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Notes On Polypropylene

by the Tacklemaster.

Five hundred feet of staple-spun polypropylene rope of an inch and a half circumference, is to be added to the reserve tackle store.

This rope will be in three lengths.  Two ropes of a hundred and twenty five feet each and one of two hundred and fifty feet. The rope is intended for use as lifeline ONLY.  It is definitely NOT suitable for abseiling, and indeed, could be DANGEROUS if so used, as it has a rather low melting point compared with that of nylon.  It is not good as a climbing lifeline either - whether on the surface or underground - as it has only a 23% stretch at breaking point.

In addition to these disadvantages, it can easily twist itself into all manner of knots, if not handled with care - especially when being coiled.  It is coiled more easily by allowing the free end to hang over a pitch so that it can untwist.  Although I see many arguments over this choice of rope, I hope that members will soon discover for themselves certain advantages, not the least of which is the cost.

Editor's Note:     I bought thirty fathoms of a similar rope last year for use as an anchor rope.  It is proved very good in service except for this habit of tying itself into all manner of knots at the slightest provocation.  I solved the problem by winding it over two pegs, crossing the rope on every turn round the pegs.  This puts an opposite twist into every alternate turn of the rope, so twists never build up in one direction.  With very long ropes, such as those described by Graham, it might pay to have a simple and light weight frame built up, so that the rope can be coiled up on it in this fashion.  If you have a top bar which can go over the pegs after coiling, this will prevent the rope from coming off while carrying through a cave.