Hep C (HCVcc) CAN be killed on our braided-in crackers!
A 2013 Yale University medical school research study (the citation is at the end of this section so you can read it for yourself) which replicated the circumstances in which healthcare workers or patients may come into contact with HCV that has dried on surfaces. It also demonstrated that the virus's infectious viability is affected by the temperature and humidity in which the droplets, in uncovered well plates, were stored, as well as by the level of the viral titer in them. "Stored at 37 C (98.6 F) and 53% humidity, 100% of the high titer spots were positive until 10 days of storage and then declined to 40% at day 14 and ZERO% at day 21!" Only the droplets stored at lower temperatures remained viable for up to 6 weeks! "The infectivity, measured by RLA of the reconstituted spots, declined rapidly over time inversely to the storage temperature. Before 21 days, cell growth was restored to almost ZERO% with a 1:10 dilution of 6% strength bleach" (which consumers can buy in stores - just check the label indicating the strength). By diluting the bleach with less water, using a stronger concentration, that word 'almost" can be changed to "absolute".
Now comes a very important quote from the study's abstract: "However, UNDILUTED concentrations of several hand antiseptics (based on povidone–iodine, chlorhexidine digluconate, and triclosan) reduced HCV infectivity to undetectable levels. Thus, there are several commercially available antiseptics that are effective against HCV."
Another argument that braided-in crackers are unsafe, is they have "nooks and crannies" that "bad bugs and dried blood" can be hidden in, and that crackers can't be fully saturated for these antiseptics to be effective. That's absolutely untrue! Nylon absorbs liquids quickly and easily when dipped and held in any liquid. Even a viscous (thick) one, if you rub it into the fibers with your fingers, a sponge, or a small brush after you dip and hold it in it for a minute or two. Regarding the "nooks and crannies", all you need is a toothbrush to do some thorough scrubbing from all sides while it's saturated and that problem is also solved. Dip, rub, saturate, scrub, rinse; repeat several times if you want, then squeeze dry with a soft cotton towel. Let it air dry further, if you want.
However, you don't want the virucidal liquid soaking so far up the cracker that it's unintentionally absorbed into the leather thong, and the thong shouldn't be coming into contact with your partner's skin when it's handled properly. A whip's cracker flies at lightning speed and has the potential to create some real harm and injury to your partner if mis-thrown. So it's always a good idea, if you're new to whips, to practice, practice, practice, until you become competent and safe when using it! An excellent, but little-known, way to determine that you are, is to suspend a roll of toilet paper from something that allows it to unroll freely. When you can make the whole thing unroll onto the floor with your whip strokes, without ripping the paper, you've reached true compepetency! (And a very popular person to do a whip scene with, too!)
Find the 2013 Yale medical school research study here: https://academic.oup.com/jid/article/209/8/1205/830800