Nov 28, 2013 at 9:33 am #1310332
Happy thanksgiving everyone!! And let me begin by saying I am embarrassed to ask this question. But I'm going to do it anyway.
Is there some secret trick to burning the ends of guy lines and nylon webbing to keep it from fraying? I hold the flame to the end, watch it melt a bit…but doesn't seem to matter. Either I'm not holding it long enough, or there is a super secret somewhere…but what am I missing? The burnt end STILL frays all over the place. And it never looks as good as the ends of stuff I buy (before I cut it).
I'm currently struggling with some of Lawson's glowire that just WILL NOT stay all nubby at the end.
Help!!Nov 28, 2013 at 9:42 am #2048846
The Kevlar/Spectra/Dyneema cores will not melt like the poly sheath, or solid nylon.
Melt the sheath, and using a folded paper towel, wipe the HOT! sheath over the end to enclose the core. (Pull the line through the towel or the towel over the line, don't "dab".)
Edited to add: Sometimes I pull the sheath down a bit, cut off the core, slide the sheath up, then melt down to the core. Be sure you melt a bit of the core and capture it in the sheath bead.Nov 28, 2013 at 9:43 am #2048847
I usually don't have trouble with the cords. I've been heating an old butter knife to use for cutting strap. It may work on the cords as well.Nov 28, 2013 at 10:12 am #2048851
spelt with a tParticipant
@speltLocale: SW/C PA
Heat with lighter, pinch and roll between fingers or over thigh. Repeat multiple times until there is a solid melty bit at the end. If you're smart you'll wear leather work gloves and pants. If you're not, we might be related. ;)Nov 28, 2013 at 10:35 am #2048855
snip the webbing/cord normally
burn with a lighter for a few seconds
thats all there is …
i do it all the time for climbing webbing/cord/ropes
;)Nov 28, 2013 at 11:04 am #2048856
@dwambaughLocale: Pacific Northwest
Pulling the jacket out a bit can work. A propane torch has a hotter point and seems to do a better job. I have a Master MT-5 Microtorch that makes a Bic lighter seems like a candle and burns at 2500F.
The kitchen style torches used for creme brûlée work well for rope as you can lock it on and set it on the bench, leaving both hands free. Master Appliance makes several variations on that theme.Nov 28, 2013 at 12:29 pm #2048876
"The burnt end STILL frays"
Maybe semantics are getting in the way again…
You don't want to BURN the end, you only want to Melt it.
If you are indeed turning it into black ash, that is the problem.Nov 28, 2013 at 12:59 pm #2048881
As Greg pointed out, you don't want to 'burn' the end; you want to melt it. The stuff you are using does not melt in the simple manner you get with nylon: it shrivels up like mad. That's due to how it was made. It's called 'grain-oriented'.
Too much heat is usually bad with this stuff. Go for the minimum amount of heat needed.
Try melting the end of the string with a soldering iron or a hot knife or even the element on an electric stove. Failing that you could try impregnating the end in epoxy or similar.
CheersNov 28, 2013 at 1:09 pm #2048883
@b-g-2-2Locale: Silicon Valley
"the element on an electric stove"
That works every time for me.
–B.G.–Nov 28, 2013 at 1:14 pm #2048884
@davidinkenaiLocale: North Woods. Far North.
Rather than paper towels to form the aglet at the end, I suggest solid paper (folded newspaper, computer paper or card stock). I use a beater leather gloves for this and several other abusive tasks. There's a box of "Mismatched Work Gloves" in my garage for such tasks.Nov 28, 2013 at 1:16 pm #2048886
@b-g-2-2Locale: Silicon Valley
How about IBM computer punch cards?
–B.G.–Nov 28, 2013 at 1:42 pm #2048891
@dwambaughLocale: Pacific Northwest
I have used hot glue to whip the ends of Kevlar mule tape. It was easy to trim to a clean form when cool. Silnet works too. You can find cans of gobbletygoop in marine supply stores for dipping lines in.
The term for this is whipping. The traditional way was to wrap the ends with small line or tough thread along with the right knots or stitching.Nov 28, 2013 at 1:48 pm #2048894
The term for employing glue/silnet/gobbletygook is Dipping.
"The traditional way was to wrap the ends with small line …" – and is called Whipping.
If I may be bold as to try to preserve the meaning of words…Nov 28, 2013 at 2:20 pm #2048902
Yes, I was trying to melt it without burning…but it never seemd to melt (zpacks spectra and Lawson's glowire to be specific).
The sheath always seemed to shrink, then the white threads inside just stuck out and they did not turn into a nice knob at the end. I will try a few of these suggestions, since obviously just holding the end in the flame of a bic just doesn't seem to work for me.
Thanks again!!!Nov 28, 2013 at 4:55 pm #2048919
@m-lLocale: W-Never Eat Soggy (W)affles
Pull the dyneema stand down and use a lighter and pair of pliers to crimp the end of the outer.Nov 28, 2013 at 6:03 pm #2048933
> The sheath always seemed to shrink, then the white threads inside just stuck out and
> they did not turn into a nice knob at the end.
Ah – the plot thickens. What happened to the core threads? Did they char instead of melting?
CheersNov 28, 2013 at 6:22 pm #2048936
@owareLocale: Steptoe Butte
"Phineas: Through the eye of the needle
Time to loosen your tongue
Got a tip how to make ends meet
Singers (and crowd): A-G-L-E-T, don't forget it!"Nov 29, 2013 at 11:06 am #2049068
"Ah – the plot thickens. What happened to the core threads? Did they char instead of melting?"
Well Roger, the tips kind of glow a bit, then just turn black. Which crumbles away, and i still have a frayed end. I can watch the cord shorten…but no nice nubby bit. I've tried rolling it between my fingers, but that never worked except to knock off all the hardened bits…
I'm looking forward to trying a few of these ideas.Nov 29, 2013 at 11:26 am #2049072
if its dyneema core …. simply cut it then dip it into seam grip, crazy glue, etc … you can also use a heat shrink wrap
dyneema has a MUCH lower melting point than aramid (nylon used for climbing ropes) … which is why they generally arent recommended for friction hitches in safety situatiions …
;)Nov 29, 2013 at 12:31 pm #2049080
Just stop playing with fire and get out and hike! :DNov 29, 2013 at 1:07 pm #2049089
> the tips kind of glow a bit, then just turn black. Which crumbles away, and i still
> have a frayed end
All is explained. Yeah, I suspected thiis would be the case.
What you have is not what you expected. The sheath is fine (some sort of meltable plastic), but the core is a different material. It could be cotton (unlikely) or it could more likely be rayon (cellulose acetate). These latter do not melt: they char.
Why is the cord made like this? There are two reasons. The first is cost: a rayon core is much cheaper than a Dacron or Spectra one. It may not be the main reason however. The second reason is what we call 'handle'. The softer core makes the string handle differently: usually softer and easier to work with. I will add that some steel cables also have a cotton or hemp core for the same reason: improved handle.
Well, that's all very well, but what should you do? You have several options.
1) Melt the end with a hot knife or soldering iron or similar (but NOT a flame) and press the molten sheath plastic into the rayon core – which may not melt. This keeps the core and sheath together, which is desirable. Gloves or tools are usful here and avoid burt fingers!
2) Work a tiny bit of epoxy or other glue into the end so it looks like the end of a shoe lace – again getting it into the core to anchor it to the sheath.
3) Peel the sheath back a bit, cut off 5 mm of the core, pull the sheath back out and melt it. This is quick and dirty, and can result in the core bunching up inside the sheath in a lumpy manner later on. I don't like it.
A report on your results would be useful to others.
CheersNov 29, 2013 at 2:13 pm #2049112
…Nov 29, 2013 at 10:04 pm #2049250
@heyyouLocale: Cutting brush off of the Arizona Tr
Dollar store epoxy glue and, as mentioned earlier, soak and shape into a shoelace end, while wearing disposable gloves.
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