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Well-known member
Supporting Member
Feb 22, 2006
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Media, PA and Brigantine. NJ
Well, I had my 1999 2520 inspected by the USCG Aux and I passed but he recommended one thing which makes sense.......On the one throwable flotation device, he said I should add 50+- feet of polypropylene rope and attach it to one end. His reasoning was that it floats and (1) wont foul your prop as easily as one that sinks and (2) as it floats, would be easier for someone to grab if the throw was a bit off. I was looking at this rope and found it comes in different sizes and color (black or yellow). I am going to go with the yellow for visibility but what about size? 1/4? 5/16? 3/8? 1/2? Your thoughts?

FWIW Powerboat Reports just rated the inexpensive Kwik-Tek rescue throw bag a "Best Buy" ... has > 50' of floating line and the bag is weighted so you throw it (underhand for best accuracy and distance) to rescue someone or heave a line. You might give that a thought, only $19 @ ShipStore, click here.


* 3/8'' x 50' braided floating line
* Bright orange bag
* Fastex buckle for quick removal
* Instructions screen-printed on bag
Notice in this picture the white rectangle in the upper left hand corner...

This is my throwable flotation device. It is attached to the rocket launcer.

The velcro side opens up... you pull out the sling.... throw it... it is attached by 100 feet of rope....

It's always there and always out of the way.

They can be found on sale for 75 dollars I believe...



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My life ring has 50' of poly attached to it, and on the end of the line is a lightweight aluminum caribiner (like the one you see here attached to the flashlight).


I had to toss the ring one day and the rope continued on, out of my hand, and into the water. :shock: Dumb move...
Clipping the 'biner to something in the pit will keep that from happening again.

I probably have 30 of those caribiners scattered all over the boat. They are great for 1000 odd uses to secure boating items, and can be found in the tool section of Home Depot.

How did it toss with the rope "coiled" like that? Usually one would "flake" a rope to be thrown so it won't tangle.

Flaking, for those that don't know, means coiling a rope in large overlapping "figure 8s" on top of each other, where the new coil lays on top of the one below it, a technique also commonly used in climbing.

Good caution about the tag end of the line :shock: !
I'm sure that there is a better way, but the loops are large and go to the floor, so the line never really gets tangled.
I unsnap the keeper... lift out the line with one hand... lift out the ring with the other...
Drop the line on the deck, making sure to hold the caribiner :) then give the ring a heave. If all goes well, the line pays out off the deck.

If all goes well... :D
Megabyte":1geukms6 said:
I'm sure that there is a better way ...
Wasn't trying to imply your way was inferior ;) , I just had an ol' navy man "show me the ropes" (pun intended) and I thought I'd share it with thers.

TimC2520":1geukms6 said:
... sending you the bill for all the $$$$$ this site is costing me ...
OK ... ;) stand in line ... :) !
When I was a kid, I had a next door neighbor who was a firefighter show me how to coil a rope in a super secret fireman's way, (actually an extension cord, but it worked with rope as well) so it hangs on a hook, you grab the end at the botton and pull out as much as you need. I'll be darned if I can remember how to do it. Its bugged me for years.
If it is what I think it is, the technique is called "chaining". We use it extensively for rope rescue gear that you want to put in service in a hurry, but don't want it to get tangled in storage. Tubular nylon webbing, for example.

I chain many of my braided dock lines as well as my utility lines.

Edit: Found a couple of examples...
Check out the line I had attached to my sea anchor when I was first rigging it. I've since changed the rigging, but you can see the chained line in the photo...


Here is a better shot of my emergency tow line.
Is this the super-secret method you were shown?
If it is, I'll send you a photo "how-to" of the process when I get the chance. :)

Funny ... I used to play with ropes and knots a lot when growing up on the river and I thought I had "invented" the chain method of line storage.

Look at the photo where the brass clip is and you can see its simple a loop twisted with the next loop pulled through, and so on, and so on. You can see that Kev has the clip holding that last "loop" so it won't pull through.