2mm Dyneema Guyline – Rated 1,000lbs

Hi-viz 2mm Dyneema Guywire Cord (1,000lbs)

In a previous post I compared the weight, cost, and strength of various types of popular cordage in an effort to provide as much information as I could about the types of cord I own and have used. I’d like to update that article now to include a new cord that I have recently purchased, the dyneema guywire cord from Lawson Outdoor Equipment. I came across Lawson Outdoor Equipment through fellow Gossamer Gear Trail Ambassador Don Meredith. Lawson’s doesn’t stock a lot of products, but the items they have are all pretty sweet, definitely worth checking out.

The dyneema guywire is a high visibility (non-reflective) 2mm orange single braid cord suitable for really heavy hauling applications like bear bagging, tarp ridge lines, and tent guylines. Unlike other dyneema/spectra based accessory cords this one is made using 100% Dyneema fiber and as a result yields an incredibly high strength for a very light weight – 0.02oz per foot (~1.2oz for 50ft). The Lawson dyneema guywire is rated at 1,000lbs which for a 2mm cord is amazing.

It feels very stiff and waxy to the touch because of a vinyl coating that is used to improve the knot holding capability of the dyneema which can be very slippery. The vinyl coating is also a huge help in reducing the friction for limb-based hauling like bear bagging, where the cord can sometime bite into the bark of a tree or saw through it if it’s particularly coarse like Kelty Triptease. 

Below is an updated version of the cord comparison table that I had previously put together with the inclusion of the Dyneema Guywire. As you can see it is second only to Aircore Plus Spectra Cord in strength, but significantly thinner, lighter, and cheaper than Aircore.

I know it’s a little geeky to break down the specifications of a length or cord to this level of detail, but we all seem to go through the same process of researching, testing, and evaluating cord in an effort to find the perfect match for whatever it is we are searching for. That’s why I’m sharing this all with you. I’m loving this cord right now for bear bagging and plan on carrying a length of it in my pack as an emergency/repair cord. Has anyone else tried this cord from Lawson’s? I’d be curious to know what you think about it good or bad.

Disclosure: The author owns this product and paid for it using their own funds.

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  • JJ_Mathes

    with a 1,000 lb rating you could haul the bear up and keep your food down with you  :-)

    • http://www.briangreen.net Brian Green

      Ha! No kidding, this stuff is ridiculously strong. I can’t think of a better bundle of cord to have in your pack for an emergency. It also holds a knot extremely well.

  • JERMM

    with a 1,000 lb rating you could haul the bear up and keep your food down with you  :-)

  • http://www.briangreen.net/ Brian Green

    Ha! No kidding, this stuff is ridiculously strong. I can’t think of a better bundle of cord to have in your pack for an emergency. It also holds a knot extremely well.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=586858864 Marty Gosling

    Great post Brian. 
    Thanks for the detailed comparison chart.  A friend is planning to hike the entire PCT and I, the geeky researcher, had recommended Spectra #725 line for bear bagging.  I will now have to check out dyneema guywire.

    • http://www.briangreen.net Brian Green

      Why yes, yes you do! :-p

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=586858864 Marty Gosling

    Great post Brian.  Thanks for the detailed comparison chart.  A friend is planning to hike the entire PCT and I, the geeky researcher, had recommended Spectra #725 line for bear bagging.  I will now have to check out dyneema guywire.

  • http://sticksblog.com/ Chad “Stick” Poindexter

    Brian,

    I agree, this is some nice cord. I have some that I have used as extra guy lines on my Lunar Duo, and then I carry the remaining 24 feet as back up cord in my ditty bag. I have no worries about using this line for anything backpacking and it is light enough not to worry about carrying it!

    Also, the cord is now called “Dyneema IronWire.” He recently had a contest over on BPL in which he asked people to suggest names and IronWire was the winning choice. I think it is a very fitting name.

    • http://www.briangreen.net Brian Green

      Thanks Stick. How come I’m the last one to know about this? I guess I have to log into BPL more often :-) The name is definitely appropriate, this cord is super tough. I don’t know about you, but I’ve found that melting the ends of this cord is not as easy as other types of cordage that I have. Did you have any issues with that?

      • http://sticksblog.com/ Chad “Stick” Poindexter

        Brian,

        I did not necessarily notice any issues with melting the ends that were out of the ordinary, although it appears that you have much more experience with different cords than I do. In retrospect, this cord is probably way overkill for the application in which I am using them in, that is the upper guy line’s on my Lunar Duo. But hey, at last I can rest assured that the tent won’t fall due to the cords not holding!

  • http://sticksblog.com/ Chad "Stick" Poindexter

    Brian,

    I agree, this is some nice cord. I have some that I have used as extra guy lines on my Lunar Duo, and then I carry the remaining 24 feet as back up cord in my ditty bag. I have no worries about using this line for anything backpacking and it is light enough not to worry about carrying it!

    Also, the cord is now called “Dyneema IronWire.” He recently had a contest over on BPL in which he asked people to suggest names and IronWire was the winning choice. I think it is a very fitting name.

  • Aawwff

    You should check out New England Tech Cord. 3mm 3,000lb. 0.8lb/100ft 

    It’s heavier and more expensive but it’s just amazing how strong it is for its size. It’s even recommended by the manufacturers as an emergency rappel rope. If you’re going somewhere that might require some climbing/rappelling it’s a lot lighter than carrying an 11mm heavy climbing rope.

    • Peter

      This leads to the question, what climbing equipment is suitable for use with 3mm cord? Most of the ascenders / descenders / belay devices / gloves / etc. I’ve seen would not work safely with such thin cord.

    • http://www.briangreen.net Brian Green

      Peter makes an excellent point. While the 3mm cord could easily be used as a load-bearing or climbing rope, there are very few or even no related climbing equipment pieces of gear that would work with it. It would have to be for emergency improvised climbing only IMHO. Even wrapping it around your torso to do an emergency rappel might painfully cut into your body because it’s so thin. Anyone have any experience with such things?

      • Aawwff

        Most figure 8 rappel devices would work with this rope if you use the smaller circle (some are designed that way for large and small rope). There are also some micro rappel devices out there designed specifically for 3mm and 5mm.

        These are designed for emergency use so they won’t be comfortable or optimal but they are still safe. At 3000lb that gives the recommended safety factor of 15 for a 200lb person. Although if using this more frequently then I would go for the 5mm 5000lb due to the loss of strength from repeated use and knots.

        Here is an example of a micro rappel device.

      • Aawwff

        Here’s a micro rappel system (ebay link) that is issued to the US Special Forces. It uses the 5mm Tech Cord. The whole package weighs 3lb and is attached to a belt which converts into a harness. It also has the micro rappel device I mentioned.

        This is a good ultralight option for someone planning on doing some light rock climbing but doesn’t want to haul around a huge duffel bag of rope and a harness. It’s also a good thing to have for an emergency depending on where you’re going.

        • http://www.briangreen.net Brian Green

          Okay – now that is cool!

  • Aawwff

    You should check out New England Tech Cord. 3mm 3000lb. 0.8lb/100ft 

    It’s heavier and more expensive but it’s just amazing how strong it is for its size. It’s even recommended by the manufacturers as an emergency rappel rope. If you’re going somewhere that might require some climbing/rappelling it’s a lot lighter than carrying an 11mm heavy climbing rope.

    http://www.neropes.com/product.aspx?mid=FC4DB29E596CB9D0D1DE3CDC00B982F1&lid=3&pid=66

  • http://www.briangreen.net/ Brian Green

    Thanks Stick. How come I’m the last one to know about this? I guess I have to log into BPL more often :-) The name is definitely appropriate, this cord is super tough. I don’t know about you, but I’ve found that melting the ends of this cord is not as easy as other types of cordage that I have. Did you have any issues with that?

  • http://www.briangreen.net/ Brian Green

    Why yes, yes you do! :-p

  • Peter

    This leads to the question, what climbing equipment is suitable for use with 3mm cord? Most of the ascenders / descenders / belay devices / gloves / etc. I’ve seen would not work safely with such thin cord.

  • http://www.briangreen.net/ Brian Green

    Peter makes an excellent point. While the 3mm cord could easily be used as a load-bearing or climbing rope, there are very few or even no related climbing equipment pieces of gear that would work with it. It would have to be for emergency improvised climbing only IMHO. Even wrapping it around your torso to do an emergency rappel might painfully cut into your body because it’s so thin. Anyone have any experience with such things?

  • Aawwff

    Most figure 8 rappel devices would work with this rope if you use the smaller circle (some are designed that way for large and small rope). There are also some micro rappel devices out there designed specifically for 3mm and 5mm. These are designed for emergency use so they won’t be comfortable or optimal but they are still safe. At 3000lb that gives the recommended safety factor of 15 for a 200lb person. Although if using this more frequently then I would go for the 5mm 5000lb due to the loss of strength from repeated use and knots.

    Here is an example of a micro rappel device: http://storrick.cnc.net/VerticalDevicesPage/Rappel/EightPages/EaredEights/EEight583.html

  • Aawwff

    Here’s a micro rappel system that is issued to the US Special Forces. It uses the 5mm Tech Cord. The whole package weighs 3lb and is attached to a belt which converts into a harness. It also has the micro rappel device I mentioned.

    http://cgi.ebay.com/New-England-Rope-Micro-Rappel-System-/160638329170?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item2566ca6152#ht_1261wt_1090This is a good ultralight option for someone planning on doing some light rock climbing but doesn’t want to haul around a huge duffel bag of rope and a harness. It’s also a good thing to have for an emergency depending on where you’re going.

  • http://www.briangreen.net/ Brian Green

    Okay – now that is cool!

  • http://sticksblog.com/ Chad "Stick" Poindexter

    Brian,

    I did not necessarily notice any issues with melting the ends that were out of the ordinary, although it appears that you have much more experience with different cords than I do. In retrospect, this cord is probably way overkill for the application in which I am using them in, that is the upper guy line’s on my Lunar Duo. But hey, at last I can rest assured that the tent won’t fall due to the cords not holding!

  • AbleMob

    I spend more time untangling this line to prepare bear-bagging than actually hanging the bear bag. It’s just too waxy and stiff.

    • http://www.briangreen.net Brian Green

      Bob, do you bundle up the cord neatly after each use? I’ve been using it for several tasks over the past few weeks and have had no problems with is tangling at all, but I make a habit to coil it back into a neat hank after each use.

      • AbleMob

        Thanks Brian. I hadn’t been winding it as neatly as I should. The tangling comes when I try to undo the bundle. it seems to develop kinks from the stiff coating that tend to snag on the rest of it.  I tried “coiling” it into the rock pouch/carrying bag like the rope for a kayak rescue throw bag but it’s a little tedious and didn’t help much.  I just tried winding it around a small plastic spool from 120 roll film; we’ll see how that works. I think I’ll save this stuff for shorter length tarp guy lines and get some spectra 725.

  • AbleMob

    Thanks Brian. I hadn’t been winding it as neatly as I should. The tangling comes when I try to undo the bundle. it seems to develop kinks from the stiff coating that tend to snag on the rest of it.  I tried “coiling” it into the rock pouch/carrying bag like the rope for a kayak rescue throw bag but it’s a little tedious and didn’t help much.  I just tried winding it around a small plastic spool from 120 roll film; we’ll see how that works. I think I’ll save this stuff for shorter length tarp guy lines and get some spectra 725.

  • http://www.briangreen.net/ Brian Green

    Bob, do you bundle up the cord neatly after each use? I’ve been using it for several tasks over the past few weeks and have had no problems with is tangling at all, but I make a habit to coil it back into a neat hank after each use.

  • AbleMob

    I spend more time untangling this line to prepare bear-bagging than actually hanging the bear bag. It’s just too waxy and stiff.