Rope Cleaning Magic:

1.  Coils of dirty rope can become a daunting task to maintain.  Rope CoilsTypically, this is an annual
   cleaning event, but could occur more often if necessary.

   2.  Uncoil all the ropes you wish to wash and lay them out,
        back-and-forth style, on a concrete surface.
Uncoiled Rope


3.  With a pressure washer (recommend 2500 psi or so) form an hour glass in the middle of the stretched out rope.  Form a mat so the rope pieces do not fly away when sprayed with the pressure washer.

     4. Work outward in both directions.  Typically
         an overhead spray cleans 2/3rds   of the
         circumference of the rope.

5.  Water does not damage nor does it drive dirt into the core of the rope.

    6.  With a sandal or sneaker roll the ropes and catch
          the 1/3rd yet to be cleaned on the bottom portion.


7.  Work your way down the entire length of the rope
forming the mat all the while.

     8.  The curly ends require some special attention to
          make sure the entire rope’s circumference gets


9.  Cleaning thick mud off a rope can reveal buggers or picks that were not obvious before.  This rope was cut at this point and became two ropes.

     10.  After the entire mat has been cleaned, let
            it dry.  This may take a day. Then measure
            each rope.  Each year your nylon ropes will
            shrink.  The last time I measured my 600’
            EZ Bend, it was 550’ long.  This spring will
            divulge a new length.


11.  Tag each rope  with its measured length.  Write all these lengths down on a tablet.

12.  Coil or stuff your dry ropes, keeping both ends available.

13.  Acquire tool dip from your local hardware store.  Some may be damaging to nylon.  Read the labels carefully.

    14.  Cover the both
    ends of the rope with 4”
    of tool dip coating.

15.   Dip the rope ends  2 to 3 times allowing the tool dip to dry between dippings.

     16.  With your computer type the I.D. tags
            you’ll want displayed on each end of the
            rope.  Include, length, owner, and p.i.s
            (placed in service) date. With a copier,
            make a transparency of this sheet of I.D.
            tags.  Make 2 I.D. tags for each rope. 
            One for each end of the rope.


17.         Cut out the I.D. tags.


     18.   Cut out Shrink tubing slightly longer than the I.D.
             tagsShrink Tube

19.   Insert tubing onto the end of the rope. Then insert I.D. marker inside the tubing.

Shrink Tubing1

   20.  Position the I.D, Tag so the shrink tubing
          will seal and protect the I.D. Tag
Shrink Tube2

21.   Heat the clear shrink tubing
Shrink Tube3

     22.  Continue heating the shrink tubing until
            the tubing forms a tight seal around the
            tool dip.

Shrink Tube4

23.   Finish the shrinking process.
Shrink Tube5

The finished product, a clean labeled rope, will look professional, shows the user cares about safety, and equipment maintenance as well as establishing a permanent record of the age of the rope.  A pressure washer does not drive dirt particles into the rope rather penetrates clean water throughout the sheath returning the rope to an almost “like-new” appearance.