Picture of Balloon-tying jig
Most kids go through a stage of being unable to tie a balloon without it farting off across the room.  Water-bombs can be even worse, slippery little devils that they are.

This simple jig makes tying balloons (especially water-bombs) a lot quicker, and makes it a lot easier to build up your ammunition for April Fools.

Step 1: Materials

Picture of Materials
The jig must be smooth and snag-free, or every balloon will burst.

For this prototype, I used a dead Sharpie pen and some spare timber.

Tools included a small saw, sharp knife, drill+wood bit and a circular file.

ptownes1 year ago
Genius! I'll have to make one.
Kiteman (author)  ptownes1 year ago

Thank you. When you do, take a picture and hit the "I Made It" button!

kewrw282 years ago
Thanks a lot brother. I will try to make one of these this weekend with my grandson. Again, thank you
Kiteman (author)  kewrw282 years ago
You're very welcome.
uersel2 years ago
In the last few years I made several of this jigs. They were always of big help for tying large amounts of ballons for various theatre shows. On the image you see about 600 ballons, all inflated an tyed within 2,5 hours by one person, myself (its for the same play I made the fog chiller). I usually make the jigs out of wooden dowels and some leftover wood.
So thanks a lot for this instructable, it saved a lot of time and my fingers from lots of blisters!
Kiteman (author)  uersel2 years ago
Oh, that's awesome!
MrE3 years ago
Great Ible I will make one myself soon. Just one little question what is the name and who wrote that little song in the video.
Kiteman (author)  MrE3 years ago
It's called "At the Rising of the Moon", a traditional Irish song. I'm afraid can't remember the artist, but it's played on an ocarina.
this is cool. but i cant stop laughing at the shape.
torned004 years ago
i think you got that idea from:

good for making epic water balloon (double layered regular bloon so it dosent pop when filling)
Puzzledd4 years ago
Fantastic idea and description!
Kiteman (author)  Puzzledd4 years ago
Thank you.
chamster4 years ago
WOW! U have made so many insructable! Are u the creater of instructables?
Kiteman (author)  chamster4 years ago

LOL, oh, no.  You need Eric, the site's creator and CEO.
chamster4 years ago
Brilliant! But why is it in the pranks section?
Kiteman (author)  chamster4 years ago
Where else do water-balloon-based projects belong?
seabananers5 years ago
some thing is very wrong here
Wafflicious5 years ago
Excellent :)
Kiteman (author)  Wafflicious5 years ago
Thank you.
flowjuggler5 years ago
Great jig. We work with a lot of kids (and adults) doing balloon workshops and tying the balloon is inevitably a source of stress for a number of participants. Although we've gotten good at teaching a no-hurt, easy to understand method of tying, this will be a great tool to have on hand! Thanks.
Kiteman (author)  flowjuggler5 years ago
You're welcome, although, after just one afternoon of using the jig, my youngest suddenly worked out how to tie them for himself...
ikeike405 years ago
Some people are ACTUALLY SELLING a similar product. Better go through copyright again...
mybluemake5 years ago
Fooking brilliant. As the world's coolest uncle and great uncle I've purchased over 5000 biodegradeable water balloons for this coming Summer. I love my siblings' spawn and their issue, but not a damn one of them can tie a balloon. As a fat fingered middle-ager, I've damaged my hands enough tying over 600 last August. This is on!
Kiteman (author)  mybluemake5 years ago
Excellent.  Post pics when you do.
EvanSavar5 years ago
That is really cool. I just looked up balloon tying on Google and the same item for $2.00. www.batteryjunction.com/ballon-tie.html. It be great though if I didn't have the 2.00 to buy the item!! 
little perverted ,much?

good job.
 lol I was thinking the same thing...
lol it's cool tho.
lol, me 2
gserrano7015 years ago
 I agree with you all.   The gratest thing of it all is the simplicity.

What if you attach a foot pump to the other end of the sharpie??? that would let the friend with the big lungs make better use of them talking to the croud while blowing up the baloons.

imfasa5 years ago
Tou are such a genius!! (although i CAN tie balloons... :P)
Questor5 years ago
if you ran an "air supply" from the back, thru the sharpy, it would blow out the slot and you could fill the balloon and tie it at the same station. Just control the air like they do with helium balloons.  Could work with water, too. Just "messier"
girlcousin5 years ago
Thank you thank you thank you!!  Our little town has a halloween party every year and we do a 'bust the balloon win a prize' game and tying those knots just kills our fingers!!!  Now I am all exited about carving my sharpie pen and putting smiley faces on all my balloons, now!
AT5 years ago
Nice!  Simple yet very usable
mizantropic5 years ago
i'm really curios if you could do that with a swollen balloon.
You could, but with a water balloon filled to its absolute limits... You might have to be very careful.
cbergquistf5 years ago
Great idea !  Simple.  Effective.
dacker5 years ago

Once or twice each year, I find myself volunteering at one thing or another which needs tons of balloons blown-up.  As a guy, with strong lungs, I'm often stuck blowing up a hundred or so.  Next time, I'll make 1-2 of these ahead of time.  I'll probably use a hardwood dowel in place of the Sharpie body.

I'm glad you posted the video or I'd never figure it out.  The video could be improved by appending a slow-motion version to the full-speed version.
Covo5 years ago
 I thought there might be a way to do that...I am bummed I did not think of it first!!!.  Good job kiteman, working with kids who do not have the dexterity of adults, this will come in HANDY!!!
That is magnificently elegant. It's easy to design something complicated and obscure, but sometimes it takes the most skill and poise to design something simple in both concept and conception. This shows a real knack for creation, engineering, etc. You should be proud.
limonchi5 years ago
nice and simple=>10
only need better decoration
thanks, i ´ll make one
GREAT job..
You should draw a couple of colored balloons under the pen...
Put some graphics on the board!

knektek5 years ago
How about using a smaller piece of wood. To save our environment!
Kiteman (author)  knektek5 years ago
Use whatever size you like - it's only pine, as sustainable as it comes.

The lump is large so that my boys can wedge it wherever they need it for making bombs, or just lay it on the ground and anchor it with a knee or toe.
 Thats what she said...
I burn 2 by 4's for fun :)
 Wood is a renewable resource. Relax.
2ndopinion5 years ago
Simply amazing. Thanks for the video also. I have several Gran Kids and this summer we'll have to have at least a dozen water balloon wars!
lieuwe5 years ago
 awesome, clever contraption, just made one myself, pretty simple, but it's really important that the slot on the bottom has a j-shape behind which then end of the balloon gets stuck, it won't work otherwise

Kryptonite5 years ago
I like the pictures at the end, very simple.
Kiteman (author)  Kryptonite5 years ago
Thank you.
You've done it again, another brilliantly simple Instructable, thanks!

Nice back drop as well, makes for a nice mood for the pictures.
Kiteman (author)  Kryptonite5 years ago
I was just hiding the clutter that Nacho moaned about in the photos of my last project.

It's actually paper left over from making my Hallowe'en Piñata - being Instructables orange is just a bonus.
Yeah I did see the previous project, and read through the comments as well. I thought "he's either covering it up, or he's cleaned it and just needed a nice backdrop..."
Gonazar5 years ago
Now if you can just figure out a way to run water through the pen, you can fill and tie the balloon in one go.

I think i saw a commercial product that did fill and tie the balloons,
 +1 vote.
i voted 4 U
Kiteman (author)  RocketPenguin5 years ago
Thank you!
zascecs5 years ago
 The simplest of things are always the best. Such as the sticky notes...

Gotta give you 5 stars for this one, man...
Kiteman (author)  zascecs5 years ago
Thank you!
 What a smart idea ! i could never tie balloons . ill have to try making one from a piece of dowel ! ill post pictures if i do it
Kiteman (author)  stephenniall5 years ago
NachoMahma5 years ago
.  That is a most ingenious idea. Simple yet very effective. Did you come up with that? What was your inspiration?
Kiteman (author)  NachoMahma5 years ago
My youngest wanted a water-bomb "kit" from a market because it included a "knot-tying machine".  I never saw the machine in action, but it has a rounded spike on the side.  I reckoned that was it, but the arrangement of slots on this model is a result of my own trial and error.

MajHunter5 years ago
 So simple, yet brilliant.  Great idea.
r-philp5 years ago
Simple and brilliant.   I would never have imagined a jig for that process could work so well.