Baggywrinkle


What the Hell is a “Baggywrinkle”?

I thought you might ask that question, and I’m fully prepared to answering you. Grab some coffee and I’ll ‘splain.

Imagine your on a square-rigger, in the North Atlantic, in December, and it is really snotty. You have 23 sails amounting to 22,227 square feet and 6 miles of rigging. Twenty-three sails, over 430 feet of mast and 6 miles of rigging require a lot of steel cables to keep them in place.

Remember, I said it was really snotty…. The wind is howling and the sails are slapping all over and rubbing against all that steel cable… you don’t have any spare sails… the sails are starting to chafe, this is not good. Your favorite swab just got finished changing a few miles of line and comes up with the great idea to use the line to make a buffer on the cable so the sails don’t get shredded like the dozen credit card offers in today’s mail.

baggywrinkle in useEnter the Baggywrinkle! Short lengths of “yarn” (single ply of rope) are attached to a “marline” (tarred cordage) using a “railroad sennit” (knot). After making several miles of this you lash the end tightly to the steel wrapping baggywrinklecable and wrap the baggywrinkle tightly around the cable like the example at right shows.

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