When Should We Retire Dyneema Stays and Running Rigging?


About a decade ago, like many sailors, we began replacing wire and low-stretch double braid ropes with super strong single-braid ropes. These ropes were made with a high molecular weight polyethylene fiber (HMWPE) commonly known as Dyneema. Amsteel SK75, a popular Dyneema single-braid, was used in our lifelines, shrouds, halyards—even in our sheets (for racing) and our ground tackle (for kedges). Dyneema soft shackles replaced our clunky metal ones.

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Drew Frye
Drew Frye, Practical Sailor’s technical editor, has used his background in chemistry and engineering to help guide Practical Sailor toward some of the most important topics covered during the past 10 years. His in-depth reporting on everything from anchors to safety tethers to fuel additives have netted multiple awards from Boating Writers International. With more than three decades of experience as a refinery engineer and a sailor, he has a knack for discovering money-saving “home-brew” products or “hacks” that make boating affordable for almost anyone. He has conducted dozens of tests for Practical Sailor and published over 200 articles on sailing equipment. His rigorous testing has prompted the improvement and introduction of several marine products that might not exist without his input. His book “Rigging Modern Anchors” has won wide praise for introducing the use of modern materials and novel techniques to solve an array of anchoring challenges.