Silent Night

Seamanship manuals are full of good advice about chafing gear. Usually, it’s all about making sure your ropes don’t wear through, but an infuriating by-product of chafe for anyone who enjoys a good night’s sleep is a rafted-up neighbour’s warp creaking in your fairlead. The best answer is to get him to buy some nice soft ropes and make them meaty, because stiff, mingy ropes are always noisier than hefty pliable ones. Since this would involve a major diplomatic offensive, it’s easier to slide a length of hose discreetly over the offending line. Find a couple of feet in your local skip. They all have plenty to choose from. Toilet hose is best because it’s big. Slit it down one side so you can slip it over. For maximum sophistication, punch a hole at each end to take a length of marlin, and rolling-hitch it on so it can’t ‘walk’ its way beyond the action.