Tank protectors can help with traction and, as the name suggests, protect your tank from bumps and scrapes.
We’ve had a look around the internet for the best ones available. Here’s our list…
Motorcycle Tank Protector Reviews
Oxford Universal Tank Pad
This is an inexpensive way to protect your tank from bumps and scratches caused by clothing and luggage. It’s also pretty universal.
There’s a sizeable main sticker (which can be cut to size) and four smaller stickers (two circular – two oblong).
The grip pattern uses hollow, square teeth to create a high level of mechanical traction.
We’re not suggesting that you ride with a bag or parcel balanced on the tank. But if you did – this pad would hold it in place better than the slippery tank.
Oil, chemical, and heat-resistant 3M adhesive means this should stay stuck on your tank no matter what.
This one is pretty simple but effective. It’ll work on just about any kind of bike too.
- Simple looking
- Quality brand
- More expensive than generic options
Motorcycle Fuel Tank Pad
This generic set of tank protectors is similar to those on bikes like the Bonneville. These stickers cover the area of the tank, usually in contact with the knees, helping with grip and avoiding wear.
The silicone pads are mounted with a durable adhesive that won’t damage your paint. It attaches using a double-sided adhesive piece similar to the rubber pad.
Putting the double-sided tape onto the silicone pads is slightly tricky but doable. Just make sure the surface of your tank is clean before application for maximum grip.
Overall, this simple set will look great on cruiser or retro-style bikes.
- Cheap and cheerful
- Looks cool on older-style machines
- Peeled off for a few people
Oxford Transformers Tank Spine
This cleverly designed modular set looks like a Transformers logo when placed together. But each piece is independent of the other, so riders are encouraged to arrange them in a way that offers maximum protection to their tank.
The 3M adhesive is 2.5mm thick and is oil, chemical, and heat-resistant. A matching set of stickers to cover the parts of the tank in contact with the knees is also available. These stickers offer decent traction as well as protection from bumps and scrapes.
- Maybe you don’t like Transformers
Hacbo Tank Protector And Pads
This set is made specifically for Honda’s CM series of bikes (the CMX 500 Rebel is the best known). However, it may fit other cruiser style machines and can be cut to shape.
The first thing of note here is how generous they are with the material. The top protection is a large, rectangular sheet that offers good traction and protection. The side panels are in a retro, teardrop shape that looks great on the Rebel’s tank.
It was necessary to mount the double-sided adhesive onto the rubber pad and then mount that to the tank with this set.
This felt a little fiddly.
It would have been easier if the glue was already mounted on the rubber and a single application was enough. But this way may result in a better bond. Either way, it’s welded on there and doesn’t look like it’s going anywhere.
- Large rubber pads
- Fits Honda Rebel
- Looks cool
- Slightly fiddly to apply
Oxford Gripper Tank Clamp Silicone
This is a classic-looking tank protector from Oxford. It’s larger and rounder than many traditional knee patches and suits a more comprehensive range of tank shapes.
It also includes pre-moulded cut lines for you to follow if you want to reduce the size but keep things looking neat.
The 3M adhesive is top quality and offers good resistance to weather, oil, and chemicals.
The reviews on these are great in terms of durability. If you’re concerned about longevity or have had bad experiences with cheaper generic brands, these tank protectors might be a good call.
- Easy to cut to size
- Look neat
- Quality silicone and adhesive
Quattroerre 3D Tank Protection
We’ve included this because we know some people will want an invisible solution. This transparent pad uses quality adhesive and a polyurethane resin coating on an acrylic backing.
It offers protection from clothing, bumps, and scrapes when mounted on your tank and is almost invisible.
The construction materials are designed to resist yellowing over time. This is a common problem with transparent plastic exposed to sunlight. Advances in polymers allow this to stay clear indefinitely and show the colour of your tank underneath.
This is a quality tank protector, designed and made in Italy at a reasonable price.
- Won’t yellow
- Quality materials
Oxford Tank Saver Clear
These silicone protectors from Oxford are transparent. They fit on the side of your tank and protect the paint from damage caused by knees. They also help grip.
The adhesive is already mounted here, and the application is as simple as taking off the backing and pressing it into place.
The photo is a little misleading about the size of this product. It must be pictured on a motorcycle with a tiny tank because, in real life, these are tiny.
That’s not necessarily a complaint. They work great, allow the paint and decals to show through, and the adhesive seems high-quality.
- Trusted brand
- Smaller than the picture looks
Why Tank Protectors?
Wearing out the paintwork on your tank from the friction of your knees or the zipper on your jacket is an avoidable annoyance.
Many bikes from the 1960s included rubber knee grippers, which helped with traction and protected the paint. Some recent retro-style bikes have begun to include this feature again (like the Triumph Bonneville).
Nowadays, most riders put a protective pad on the top of their tank. These aftermarket tank protectors are the best way to avoid damaging your paintwork over time.
Some protectors come as a set, with adhesive patches for the top and sides. Many riders choose to put a protector only on the top of the tank to protect against scratches from the zip.
Putting the knee grip-style protectors commits you to a particular look but can really help you grip the bike. Thankfully, our list also contains transparent options.
This is either going to be silicone or another rubber compound. Some of the top-of-the-tank pads use a kind of acrylic and polyurethane resin to offer lasting protection.
Both of these materials work fine. Rubber does degrade due to exposure to weather, UV, and time. In our experience, UV light is the harshest of these factors. In the UK, your rubber/silicone accessories should last a long, long time.
We’ve done our best to trawl the reviews to list only protection with decent adhesive.
Typically, buying from any recognised brand means you won’t run into any trouble. Most use 3M compounds for their stick.
Remember to thoroughly clean your tank before applying the sticker. Any dust, grease, or grime on the paint will negatively affect the adhesion, significantly reducing the bond’s lifespan.