Mooring lines; construction, stretch and materials.
Mooring lines and docklines are being produced invarious constructions (3-strand, doublebraided), materials (polyester, nylon, dyneema), diameters etc. Which one is the right one for your boat?
First of all stretch in mooring lines is very important. The mooring line should be able to absorb shocks that are generated by waves or wind. The amount of stretch required is defined by the situation your yacht is moored. Marinas and harbours with good protection require minimal stretch, while mooring places in where you might experience big waves it is important to have great stretch. In this case even extra items may be required such as rubber stretchers.
The type and shape of yacht is also important. Sailing yachts with furling sails have quite some projected area for the wind, while low motoryachts won’t catch much wind.
Stretch is being generated by the right construction and material used in the docklines. 3-strand construction generates very good stretch. The 3-strand construction is the oldest way of making ropes and still very effective for mooring lines!
The disadvantage of 3-strand is that it might get a stiff after a while.
The more modern double-braided ropes have 12-strand “woven” core and 32-strand woven cover. This makes the rope very flexible and strong.
The material used is quite important as well. We now work with materials such as nylon, polyester and dyneema.
Nylon is losing marketshare in the ropes for yachts. The stretch is good, but the disadvantage is it will shrink and get stiff due to UV radiation.
Mostly used material is nowadays polyester.
Polyester still provides stretch if constructed in the right way. Polyester has a great resistence against abrasion which is a great benefit since mooring lines mainly need to be replaced because of abrasion.
Dyneema actually has even a better abrasion resistance but simple is to slippery to handle. Therefore our dyneema mooring lines are protected with a polyester cover.
Dyneema is great for handling; the material is very light and strong. Because the great strength it is possible to work with much smaller diameters whilst still having the same breaking load on the rope.
Since dyneema has virtually no stretch, we recommend using polyester loops as stretchers. The length and diameters of these loops depend on the required stretch, which again is defined by the yacht and mooring properties.
Still not sure which rope you need for your superyacht? contact us for free advise!
More about how the Mooring Lines are being produced can be found on our “how it’s made” page.