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Ropes: buy dry or not?
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Feb 5, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: On top of Rectory
Hello MP'ers,

I have a question about buying dry ropes for ice? I have heard that it's all a marketing ploy. The rope gets wet no matter what. The waterp-oofing agent get warned off rather quick.

What's your experience?
Thanks
D
Dmitriy Litvak
From Pacifica, CA
Joined May 25, 2007
59 points
Feb 5, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Me on Kamakaze 5.10a (Ozone)
My friend and I were climbing together shortly after rain. His rope was dry treated, mine wasn't. Both got in puddles. His was fine, mine became spongy and fat, it didn't feel right. I don't think it's a just a marketing ploy; my next rope will be dry treated. Bill Shubert
From Lexington, MA
Joined Jul 20, 2012
60 points
Feb 5, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Middle
Dry coating wear off with time and ropes will wet out no matter what. However, I find that dry treated ropes take longer to get fuzzy and are generally more durable. A rope has to be well below $100 for me to buy a non dry rope. Ray Pinpillage
From West Egg
Joined Jul 23, 2010
180 points
Feb 5, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: en route to wham ridge  Photo by Carl Schnitker
it's not just a marketing ploy but you really don't need it unless you're doing ice or alpine. It will make the rope slightly more durable and will improve handling, but IMO it's not really worth an extra $30+ eli poss
From Durango, Co
Joined May 9, 2014
422 points
Feb 5, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: OTL
Ray Pinpillage wrote:
Dry coating wear off with time and ropes will wet out no matter what. However, I find that dry treated ropes take longer to get fuzzy and are generally more durable. A rope has to be well below $100 for me to buy a non dry rope.


This.
I don't ice climb, but prefer dry (heck double dry when you score a deal) treated ropes. Seems to extend their life and they stay cleaner, longer.

Would make sense to not use your ice ropes on rock, though, to keep the treatment longer, if it actually mattered in your purchase.
Matt N
From Santa Barbara, CA
Joined Oct 20, 2010
378 points
Feb 5, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: Bolton, VT
I've always purchased dry treated ropes and at a certain point, in my opinion, after around 1.5 seasons on ice the rope tends to get wet no matter what. BUT that can also be pretty condition dependent, climbing wet snow here in the northeast can often wet through it pretty quick.

I also agree with Roy and Matt that dry ropes in general are more durable and the sheaths last longer, which is why I continue to buy
Nick Votto
Joined Jul 27, 2008
338 points
Feb 5, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: top of mt. lady washington - rmnp
Ive only owned dry ropes for the aforementioned benefits but I think if I was going to buy a rope exclusively for cragging (where your presumably going to bail via a single lower/rappel in the event of rain), I would get a cheap non-dry rope.

otherwise dry treatment is worth it IMO.
Andrew Mayer
Joined Nov 14, 2010
135 points
Administrator
Feb 5, 2016
I would choose the non-dry option. The coating really does not last long if you're actually taking whips and using the rope as its designed. I bought a Beal Golden Dry rope once and within three weeks in Red Rocks it soaked up water like a sponge.

If your main concern is durability, choosing a rope with a high percentage of sheath will do far more than any dry coating ever will. Even if you reapply the dry coating after it wears off, it still wont make as much of a difference as simply selecting a more burly rope with a thicker sheath.
20 kN
From Hawaii
Joined Feb 2, 2009
1,219 points
Feb 6, 2016
20 kN wrote:
I would choose the non-dry option. The coating really does not last long if you're actually taking whips and using the rope as its designed. I bought a Beal Golden Dry rope once and within three weeks in Red Rocks it soaked up water like a sponge. If your main concern is durability, choosing a rope with a high percentage of sheath will do far more than any dry coating ever will. Even if you reapply the dry coating after it wears off, it still wont make as much of a difference as simply selecting a more burly rope with a thicker sheath.


Note that he's using them for ice climbing. Dry coats will last much longer on ice than they will on rock. Fewer falls, ice isn't as abrasive as rock, etc etc.

I wouldn't necessarily recommend dry ropes for rock, but I definitely would for ice as they are going to be exposed to more water and the environment is friendlier for the dry coat so it lasts longer.
John Wilder
From Las Vegas, NV
Joined Feb 1, 2004
2,461 points
Administrator
Feb 6, 2016
John Wilder wrote:
Note that he's using them for ice climbing. Dry coats will last much longer on ice than they will on rock. Fewer falls, ice isn't as abrasive as rock, etc etc. I wouldn't necessarily recommend dry ropes for rock, but I definitely would for ice as they are going to be exposed to more water and the environment is friendlier for the dry coat so it lasts longer.

Missed that. In that case, dry is not a bad option.
20 kN
From Hawaii
Joined Feb 2, 2009
1,219 points
Feb 6, 2016
Buy dry surface AND core treated ropes for good ole wetness (ice)

Pretty useless in that environment to have one without the other

The UIAA has a new dry rating which is supposed to be better ... Look for that marking if youre willing to spend the money

Save that tope exclusively for ice if you want the treatment to last awhile

Get a cheap non dry rope for rock

;)
bearbreeder
Joined Mar 1, 2009
3,068 points
Feb 8, 2016
Rock Climbing Photo: On top of Rectory
Thanks peeps. I got Bluewater Excellence. Now, I have to figure out how I stay dry :) Dmitriy Litvak
From Pacifica, CA
Joined May 25, 2007
59 points


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