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What kind of line for the outhaul?

2010 August 1

Dear Boat Doctor,

I need to replace the outhaul and reef lines on my Beneteau First 375. When I last replaced them I used New England Sta-SetX, and this worked well, but the rope was very stiff and hard to handle. Do you have any recommendations on what type of rope I should use this time?
Amy James
Evanston, Illinois

Dear Amy,

I have traditionally used New England Ropes Sta-Set (www.neropes.com, 800-333-6679) in these applications, but I understand that you'd want something a little higher performance than plain old Dacron doublebraid. New England Ropes introduced a rope called VCP a few years back. This rope has a very high-quality Dacron cover and the core is a blend of polypropylene and Vectran. The result is a very high-performing rope with virtually the same handling characteristics of Dacron doublebraid. It costs a bit more, but you don't need a lot for your application.