November 20, 2015 8:16 PM MST - Subscription purchasing, account maintenance, forum profile maintenance, new account registration, and forum posting have been disabled
as we prepare our databases for the final migration to our new server next week. Stay tuned here for more details.
Subscribe Contribute Advertise Facebook Twitter Instagram Forums Newsletter
Guy-lines for Tarp
Display Avatars Sort By:
Charlie Dangerfield
(StueyD) - F
Guy-lines for Tarp on 07/01/2010 16:29:04 MDT Print View

What cord do people use for they Tarps? I would like something that reflected in torch light.

Scott S
(sschloss1) - F

Locale: New England
Guy-lines for Tarp on 07/01/2010 17:27:50 MDT Print View

Kelty Triptease isn't the lightest cord available, but it's super reflective--you'd have to be blind to miss it in the dark with any kind of light.

Ben Crowell
(bcrowell) - F

Locale: Southern California
oware on 07/01/2010 17:37:16 MDT Print View

Oware sells lightweight cordage: They have 1-mm dacron cord on their online ordering page, 50 ft for $4. It's white, so I think it would be fairly easy to see in dim light.

Anyone know of a cheaper source that's equally high in quality? I just lost a whole bunch of the oware stuff on Shasta because my snow anchors froze under thick ice, and I had to cut them loose.

Michael Baker

Locale: Minnesota
Re: Guy-lines for Tarp on 07/01/2010 17:38:14 MDT Print View

I use this stuff.

Steven McAllister
(brooklynkayak) - MLife

Locale: Atlantic North East
Stealth on 07/01/2010 17:53:45 MDT Print View

I tend to stick with less visible line, but that is because I often have to stealth camp.
A lot of great backpacking in my area, but areas don't allow camping.
I've never had any issues, just don't want to push it by using glow in the dark lines.

My favorite is the better quality braided masons line that you can get at construction supply stores. Lighter than most tent lines and surprisingly durable.
The cheaper twisted variety is not recommended.

David Lutz

Locale: Bay Area
"Guy-lines for Tarp" on 07/01/2010 17:56:06 MDT Print View

I've been using this stuff that I got at Home Depot for less then $10.00. Bright and light. So far, so good, but I haven't seen any big weather, either.



John Nausieda
(Meander) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Braided mason's line on 07/01/2010 18:00:34 MDT Print View

+1 on #18 braided mason's line . Doesn't unravel. Works with micro clam cleats. Bright yellow , pink . Cheap.

Edited by Meander on 07/01/2010 18:01:41 MDT.

David Lutz

Locale: Bay Area
"Guy-lines for Tarp" on 07/01/2010 18:02:11 MDT Print View

Good point, John - You have to make sure you get braided, not twisted.

John Nausieda
(Meander) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Strength of braided mason's line. on 07/01/2010 18:39:27 MDT Print View

When I went through all the numbers months ago it tested at 150 lbs. for failure although you sure wouldn't want to hang that amount from it. I burn it with a Bic to keep a nice line end and if you are stuck with twisted that helps in a pinch. There were many postings about it not working with micro clam cleats but it definitely does. I bought my micros on E-bay and the seller confirmed the specs despite the fact that he sold other cord himself. While I know many people prefer knots this line is pretty thin and your ability to untie a knot that has been compressed or frozen may make that less desirable even though the clam cleat adds weight. For me, I love the instant adjustment in rain or dark.

Edited by Meander on 07/01/2010 18:41:09 MDT.

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Re: Strength of braided mason's line. on 07/01/2010 18:54:11 MDT Print View

Do the standard micro tensioners (as sold here) work on mason line? I don't see why they wouldn't...

I've been using it on my tarp with clove hitches on the stakes...tensioners would be nice.

As for strength, I'm not sure I'd trust it in a big storm...but then I wouldn't be carrying an UL tarp with mason line in "serious storm" territory anyway.

John Nausieda
(Meander) - MLife

Locale: PNW
micros on 07/01/2010 19:02:54 MDT Print View

Here's the url of the seller I bought from . I can confirm that I can't pull the line out but I imagine that with a torque wrench or a jack I'd discover some real limit and a snapping wind load would do it at some point . But here's a place to start a cleat evaluation.

Unknown abc
(edude) - F
"Guy-lines for Tarp" on 07/01/2010 20:58:41 MDT Print View

I currently use 100lb. Dacron kite cord. Not good for constantly retying knots but they have held the permanent bowlines I put in all the ends of each piece nicely.

Anyone have any experience with 65lb. fishing line?

Chris H
(-NXP-) - F

Locale: Upper Midwest
Re: Strength of braided mason's line. on 07/01/2010 21:17:33 MDT Print View

While it may be more expensive than the mason line, has anyone considered using bowfishing line? I believe BCY Fibers makes it (same company that makes the spectra lines for bow strings)

It's a braided Spectra, rated to either 100lbs, 350lbs, or 700lbs depending on which line you buy. 35yrds usually runs about 20.00, and is very thin.

David Olsen

Locale: Steptoe Butte
Re: Re: Strength of braided mason's line. on 07/01/2010 22:00:10 MDT Print View


How strong are your tarp anchors? Do you use 50 lb rocks
to tie off to? Stakes in the ground, trees? Braided
masons twine should be up to most tasks unless it runs
over a sharp edge. If needed it can be doubled or tripled up.

I like to carry lots of thin cord. 100 ft weighs less
than an ounce and can also be used for bear hang
retrieval cord, shoe laces, etc.

Stuff like para cord is overkill in my opinion. Tho
I once used a come a long with multiple strands of 550
cord to pull a pickup out of a ditch.

Eddy Walker

Locale: southeast
no tangle guidelines on 07/01/2010 22:12:18 MDT Print View

I use the Speer NoTangle GuideLines.

This is off his site:

"Simply the very best guideline cord available!
1/16" spectra core with nylon sheath, 275 lb breaking strength, highly visible bright orange, no tangles! Extremely strong lightweight cord for many outdoor uses; 100' weighs 1.8 oz; sold in 100 ft length only $26.00/100ft"

josh wagner
(StainlessSteel) - F
speer on 07/01/2010 23:38:47 MDT Print View

i too use the speer guylines...

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Re: speer on 07/01/2010 23:43:44 MDT Print View

That's a really good point Dave!

Why stress over the tensile strength of your guyline (~150# in the case of mason line) when your anchor wouldn't hold a fraction of that!?

Ahhh, so simple...never thought of it that way...Thanks!

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Re: Re: Re: Strength of braided mason's line. on 07/02/2010 01:01:13 MDT Print View

> How strong are your tarp anchors? Do you use 50 lb rocks
to tie off to?

For that matter, how strong are the attachment points on the side of your tarp? Strong enough to hang a 150 lb man off them?
A bit absurd in some ways ...


Steven McAllister
(brooklynkayak) - MLife

Locale: Atlantic North East
Advantages of braided mason line. on 07/02/2010 05:36:23 MDT Print View

I avoid Home Depot and the likes because I can. There are plenty of good family owned construction supplies near me.

I eventually got rid of most of my tensioning devices as I find that mason line seems to have just the right amount of grip to hold a taut-line hitch quite well, but slippery enough to untie easily.

It can tangle easier than the slick stuff, but isn't an issue if you have good rope handling and coiling skills.

It's light enough that you can bring a hundred of feet of spare.

Daniel Fosse
(magillagorilla) - F

Locale: Southwest Ohio
Kelty Triptease on 07/02/2010 10:14:10 MDT Print View

I use the Kelty Triptease. Not light but very nice cord. Still about 1oz for 50ft isn't too bad and the stuff will light up the forrest when you hit it with a flashlight. Very good if you are with a big group. Very very good if some in said group are completely clumsy. I lost a tent to a ding-dong friend who managed to step right in the middle of it. How he managed to not see it may have had something to do with vodka. Now on group trips I use reflective cord.

I have braided mason line, never considered using it for guyline. I used it to replace heavy cords on stuffsacks or when I need a lanyard. I may give it a go for guyline.