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February 03, 2022 2 min read

Allen Thimbles, What Are They and Why You Should Use Them

Allen Brothers thimbles are an evolution from a product that has been used on tall ships for many years, originally made from wood and plastics. Thimbles can be used for lots of different parts of your boat from kicker cascades to a 2:1 halyard system.

The Thimble

These Allen Brothers thimbles have a simple design made from a single piece of high-grade aluminium that is CNC machined into its shape. The high-grade aluminium allows the thimble to have great strength while weighing so little.

The shape allows you to splice a line around the outside of the thimble and the low friction coating inside allows other lines to slide through the middle with ease.

Being low friction and having a smooth inside means your ropes wear less than a they would as a traditional loop or eye splice.

Where should I use a thimble?

A thimble is a substantial weight saving over a 20mm block. With a higher working and breaking load than a 20mm block, they sound great. But they can't be used on everything. They are low friction but that doesn't mean they have no friction as they have no moving parts. Constant use under load and adjustment through the centre isn't recommended and a standard block would perform better in this application. 

Day Boats and Yachts

Thimbles can be used in lots of different places on your boat. From 2:1 halyard systems to traveller systems they can reduce the weight and the cost of replacing a damaged block. They can be also used on backstays as their low friction characteristics allow the rope to move while under a slight load.

Dinghies and High-Performance Boats

Thimbles can be used from anything from over deck continuous control lines to tweaker lines for your symmetrical spinnakers to take up systems on asymmetric spinnaker halyards. With a great working and breaking load they can also be used in kicker systems and downhaul systems but you would need to check if your boat class allows this.

What Options Do I Have?

Thimbles come in a variety of sizes ranging from 15mm to 35mm and a selection of colours too. If you are interested in thimbles or splicing them into your new lines we can also do that for you. Simply get in touch with our team and tell us the length and thickness of the rope you would like them spliced to.

Explore our full range of Rope Thimbles or take a look at all of our Allen Brothers products.