Clicking on each page image will enlarge them for better viewing. Again, these instructions are geared to the beginner, but once you've mastered the technique, you can move on to smaller beads, a smaller hook, and finer thread.
My choice of hook is a 0.9 mm, and this I use for beads anywhere between 15/0 and 6/0. My preferred thread for crocheting ropes with is 'Coats' button thread or dual duty thread. Both polyester based, and both very very strong. Upholstery thread is also good to work with. Try to skip cotton thread, as it will eventually stretch out under the weight of the beads, and in the long run, might give your rope a loose look.
As for your rope care, try not to get it wet, to avoid thread rot inside the beads. If such an accident should happen, lie your rope flat on a towel, and dry it with a hair dryer on a very low setting. This will help prevent the thread from rotting and weakening inside the beads.
As far as bead amounts and thread length, I usually don't calculate them, but just in case you want to make sure you've got enough beads, here's a rough method to calculate how many beads you'll need:
Bead size number x number of stitches will usually give you the number of beads you'll need in an inch. Example: Say you're using size 11 beads and are making a rope with six chain stitches. Multiply 11 by 6, and you get 66. You'll need approximately 66 beads to an inch (2.2 cm).
Let's try size 8 beads and a 4 chain stitch rope: 8x4= 32 beads. (again, this is approximate).
As for the thread length, again, I pretty much wing it. But I'd say I use about 1 meter of thread to each inch of a 6-chain rope. Maybe a bit less. I'll see if I can figure that out one day. ;)