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Carl C
04-19-2016, 09:25 PM
It's time to order new dock lines and I can't tell if mine are 1/2" or 5/8". I have the ones that Donzi sent me after I filled out a survey. They are so soft that I can't measure them with a caliper or anything. I think they are 5/8". Which size should I get for a 22C? This site has the best deal on them: http://www.maddogproducts.com/cordage.html

Pic in post 3. Is it 1/2"?

Just Say N20
04-19-2016, 10:38 PM
5/8 is serious overkill for a 22, and much less friendly for storing. I have 3/8 for the Criterion.

Carl C
04-19-2016, 10:53 PM
5/8 is serious overkill for a 22, and much less friendly for storing. I have 3/8 for the Criterion.

Does this look like 1/2" line?

Ghost
04-20-2016, 12:53 AM
5/8 is serious overkill for a 22, and much less friendly for storing. I have 3/8 for the Criterion.

Ditto that. 3/8" is plenty. And smaller line is easier to store. And it's cheaper. And it leaves room on cleats for spring lines and fenders. And it stretches more easily, providing far better cushioning for fittings. Dries much faster too.

And 3-strand nylon stretches much more than double-braid. And anyone can splice it.

And the cheap stuff is softer, more pliable, and stretches even more easily. If one looks at the breaking strength, it's MORE THAN PLENTY for any dock lines. 3/8" is 3800 lbs. Hell, that's more than the weight of the boat.

Dock lines: economy 3/8" 3-strand nylon: http://www.westmarine.com/buy/seafit--economy-three-strand-nylon-dock-lines--P005_151_001_004

Anchor rode: premium 3/8" or even 5/16" 3-strand nylon. http://www.westmarine.com/buy/new-england-ropes--premium-white-three-strand-nylon-line-per-foot--P000122606

And white 3-strand nylon is as classic as classic gets. Whip the ends. Soak it in a fabric softener and water mix every season or two and it stays very pliable.

The vast majority of boats have lines that are waaaay too thick. It's wrong in nearly every possible engineering and cost aspect. In many ways, it'd actually make sense to go smaller than 3/8" for most Donzis. Only drawbacks are that any smaller can get uncomfortable to handle, and it's harder to spot as anchor rode, especially in the dark.

Virtually no reason to buy larger diameter rope for boats our size. Buying other specialty lines makes sense, and it can be worth buying double braid in other colors for some of those. Where the different colors and texture make it easy to know quickly what one is looking at.

And use shock cord for standard fender hangers, not rope. Do it right and you'll never go back.

Solid braid polypropylene (as in the link earlier in the thread) doesn't stretch hardly at all. Thick solid braid polypropylene is worth avoiding for dock lines, springs and hanging fenders. Wrong in every way. It's a natural reflex to want beefy lines, but instinct is usually backwards on this one. Sailboat rigging is on a never-ending quest for the lowest-stretch possible. On a powerboat, nearly ever use of rope likes lots of stretch.

jl1962
04-20-2016, 07:28 AM
I have 1/2" on the 18' which is PLENTY!

Stretchy is good.

Carl C
04-20-2016, 08:24 AM
I'll order 1/2" lines. I snapped one like the one in my pic while tied up in an unsheltered slip at Put-in-Bay. Thanks.
Everyone on OSO has been buying the lines from maddog and have been happy with them. http://www.offshoreonly.com/forums/general-boating-discussion/309338-killer-deal-dock-lines.html

penbroke
04-20-2016, 10:57 AM
Those are polypropylene, not nylon...


Frank

Ghost
04-20-2016, 11:08 AM
You broke a dock line?! What diameter and material? How long was the run, from your cleat to where the line was made fast on the other end? Where did it give? Where was each end fastened? And thus was the likely breaking motion of the boat due to horizontal pull, or rise/fall that exceeded the actual travel afforded by the line when taut?

If it broke, it was likely because of shock-loads on rope with very little stretch to it. Breaking strength specs are not measured by shock loading, but rather by gradual loading. Breaking strengths are far lower when under shock loads.

Shock loads are greatly increased by using rope with low stretch. Stretch is important for reducing loads on the cleat as well as on the line itself. If you've had one break, aside from a defect or prior compromise, or cut/chafe scenario, one would expect the line was heavily shock-loaded, with low-stretch rope, on a very short run, or all of the above. Or worse, and this is an easy thing to do with a Donzi, the line could be set up so that rise/fall from wave action at some point exceeded the slack, such that the weight or lift of the boat itself was on the line, with the needed travel exceeding the slack in the line.

FWIW, if one broke due to loading, I'd be even more cognizant about choosing a good 3-strand nylon in a suitable size rather than an oversized single-braid polypropylene. The shock loading is painful for the deck hardware and glass as well as the line. The material and the size are both exacerbating this with single braid poly. Picture rubber bands versus chain.

For people who never really challenge their lines, anything will be fine even if it's the wrong material. Given you broke one, I'd take a closer look at the engineering.

EDIT: took a look at the OSO thread. No offense intended to any of those guys, but a quick sample suggests most reviewers were interested in the appearance or the price. Yikes, one guy even bought an "anchor line." A FLOATING "anchor line." Seriously. Someone should PM him before that gets cut AND fouls someone's prop.

http://www.maddogproducts.com/anchor_lines.html

Anyone who sells floating "anchor lines" is not your friend. :)

Not saying people are stupid, not at all. But I am saying they haven't thought it through.

If yellow is actually important, definitely spring for some snubbers.

Carl C
04-20-2016, 12:00 PM
There hasn't been a single complaint about the mad dog dock lines and some of those guys are using them on large and very expensive boats. I think the fact that they look good and come in all colors is just a bonus. Yes, I snapped what I now know is a 1/2" dock line. Boat was tied in the middle of a slip with two lines on each side. Lake Erie was kicking up. The boat was not in a sheltered slip and was getting rocked pretty hard and one line snapped. 3/8" is definitely not sufficient for Lake Erie! I am ordering a set of the 1/2" yellow dock lines.

Ghost
04-20-2016, 12:12 PM
Setting all my rationale and discussion of materials and failure modes aside...

You are considering line diameter alone to gauge what is sufficient. You snapped a 1/2" line, and your thinking is to replace it with a 1/2" line?

Just Say N20
04-20-2016, 01:07 PM
Does this look like 1/2" line?

Yes.

I use 5/8" on our Carver, which weighs 23,000 lbs. It has seen some pretty big wave action. I would have thought a cleat would have ripped out of the deck before a 1/2" rope would have snapped on our boats.

Ghost
04-20-2016, 02:03 PM
Yes.

I use 5/8" on our Carver, which weighs 23,000 lbs. It has seen some pretty big wave action. I would have thought a cleat would have ripped out of the deck before a 1/2" rope would have snapped on our boats.

Agreed 100% (which is why I was so focused on shock loading, which might account for how the line might have failed less predictably). Also, I didn't see where Carl had said where the break occurred in the line itself. At the cleat on the deck, at the cleat on the pier, splice giving out, at a worn spot in the line, whatever. Nor what the failed line was made of.

Anything where the line turns a sharp corner (knot, cleating, etc) can significantly weaken it. Another place where stretch should help mitigate the weakness I think. Most people don't know that most knots cut breaking strength about in half of worse. A few specialized knots retain 80-90% of breaking strength (double or triple fisherman is very high on the list). Hence the use of spliced-in eyes.

One other side note: not sure what kind of "splices" are being used in the Mad Dog single braid polypropylene lines. I'm used to splicing 3-strand (nylon and polypropylene), and used to the proper splices in double-braided nylon. Those single-braid "splices" wrapped in black look really odd to my eye. Could also be a weak link, not sure. Are they sewing the end back onto the line, and covering in black fabric?

Carl C
04-20-2016, 03:49 PM
It snapped right in the middle of the line. These are the lines Donzi sent me when I bought the boat new. It probably failed because they are 10 years old even though it looked perfect. I just ordered 6 new yellow ones. 1/2 inch.

TBroccoli
04-21-2016, 12:40 PM
I like all the information on this thread. I use 3/8" lines on my 22 Classic and feel they are sufficient. They work well with the size of the cleats and I boat in mostly secluded areas.

My question: What length lines work best for everyone? Normally I only use two lines on my boat. One is 15' long and the other is 20' long. The longer of the two stays attached to my bow eye. The other is used at the stern for tying up at the dock/ramp. Depending on the tide, I feel my bow line could be a little longer for ease of getting back onto the trailer.

I have a red/white Classic and black dock lines.

woobs
04-21-2016, 05:00 PM
I have (4) nice black 1/2" lines for the ol' woody 2x15' and 2x25'. I usually only use two but the others are for setting spring lines when needed. The black looks nice with the wood and they coil nicely on the dock when she's at a show.

Now, my buddy does not like wooden boats. he says they require too much $ in upkeep and repairs. Last July 1st, I had to tow his 2007 26' Cobalt about 10 miles when he had a boat load of people (12) and his engine quit. I had five people in the 1972 18' Greavette and pulled him with a little 4.3 . Fortunately, I had two brand new 1/2" lines that were 25' in length. just linked the eyes together and tied off to his bow eye and my transom eye at a workable distance... the rest is history. I always replace 2 lines every 3-4 years (or sooner if they are fraying).

Funny thing, even though his boat was repaired (just a faulty switch) he traded it in at Christmas for a brand spankin' new Cobalt :). I think he was embarrassed my old wood boat had to pull his luxury Cobalt. Lol. I wonder who spends more on boats... him or me. (it ain't me).

Carl C
04-23-2016, 02:53 PM
I got my new dock lines today and they look as good as any I've seen. Two year old thread on OSO and not one complaint about them. They are about half the price most charge.

http://i763.photobucket.com/albums/xx275/CARLC222/DSCN5795_zps12pbjblo.jpg (http://s763.photobucket.com/user/CARLC222/media/DSCN5795_zps12pbjblo.jpg.html)

Hilltopper
04-23-2016, 06:23 PM
Sorry to be late in this thread, but line size for me is about non-cutting in the hand diameter and not about load capacity. I have always used 1/2 minimum including my 37' sail footers. Too small diameter is hurtful in a blow or a tow!

Carl C
04-23-2016, 06:39 PM
Sorry to be late in this thread, but line size for me is about non-cutting in the hand diameter and not about load capacity. I have always used 1/2 minimum including my 37' sail footers. Too small diameter is hurtful in a blow or a tow!

The 1/2" seems perfect for me. It fits my cleats nicely. It's also what Donzi sent me originally for the boat.

Ghost
04-23-2016, 10:54 PM
A few thoughts:

First, I only wrote all this because there's some potentially painful bad information floating around in this thread. Trying to keep people from making bad choices.
Second, Hilltopper, you're right. 1/2" is nice on one's hand. I'm 100% with you there. I'd even take 5/8" over that if it was the only factor. That's the principal disadvantage of the smaller line I recommend. (For feel I'll also take double-braid over 3-strand also.) My thoughts are that the other factors outweigh those, but I'm on the same page about the preference for larger.
For the most part, since the days of Manilla rope passed, there is one and only one material for dock lines. Nylon. One needn't look far to find consensus among the experts on this. Try Chapman's I'm sure. Try the West Advisor. Try Boat US.​

​http://www.westmarine.com/WestAdvisor/Dock-Lines
http://www.boatus.com/boattech/casey/docklines-casey.asp


And the resources above will be very clear that you don't need (nor want) anything larger than 3/8" for a boat up to 27 feet or so. Of course, when they say that, it's based on the fact that they're assuming you'll have followed bullet 1, and that you'll use nylon like they told you to.
Despite the claims to the contrary, there actually are a few complaints in the 2-year OSO thread about these very inexpensive polypropylene dock lines from Mad Dog. Not many, but a few. Two or three are about the color running when the lines got wet the first time. One is about the color fading. Only one comment in the whole thread has anything to do with performance under stress. "[the Mad Dog lines] stretched and frayed on pilings in KW and stretched under stress from wave action at LOTO. I had to readjust them numerous times due to stretching." It is also, I believe, the ONLY comment in the entire thread noting the actual PERFORMANCE of the lines under any adverse conditions. FWIW, it is a negative comment. Note that it refers to the lines stretching and NOT rebounding back. It means the lines got permanently longer. So, they became too long, and thus loose when the boat was tied up. My preference for "stretch" is about lines that stretch and then bounce back to their original length right away.
Not that I am concerned much with the comments in the OSO thread anyway, as I'm not claiming they are worth much. Why not?

First, the VAST majority of the comments are from guys who just opened a cardboard box full of shiny new pretty-colored lines. They haven't even tried them. They know nothing of how they perform at all.
Second, what would we expect to hear from the sample of people in the thread? Especially from folks who clearly don't know that they should be buying nylon, much less why. If one of those polypropylene lines (with the sewn (not spliced) "splices") actually is strong enough not to fail under load, it may well rip out a cleat or break up the glass at the cleat mount, because it doesn't give enough under shock loading. If something ever fails, the guys who didn't understand that stretch reduces load are unlikely to realize the problem wasn't with the cleat or the glass. They are unlikely to realize the problem was with the punishment they gave the cleat and the glass because they chose the wrong dock lines. Put simply, if there is a problem, we are unlikely to hear about it from the OSO thread.
Third, most people won't have a problem anyway, as they don't test their dock lines with rough conditions often, if ever. Imagine a thread of people driving cheap, pretty new cars with 1-star crash-test ratings. But nobody's ever been in a wreck. Not likely to find out whether the crash-protection of their cars is sufficient. As before, if there is a problem, we are unlikely to hear about it from the OSO thread.


The guy running the business selling ultra-inexpensive polypropylene dock lines sounds like a very good, honest, stand-up guy who delivers excellent customer service. Kudos to him for that. But if that's the case, he also has limited experience. For any who doubt this, note that along with his polypropylene dock lines, he is selling anchor "lines" of the same material. They are advertised, among other things, touting that they FLOAT. "Repels water and float" [sic] as quoted right off his web site (http://www.maddogproducts.com/anchor_lines.html). This is a clear sign of inexperience. No anchor rode should float. It is not just inadvisable, it is a TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE idea. It might sound good to someone who doesn't know any better, but it is TERRIBLE. No one who knows the pointy end from the stern wants a floating anchor rode, much less sells same to others. Again, does not mean he's a bad guy with bad intentions, just means his experience/knowledge is limited.
Those Mad Dog lines are not spliced. The free end is sewn back onto the line to form a loop. Done with great knowledge and expertise and the right materials, this can perhaps be done well. Per the above bullet, we know this company lacks some very fundamental nautical experience and expertise. Thus, I doubt they are sewing their so-called "splices" with great knowledge and expertise and proper materials. (They aren't even using the right material for the dock line itself after all.) So, good reason not to trust the "splices", EVEN IF one is happy with the dock line material. Which, for all the reasons above, one should not be.
Ironically, the only example we have of anyone actually challenging a dock line's bona fides under adverse conditions is Carl's. He snapped a 1/2" dock line. And insists a 3/8" 3-strand nylon dock line can't be "sufficient for Lake Erie" simply because it is 3/8". Because he snapped a 1/2" line. Yet:

he is replacing the clearly insufficient 1/2" line that broke with...wait for it... another 1/2" line, based on diameter alone. Ohhh-kay....that logic fails me...AND
his thinking ignores that the stretch of nylon means that a 3/8" nylon dock line can live where a 1/2" polypropylene line with little stretch would fail (or cause a cleat or the mounting fiberglass to fail). The force on a line (and a cleat, and the glass) is equal to the RATE OF CHANGE OF MOMENTUM of the boat that wants to move away, which the dock line has to stop.

IF the line has little stretch (say, 2-4%) with polypropylene, the boat's movement is stopped with a sharp jolt, where the change in momentum happens in a VERY brief time. So, the force = change of momentum/a very short time
IF the line stretches a lot (say, 15%) as with nylon, the change in the boat's momentum is spread over much more time, cushioning the blow like a stretchy rubber band would. Perhaps 5 or 10 times as much time to stop the same momentum. So, the force = the same change of momentum/a much larger time.
Making the denominator much bigger makes the force much less. This is how a stretchy 3/8" nylon line can be effectively stronger than a 1/2" polypropylene line with a higher breaking strength but very little stretch. The line isn't necessarily stronger, but the line's stretch causes the force on the line (and the cleats, and the glass) to be much smaller.



​All that said, for most folks in our world, the Mad Dog dock lines will be fine. Most people in this community (and on the OSO thread no doubt) keep their boats on trailers or lifts, use their dock lines simply to launch and retrieve at the ramp, and to tie up at lunch in perfectly calm water. Please don't get me wrong. If that's the extent of what your dock lines will encounter, I expect you will be fine with ultra-cheap, sewn-"splice" polypropylene. You'd be even better off with nylon, but it is unlikely ever to matter. It's only going to matter if it matters. When the weather surprises you. When a jerk hits you with a big wake in a no-wake zone, whatever. If you ever do find out 1/2" polypropylene was a bad idea, it'll be something like that. Like what happened to Carl. Which is why, ironically, he of all people, should consider using the right material this time around.
3/8" nylon with a proper splice is by FAR the better choice. Stretching will lessen the load on the line itself on the cleats, on the glass holding the cleats, everything. The fact that the line it ISN'T oversized like 1/2" polypropylene helps it stretch. The fact that it is nylon instead of polypropylene helps it stretch. The fact that it's nylon means it won't degrade from sunlight like polypropylene. (If it's 3 strand, it'll stretch even better. If you are using permanent dock lines instead of transient, double-braid will help with chafe, even if it stretches less than 3-strand. It's a trade-off.) Having a proper splice is likely to help, rather than having a sewn "splice" like Mad Dog offers.
Some years back, in the interest of safety, Stan (Inferno on the board, a professional offshore racer for many years and a Lifeline dealer) offered us all Lifeline jackets at cost. He didn't need to, but he did it to increase safety in our community. Folks were adding more and more performance to their boats and it was a very generous way to encourage safety. I don't have near Stan's expertise nor experience, but I firmly believe my info on dock lines is largely on the mark. I'll gladly share whatever I know with anyone if anyone has questions or doubts. It's not much to give back, but this is something I know a little about. 1/2" sewn "splice" polypropylene dock lines are, quite simply, a bad idea. A bad idea that most people will get away with because they're never challenged. Parachute cord would be strong enough for most people. But if I can help anyone with dock line or tow-line info, please PM me. I'll share the best info I have. It's not much to give back, but I've looked at this pretty closely over the years.


Carl, at least grab some snubbers for your next trip to Lake Erie. http://www.gandermountain.com/modperl/product/details.cgi?i=78500 If 3/8" isn't strong enough somehow, bump up to a larger size of 3-strand nylon.

BTW, it's a LOT cheaper to buy nylon than it is to buy snubbers. And, it's a lot cheaper to buy nylon than it is to replace polypropylene every couple years due to UV deterioration. Ironically, the linked sources above mention this also. Polypropylene looks cheap, but it's a sucker bet most of the time. For comparison BTW, the SeaFit 3/8" 3-strand nylon professionally-spliced 20-foot dock lines I mentioned are $15. The 1/2" polypropylene sewn-"splice" 20-foot dock lines at Mad Dog are $13.50. That's $1.50 savings. The UV deterioration of polypropylene is enough to make that a sucker bet compared to the nylon.

Don't take my word for anything. Follow the links. Read what the experts say. And read the thread on OSO. http://www.offshoreonly.com/forums/general-boating-discussion/309338-killer-deal-dock-lines.html

It'll be painfully obvious that what the folks in the OSO thread care about is:

appearance
price
customer servce


All of which they are getting, in spades. What they aren't talking about is how the lines perform under load when the chips are down and you're not just tying up for lunch in glassy water. And what those adverse conditions do to to their cleats and their glass, when the lines don't have enough give. One or two good folks in the OSO thread tried to point this out, citing expert links, but to no avail. I'm trying to give folks the explanation instead of just citing the experts.

Buying the cheap 1/2" polypropylene lines is a bit like buying a good-looking nerf fire extinguisher for $5. Lots cheaper than a real one. Comes in more pretty colors than a real one. Lightweight. Floats. Fools the Coast Guard on a safety inspection. Does just fine, as long as it doesn't need to deal with a real emergency. And very few fire extinguishers ever do, so...odds are the nerf will do all you need.

Judge for yourselves.

Ghost
04-23-2016, 11:07 PM
The 1/2" seems perfect for me. It fits my cleats nicely. It's also what Donzi sent me originally for the boat.

It's also what broke. Can't be perfect, no?

Just Say N20
04-23-2016, 11:13 PM
Who knew there was so much to consider regarding dock lines?

I feel so much smarter now!

:cool!:

Ghost
04-23-2016, 11:21 PM
Who knew there was so much to consider regarding dock lines?

I feel so much smarter now!

:cool!:

LOL Bill, it's a bit like explaining in detail why round wheels are better than square. Most people never need to hear it. But the guy with the square wheels does. :) And so do any people whom he is encouraging to buy square wheels, if they are tempted.

Ed Donnelly
04-24-2016, 12:23 AM
If you get a gift of lines, how do you tell the difference between nylon and
polypropylene? Ed

Ghost
04-24-2016, 12:40 AM
Nylon will sink where polypropylene will float. That's one difference for sure. Most of the nylon varieties (3-strand and double-braid) are well-known, so they're probably recognizable, if you have a close-up pic. Also, I'd expect we can look at the lines and see whether they are properly spliced, or whether they have a sewn "splice" covered up with fabric. While I have read about some sewing methods that are strong, I'm a fan a proper splice.

Ghost
04-24-2016, 01:59 AM
I like all the information on this thread. I use 3/8" lines on my 22 Classic and feel they are sufficient. They work well with the size of the cleats and I boat in mostly secluded areas.

My question: What length lines work best for everyone? Normally I only use two lines on my boat. One is 15' long and the other is 20' long. The longer of the two stays attached to my bow eye. The other is used at the stern for tying up at the dock/ramp. Depending on the tide, I feel my bow line could be a little longer for ease of getting back onto the trailer.

I have a red/white Classic and black dock lines.

I'm a fan of having at least 4 dock lines, in case you end up in a slip where you need to have a line out on each corner. 15s are probably enough for half those setups, but I'm a fan of slightly longer, like 20s, based on experience. I have a lot of lines available, up to 35 as needed for docking. But going minimal as you do, I'd have 4 lines at least, doubling up what you have. Perhaps adding 2 more springs as well, totaling 6. I have some pretty small diameter springs aboard. Doesn't take much space, but a good option.

I also built a towing bridle a couple seasons back, which has already come in handy. It's a much more complex rig than anything with dock lines alone, but I think it'd allow me to tow most anything within reason, safely, at about the best speed I could muster. (Say, 9 mph maybe.) But that's extra credit. :)

tmdog
04-24-2016, 05:38 AM
Thanks Ghost, good post.:)

Carl C
04-24-2016, 07:24 AM
You're over analyzing things again. I'm just posting where to get a good deal on dock lines. If you don't trust me then read here: http://www.offshoreonly.com/forums/general-boating-discussion/309338-killer-deal-dock-lines.html and save some money on your next dock lines like the rest of us are. Probably good for this too: :hangum:

gcarter
04-24-2016, 07:54 AM
Mike's essay on "momentum" reminded me of the scene in "American Graffiti" where the local punks chain the police car's rear axle to something substantial........just replace "rear axle" with "cleat" or "bow eye"....
Come on, every one remembers that scene, don't they?

Greg Guimond
04-24-2016, 08:08 AM
This is what the site has come to .......... :nilly:

I don't give a rats ass what kind of lines I use. Normally I just pick up whatever is floating in the water and use those for a while. Or I dig out some old decrepit stuff that I forgot I had and use those. Black, white, color, poly, plastic, jute, don't matter. The clothes lines I find floating in the Harlem River are the best but sometimes I have to cut the body part loose which is annoying.

duckhunter
04-24-2016, 08:16 AM
Ghost, great tutorial on dock lines. The comparison between lines and other safety gear is apt - 99% of the time it doesn't matter, whether you're talking lines or life vests or fire extinguishers. The 1% of the time when it REALLY matters is worth a small premium for peace-of-mind IMO. Pretty simple risk or cost/benefit analysis.

Anyway, thanks for posting that. I learned some stuff.



If you get a gift of lines, how do you tell the difference between nylon and
polypropylene? Ed

Ed, they're nylon. If they float, send 'em south and I'll choke the vendor with them!

Carl C
04-24-2016, 08:26 AM
If the anchor lines are good enough for Glass Dave then they are good enough for me. If the dock lines are good enough for big MTIs, Cigs, Skaters, Velocities, Donzis, etc etc., they are good enough for me. These lines are identical to the dock lines that Donzi sent me to use on my brand new Donzi powerboat and which lasted 10 years before one failed. Bye.

Ghost
04-24-2016, 09:22 AM
You're over analyzing things again. I'm just posting where to get a good deal on dock lines. If you don't trust me then read here: http://www.offshoreonly.com/forums/general-boating-discussion/309338-killer-deal-dock-lines.html and save some money on your next dock lines like the rest of us are. Probably good for this too: :hangum:

This is pretty funny. Hard to know if it was over-analyzing or not without reading and comprehending what I wrote. Setting the engineering aside, it should still be obvious that I had read every word of that OSO thread, since I actually gave summary stats on what was said and not said in that thread, referred to specific examples of the complaints that thread contains (despite Carl's repeated false claim that none exist), and cited the couple of guys over there who tried to save some others from following the herd's mistakes.

I also explained how at first it seems like one can save money, but:

it's a pretty trivial amount at a mere $1.50 per line, even at West Marine markup on pre-spliced nylon
it's penny-wise, pound-foolish just on the UV degradation factor alone. Nylon outlasts polypropylene by a lot.
it's even more penny-wise, pound-foolish if you consider the higher risk of damage from lines without the proper give to them


Perhaps that's over-analysis. Perhaps it's THE analysis. But I hope it helps some folks who were not aware that these factors can matter, and that there was near-universal agreement on them by boating experts, if one looks. On the importance of stretch, on the material to use, on the size to use, and on the trade offs between the stretchier 3-strand and the more chafe-resistant double-braid. The sneakiest one being that right-sized is better than too large--the most common mistake of them all, even for folks who know to use nylon. And if you're in for a really rough ride, don't settle for nylon. Consider snubbers.

Contrasted with the under-analysis, essentially "3/8 is too weak. Half-inch broke on me. I'm going with half-inch again." <face-palm>

But it I have to admit, Carl's lines are pretty, cheap, and yellow. Even if they might give you something you didn't really want. (I'll resist the urge to make an extremely politically-incorrect joke here. Well, sort-of. :) )

Ghost
04-24-2016, 09:28 AM
Mike's essay on "momentum" reminded me of the scene in "American Graffiti" where the local punks chain the police car's rear axle to something substantial........just replace "rear axle" with "cleat" or "bow eye"....
Come on, every one remembers that scene, don't they?

Exactly! I hadn't thought about that in years! Classic. :)

Ghost
04-24-2016, 09:42 AM
If the anchor lines are good enough for Glass Dave then they are good enough for me. If the dock lines are good enough for big MTIs, Cigs, Skaters, Velocities, Donzis, etc etc., they are good enough for me. These lines are identical to the dock lines that Donzi sent me to use on my brand new Donzi powerboat and which lasted 10 years before one failed. Bye.

It shouldn't ever fail.

BTW, your hull cracked, just as Donzi had sent it to you. When they repaired it, they made it different from how it was the first time. If Donzi sent you a paper raincoat would you say they were a good idea?

And FLOATING anchor rode?!! Seriously? You can't even bring yourself to say a floating anchor rode is a bad idea? It might be good enough for you, but it's not good enough for anyone creeping in our out of an anchorage anywhere near you. Especially at night. Floating anchor rode = prop city. I can totally accept that someone might not think of this at first. But not to get it once it's pointed out?! Thanks a lot. Now a bag of hammers in my basement wants to be a pilot. I'd bet that Glass Dave would agree if it was pointed out to him. If he hasn't figured it out already. Not fair to tar him with your brush when he wasn't offered the chance to consider the point. With enough wind or current keeping it fairly taut, a person might not notice it was a bad idea. For a while.

That's all, folks. I hope some of this has been useful. If I can be of help, please post or PM. Don't be shy. Smart people ask questions. I don't claim to know all the answers, but I know some of them on this subject. I very much appreciate all the useful things people share here. I learn a lot reading what people contribute.

If you have to make one of these mistakes, definitely buy the wrong dock lines. You'll probably get away with that. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE don't buy a floating anchor rode. For yourself and others. :)

woobs
04-24-2016, 12:57 PM
Okay, so there's obviously some passion for docking lines on this site....

Personally, I think that is great and I not only learned a few things; I have had to think about a few other things. When we learn to do things right, everyone on the water benefits.

I can't help but think if we were discussing an item that added 5mph to a top boat speed ... how the minutia would not escape many (if any). But, because "ropes are ropes", when actually they are "lines" and there are actual facts which seem undisputed, that we choose to ignore the "best" or "correct" item due to whatever reason we justify. This is funny.

In truth, it is mostly application based. Now I am educated as to the strongest lines available, is this what I need? Are there other factors that should be considered? It's the same as other rigging choices on my boat. Do I need a Bravo drive as my Alpha might break at 300HP? Do I need Livorsi gauges as my Faria gauges could be slightly less accurate? Do I need steel braided oil lines where standard rubber lines will do the job? These are all questions with different answers according to the application of the product and the use of the boat.

It has been interesting learning so much about lines (stuff I have never considered) ... With this knowledge I can now make better choices with respects to how my boat is rigged. Thanks for the info! Awesome seminar Ghost!!!

woobs
04-24-2016, 01:14 PM
Okay, so after my last post I went to my Sea-box and pulled out my spare lines (same as my regular lines except colour).
Turns out they are 1/2" Nylon with a double braid, full splice and whipped ends.... Probably why they did so well as a tow line last summer. AND they were just $11.99 CAD for 15'! (I also have 25')

Phew, crisis averted... I like these lines and I didn't want to change. Yeah, I know... it's 1/2" and not 3/8" and it's double braided, not 3 strand but, it's comfortable and spliced from the factory so, it should be more than strong enough with better stretch than poly. It's good for me.

duckhunter
04-24-2016, 07:53 PM
Dang Woobs, you made some great comments but missed the whole point. If it's not color-coordinated to your gelcoat it doesn't even count.

Keep up, would ya? :biggrin.:

It was definitely a good tutorial on docklines. Reaffirmed some stuff I already knew and gave me some new stuff to think about. Can't ask for much more than that.

We should talk about fenders next...

woobs
04-24-2016, 08:17 PM
...Keep up, would ya? :biggrin.:...
Dude, Gelcoat?

gcarter
04-24-2016, 08:33 PM
Sean, I like how Canadian packaging must help those of you who don't live in Quebec (and probably don't speak French on a daily basis) keep up your French speaking and comprehension skills. :bonk:

Ed Donnelly
04-24-2016, 08:45 PM
If they float, I will use them for the shallow end of my pool
Looking forward to using them for the first time at the awakening.
P.S. No Bill I will not trade back our Donzis so you can have new lines..Ed

Ghost
04-24-2016, 09:10 PM
Dude, Gelcoat?

Damn, Woobs, that's some good looking wood! :)

(Go ahead folks, have at me. :) )

woobs
04-24-2016, 09:48 PM
Bonjour Geroges,
Je ne pas parle francais. Je suis Canadian!:canada::yes: eh.

Ghost, merci pour la comment de la bois sur mon bateaux.

Seriously, I don't speak French at all... anyone that does could tell from ^

Carl C
04-25-2016, 08:25 AM
I concede that dock lines should be 100% nylon after looking into it. I don't know why Donzi was providing Poly lines with their new boats. I don't know why folks with the likes of MTI and Skater boats are all over these poly lines. I don't know why Glass Dave endorses the floating anchor line. My last poly lines went ten years and these yellow ones will probably not be looking so bright in five years or so. Then I will buy nylon lines. (Mike, you do over analyze things though! ;))

edit: They will still be yellow though, as is my current, non-floating nylon anchor line!

http://i763.photobucket.com/albums/xx275/CARLC222/DSCN5793_zps7l8tezbo.jpg (http://s763.photobucket.com/user/CARLC222/media/DSCN5793_zps7l8tezbo.jpg.html)

gcarter
04-25-2016, 02:22 PM
I think I know why the correct lines aren't supplied.........
The MFGRS get a huge break on volume orders which include customization.
I betcha.

CHACHI
04-25-2016, 05:07 PM
The dock lines Donzi gave you are considered "added value".

Donzi is not in the business of selling dock lines.

Ken

Ghost
04-25-2016, 05:13 PM
I think I know why the correct lines aren't supplied.........
The MFGRS get a huge break on volume orders which include customization.
I betcha.

Yep, I could see that. And/or, nobody was paying much attention. Just said, "hey, I can get these cheaply and give the customer something that matches the boat."

Ironically, the SeaFit Economy 3-strand pre-spliced are pretty hard to beat for price. $15 for 20-footers. Attwood has 15 footers for $9.35 on Amazon. Might be the same stuff, just re-branded. You can't even get a splice done in your own line for that price--really good deal.

New England Ropes high-strength 3/8" is stronger, but the economy stuff should stretch even better and has a softer feel--not as stiff. Only drawback to the economy stuff is snags more easily and likely doesn't handle chafe as well. I use the N.E.R. high-strength 3/8" for anchor rode (extra strength, don't care about the feel, and it's long enough that you get extra stretch from that).

gcarter
04-25-2016, 06:58 PM
If anyone wants to keep their "lines" (Mike, I knew that!:) ) nice and clean and soft, wash them in your washing machine in soft water.
You don't have soft water?
That's too bad, you deserve stiff lines! :)

Ghost
04-25-2016, 07:18 PM
If anyone wants to keep their "lines" (Mike, I knew that!:) ) nice and clean and soft, wash them in your washing machine in soft water.
You don't have soft water?
That's too bad, you deserve stiff lines! :)

:)

If you don't have soft water, soak them in a bucket of water with a healthy dose of fabric softener. Stir occasionally to work it into the fibers. Give them a day or so. Then rinse them thoroughly and hang them up to dry for a couple of days. Works great.

Probably can speed up the drying by doing the rinse in the washing machine, such that the spin cycle drives most of the water out before you hang them up.

(Note: this is for nylon lines. Not sure what you'll get with some other materials. Probably won't do anything for polypropylene.)

duckhunter
04-25-2016, 07:32 PM
Dude, Gelcoat?

Touche'. I stand corrected.

I guess you need to find some willow bark and get to weaving!

84416

Carl C
04-25-2016, 08:14 PM
If anyone wants to keep their "lines" (Mike, I knew that!:) ) nice and clean and soft, wash them in your washing machine in soft water.
You don't have soft water?
That's too bad, you deserve stiff lines! :)

I still have my old Culligan, George. I put a new digital valve/timer assembly on it.

woobs
04-25-2016, 08:16 PM
...I guess you need to find some willow bark and get to weaving!

Lol. Yeah, I tried weaving hemp rope (as a natural fibre) but, after a couple bowls I just got hungry and forgot about weaving. :pimp:

Fwiw, hey, I'm good for a thread on fenders .........

Carl C
04-25-2016, 10:09 PM
Lol. Yeah, I tried weaving hemp rope (as a natural fibre) but, after a couple bowls I just got hungry and forgot about weaving. :pimp:

Fwiw, hey, I'm good for a thread on fenders .........

Fenders ... I do have a question about them if you start a thread.

Ghost
04-25-2016, 10:45 PM
BTW, kudos Carl on your nylon 180. Just a thought--if you expect to be out at PIB or other places where you might get tied up in ugly lake action, snubbers are a big step up, even from the stretch of nylon. They'll work with the poly lines you have just fine. Might be a good insurance policy. You don't have to use them all the time--can just have on board. You can rig one in under a minute if you've done it before.

For anyone whose boat sees any really ugly wave action while docked, I highly recommend them. They're not cheap, but they're a lot cheaper than glass repairs. They're over $50 apiece from West, but you can do much better if you look around. Amazon has them for $33/per. http://www.amazon.com/Dock-Edge-16-Inch-Mooring-Snubber/dp/B002IZKCQ2 if you have lines from 3/8" to 7/16". Half inch might not squeeze in, would have to go up a size. Better probably to size the lines down than to buy much bigger snubbers just for dock lines, but maybe not.

Carl C
04-26-2016, 07:44 AM
BTW, kudos Carl on your nylon 180. Just a thought--if you expect to be out at PIB or other places where you might get tied up in ugly lake action, snubbers are a big step up, even from the stretch of nylon. They'll work with the poly lines you have just fine. Might be a good insurance policy. You don't have to use them all the time--can just have on board. You can rig one in under a minute if you've done it before.

For anyone whose boat sees any really ugly wave action while docked, I highly recommend them. They're not cheap, but they're a lot cheaper than glass repairs. They're over $50 apiece from West, but you can do much better if you look around. Amazon has them for $33/per. http://www.amazon.com/Dock-Edge-16-Inch-Mooring-Snubber/dp/B002IZKCQ2 if you have lines from 3/8" to 7/16". Half inch might not squeeze in, would have to go up a size. Better probably to size the lines down than to buy much bigger snubbers just for dock lines, but maybe not.

It doesn't happen very often. I did buy six lines so that I can make a spring line on each side. That was the time I had to idle for 20 miles in 6-8 footers before I could plane out in 4s. Good ol Lake Erie.

woobs
04-26-2016, 12:28 PM
Fenders ... I do have a question about them if you start a thread.

As requested...
http://www.donzi.net/forums/showthread.php?71149-FENDERS!!!!-for-those-of-you-that-asked&p=663547#post663547

have at 'er.

Pismo
04-27-2016, 02:09 PM
3/8"

The old white braided jobs.. Uglier but they don't slip with half hitches and the smooth ones do.

Carl C
05-05-2016, 07:23 AM
I found a use for one of the original dock lines. It'll go to the cabin.

http://i763.photobucket.com/albums/xx275/CARLC222/DSCN5810_zpso4tqmkwg.jpg (http://s763.photobucket.com/user/CARLC222/media/DSCN5810_zpso4tqmkwg.jpg.html)

JParanee
05-05-2016, 09:27 AM
That looks cool

is it just pinned ?

Carl C
05-05-2016, 09:41 AM
Nope. Glued with polyurethane construction adhesive.