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two questions about fraying rope

Original Post
Matt Carroll · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Dec 2013 · Points: 35

I have a few Mammut infinity ropes. One is developing a fray right next to the middle mark (not a bi-pattern). These ropes are usually bomber, and all my previous ones have lasted for thousands of pitches. The fraying rope has probably seen less then 50 total pitches, and clearly must have gotten awkwardly loaded over an edge or something.

I noticed the fray while on an extended trip and simply taped over it with some climbing tape to mitigate the wear. This led me to consider a few things:

1) Do frays lead to more extensive fraying? For example, the rest of the rope has yet to develop any issue, but the fray of interest seems to have gotten somewhat worse (obviously not core shot). This assumption lead me to tape it and attempt to slow down the local wear.

2) Is it a viable solution to use a lighter and singe off the frays? I've read about it (…) but am curious if more people have done (or avoid) this tactic.

yer gonna die.

sherb · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Dec 2012 · Points: 60

I'm no rope expert, but I am a third party observer and no one else responded.

1) do you mean fuzzies or fraying? Both are small bits of rope sheath strands that are cut --but if no core shot then it should be fine because the main use of sheath is to protect the core. I don't know if fraying leads to more fraying... I assume in use yes because there are fewer protective strands. Just keep an eye on it.

Careful with tape- even if tape causes it to not unravel, the tape might mask your ability to check the rope for true damage by both look & feel.

2) I would NOT put a flame to the midsection of the rope, where it would need to bear weight. It would damage the core. Ends are ok to use a lighter because they do not bear weight.

No clear nail polish to stop fraying either (a trick to stop pantyhose from running), in case it soaks thru to the core because it contains acetone... although I would almost prefer that to flame as long as only the frayed ends are carefully brushed with no soak-thru and not touching any other part of the rope. Plus it likely won't help. The movement of the rope would cause the strands with the frayed ends to shorten anyway.

Just keep an eye on it and feel it often. Maybe do nothing & retire it as soon as you see core because I don't want to be liable for a torn rope & any subsequent injuries.

grog m aka Greg McKee · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Aug 2012 · Points: 70

Please post some pictures of the fraying for Mountain Project science

sherb · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Dec 2012 · Points: 60


Greg R · · Durango CO · Joined Jan 2013 · Points: 0

Putting heat to a rope just sounds bad. Cut the fuzzies close with nail clippers and call it good.

JK- Branin · · Southern New Hampshire · Joined Nov 2012 · Points: 58

Shave the fuzzies off with preferred method (I use a an old set of clippers from when I pretended I could grow a beard, it's amazing the various uses I've found for them), visual and tactile inspection, roll with it.

Allen Sanderson · · Oootah · Joined Jul 2007 · Points: 1,145

Just leave them alone and watch them. Singing the frayed ends will do more damage. Clipping the ends will make them shorter and prone to more unraveling. Taping over the ends hides potential future issues.

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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