Picture of How to Tie a
When I was growing up I had the privilege of living in the Australian bush and getting to know some true bushmen. People with the skills and resourcefulness that allowed them to thrive in an environment that would leave most city people helpless.

One of essential skills for anyone living and working a long long way from town is the ability to fix just about anything with fencing wire and a pair of pliers. For this you need at least to know how to tie a "Cobb & Co Hitch". This probably has other names in other places, but I like Cobb & Co because the name is from one of Australia's pioneering transport companies.

The Cobb & Co Hitch is very simple, and very effective. It uses only fencing wire to make a very tight lashing for joining anything you like. Mostly it is used to join timber.

In this ible I will try to show how to tie a "Cobb & Co. Hitch". I will just tie some sticks together to show how it's done.

Step 1: Assemble Materials

Picture of Assemble Materials
You will need something to cut wire with. Pliers are the best. Sadly I no longer have my trusty old fencing pliers, but these red ones will do.
You will also need something to use as a lever to twist the wire and crank up the tension. Here I have used a bolt, If your pliers have plane steel handles they are even better. Whatever you use must not get thicker at the end or it will get stuck when you tighten the hitch.
Most important of all you will need wire. If you are in a rural area it shouldn't take too much scouting around to find some old fencing wire. Don't cut it off a fence though; that would be stupid and thoughtless.
Takelababy3 years ago
Thanks so much for this. It's going to come in real handy.
Very good. I have to ask myself how I would use wire to secure these pieces. Answer: Not as well as your method will allow. Thank you for this simple ible.
Void Schism3 years ago
Is "bite" an Australianism, or did you mean "bight"
cammers (author)  Void Schism3 years ago
Spelling error. Thanks.
To be totally obnoxious, I will mention that pliers have PLAIN steel handles, not PLANE. Wonderful tip, though. Thanks!
cammers (author)  allanstewart3 years ago
Good on you.
9w2xyz3 years ago
Nice pictures. We use light gauge galvanised wire for all sorts of things but the bolt... I never thought of. Thank you. For multiple ties.... I tend to use one of these. http://www.marshalltown.com/Products.aspx?D=200&S=217&C=C2160
glorybe3 years ago
I have tied with wire that way but never even knew there was a name for it. If my memory is correct I was tying rebar of fairly large diameters and had to make every joint tight to hole shape since a lot of concrete would be poured over the joints.
m9133 years ago
So essentially, this is just like using a twist-tie to close the bread bag, except with thicker wire and a tool to add leverage. But I like the "use what's available" philosophy.
CaseyCase3 years ago
Interesting. I just saw something similar but utilizing rope instead of wire. It's called the "Thai Tie."

It's very cool to see that there is a name for that. I came up with that exact concept when I was about 6 years old. Trying to build a fort I wasn't strong enough to tie knots as tight as the bigger kids so the knot would come loose. I started twisting sticks in them to take up the slack and then I'd try to wedge the stick some way so it couldn't spin loose. I tried stick with a Y in them and it'd work okay until it got bumped. I got tired of having to retwist it and quickly realized that even a weak knot could hold the stick in place. I didn't use a rope and a string though. I just left a long tail on the rope and used that to tie the stick the way the string is used.

The older kids teased me about it.
OMG COOL! I always wondered.
cammers (author)  CaseyCase3 years ago
That's cool.
I wonder if it would be better to NOT cut off the Bight- that way if you want to temporarily undo it and then redo it you can.
cammers (author)  shantinath10003 years ago
Thanks. You're right. I never cut the bight off. I usually just trim off the ends.
pfred23 years ago
Sometimes when I don't have wire cutters and I need to cut a piece of wire making a notch in the wire lets it break bending it back and forth a lot faster. Anything you can bash a piece of wire with that is somewhat sharp can notch it. Usually I do it with the claw of a claw hammer. But I'm not above using sharp rocks etc.
cammers (author)  pfred23 years ago

Maybe you could do us a "How to cut wire without tools" instructable for the wire challenge.
pfred2 cammers3 years ago
Maybe I already have an entry in?
rimar20003 years ago
Good work, cammers!

People says "tied with wire" contemptuously, but I always say that a thing well tied with wire may be for ever. Example, a wire clamp (brace?) for rubber tube, made with two turns, no more, no less, is perfect.
cammers (author)  rimar20003 years ago
I agree Rimar. A large part of this country would fall in a heap if the wire ties were removed.
mrmath3 years ago
Looks like this could be done with wire coat hangers quite well!
cammers (author)  mrmath3 years ago
Absolutely. In fact the wire I used here came from an old clothes drying rack.
The point is to use whatever you can get your hands on.
paganwonder3 years ago
"Bush" craft (in whatever language) could save us all these days- no matter where we live. The more a people can do for themselves the more our communities can do for us all.
Nice! Great photos, and I love the idea of using a lever to get the wire extra tight. It's always so tricky to work with.