rifle

Besides the, uh, colorful background, the tape, as you can see, is quite eye-catching and Max, my friend who sent me this picture, really like the look as well as having it help him see the rifle in low light.

Experiment, find your design. Have fun!

Here are some wonderful designs submitted by Omar Zamora, a drill coach and exhibition Driller.

Omar's Rifles1 Omar's Rifles2 Omar's Rifles3 Omar's Rifles4 Omar's Rifles7 Omar's Rifles8 Omar's Rifles9 Omar's Rifles10 Omar's Rifles11 Omar's Rifles12

drill rifle, drillamerica, daisy drill rifle, parade rifle, 1903, tape a rifle, how to tape a rifle, taping a rifle

Comments 4

    1. Post
      Author

      Hi Chris,

      To my knowledge there is nothing specific out there besides this article. I think it’s going to be a matter of trial and error for now.

      Thanks for the question!

  1. I was looking at your response to tape designs, I have a Daisy and want to spray paint it. How do I do it safely and make sure it stays on?

    1. Post
      Author

      Hi Leo,

      First, after tsking the rifle apart, you should lightly sand the stock and then test your preferred paint on a portion of the butt stock. Let it dry completely and see how it looks. You will also want to test it to see if it rubs off. If everything is ok at this point, then you can begin to paint the rest of the stock. Spray painting is going to be the best. if the paint does not work well in your test, you may want to use a primer and then several coats of your paint depending on the look that you want. You will have to experiment.

      Finally, you will want at one if not more of a hard outer clear coat. You are than ready to put your newly-colored rifle back together.

      Let me know how everything goes!

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