Marlin spikes--at least here in the Pacific Northwest--are an old-fashioned logging tool. They are used for splicing wire rope, and while loggers use them in the field, rigging shops (like ours) use them in house as well. A good marlin spike really helps make a hand laid splice come together. They are made from special, hardened steel with a tapered tip that is driven into the wire rope as needed using a Splicing Hammer. The flat heads helps to facilitate this. With smaller spikes, and on smaller diameters of wire rope, the spike might be inserted by hand without the need for a hammer. But on bigger diameters, espeically with Swaged Wire Rope, you could find yourself needing both a small and large spike. Pro Tip: start with the small spike, then follow up with the larger spike as needed. Available in sizes from 6" - 16" in length, with larger sizes coming soon.