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Old 29-03-2010, 06:02   #1
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Laundered Lines

I decided after years to give my running rigging a rinse! Not finding any serious guidance here is what I did:

I made up the lines, and the halyards with a shackle had a couple of old socks placed over them held with a rubble band or two. I then placed the lines in a mesh laundry bag, tied the top in a knot and tossed in into a large front loading washing machine. I used warm water and normal cycles and laundry detergent.

They came out of the machine only a bit damp - I suppose the water was spun away... and I set them on the window sill to air dry.

Results:

Clean and softer - no doubt about that... and smell like laundry!

One rarely used spinnaker halyard that had chafed through a portion of the core (against the radar mount?) managed to have about 6" of core work its way out. I milked it back, but it's going to be cut and shortened. That was an old jib halyard and was way long so the shackle will be re spliced to where the chafe was.

The made up lines got nicely fouled inside the mesh bag. But it was not terribly difficult to clean up the spaghetti.

It's not something I would do regularly, but at a cost of $10.50 for all the running rigging on the boat, it's worth it every decade of so.
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Old 29-03-2010, 07:39   #2
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This is what I wanted to do with my lines but wife through a fit. I will have to wait for her to visit relatives to do it now. My dock lines get really dirty in a season. Running rigging also really need it. I was just going to throw the whole mess in the washer but laundry bag idea sounds better.
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Old 29-03-2010, 07:47   #3
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Two things -
1) donot use chlorine bleach; Oxyclean should be OK.
2) Fabric softener will soften the lines hand.
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Old 29-03-2010, 08:55   #4
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If you donít have a suitable mesh bag, for washing your rope; at least secure the two free ends together (I use a tie wrap, as knots can come undone), so that they cannot knot. It may not be a bad idea, even in a bag.
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Old 29-03-2010, 09:57   #5
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Definitely something for the laundromat in order to preserve marital bliss.
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Old 29-03-2010, 17:30   #6
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And lastly, do not run them thru the dryer. Some friends did just that with double braid jib sheets and they shrank so much that they had to be replaced!

Cheers,
Jim
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Old 30-03-2010, 06:30   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GordMay View Post
If you donít have a suitable mesh bag, for washing your rope; at least secure the two free ends together (I use a tie wrap, as knots can come undone), so that they cannot knot. It may not be a bad idea, even in a bag.
If you don't have a mesh bag, use a pillowcase.

Salt gets into the lines and makes them stiff and unpleasant to handle. We just laundered all ours -- night and day difference! Like new again!
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Old 30-03-2010, 06:43   #8
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I soak them in a tub of warm water and Oxyclean, works like a charm.
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Old 30-03-2010, 07:07   #9
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For a treatment that lasts, try this:

Sail Delmarva: Line Washing

Fabric softner sounds good, but it is designed to washout very quickly. This treatment is more similar to the treatment new ropes recieve. Sense it is intended for rock climbing ropes, it has been tested rope-safe.

I find daisy chaining is better than a mesh bag and air drying still chained is best, having done this dozzens of times.

I should add this product is NOT a rope cleaner. It is a treatment that helps them run better. If stains matter to you, I have no advice.
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