A hoisting first is what Ferndale, Wash.-based Samson Rope pulled off under the direction of Michael Quinn, director of new market development, when it debuted the world's first synthetic hoisting rope—the KZ100—for use on cranes in 2014.


Produced fully in Ferndale, the synthetic hoist rope yielded a bounty of benefits for crane operators by reducing weight 80% versus traditional—and grimy—wire rope. Quinn's list of improvements included faster reeving, installation and set up; safer use, without the difficult-to-inspect steel wires; less weight below the boom, allowing for more hauling weight; and maybe the best of them all, torque-neutral.


Mike Herbert, Wisconsin-based Manitowoc's global product director for rough-terrain cranes, says the synthetic material improves performance, even on the ground. The lightweight nature makes reeving for higher load capacities easier and safer. Plus, without the need for lubrication, as with steel rope, the process is cleaner and requires less maintenance.

The two-year design process to debut the KZ100 allowed Samson to work with Dyneema fibers and enter into an exclusive commercial-sale contract until September 2015 with Manitowoc.

"It met all our expectations, and every customer that used it in normal crane operation was excited about it," Herbert says. Along with other proprietary features, the right twist level and braid angle helped to create a "control core" in the center of the 12-strand rope, giving Samson a finished product full of strength, Quinn adds.