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I agree, toss it in the wash with fabric softener and detergent. You might need to do it twice. And you will probably have to do it every year.The segments of my main and jib halyard that "live" inside of my mast when the sails are down are becoming darkly discolored. I've had the boat 2 years and have only noticed it with in the last few months. Its almost as if some oil or lubricant or something is getting on them from inside the mast. Its not just that the sun is bleaching out the segments that are normally outside.
Nothing else is wrong with them. No signs of fraying etc... There's nothing mechanical inside the mast. Could it just be mold?
Ideas? If it is solvent or mold could this weaken the lines?
Be glad you don't have wire to rope, then you'd have to wash it in the tub with your feet as you shower.