Part 4 of My Knot Series: the Sheet Bend





Introduction: Part 4 of My Knot Series: the Sheet Bend

About: I LOVE knots. As well as other things. I post random 'Ibles not even related to knots. Sorry if there's a delay of when I post my instructables.

This knot joins two ropes of unequal size, but, can join two ropes of the same size just as well.
It has to be tied with both ends loose, And can't be under any load.
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Step 1: Starting

Take one of the ends on each rope, and position it like the picture. Then make a loop with the right side.

Step 2: Goin' Through the Loop

Take the right end through the loop, the bring it farther over and down under the two ropes.

Step 3: Then Up Over the Two

Up over the two, and under the top.

Step 4: Done!

Now you're done! Keep in tune!



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    18 Discussions

    For this knot using lines of different colors. and sises would be better for illustrative purposes. I generally go to animated knots to refresh my memory.

    Great, well illustrated instructable. Wish more were written this clearly. One thing, is there a specific use for this knot, or does it have any special properties? ie.- "A square knot won't slip" or "a hangmans knot is used for hanging people" etc.

    2 replies

    The best reason to use this knot is for joining ropes of two different diameters. I use it when I want to hang a large rope over a tree limb: first I take a small diameter rope and tie a rock to the end of it, and then throw the rock up in the air, and hopefully over the end of the tree limb (usually this takes several attempts). Once I've succeeded at this, I then use a sheet bend to tie the large rope to the end of the small rope so that I can use the small rope to pull the large rope over the limb.

    Another time that I use a sheet bend is when I'm doing "double mooring" with my sailboat, which means that the boat is tied up to two mooring balls -- one at the bow and the other at the stern, and then the ropes are pulled in tight to keep the boat aligned between the two mooring balls. The reason that the sheet bend is needed is because inevitably the distance between the two mooring balls is much longer than the length of my standard (large diameter) dock lines, so I use a long piece of smaller diameter rope to extend the length of one of my dock lines so that it can reach the other mooring ball.

    One comment that I've got about this instructable is that you don't demonstrate how to actually use this knot on different diameter ropes. It is important to understand that the large diameter rope must be the one that forms the "U" shape, and the small diameter rope must be the one that forms the "6" shape.

    Whenever I tie a sheet bend, I just think of it as if I'm tying a bowline using the standard "rabbit-hole-tree" mnemonic. I make the hole/tree using the small rope, and then instead of using the working end of the small rope as the rabbit, I use the big rope for that.

    Can you show us the knot that Roy Rogers used to tie Trigger to a post outside a bar... it could be pulled from the end connected to the horse without unravelling but he trained the horse to pull the loose end and the knot would untie itself, letting the horse come to Roy when he called for it! Always loved that bit.

    6 replies

    I think what you are remembering is called a slippery hitch. Take a round turn around the hitch rail and then tuck a bight of the free end over the round turn and under the standing part where it is in contact with the rail. Yank on the free end and it will pull the bight out from under and all you have left is the round turn which will pull right off.

    That knot is a clove hitch. It's used to tie something to a bar or branch. Very easy to tie and untie.


    Yes, "Trigger" could UNTIE the knot
    but could "Gabbie Hayes" tie the knot as well as Roy Rogers ???

    I believe that would be called the highwayman hitch, search it up tell me if I'm wrong

    Yes... It is also used to tie airplanes down. After weeks in cold weather the knot may become frozen solid and a regular knot would not be able to be released. Just give the end a yank and it comes undone.

    I love what you are doing with the whole series starting with the very simplest knots. Have you seen this one:

    It doesn't seem to be in Ashley.

    probably my second favorite knot (after the bowline). Though, actually, I find it weird myself that I have favorite knots.

    It's great for connecting lines of *different diameter*, or even material. Most knots can't handle different diameter so well. If it's too extreme of a difference, though, you'll have to add a second friction loop (meaning, on your last photo, the top part goes again under the other line), or even a third loop. But that's ok; no harm.

    I remembered it as the "sheep bend." Glad to know it's actually called sheet.

    Thanks for sharing. I can use this Sheet Bend knot to tie the tail-piece of my Cello using Kevlar gut for more harmonics to string and bridge instead of steel cable.

    Decorative knots are fun too. The "Deck Apes" used them around the quarterdeck on the ship to make things look "squared away."

    I used to try to teach my Boy Scouts the Turk's Head and Dragin' Bowline but they could never catch on to the Dragin' Bowline. LOL!