Have you seen the new hats? Cactus has teamed with one of the hottest brands on the market to sell three newly designed Hooey hats, as well as a special new calf rope. The first shipment of Cactus/Hooey hats sold out completely within three weeks, but more will be available in May.
“To be partnered with such a popular brand out of south Texas is a win-win for us, because the calf ropes are flying out the door, too,” said head rope-maker Barry Berg.
The new straight-poly Hooey calf rope comes in an array of diameters from 9.0mm to 10.75mm, as well as a youth version, and it’s fast becoming one of the company’s most popular. Cactus also continues to offer some of the industry’s best team ropes, including the Xplosion (from the Relentless line) and the Nitro—the lightning-fast twine used by Matt Sherwood and Cesar de la Cruz.
“As we go into the summer months, we also remind people that our 100-percent nylon four-strands perform really well when temperatures are high,” said Berg. “Those include the C4, Hypnotic and Mojo.”
CactusRopes.com • (800) 774-6946
From its beginning in a small garage across the street from its current 17,000-square-foot Idaho location, Cowboy Cordage continues to expand to serve its growing customer base. Commonly known as The Rope Shop, this family-owned company opened its doors in early 1981 as Rocky Mtn. Ropes, later filing its corporate name as Cowboy Cordage Inc. Over the next several years, it added many brands and trademarks, including Gator Ropes, Magnum Ropes, and RoperVision.
The latest release in the team rope line-up—the Gator Fource—is popular in its regular head and heel lengths, but it also now comes in a 25-foot tie-on length. This ice blue tie-on rope has proven to be a successful combination of length and price ($29.95)—allowing consumers to pay only for what they need. And carrying the tradition forward from so many years ago, the signature rubber gator hangs from the eye of each rope.
The Rope Shop produces 20 styles of team ropes, plus a full line of children’s ropes and ranch ropes. In addition, it offers the WonPad saddle blanket and accompanying WonBoot leg gear and WonCinch lines, as well as a bit and spur line.
TheRopeShopOnline.com • (800) 447-6259
Lone Star Ropes
As a relative newcomer to the industry, Lone Star Ropes is still small enough that veteran rope maker Guy Alford personally oversees the process of making each rope. Lone Star was launched about eight years ago by team roping brothers Richie and Kevin Pate of Texas, who just wanted to make great ropes for themselves and their friends.
“We are constantly being contacted by dealers from all over the United States whose customers are coming into their stores asking for our ropes,” said manager Bob Travis. “Lone Star Ropes are really gaining in popularity and we’re seeing some pretty tremendous growth.”
One of Lone Star’s biggest fans is two-time world champion heeler Patrick Smith, who joined the team in late 2013 and helped develop The Storm—a weighty four-strand blended rope. Another big customer is reserve world champion header Kaleb Driggers, who uses Lone Star’s three-strand Glacier at rodeos and turns to the four-strand Storm at jackpots.
Lone Star offers five different four-strand ropes, including one made of straight nylon. Visit the site and you can locate dealers and shop through Lone Star’s logo apparel, from tees and hoodies to vintage meshback caps.
LoneStarRopes.com • (855) 54-ROPES
Classic and Rattler Ropes consistently deliver some of the most sought-after ropes in the industry, and that hasn’t changed since Classic’s debut back in 1986 all the way through the launch of its wildly popular rope The Heat in 2009 and Spydr5 in 2010.
While the five-strand Spydr5 offers that patented Coretech technology, the rope making the biggest splash lately is actually one that Rattler has offered for a number of years—the GT4. More durable than a three-strand, the GT4 is easy to handle with lots of body, making it the favorite rope of guys like Travis Graves and Kollin VonAhn.
“People know they can always come back to a Classic or Rattler rope because they consistently perform well,” says production manager Craig Bray. “We put a lot of pride in the quality of our product.”
Bray estimates that 21 out of the 30 team roping contestants at the 2013 Wrangler NFR were swinging a Classic or Rattler, and that six of the past eight pairs of world titles were won with the ropes.
It truly seems that, as Classic likes to say, “success is in your hands.”
www.ClassicRope.com • (800) 654-7864
If there’s one company in America with more old-school cool than any other cowboy retailer, it’s King Ropes. Visit the picturesque King family ranch outside Sheridan, Wyo., in springtime and you’ll likely glimpse dozens of fresh ropes stretched out in the sun.
“Part of what makes our ropes so popular is our curing and aging process,” said Danny Morales, who’s worked at King Ropes nearly 35 years. “Heat from that sun helps set the wax into the rope, so the hondo always stays straight. Plus, they break in a lot quicker with less runs.”
King’s 3/8” scant “light” head and heel ropes in blue-green or red are becoming popular, and are King’s answer to the market trend toward smaller and smaller ropes. But don’t worry about the King brand coming out with any fancy rope names—you still just ask for a King in a nylon or blend, three or four strands.
And don’t forget to get a cap. The wildly popular King Ropes hats are spotted everywhere from Brazil to Australia, where King commonly ships its home-tied 40- and 60-foot ranch ropes.
KingRopes.com • (800) 443-8919
Fast Back Ropes
This company has a brand-spanking new rope out called The Vortex. It’s a small, light straight-nylon three-strand rope with no color.
“The benefits of three-strand ropes have been overlooked lately,” says general manager Al Benson. “Most of our pros use and win with three-strands and we felt like it was time to provide new options in that market.”
The Vortex head rope is a hair bigger than the Mach III with a little more weight; plus, it’s 33 feet long, which is great for reaching at rodeos. The heel rope is slightly smaller and lighter than the Mach III, but offers so much body that you can put a big trap under a steer with no bounce—and it doesn’t close up.
“I use a softer heel rope, and the Vortex is light and easy to swing and control,” says Dakota Kirchenschlager, who helped develop the rope. “The body it has really keeps my loop open when I place it on the ground.”
Plus, the natural color means this rope is more consistent in different temperatures and it won’t fuzz up as fast as a dyed rope. Plus, the higher crowns of its three strands make it stop faster on the saddle horn. Not only will you make faster runs, but your rope will last longer.
“Economically, it’s a whole lot better all the way around,” Benson says.
FastBackRopes.com • (800) 479-1851
Noble Outfitters True Flex Roping Glove
Have you been frustrated by a roping glove that doesn’t allow you to really feel your rope, or one that bunches up around your palm or wrist because the size just doesn’t quite work?
Now there’s a new standard in thin roping gloves. Noble Outfitters’ True Flex™ Roping Glove was engineered for a close-contact feel because it was constructed specifically to reduce bulk in the knuckles for even better feel of your rope. The nylon/cotton/rubber blend material is made with flexibility, fit and feel in mind, giving you an extra-sensitive feel and skin-tight fit that allows for even faster rope speed.
The True Flex™ Roping Glove comes in a fun orange color and is available in four sizes to ensure a snug fit, with each cuff color coded by size for easy reference. The gloves are available in 12-packs of small, medium, large or extra-large.
Noble Outfitters Retro Rope Bag
Here’s something brand new from the California-based Noble Outfitters – a ropebag that offers you all the rope protection of a traditional can without the weight and bulk, plus several extra features. The new Retro Roper’s Bag has a 600-denier 100-percent polyester canvas water-repellant exterior and it opens just like a can to give you full access immediately.
New innovations include a couple of full 19-inch dividers with mesh bottoms to let dirt fall away as you easily separate new ropes from old stand-bys (no more coils getting caught up in each other). Other features include a quick-clip at the handle so you can hang it from anything and a removable shoulder strap for hands-free transporting.
A large zippered front section holds all your accessories, while a revolutionary Grab ‘n Go dispenser just above it lets you store your favorite glove where it’s extra handy. What’s more, when you buy a Retro Roper’s Bag, you get a six-pack of True Flex™ Roping Gloves for free.
And you can enjoy your new bag and gloves even more knowing that Noble puts 5 percent of profits toward equestrian-focused youth programs.
NobleOutfitters.com • (209) 566-7800