Introduction: How to Tie a Figure 8 on a Bight

The Figure 8 on a Bight knot is a popular knot used in the fire service. It is very versatile, and easily tied with gloved hands. There are also multiple applications for this knot outside of the fire service.

The only thing that you will need is a section of good rope.

Disclaimer: Any activity involving rope is potentially hazardous. Lives may be at risk - possibly your own. Careful attention has been paid to ensure that the following description is accurate. However, there are multiple factors that cannot be controlled, including: the choice of materials; the age, size, and condition of ropes; and the accuracy with which this description has been followed. No responsibility is accepted for incidents arising from the use of this material.

Step 1: Rope Terms

It is important to first understand some terms related to rope:

1. Working end - This is the end of the rope that will be used for tying the knot.

2. Running end - This is the other end of the rope (commonly used for lifting or hoisting).

3. Standing part - The area of rope between the two ends.

4. Bight - This is a bend in the rope that forms a "U" shape.

5. Loop - This makes a circle in the rope with the ends going in opposite directions.

Step 2: Make a Bight

First make a bight in the rope. Then move the bight over the standing part of the rope; which will form a loop.

Note - Make sure to give yourself enough rope to complete the knot. The completed knot will form a loop, so depending on your application the amount of rope needed will vary.

Step 3: Run It Under

Run the bight end under the standing part.

Step 4: Pass Through the Loop

Pass the bight end through the loop in the rope.

Step 5: Complete the Knot

Pull the bight all the way through to complete the knot. You will see that the knot forms a figure 8.

Step 6: The Completed Knot


The only thing left to do is to secure the knot with an overhand safety knot. Using a safety knot is optional, however, during firefighter training it is required.

Step 7: Start the Safety Knot

Take the working end under the standing part, and then back across forming a loop.

Step 8: Tuck It In

Tuck it inside the loop and pull it through.

Step 9: Finish the Knot

Pull both ends to tighten.

Step 10: Done, and Done!

The completed Figure 8 on a Bight with an Overhand Safety Knot.

Step 11: Video Steps

A video by CMC Rescue, showing the knot being tied in real time.