Caring and maintaining your rope

 To retain strength, rope must be taken care of and correctly maintained. But how do you properly care for rope? What do you need to do to ensure that it provides strength for a long time?

Here we’re going to look at a few ways in which you can better take care of your rope.

Coiling rope – When you’ve finished working with rope you should make sure it’s coiled correctly. No doubt you’ve seen people coil rope over their hand and elbow. This shouldn’t be done as it can cause excess twist and kinking.

To avoid twist, you should turn the rope as its being coiled. You can either coil the rope over an open hand or on a pin rail.

Storing your rope – If left lying around on the floor, rope can become a trip hazard, so if used in a working environment make sure it’s hung on a pin. Consider the rope before you hang it on a metal pin though. The metal could oxidise and speed up the deterioration of your rope.

Drying the rope – If you’ve made use of manila rope and it’s become wet you must dry it. Because it’s made from hemp which is an organic substance, it will rot when left damp or wet. Hang it loosely where air can circulate and inspect it every now and again. Wet manila rope has a very distinct odour, so you can test to see if it’s drying by smelling it.

Rope stress – You should always make sure that you’re using the correct rope for your application. If over stressed it loses strength and durability becoming completely obsolete. If you have rope that’s weakened over time then make sure you cut it up before throwing it out. You don’t want someone else using it in a load-bearing application.

Abrasion – Whilst we’re on the topic of rope weakening, you should always avoid dragging the rope over rough surfaces. This will wear the rope down. Sheaves and pulleys should be grooved depending on the size of your rope.

Many applications require the strength of rope to provide safety, so it’s important that the rope is correctly cared for and maintained. 

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