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post #1 of 5 Old 10-17-2010 Thread Starter
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Help with Rope Cleaner Project

So, obviously, I'm new to SailNet; I just joined last week. But, I've been looking around, and it seems like a reasonably helpful place, especially after a somewhat annoying ordeal with iBoats.

Anyway, I have a high-school engineering class for which we have a year-long invention project. I'm doing a boating-related invention, so I decided to ask you guys' input on it. I want to make clear that I'm not trying to sell anyone anything; it's very likely that the invention in question will never be mass-produced or even patented. It's simply a requirement of the project that we get outside opinions, and it's difficult to find large groups of people knowledgeable about boating in one place (at least where I live). I'm just asking for your help.

The specific invention is, basically, a rope cleaner. I know that seems like a fairly obscure issue to a lot of people, but I've been doing some research, and there's significant evidence that cleaning ropes can meaningfully extend their lifespan. However, even though it can be used for general maintenance, the original intention was for it to make ropes which have dry-rotted usable again. The target group was people who do lots of boat restorations, but the input of anyone who uses boat ropes could prove useful (though perhaps for some of the survey questions you should answer in that mindset).

We (my group) have put together a survey. I realize everyone hates surveys, but that was the required format for the assignment. It's only five questions long, so if you could please help us out by clicking the following link and answering the questions, it would be greatly appreciated.

The Official 2010 Survey for the Imperial Ropesmithing Institute
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post #2 of 5 Old 10-17-2010
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It seems to me that the challenge you've got is that dirty line is easily cleaned by putting it in a mesh laundry bag or old pillow case and running it through the washing machine.

If a line is so old that it has become dry rotted, I don't know that there's any way to restore it. If it truly is dry rotted, the material is gone; you can't bring it back.

- Bill T.
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"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do, than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover."
- Mark Twain
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post #3 of 5 Old 10-17-2010
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I'll take the survey in a min.. However the method that I have heard for cleaning LINES (as they're called on a boat) is to run them through....












...The Dishwasher!


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post #4 of 5 Old 10-17-2010
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Try this:
Sail Delmarva: Line Washing

You should be able to find purpose-made products.

(when asked how he reached the starting holds on a difficult rock climbing problem that clearly favored taller climbers - he was perhaps 5'5")

"Well, I just climb up to them."

by Joe Brown, English rock climber




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post #5 of 5 Old 10-18-2010
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Here is one type of product that cavers use to clean their ropes. http://www.innermountainoutfitters.net/catalogentry.php?subcategoryid=24&page=1&brand[]=&catalogentryid=749&brand=

The cheap method is to take three scrub brushes all with the bristles pointing inward and tie them together with nylon wire ties.

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