Nylon is a commonly used thermoplastic found in many everyday items, and has long been used in the modern marine industry for dock lines and anchor rodes (fancy anchoring term for ‘line’). When used alone (not blended with another material), it serves as a very function dock line material. Nylon is naturally semi-elastic, abrasion resistant, and fairly flexible. These characteristics make it easy to hold onto, tie off your boat, and will provide you peace-of-mind that the boat movement caused by waves and winds will be absorbed by the nylon’s elasticity (and not pull the cleats off your boat’s deck).
More recently, Nylon is sometimes blended with a stronger material, such as dyneema, to make a mainsheet that’s low-stretch (dyneema) but that is easy to grip (nylon).
Characteristics of Nylon:
- Very elastic/stretchy
- Helps cushion the boat to docks/moorings/anchors
- Reduces strain on cleats and deck hardware
- Incredibly strong
- Has great UV resistance
- Only slightly less UV resistant than Polyester
- Less expensive than most comparable materials
- Abrasion resistant
- Flexible and easy to handle