Maxi jacket alternatives...

  • Thread starter Wagnaw
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Hey all,

I talk to someone over at Sherrill tree supply yesterday, and I got them to tell me what they use for dipping the vectran eyes in. They wouldn't sell me any, but they told me that they use Scotch Kote, which is a liquid electrical tape product.
I checked into it, and the electric crew on campus had some. I read into it and asked around about the corrosiveness of it, and it's not supposed to be corrosive to synthetics or plastics. It's actually made as a dielectric coating to put/ paint on wire ends where it's hard to get electrical tape.

So... I'm wondering if any of you all have heard of using it. I mean... I would be really surprised if Sherrill Tree was using it on ropes that they sell if it were hazardous to the rope. Interested to hear your responses....
Liquid electrical tape has been a staple in my toolbox for many years. You can get a cheap version at any auto parts store. It works great for marine electrical connections. I've never used it on rope, although I can't see how it would cause any harm.
I would think that it should be alright since the jacket that insulates the wire is are different types of plastics. And your ropes are made of peterolium products.
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  • #5
I think I may make a trip out to this cable and rigging supply next week to break test one of them after they cure long enough.

Here's some HRC that I've coated, and it seems to feel alright once it dries. I'll have to splice up some beeline to see if it feels the same. ...for some reason the vectran core in beeline seems way "fluffier," so I'll have to see how it sets up.


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looks good, did ya end up finding it on campus after all the hunting around? I doesn't look like its gonna peel off. Looks different then the stuff from home depot...plastic dip stuff
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  • #7
Yeah, I ended up getting some for free from the electric crew. It's called STAR BRITE


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  • #9
Any thoughts Nick? You're the resident critic as far as this stuff is concerned.
I use a Starbrite product called Dip-It... probably the same stuff, looks the same. I think it's basically air cured polyurethane. No complaints.

I think the deal with Maxijacket is that it soaks into the braid rather than coating it.

The vectran in BL does seem fluffier. I like the HRC core better. What's the black between the eye and the whiplock?
I was concerned with the starbrite stuff because the chemicals in it (mostly solvents) are quite harsh on the lungs. I wondered if there might be a chance that it could also degrade rope.

I called Starbrite last week and spoke to one of their engineers (whose name escapes me right now) and he said that there is now way that the Dip-it would degrade the rope. He wasn't able to point me to any research or testing on the matter, but he was confident that Dip-it could be used safely for this purpose.

Take from that what you will.

Wagnaw, do you electrical tape the cover down, then whip the ends?

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  • #14
...can I dip the ends first?

Yeah, I was going to call today to ask you if you wanted to come over and treat that split tail.

As far as the tape goes... yeah, when I'm making them, I tape off the length of cover I want, then I tape off (at least) 2/3 FID length past that on both sides. That's where I cut it. Then I'll slide the cover to one side until the inside tape is over the end of the core, I'll cut the cover, slide the cover to the other side, and cut off the excess again. That leaves me with 2/3 FID length core sticking out either side of the cover, which is now the length I want.

I leave the tape on to keep the cover from fraying at the ends, and I think it gives it a clean look when its milked up tight against the eye.

...I think that answers the question.
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  • #15
Ohh... and I climbed on one of the eye & eyes that I dipped today, and the Star Brite stuff seems to work into the eye pretty well. I remember that the last eye & eye I ordered from Sherrill felt the same way, although at the time, I didn't like it because they left the eye really loose, which made it slide around and side load. I made these eyes as tight as I could, which made everything better.
I gotcha now. I've been stitching the cover down, whiplocking over it right up to the eye and then trimming it. After that I dip the eye and what's left of the trimmed cover to finish everything up.

I'm using a smaller whipping twine though; Marlow #4.
I pull the core out of side of the cover (extracted like when you do a double braid splice) then splice the core, slip the cover back up to the base of the eye, then whip the cover down. Then I fray the end of the cover and snip it off right at the whipping. Ends up looking like:


Either way works.

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  • #18
That looks great! We'll see how these hold up with the tape there and all. I've yet to really put my own splices into action yet. least long term, and not just tests, you know...?
got some of that star brite much cheaper than maxi jacket and seems to be working well still to climb off yet just finished it, ill post some pics later on.

I use heat shrink then whip it up or that and heat shrink over it again to protect the whipping from unravelling they've come up pretty nice i think.
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  • #21
I'm gonna break test a split tail this week, so cross your fingers...

I think it'll be fine though.
Considering that your hitch cord only holds 1/4 of your weight on each end, is it really necessary? Working load on your cord is about 50-60 lbs. Shock loading from a fall with a 20X multiplier will still be a fraction of the cord strength. In a more severe shock loading, your internal organs will be ripped out long before the cord breaks.

If you're going to break test, you might consider break testing your entire climbing system. Just picking out one piece to test isn't going to give you any usable information. If you're climbing on a rope guide then my suspicion is that the rope guide will be the weak link since it carries the full load of your weight plus any shock load.
It's good to break it to see if it might just fall apart at a super low load. It's a good way to make sure you put it together right.

gimme something to break:D

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