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Old 31-07-2011, 14:26   #1
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How Can I Wash a Large Quantity of Line and Rigging ?

I'm in the process of cleaning my deck lines and rigging and was wondering if the laundry machine with a mild detergent is the best method? I was going to add a very small amount of bleach as well since some of the lines have turned a shade or two of green. Once washed I was going to lay the line out to dry and not put it in the dryer for obvious reasons (additional ware and tear). Any suggestions for washing a large amount of line and rigging?
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Old 31-07-2011, 14:42   #2
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Re: How can I wash a large quantity of line and rigging?

Find a friend with a swimmimg pool, toss them in for a day or two, then just run the lines thru your hands like trying to squeeze the water out, let soak if needed and do again. Let dry and you're done.

Works the same for your sails the same way..
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Old 31-07-2011, 15:18   #3
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Re: How can I wash a large quantity of line and rigging?

Ours gets the washing machine treatment, the sheets annually with ordinary detergent on a cool wash then air dried. Never needed bleach, the washing does the trick. Some put them individually in pillow cases to stop them knotting. I just unravel them afterwards.

Always clean and nice to handle afterwards.

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Old 31-07-2011, 15:26   #4
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Re: How can I wash a large quantity of line and rigging?

I soak mine in a five gallon bucket one line at a time. Just keep flushing the water. A lot of salt brine comes out. And I don't use any detergent. Just keep flushing till the water doesn't look (or taste) like salt water any more.
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Old 31-07-2011, 15:31   #5
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Re: How can I wash a large quantity of line and rigging?

I have used a small pressure washer hooked up to a soap feeding attachment to really clean lines that are almost black with crude.
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Old 31-07-2011, 15:53   #6
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Re: How Can I Wash a Large Quantity of Line and Rigging ?

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Originally Posted by James Dieterich View Post
I'm in the process of cleaning my deck lines and rigging and was wondering if the laundry machine with a mild detergent is the best method? I was going to add a very small amount of bleach...
This is what I do, when I have access to a machine without being watched

I'm not sure bleach is a good idea, or even necessary, but fabric conditioner is good.
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Old 01-08-2011, 05:42   #7
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Re: How Can I Wash a Large Quantity of Line and Rigging ?

I took some old T-shirts, stiched across the neck and arm holes, and then hemmed a draw string around the waist of each shirt (you could do the same with old pillow cases, etc...) Stuff a halyard in one, a couple sheets in another, etc.... and throw in the washing washing with some laundry detergent. This keeps the lines from getting too tangled with each other or with the agitator post in the washing machine (the latter is not an issue if you use a front-loading tumbling washer, although tangling of the lines with each other might be a greater issue in that case).

Try washing without the bleach first, I think you'll find that your green mold will be taken care of by just the laundry detergent.
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Old 01-08-2011, 06:16   #8
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Re: How Can I Wash a Large Quantity of Line and Rigging ?

Chum bags work well for washing machines also.
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Old 01-08-2011, 06:40   #9
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Re: How Can I Wash a Large Quantity of Line and Rigging ?

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Chum bags work well for washing machines also.
Dont forget to remove the chum
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Old 01-08-2011, 07:08   #10
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Re: How Can I Wash a Large Quantity of Line and Rigging ?

Wash a dirty rope in cold water using mild, non detergent soap. Adding fabric softener while washing improves rope flexibility by lubricating the fibers.
Do not bleach your rope.

One of many DIY Rope Cleaning Tools
HOWTO: Create a Climbing Rope Washer

Pressure Washing is OK
Rope Washing
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Old 01-08-2011, 13:56   #11
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Re: How Can I Wash a Large Quantity of Line and Rigging ?

Absolutely do not use bleach. It can destroy fibers in your lines and degrade strength.
kind regards,
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Old 01-08-2011, 15:09   #12
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Re: How Can I Wash a Large Quantity of Line and Rigging ?

You can purchase some sodium perchlorate powder (this makes a solution of Hydrogen Peroxide). You can add some of this to any large container of water (a barrel , inflatable kid's swimming pool, your dinghy, etc. Soak sails, sheets, etc. for 1/2 hour. Take out and scrub out hard stains with a hand bristle broom, gently. Rinse and you're done.
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Old 01-08-2011, 15:43   #13
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Re: How Can I Wash a Large Quantity of Line and Rigging ?

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You can purchase some sodium perchlorate powder (this makes a solution of Hydrogen Peroxide)...
Sodium perchlorate (NaClO4), is used primarily to produce rocket fuel, which also has applications in the fields of explosives and pyrotechnics, batteries and electrometallurgy.
Hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) is often used as a bleach or cleaning agent.
Household bleach is, in general, a solution containing 4-6% sodium hypochlorite (NaClO)

None of these would be particularly compatible with Nylon rope.
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Old 01-08-2011, 20:00   #14
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Re: How Can I Wash a Large Quantity of Line and Rigging ?

GordMay,
You are sooo right. I really made a big one. I meant to type 'sodium percarbonate". AM real glad you pointed it out. Ouch.
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