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Stored ropes

Postby woodsxc » Tue Sep 22, 2009 6:42 pm

My scout troop has about 10 ropes in storage. They were bought between January of 2000 and October of 2001. They live in a closed plastic tote 365/24/7. At most, they have been used 5 times for top roping. Due to age though, they all have to be retired.

It breaks the heart though to see an unused (seriously, never even uncoiled) 10.2 mm x 60 meter Sterling dynamic lined up for destruction. If it's gotta go, it's gotta go, but it sure does hurt.
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Postby jackstraw0083 » Tue Sep 22, 2009 7:04 pm

You could always weave some nice doormats with them. I know how you feel though, I have a couple "dead" ropes lying around that I don't have the heart to throw away.
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rope life

Postby T Sharp » Tue Sep 22, 2009 8:01 pm

Beal says on their web site that the maximum life of a dynamic rope is 15 years with light usage and proper storage. I would contact Sterling to get their opinion.
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Postby Flux » Tue Sep 22, 2009 9:01 pm

It is mind-boggling to me that a climbing rope that has seen little or no use with no falls has such a short life expectancy. Hell, safety gear in race cars (harness, etc.) have a longer life than that...
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Postby Rob A » Tue Sep 22, 2009 9:44 pm

Flux wrote: Hell, safety gear in race cars (harness, etc.) have a longer life than that...


Not in the People's Republic Of New Jersey! I gotta buy new belts every 2 years!





but woods, if you dont want the ropes, ill gladly take them!
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Postby Alpinisto » Tue Sep 22, 2009 9:55 pm

Flux wrote:It is mind-boggling to me that a climbing rope that has seen little or no use with no falls has such a short life expectancy. Hell, safety gear in race cars (harness, etc.) have a longer life than that...


When you think about the potential liability the Boy Scouts face if some youngster were to get hurt on a climbing outing, it's not that mind-boggling.

As a BSA-certified climbing instructor, I can tell you that some of their rulez might seem a wee bit daft on the outside, but there are (or were) valid reasons for implementing them. F'rinstance, I don't believe the ropes cited above would even be allowed to be used if they were new -- IIRC, the current BSA climbing regs mandate 10.5mm ropes, while we all know that 10.2's are perfectly servicable.

That said, I betcha many (most?) of us who climb out in the real world (i.e., not in a Scout program) wouldn't have any problem climbing on ropes used/stored as woodsxc has described. Am I right?
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Postby woodsxc » Tue Sep 22, 2009 11:43 pm

Alpinisto wrote:
Flux wrote:It is mind-boggling to me that a climbing rope that has seen little or no use with no falls has such a short life expectancy. Hell, safety gear in race cars (harness, etc.) have a longer life than that...


When you think about the potential liability the Boy Scouts face if some youngster were to get hurt on a climbing outing, it's not that mind-boggling.

As a BSA-certified climbing instructor, I can tell you that some of their rulez might seem a wee bit daft on the outside, but there are (or were) valid reasons for implementing them. F'rinstance, I don't believe the ropes cited above would even be allowed to be used if they were new -- IIRC, the current BSA climbing regs mandate 10.5mm ropes, while we all know that 10.2's are perfectly servicable.

That said, I betcha many (most?) of us who climb out in the real world (i.e., not in a Scout program) wouldn't have any problem climbing on ropes used/stored as woodsxc has described. Am I right?



^^^This iz korrekt.

Alpinisto hit the nail on the head. It's an issue of liability. The mfg warranty is up, so the ropes are dead to the BSA.
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Postby T Sharp » Wed Sep 23, 2009 4:15 am

I looked on the entire Sterling web site for their warranty restrictions, and they are not listed.
That leads me to think there is no warranty. They did however have these guidlines regarding lifetime:

Sterling Rope
Dynamic Rope Care, Use, and
Retirement
Sterling Rope's guideline for rope retirement
in regards to shelf life is; Shelf life of
any Sterling Rope Life Safety Product in
unused condition stored properly in an
environment not exposed to sunlight or
hazardous materials will be a maximum of
10 years. Actual working life of a rope
should not exceed 5 years. The combined
storage and usage lifetime must never
exceed 10 years. If there is any question
as to the use, history, condition or quality
of your rope, retire it.

They also offer this service:
Simply send your retired rope to the address below (the U.S. Postal Service is very affordable):
Sterling Rope Company, Inc.
C/O: Rope Recycling Initiative
26 Morin Street
Biddeford, ME 04005-4413

Of course, we encourage reusing rope on your own to make dog leashes, rugs, and tie-downs; however, please be sure a retired rope is never used as a life-safety line. Also, know that countless miles of rope is produced every year between all of the various brands so simply reusing the old rope is not enough to reduce it's impact on our environment.

Beal warranties their ropes:
• All BEAL PPE is guaranteed for 3 years against all faults in materials or manufacture.

Excluded from the guarantee:

- normal wear and tear,
- modifications or alterations,
- bad storage,
- bad maintenance, accidental damage, negligence, and/or uses for which the product was not designed.
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Postby lspoeira » Wed Sep 23, 2009 12:06 pm

You can find a very interesting article about ageing ropes in the UIAA site by Pit Shubert, a guy that I think is a expert in the field of security and material testing.

http://theuiaa.org/upload_area/files/1/ ... _Ropes.pdf

You can also find other articles here:

http://www.theuiaa.org/act_safety.html

Enjoy,

Luís
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Postby rpc » Wed Sep 23, 2009 4:42 pm

you know, those "dropped biner/cam", "old rope" etc. questions....if you dig deep, I think you already know the answer (I do in my case(s)): if you find yourself thinking about it while climbing on it, probably shouldda tossed it :) . Otherwise, put it back into service & never give it another thought.
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Postby woodsxc » Wed Sep 23, 2009 6:53 pm

Thanks Luis, I did read the first article. I'm not sure I'd climb on 25-year-old ropes though.

Broadly speaking we have a 5/10/0 guideline on retiring ropes.
All other factors aside a rope should be retired
- after 5 years of regular use
- after 10 years even if it is brand new in the bag and stores well
- 0 - should not be used at all if the history is not know for sure (i.e. bought used on e-bay etc.)

Based on that and what you've shared, your rope should still have a few good years of use.


That's the response I got from Sterling when asked about the unused rope.
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Postby woodsxc » Fri Sep 25, 2009 9:49 pm

Woo hoo! I might get to keep one of the unused ropes!! Hooray!
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Postby Alpinisto » Sat Sep 26, 2009 2:59 am

woodsxc wrote:Woo hoo! I might get to keep one of the unused ropes!! Hooray!


n00bz!! UR gonna die!

:shock:
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Old Ropes

Postby Wastral » Sun Sep 27, 2009 12:25 am

All Plastics are only "plastic" due to their elastomers. The names of these chemicals which are needed in all plastics to retain their elasticity over time are very long. Anyways, Over time these elastomers "leak" out of plastics and they then become brittle.

In more modern plastics, the folks making said elastomers have made it so they "leak" out slower and add in the fact that they are adding more "elastomers" into said plastics like Nylon, PVC, ABS, HDPE, etc equates to a longer shelf life of plastics. Thus, ropes today have a much longer "shelf life" than old nylon ropes. Eventually, they will become brittle and break.

For instance if you see nylon slings around rocks in the mountains you don't expect them to any good because slings are not UV stabilized and they don't have as many expensive "elastomers" imbedded in them. Thus, it is VERY IMPORTANT TO REPLACE YOUR CLIMBING SLINGS WAY BEFORE YOUR ROPE!

This is one of the main concerns about data storage and CD's/DVD's the "coating" covering the data pits will degrade over time and one will not be able to "bend" those CD's/DVD's when moving them around without destroying the data like today.

Brian
As the UIAA wrote. Old ropes are fine, just that they can't take the abuse of new ropes due to fewer elastomers present and the whole rope will be more "brittle" and cut more readily over an edge.

Alpinisto wrote:
woodsxc wrote:Woo hoo! I might get to keep one of the unused ropes!! Hooray!


n00bz!! UR gonna die!

:shock:
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Postby woodsxc » Mon Sep 28, 2009 1:36 pm

Alpinisto wrote:
woodsxc wrote:Woo hoo! I might get to keep one of the unused ropes!! Hooray!


n00bz!! UR gonna die!

:shock:


Wastral, I think he was kidding. If it works out though, Alpinisto and I can do an Orange-MH-Torch-Wearers-Only climb. :wink:
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