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Reviews > Health & Safety > Emergency and Survival Gear > TreeLine 40 Spectra 725 Line > Owner Review by Derek Hansen

OWNER REVIEW: TreeLine 40’ Spectra 725 Line

DATE: December 1, 2007

Spectra 725 Line Photo

Photo courtesy AntiGravityGear, LLC

TESTER INFORMATION

Name: Derek Hansen
Age: 32
Gender: Male
Height: 5’ 10” (1.78 m)
Weight: 165 lb (75 kg)
Email address: derek(dee-oh-tee)hansen(at)mac(dee-oh-tee)com
City, State, Country: Alexandria, Virginia, USA

BACKPACKING BACKGROUND

I began serious backpacking two years ago after becoming a Scoutmaster for a local Boy Scout troop. I overnight camp at least once a month with two or three week-long high adventure treks every year. I keep my week-long pack under 30 lb (13 kg), including consumables. I use a hammock year-round.

PRODUCT INFORMATION

Manufacturer: AntiGravityGear, LLC
Year of Manufacture: 2007
URL: http://www.antigravitygear.com
Weight listed (rope and storage bag): 1 oz (28 g)
Weight measured: 1 oz (28 g)
Rope length listed: 40 ft (12.2 m)
Rope length measured: 40 ft (12.2 m)
Rope thickness measured: 0.125 in (0.32 cm)
Bag dimensions measured: 6.25 x 3 in (15.8 x 7.6 cm)
Rope breaking strength listed: 725 lb (329 kg)
MSRP: $18.95

PRODUCT DESCRIPTION

The TreeLine 40’ Spectra 725 Line is a 40 ft (12.2 m) length of strong, lightweight synthetic rope stored in a small 6.25 x 3 in (15.8 x 7.6 cm) silicon-impregnated nylon sack. The line is primarily used to hang a bear bag, but can be used for other purposes such as pitching a tarp or a line for drying clothes. The rope has a listed breaking strength of 726 lb (329 kg). The storage sack comes with a black cord lock and the rope is fed through the stuff sack loop and back through the cord lock. The storage sack can double as a throw bag.

The rope and storage sack came in an unassuming white box with an AntiGravityGear sticker affixed. The rope was neatly coiled inside the storage sack. My product differed from what was listed on the website in that the rope received was white (as opposed to charcoal) and the nylon sack was black (as opposed to white).

FIELD USE CONDITIONS

I have used the TreeLine 40’ Spectra 725 Line on all of my backpacking treks in 2007 to hang my bear bag (30+ uses). I have used this line at elevations from sea level to 6851 ft (2088 m) and in temperatures ranging from 20 to 100 F (-6 to 38 C) and in clear, rainy, and humid conditions.

Before I used this rope out on a trek, I experimented in my 209 sq ft (19 sq m) back yard where I tried multi-day “dead-hang” bear bags ranging in weight from 1 lb (0.5 kg) to 10 lb (4 kg) at an elevation of 50 ft (15 m) in the same temperatures and conditions listed above.

My average bear bag on a trek weighed 4 lb (1.8 kg) which included food, trash, cook gear, first aid kit, hygiene kit, and other “smellable” items.

FIELD USE RESULTS

Bear bag rope

Spectra rope attached to mini carabiner.

I was looking for a strong yet lightweight rope to hang my bear bag during my backpacking adventures. Rope for hanging a bear bag gets a lot of use and abuse, and I’ve used everything from military-grade “550” cord to cheap braided plastic to get the job done. When I received my TreeLine rope in the mail I was shocked by its small footprint and weight, or lack thereof. I really doubted if there was 40 ft (12.2 m) of rope tucked away in the storage sack, but I turned quick convert once I pulled out the long–but minimalist–white cord from the sack.

When I hang a bear bag, I typically use the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) Method which is a little more complex than simply tying the cord off to an adjacent tree. The PCT Method uses a small carabiner and a pencil-size twig as a toggle to keep the bear bag above the critters. I used this method using the line in various conditions in my backyard before I felt comfortable taking it out into the field.

Bear bag hanging from branch

10 lb (4 kg) bear bag example hung using the PCT Method with Spectra rope.

It was difficult to get a firm grip on the rope in wet and rainy conditions, and I found that the weight of the bear bag directly influenced this measurement. The heavier the bear bag, the more the cord slipped in my hand while hanging the bag. This may seem like an obvious correlation, but even compared to other synthetic rope, the flat-weave of the Spectra line greatly reduced my gripping ability.

My test 10 lb (4 kg) bear bag was a monster to pull up. I had to wrap the cord several times around my hands in order to get a firm grip. With great effort (and lots of practice), I was able to tie a clove hitch toggle for the PCT Method and let the cord lose to let the bag hang. Once hung, however, the cord performed flawlessly. I let my test 10 lb (4 kg) bear bag hang just under 36 hours and noticed no slippage or movement due to rain or moisture. Getting this heavy bag down, however, was also an issue: I had to wrap the flat-weave cord around my hands multiple times to get the bag down.

My test 4 lb (1.8 kg) bear bag was very easy to hang using the Spectra cord. I also tried this weight in rainy conditions, but I did not have any problem getting a grip on the line and tying off the toggle to hang the bag. I found that the optimal hang weight for this cord was under 8 lb (4 kg). Anything heavier and I would want to wear gloves in order to get a good grip on the cord.

I never tried the Spectra’s breaking weight of 725 lb (329 kg). I hope my bear bag never weighs that much!

Whether using my light- or heavyweight bear bag, however, I noticed how effortlessly the Spectra cord ran over the tree branches. Hot or cold, wet or dry, the line slid across the branch without snagging or cutting. Even after months of use, the cord does not show signs of fraying.

The stuff sack, however, was not built for long-term durability. The feather-weight silicon-impregnated rip-stop nylon is wonderful for weight, but after six-months of use, I finally managed to rip two holes near the bottom. The holes came from using the rope storage sack as a throw bag. The website recommends the “storage bag…is made to use with a rock weight for throwing over tree limbs.” This is a great second use for the sack, but I have never been able to find smooth, marble-shaped rocks in the field, and the ones I have been using finally wore a hole.

The other issue I had with the storage bag was how the line doubled as the bag’s cinch cord and was fed through the cord lock. At first I thought this was an ingenious solution and minimalist approach to an all-in-one solution. In use, however, I found this more of a nuisance. It was difficult to feed the line through the cord lock to open and close the bag. I finally cut the line and used a small portion just for the storage sack and cord lock, leaving the rest of the line free.

SUMMARY

The TreeLine 40’ Spectra 725 Line by AntiGravityGear, LLC, is an excellent lightweight line that is great for hanging a bear bag or other camp uses (e.g., tarp/tent guy-lines, tie-downs, laundry line, etc.). The light, flat weave cord takes some getting used to due to its slippery feel, but it glides easily over rough bark and doesn’t snag. The storage bag makes a handy throw bag and keeps the kit self-contained.

ROSES

  1. Lightweight.
  2. Cord-locked storage bag doubles as throw bag.
  3. Rope is smooth and does not snag on tree branches.

THORNS

  1. Rope is slick and passes through hands easily.
  2. Storage bag durability sacrificed for weight.
  3. Rope line is used as bag cinch line.
Updated: Wed, Dec 12, 2007 at 11:08 PM

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Reviews > Health & Safety > Emergency and Survival Gear > TreeLine 40 Spectra 725 Line > Owner Review by Derek Hansen



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