New synthetic rope innovator

By Euan Youdale25 February 2009

FibreMax’s Wilco van Zonneveld holds a 3 m long cable with a 350 tonne breaking capacity, weighing 2

FibreMax’s Wilco van Zonneveld holds a 3 m long cable with a 350 tonne breaking capacity, weighing 20 kg. A similar sized cable in steel instead of synthetic fibre would weigh seven to eight times tha

FibreMax is a new Netherlands-based company specializing in the manufacture of lightweight precision ropes out of synthetic fibres.

"By means of a unique endless winding production process we are capable of producing precision cables that are far lighter, stiffer, stronger and thinner than conventional steel wire ropes," according to the company. "Our cables are even stronger, stiffer and lighter than traditional braided synthetic ropes."

A range of characteristics make the cables ideal for heavy lift crane and offshore applications, said FibreMax. When compared at the same steel wire break load, they have an 80 to 90% lower weight, 10% smaller diameter and 30% lower weight than braided ropes.

Other advantages include excellent fatigue life, 40 year lifespan and no construction stretch. The company added that no bedding-in is needed and that a continuous length of up to 5,000 m will be available by the beginning of 2010.

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