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Gekko_Vitatus

nail polish to mark center of rope

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Might be a stupid question...

 

Using nail polish to mark the center of a rope (in order to save money on buying the double pattern kind)...what are your thoughts? Stupid? Dangerous? Perfectly ok?

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There is a thread on this floating around...but the best Idea I gleaned from it was to use flat dental floss woven in around the sheath at the center mark. Use a fine needle. This will provide tactile and visual center point marking. Try to avoid using harsh chemicals on or around ropes.

thumbs_up.gif Good luck!

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Nail polish is about as harsh a solvent as I can imagine. It would be my choice when hell freezes over and pigs fly.

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I thought you were supposed to use a blunt needle so as not to damage the sheath fibers, but just weave in between them.

 

And use the mint or cinnamon dental floss. That way you still find the middle of the rope via taste if it's dark and your fingers are gloved or frostbitten.

 

Distinctly colored nail polish is commonly used for marking metal gear (carabiners, cams, stoppers, etc) as an ownership indicator. I've never heard of using it for middle-marking a rope. Perhaps you got two threads mixed up.

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i don't think i'd use nail polish and don't know of anybody who does. (that's more for marking hardware - like chuck said.) lots of folks use a sharpie marker.

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Thread is the best way. Dental floss or sail repair thread. There were studies from Mammut about failures of the rope over an edge if the sharpie-marked section was on the edge (same for brand-approved markers like Beal marker). Not very likely but hey, so was my last accident.

 

drC

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I use hair gel to mark the center of my rope. I give the center a nice pomade wave; that really stands out, even in the dark.

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In my opinion, I'd have to answer your question with "stupid and dangerous". I'm no chemist, but I think that nail polish uses acetone or xylol as the carrier for the pigment. Those are some pretty nasty chemicals to have around your rope. You wouldn't store your rope next to your gas can, would you? Go with the Sharpie marker (my favorite) or do the Martha Stewart thing and get out your sewing kit...

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Did some more research...

 

Sharpie and other markers all contain the same or similar solvents as nail polish so I would think they'd be just as dangerous to use...assuming it's dangerous.

 

Those solvents evaporate when exposed to air so I don't really know what kind of danger they would really pose...I don't know if they have any acidic properties.

 

I'm not a chemist either...so since I'm not sure...I'd take the safer approach...and avoid what may be dangerous.

 

As for running a needle and thread through the rope...don't particularly want sharp objects next to my rope...

 

I guess I'll have to spend the extra dough on some rope with two patterns...

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I have not had a bicolor rope for years and I don't bother to mark the middle, either. If you want to match the ends for a rappel or something, all you have to do is to start with the two ends and hand-over-hand your way to the middle. It is not an absolute necessity to have a middle mark, though it is a nice convenience.

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I just picked up a Mammut Genesis and it has a middle mark on it. You don't have to find a duodes rope to have the middle factory marked.

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Did some more research...

 

Sharpie and other markers all contain the same or similar solvents as nail polish so I would think they'd be just as dangerous to use...assuming it's dangerous.

 

Those solvents evaporate when exposed to air so I don't really know what kind of danger they would really pose...I don't know if they have any acidic properties.

 

I'm not a chemist either...so since I'm not sure...I'd take the safer approach...and avoid what may be dangerous.

 

As for running a needle and thread through the rope...don't particularly want sharp objects next to my rope...

 

I guess I'll have to spend the extra dough on some rope with two patterns...

 

or you could just buy one of these Rope Pen

 

And it's a whole $1.00 more than a sharpie tongue.gif

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use cat pee. cat urine glows in the dark, so you would be able to see the middle even at night.

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Here's a good article about the subject in Outside Online:

 

http://outside.away.com/outside/gear/gearguy/200206/20020609.html

 

and here's another:

 

http://www.tradgirl.com/climbing_faq/safety_3.htm#markers

 

Essentially any of these pens reduce the strength of the rope by about 50% if loaded right on the marked spot... And this is due to acidic properties of the paint... I guess nail polish may contain the same stuff.

 

Oh, and urine reduces it by about 30% Dru. cantfocus.gif

Edited by Gekko_Vitatus

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Well, I is a chemist, the only thing you want to think about using is the BD or Bluewater pens made specifically for a rope, Marmot and REI both have 'em cheap.

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If you want to match the ends for a rappel or something, all you have to do is to start with the two ends and hand-over-hand your way to the middle.

 

Matt P has it, really why do you need a middle marker. I never understand why people want this so much smileysex5.gif

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As said, just grab the two ends and hand over hand it to the middle smileysex5.gif ....easy and not that time consuming....besides middle marked ropes are AID!

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use cat pee. cat urine glows in the dark, so you would be able to see the middle even at night.

 

Cat urine glows under ultraviolet light, not in the dark. You'd have to bring one of those little uv LED key chain light thingies. Or just hold the rope close to your nose.

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One rope I bought a couple of years ago came with a little card that recommended two specific brands of black markers they suggest you use to mark the middle. I forget the names of them though. I marked 3 of my ropes with that pen and the next week my buddy told me he read a piece in a climbing magazine where they tested ropes marked vs unmarked and the marked ones failed sooner. Oh well. Haven't broke a rope yet....

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Nail polish was favored by Jerzy Kukuczka, for the obvious reason.

 

But what about using ordinary fabric dye (á la Ritz)? The sheath fibers are already dyed, after all.

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