Gaffer tape vs Duct tape

Like anybody else, I always keep a few rolls of duct tape around, one at home, one in my car, one with the camping gear etc. This stuff is so useful that it gives you peace of mind to know that you always have on hand.

I have tested both the gaffer and the duck cloth brands and listed my little research results down below. Yes, they are all multi-purpose, they all have a fabric back and they can all hold a fort. But which one is the best? Which one would l trust to be in the front of my toolbox for a quick fix?

black gorilla tape

With all the respect to the two brands in question here, I truly believe that my preferred one will be the Gorilla tape. This tape is simply in a class by itself.  Durability wise it is with no dought the best option over the two in question, just holding it in hand gives you the assurance that it is a thicker material that will hold stronger for you.

When I want reliability and true multipurpose my experience shows that I need to go with the ape. For me, the glue masters from Gorilla have done it again.

Note: For some specific uses (like holding cables and replacing a bra) the Gaffer have no competition.

duct tape on an old wheel

I have tried to summarize the important factor in this quick table below

Gorilla tapeDuct MAX StrengthReal Premium Grade Gaffer
PriceCheck onCheck onCheck on
Stickiness / AdhesivenessHighMediumMedium
Easy to tearHighHighHigh
Tape qualityHighHighHigh

These factors are definitely the most important one when assessing a good tape.


You want it to hold, you need to be sure that there is some killer glue behind it. Durability – My kids’ clear tape might be able to hold the windows covers in the wind for few seconds but this is not what important, holding a roof patch for two seasons (I know, I know… ) is what I’m looking for.

Easy to tear 

this is a working tool and I hate working for my tools, I wat to be able to have what I need as smooth as possible, the easy tearing is an amazing feature that I really learned to appreciate.

Tape quality

kind of an overall grade the feel of the tape

Other technical details I have collected around

Gorilla TapeDuck MAX StrengthReal Premium Grade Gaffer
length35 yard35 yard30 yard
colorBlack, White, Silver7 colors with a reflective finish18 colors. Matte finish blends in and don’t reflect light or draw attention
Thickness17 mils11.5 mils
WeatherproofNot very heat resistantNot very heat resistantAble to resist high heat temperatures.Not designed to withstand a lot of moisture on its adhesive side

Gaffer tape

Holds things down and comes off clean. Being able to remove the tape without leaving any residue is a unique quality that might be mandatory to some uses.  Unless you have very old paintwork or already pealing subsurface the gaff tape won’t damage the surface. The innovative revel from Kim Kardationa is hilarious and hopefully, opened new markets for the company. Together with the cable and stages industry, it seems like they have their own specialty domains.

Gorilla tape

You get what you pay for. This one is probably a little pricy but with all the benefits it is surely a good investment. Going on an outdoors trip, being on the water or just fixing some stuff around the house you want to know that you can trust your fixes. Whether you need to hold until you get to a safe place (maybe a little hole in the kayak?) or help you fight the elements (did anyone said a chimney cover?) this all-weather shell will be there with you.

Thick adhesive and tough tape which tears fairly easily.

One area that you need to remember is that the Gorilla does not perform as well as expected when applied in high-temperature conditions. I would say that anywhere over 113 Fahrenheit is a bit tricky for the application. For example, if you believe that your glue will have to stay for a long time in a closed vehicle under direct sunlight then you might want to look for another solution. The glue might melt and the tape will most likely peel off.

Bottom line is that this is the preferred tape money can buy.

Totally worth the little bump in cost.

Duct tape

The popular brand that also gave this industry its name hence getting a little branding advantage. I believe that for a normal day to day use they deliver a good product that will give the results. I like their attempts to shine to other than contractors, handymen, and DIY people by opening their portfolio to different colors and patterns that are truly delightful.

If you are looking for a good on-t]he-budget solution then this is most likely the one for you. Well rounded qualities that will give good results for normal needs.


Duct tape and creativity

Same like me people have become true fans of this amazing material. A quick check around the net will bring you tons of unique ideas like :

  • duct tape crafts – You will not believe that this thing from your emergency kit can look like that
  • You definitely want to look for some of the old Mythbusters episodes where they tested some of the myths, build a boat, a bridge, and a few other epic things.
  • Teens have adopted it as well and run the duct tape challenge :


I think every guy should be issued a roll of duct tape for each car he owns!

My method is to hold two types of tapes around: High-quality and expensive and the average. Whenever I’m in a need for tape I just choose which one of them to use.

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