Boat docking lines are essential in keeping your boat stable at the dock. An anchor chain can do the same job but they’re bulky and not stretchable. Flexibility is important since the impact is carried by mooring or docking cleats. Only the best dock lines can bear this strain without snapping. Don’t be tricked into buying low quality dock lines. Instead, look for these factors to get your money’s worth:
- The sufficient length for your boat length
Here’s a guide for the boating rope size that matches the length of your boat. Refer to the following dock line size chart:
|Line diameter||Boat length|
|3/8 inch||Up to 27 ft|
|7/16 inch||28 to 31 ft|
|Half inch||32 to 36 ft|
|5/8 inch||37 to 45 ft|
|¾ inch||46 to 54 ft|
|7/8 inch||55 to 63 ft|
|1 inch||64 to 72 ft|
When getting permanent dock lines, make sure that they are three-quarters long for half of the boat’s length. A 10-15-inch eyelet can affect how you tie the lines. This feature is not found in some dock lines.
- Kinds of dock lines based on weaves
Braided – This kind of dock line is tough and looks nice. At the same time, it’s easy on the palms and hands.
Shoreline marine double braided dock line – Apart from having a good appearance, this type of dock line has the strongest weaving design. Thus, it guarantees controlled elongation while hampering abrasion.
Three-strand rope – It’s flexible because it stretches a lot. You can rely on its resistance to abrasion. It’s also convenient to use as it doesn’t drop easily when interweaving happens.
- Usage and purpose
Before the purchase, think about whether you need permanent or transient dock lines. A permanent dock line is intended for permanent docking while the transient lines are utilized when you’re away from the harbor. It’s best to opt for nylon rope with premium quality for durability.
Another substitute for nylon boat rope is polypropylene. However, this material doesn’t have the flexibility and strength of nylon. Also, it easily gives in to sun rays.
Once you consider these factors, you can have pick out the best boat dock lines from the following list:
Table of Contents
- Top 11 Dock Line Reviews
- 1. SeaSense 50013096 Double Braid Nylon Dockline
- 2. Rainier Supply Co Dock Lines
- 3. ACY Marine – Double Braided Nylon Dock Line
- 4. Jranter 4 Bungee Dock Lines for Boat Shock
- 5. GREENEVER GJ-MTX-01 Dock Lines & Ropes
- 6. ACY Marine Double Braided Nylon Dock Line
- 7. Regatta Marine Essentials Nylon Dock Line
- 8. INNOCEDEAR Dock Lines
- 9. Orange Cycle Parts PWCD-2 Dock Lines
- 10. PREDATOR NZ Hi-Performance Dock Lines
- 11. Seachoice Double Braid Nylon Dock Line
- Factors To Consider When Choosing Dock Lines
- How Thick Should Dock Lines Be
- How Long Should Dock Lines Be
- How Many Dock Lines Should You Have
- How To Tie Dock Lines
- Are Bungee Dock Lines Any Good
Top 11 Dock Line Reviews
1. SeaSense 50013096 Double Braid Nylon Dockline
After many years of sailing from Florida to California or other islands, I can say that this is the top-rated boat dock rope I’ve ever used for securing vessels. I do not have issues with loose coils as long as I set it properly from the boat cleat to the loop. This rope for boats fits well on the dock cleats. Thus, it’s suitable for coiling and handling.
This braided nylon dock line has dependable strength with support from its braid to braid pattern and half-inch thickness. It can pull a 50-foot boat. You can’t underestimate its strength as it’s also used for tying loads on a truck. I’m thankful that I can secure lumber, hay bales, trash, motorcycles, appliances, and many more while traveling with my truck.
Another thing that I admire about this product is its shock absorption feature. There is no doubt that it can handle everything when used for docking. The total length from end to end is 25 feet. I find it appropriate but some people find it shorter for the requirements of their application.
2. Rainier Supply Co Dock Lines
I looked high and low for the right dock lines and I only stopped when I found these dock ropes for boats. They’re double-braided nylon boat ropes for docking with strong construction. So, I don’t have to worry even if I dock my boat under windy weather. They also have superb shock absorption, which has been useful in many cases.
I also used these ropes to hold towables behind my kayak. It made me happy since the kids can have a fun and safe ride. They don’t snap unexpectedly. I sometimes use them to tie my friend’s boat and they only stretch a little. Even when I leave our boats for several hours; they don’t slam into each other. I appreciate that these double braid lines don’t stretch too much but deal with shock well.
These dock lines are friendly to my hands. So, I don’t have to deal with discomfort when using them. The eyelets are helpful too. Moreover, the quality is admirable; even the ends are carefully designed. My experiences prove that these are durable nylon dock lines! They can surely last for years.
3. ACY Marine – Double Braided Nylon Dock Line
It’s a strong line with a soft texture that does many tricks. It’s not only a great docking line but also a utility line. It is a pliable mooring rope that boasts premium quality. I have three in my boat to meet the demands of docking.
They’re easy to wrap and knot so docking is convenient and attachment to cleats on the bow and stern is trouble-free. Although I use these regularly in the summer, they do not fray thanks to their UV-resistance. They are also resistant to shock and excessive stretching. Therefore, you can certainly depend on their durability!
In addition, this nylon boat rope helps me a lot even when I’m not sailing. I use it to tie my large dog that weighs 100 lbs on a tree. The weight of my lush hydrangea doesn’t weigh down my arbor anymore because I also use it. These are only two examples but there are other situations where it’s effective.
4. Jranter 4 Bungee Dock Lines for Boat Shock
These boat bungee dock lines are the epitome of versatility. They can accommodate different applications and adapt to various kinds of cleats and hooks thanks to their size. I use them for my small aluminum powerboat and large sailboat. If it’s too long for you, don’t worry; it’s effortless to boat tie-down ropes. I did this in the front of my small boat, and it’s also easy to take off.
These bungee dock ropes will surely impress you in many ways. Due to their ability to absorb shock from docks, cleats, pylons, other hardware, and boats, they’re not swayed by descent waves and 20 mph winds. I was amazed to witness them holding five kayaks in the gusting wind.
I like that these lines are easy to use and come in handy during bathroom or short breaks. There’s no need to take a lot of time doing it. Despite the high and low of the water in the river, you can depend on it to hold your boat for a couple of days. I don’t need to check my boat too often. You may also use them to tie bumpers as many boat owners do in my area.
5. GREENEVER GJ-MTX-01 Dock Lines & Ropes
Among the boat rope accessories that I’ve used, these double braided dock lines have exceptional quality. Every boat owner will love them as they have the nice features of boat ropes for docking. They’re stretchable and durable with a breaking strength of 5,800 pounds. In addition, their safe working load is 790 pounds. These demonstrate that they’re relatively 25% to 30% stronger than other dock lines.
They excel in absorbing shock so I use them as bow and stern lines. Moreover, they’re suitable for small to medium boats. I’m afraid they may be insufficient for larger vessels. With the ultra-strength of these premium quality nylon dock lines, they stay tough in facing marine environment where UV rays, salt water, mold, and oil are present.
I don’t need to create an eye splice as the eye loop is ready-made. Thus, I feel comfortable when handling them. If you inspect it closely, you’ll notice that the fabric is tightly stitched and supple. It’s why the 3/8 inch thickness creates enough leverage. This is also the basis of durability. I appreciate that they quickly cling on the cleat as well.
6. ACY Marine Double Braided Nylon Dock Line
With about half an inch thickness, this dock line serves me and my boat well. It never slipped or loosened and at the same time, its softness and strength are satisfactory. Holding onto this line is comfortable without sacrificing strength and quality. It has a breaking strength of 2,240 kgs!
When I first received a couple of these dock lines, they were slightly stiff but I dedicated some time to practicing tying knots. I did it to make them cling to the cleats well. After continuous practice, I can feel that they’re tightened just the way I like.
Also, I discovered that they can be made into a cleat hitch, clove hitch, two half hitches, rolling hitch, and stopper knot. Despite their strength, it’s a piece of cake to wrap and knot them on the boat’s cleat.
I’m glad that they have an eye splice as it can make docking much easier. I can just toss the lines when mooring to save time. Aside from strength, they have resistance against elements in the marine environment. They don’t turn brittle under the sun. I noticed that they are resistant against stretching and shock as well.
7. Regatta Marine Essentials Nylon Dock Line
These are attractive marine dock lines and they’re perfect for my 24-foot cabin cruiser. Aside from enhancing aesthetics, they’re great for voyages in the open sea. I have peace of mind leaving my craft at the slip. Thanks to the eye hole, I can loop or coil the cleats much quicker than the previous lines that I owned.
These four lines have a good value since I just paid for the price of one line. Unfortunately, they’re only great for small to medium vessels. They prove to be excellent for weekend getaways but you’ll need other lines for a mooring or permanent slip. You may also have it as travel dock lines to secure your boat.
I can’t ask for any darker lines since they’re colored black and don’t easily get stained. It’s indeed a good feature since the marine environment can be harsh. Using dirty lines can tarnish the flawless looks of my cruiser.
8. INNOCEDEAR Dock Lines
When I found this product, I knew that I’d gotten the right dock line. You’ll find the necessary strength for docking from their double braided construction. Two additional whipped strings prevent unraveling and splitting off the bitter end. They can handle shock loads without rotating and getting kinky. I entrusted my 30-foot boat to them and they haven’t disappointed me.
My friend also owns these INNOCEDEAR lines, but he doesn’t only use them as two spring lines. He relies on them to keep his catamaran in place on the trailer when traveling. He tried it after they proved to be effective regular dock lines. With four pieces of lines in a pack, you can sort them out as a spring line, one stern line, and a pair of bowlines.
I also use them on boat fenders and everything is fine. With continuous use, they prove to be made for both freshwater and saltwater environments. They remain taut and stretch-resistant after three months of consistent exposure to salt air. Furthermore, they won’t easily be degraded by other outdoor elements, such as UV rays and mold.
9. Orange Cycle Parts PWCD-2 Dock Lines
This product put an end to my search for dock lines for PWC, jet ski, kayak, and pontoon. In my case, I usually use it in securing jet skis with my pontoon. I find it convenient every time I leave with my jet ski or lock it in after a ride since I only need to clip and unclip.
My back is no longer constrained as it helps me pull my kayak and pontoon with these dock lines in the shallow area. There’s no need to bend and drag the handle. They are light and not super strong to make it float. But they will hinder your boat from leaving the dock unattended.
On the other hand, they may be short for some applications but they’re long enough if you need to tie your vessel to another. As you can see, their features have specific purposes. The various colors make them attractive even though there’s nothing to do with functionality.
I can attest that the polymer hook is sturdy and heavy-duty. There’s a knot next to it so it won’t get loose. You may even need to practice opening the hook first since it’s tough at first use. Nevertheless, it only means that it’s a reliable clasp. I can’t complain about the rope because it has the right thickness.
10. PREDATOR NZ Hi-Performance Dock Lines
Just looking at the package of these dock lines, you can tell that there’s superior quality. The firmness that you can feel on their entire length supports this claim. Since they are made of nylon, they’re more stretchy and durable than polyester lines. I can tightly tie them on a dock cleat with no issues of snagging on docks and pillars. Thus, I launch and dock my boat without any trouble.
The navy blue color is outstanding as it’s lasting. Exposure to sunlight and rain doesn’t result in fading. No discoloration occurs even after I rinse them off whenever I do the regular cleaning for my boat. To further protect the color of these high-end boat tie-up ropes, a storage bag is provided for every purchase.
I’ve also witnessed how they hold up against saltwater. Even if there’s a wind blowing at the docking area, the knots never come undone. They’re not fragile to mold and rot. Since I have these Hi-Performance lines, I don’t need backup lines. With all the wonderful features that are packed elegantly, it’s not embarrassing to give them as a present to someone.
11. Seachoice Double Braid Nylon Dock Line
The most impressive ability of this dock line is bearing massive weight. I even use it to lift objects that weigh a hundred pounds with a hand-cranked winch. The hammock located in my yard hangs properly between the trees because of it.
Thanks to the strength and length of these easy dock lines, it’s a menial task to secure my canoe and kayak at the lakeside. They’re multi-purpose with a nylon length of 35 feet.
Aside from blue, this dock line is available in seven colors. When I first received it, I felt the slimy texture due to the bleeding dye. This is not a downside as it only requires a quick clean. I just had to soak it in warm, soapy water to get rid of the unwanted slimy texture and dye.
Its thickness and smoothness will make you think that it’s very expensive but it’s actually relatively affordable. The convenience that it brings is undeniable since it is easy to handle and control with a 15-inch eye splice.
Factors To Consider When Choosing Dock Lines
Types of dock lines
You must know different types of dock lines to get the one that suits you best.
- Polyester dock line
It has the same strength as nylon since it can resist UV rays and abrasion. Thus, it can serve you in the long run without losing its flexibility. However, it can stretch a bit so it may fail to take in shock. That’s why you need to be careful when using this dock line.
- Nylon dock line
This dock line is stronger than the one made of polyester. Also, it’s more efficient at taking in shock loads during rugged settings because of the stretch. As time passes, the flexibility gradually vanishes. Eventually, it can no longer hover in the water and loses its strength when soaked.
This can be a cheaper substitute for nylon. It’s known to maintain flexibility and resistance against rot. It’s also known to hover in the water. But this is not the toughest dock line as it weakens under the sun. So, it’s advisable to store it properly when not in use.
- Steel wire mooring lines
This type of dock line is composed of six strands of steel wire that forms a curled configuration. It’s lightweight and easy to handle as it carries on power. It specializes in bearing shock and elasticity. However, it necessitates high maintenance since it’s prone to corrosion.
- Sisal or synthetic fiber
The material called Agava Sisalana yarn is quite strong but its stretching ability is missing. This leads to failure of taking in shock loads. It can also be abrasive so proper handling is needed. But you will be surprised that you can have a nice grip on it. Moreover, it resists the harshness of the sun and can last even longer if it goes through treatment.
How Thick Should Dock Lines Be
There are braided, double braid, mega braid dock lines, and three strand lines. You have to look at the thickness or the line diameter. Based on the rule of thumb, 1/8 inch diameter should be allotted to every 9 feet of your boat’s length. 3/8 inch is the minimum size and it’s good for a 20-foot boat.
For a 40-foot boat, a 5/8 dock line is the right match and it can handle up to 45-foot long vessels. A half an inch is for crafts that are 36 feet long. You’ll find ¾ dock lines and they are for boats that are up to 54 feet long.
How Long Should Dock Lines Be
Before buying, you should know the docking line size or length. It’s not complicated as dock line sizing should be 2/3 of your boat’s length. But the spring lines should be equal to the vessel’s length.
How Many Dock Lines Should You Have
The basis is not about dock length to boat length. Generally, six dock lines are needed, such as a pair of bow lines, stern lines, and spring lines
How To Tie Dock Lines
If you just recently engage in sailing, it’s vital to learn how to boat tie off the rope for docking. Here are the basic steps:
- Step 1: Start by creating a loop with a free end by making a turning action. There should be a gap in the middle part.
- Step 2: Grab the standing line from the loop that you’ve made to pull a section. Do the same with the remaining free end for a new loop.
- Step 3: Pull the knot down on the standing line to come up with a turn stiff.
- Step 4: Pull the free end to unfasten the knot.
Are Bungee Dock Lines Any Good
The bungee dock lines for boats are good. They’re also called built-in snubber. A chafe guard is added on these lines to protect the hull. Due to the feature, sliding adjustment is available to dock with ease and convenience. So, it’s safe to call them adjustable dock lines.
To wrap it up, the essential features of the best dock lines are strength for securing your boat and flexibility to make tight knots. Thus, your boat won’t go astray. You can also expect resistance against harsh outdoor elements, weathering, and loads from these excellent dock lines.