This is simply a piece of wood with some simple and some fancy knots on, despite being simple and easy to make they look very good. I have decided to use red, green, blue and yellow 550 Paracord. Paracord is cord that is used in parachutes and the 550 simply tells you the weight it can take, this type can take a maximum load of 550lbs. Although I have used Paracord any rope will do, and you don’t need multiple colours although it does help to show how the knots are tied.
Step 1: Parts, tools, etc.
You will need:
Some sort of rope, I used Paracord from Ebay
Lighter, match or some sort of heat source capable of melting your rope
Wire cutters or something to cut the rope
Piece of wood for mounting the knots
Nails- U shaped
Screws- long enough to go through the back board and into the dowel
Step 2: Choosing your knots
There are a great many practical and decorative knots that could be used and you don’t have to stick to the ones that I have used, make your own, be original, that’s the great thing about DIY, you make it how you want it. The knots that I have used are:
Figure of eight knot
Step 3: The sheet bend
This knot was mainly used to secure the trimming ropes or sheets that were attached to a ships sails, it may also be referred to as the flag bend as it was also used to attach flags to masts. This knot is quick to make and easy to untie and will join two ropes of different diameters. It is stable under moderate stress but is not overly strong, this knot is widely used in the construction of nets.
You must start with the thicker of the two ropes if you are using ropes of different thicknesses otherwise it doesn’t matter.
Firstly you must make a loop with the thicker of the two ropes (image 2), then you pass the second rope through the loop, round behind the thicker rope and then under the second rope but in front of the loop made by the first(image 1)
Step 4: The fisherman's knot
This knot goes by many names; it has 8 different aliases, the anglers knot, the English knot, the Englishman’s knot, the true lovers knot, the water knot, the waterman’s knot and the Halibut knot. This knot is mainly used to tie two lengths of fishing twine together and the thinner the rope the stronger the knot is. This knot is simply two overhand knots wrapped around each other.
Firstly you must toe an overhand knot round the end of one piece of rope with the other (image 2), then tie another overhand knot over the other piece of rope (image 3), then pul the two knots together (image 1)
Step 5: The reef knot
This is probably one of the most common knots and is commonly mistaken as the granny knot, and not so commonly the grief and thief knots which are similar but not the same. This knot is also known as the square knot in America due to its shape. This knot was used by the ancient civilisations (Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans) to tie bandages and may also be known as the first aid knot. Is English name, the reef knot, comes from it being used to anchor sails the process of doing this was called reefing the sail, hence the knots name. This knot has many uses, mainly tying the two ends of a rope together. There is a simple saying that can help people to remember it “left over right and under (image 2), right over left then under (image 1).”
Step 6: The Constrictor knot
This knot has been recognised as one of the must know knots as it is very versatile as it can be tied using many rope types and has many uses, including tying up the top of bags and sacks, tying rope to nails, branches etc.
To start with you make a loop round what you want to make the knot around (image 2) and then you make another loop around it on the other side of the static line passing the working end under the bit of rope that goes over the static line (image 3) then under the first loop (image 4) and pull tight (image 1).
Step 7: The Prusik knot
This knot was named after its inventor, an Australian called Dr Karl Prusik but is also known as the Triple Sliding Hitch. The main use for a Prusik knot is for ascending a static line as it can easily be move up the line when no weight is on it but then will not slip when weight is put on it, however, it is not used as much anymore due to the invention of other ascenders such as the Gri-gri, Tibloc Ascender, Croll Ascender and the Expedition Ascender. However the Prusik knot can also be used to ascend vertical poles and trees which newer ascenders can not.
The Prusik knot is simple to make all you need to do is make a loop with the rope (image 2) and then wrap it round the object that you want to ascend passing the ends through the loop a couple of times(image 3) and then pull it tight(image 1).
Step 9: The Highwayman's hitch
The Highwayman’s hitch got its name as it was supposedly used by Highwaymen to tie up their horse so they could escape quickly. This story is plausible as the knot can be undone in a hurry by simply pulling in the loose end. This knot however is not very strong and may come loose if put under strain despite this it can be used for things such as tying up horses, kayaks and canoes.
This knot is fairly simple to make as it consists of 3 loops, first you make a loop behind what you want to tie the knot around (image 2) then with the load bearing end you make another loop through the first (image 3), next with the other end you make another loop through the second (image 4) and finally pull tight making sure that you don’t pull on the non-load bearing end as this will cause it to come undone (image 1).
Step 10: Bowline
The origins of this knot aren’t known but some people speculate that it was used by the Egyptians, however we do know that it was well established in the 17th and 18th centuries. The bowline got its name as it was used to tie a square sails weather leech; this is tying part of the sail to the front of the boat to stop it from turning inside out. This knot can be used for any application that needs a loop in the end of a rope, the bowline is easy to tie, very strong and easy to untie even after being subjected to heavy stress. This knot can be used as an emergency harness as it will never slip, although it may come loose if subjected to continuous jolting. The Bowline can even be tied 1 handed around your waste and also this knot can be tied around objects.
There is I saying that can help you remember how to tie a bowline this is “the rabbit comes out of the hole, goes round the tree and back into the hole.” This means you make a loop in the rope (image 2), and then pass the end of the rope up through the hole round the static part of the line and then back down through the loop(image 3), and then you pull it tight (image 1)
Step 11: The Figure of Eight Knot
It is obvious where this knot got its name from as when laid out flat it looks like a figure of eight. On its own its main use is as a stopper knot, preventing a piece of rope going all the way through a hole, but when it is doubled back on its self it makes a very strong loop that is used in climbing to secure the rope to a harness. This knot is quick and easy to tie and un tie and will only come undone if subject to continuous tugging.
To make a figure of eight all you do is make a loop (image 2), pass the working end of the rope behind the static end of the line (image 3), and then back through the loop (image 1)
Step 12: Diamond knot
This knot is also known as the Lanyard knot and the Chinese Button knot and has been used for centuries. This is a decorative knot although it can also be used as a stopper knot in stranded rope. This knot is fairly tricky to master initially but as always practice makes perfect. Once tied tis knot is strong and fairly permanent being a pain to undo.
To make it easier to see what I have done I have used 2 different colours however in the finished thing I have just used one colour. For the final thing in one colour I used one length of Paracord and folded it in half. First you need to put the cord between your fingers with a finger between them (image 2), then you need to make a loop with the lower cord over the higher (image 3) then bring the other cord round under the tail of the first cord over one side of the loop, under the start if the second cord and the over the other side of the loop (image 4) then you need to wrap the first cord round the outside of the knot and when it’s half way round push it up through the centre of the knot (image 5) then repeat with the other cord (image 6) and finally pull tight (image 7). Image 1 shows the single length of cord version that was mounted on the board.
Step 13: Monkeys Fist
The monkeys fist is fairly simple in design but when completed looks amazing. It was originally used by sailors to add weight to the end of lines so that they were easier to throw, its name came from the fact that it looks a little like a fist and that monkeys will not voluntarily let go of something once they’ve got it. This knot can also be made into key ring (image 2) if i get enough votes I may consider selling them on Ebay.
To make this knot you will need a small spherical object like a large marble, although they can be made any size for this application we don’t want it too big. To make a monkeys fist you wrap the cord round your hand several times, the number of times depends on the size of your spherical object, (image 3), then remove your middle two fingers and place you spherical object in their place (image 4), then wrap your cord round the cylindrical object vertically the same number of times as you did previously going over the cord previously wrapped (image 5), now you need to remove your fingers from in between the marble and the cord ensuring that it doesn’t all unwrap (image 6), next wrap the cord round going under the cord where your fingers were and over the other (image 7) and finally slowly work it tight (image 1)
Step 14: Attaching and labelling
Finally you need to attach all the knots how you like them and then label them, I used a labelling machine to make the labels as that was the best way available to me. lay out the knots how you like them and then nail them to the board with the U shaped nails. if you have used some dowel to put the hitches on then you will need to fix that on with a few screws going from behind the bord and into the dowel, drilling guidance holes would make this a lot easier but isn't 100% necisary. And then your done!