Introduction: Paracord TallyMan Action Figure

Wow, the Monkey Fist Headhunter Bracelet went over so well, I thought I'd give this another go.
This is more a 'liesure / time well wasted' project.

I tied the TallyMan about 3 months ago, after first viewing 'Instructables' ; then, being properly inspired, and having reviewed all my dormant mountain operations knot tying skills,
I browsed 'Instructables' and saw the 'Monkeys Fist Knot and the Monkey', and thought 'TallyMan needs to deploy!'

I've always thought that the Monkeys fist knot looks similar to a turban-wrapped head of a Berber nomad. I use my Tallyman as a USB Flashdrive minder, as I find I leave the darn flashdrive hanging out of the computer altogether too often. I guess the amount of paracord used is altogether 7 or 8 feet (?). I used intact Paracord for the monkeyfist head and ladder weave half hitches for the body, and gutted paracord for the legs, in a square weave pattern.

Step 1: Ingredients

-Approximately 7 to 8 feet of intact paracord; more depending on how big TallyMan is to be. I measured the ratio of cord to weave once, and promptly forgot it.Also 4 feet of gutted paracord for the legs.
-A pair of scissors or sharp Swiss Army knife.
-A lighter to melt fraying ends.
-A marlin spike or similar pokey object, used when dressing the monkey fist knot; it should be as tight as possible.
-Time: 2 hours for first attempt

Step 2: Making the Head.

Taking a 4 to 5 foot long piece of intact paracord- we need the bulky look for the head and body-
construct a monkey fist knot as close to the center of the cord as possible.
Tying the monkey fist: Wraps and Fraps
Hopefully these pics and diagrams will help; if not, there are lots of good knot-tying sites online.
Begin with your single, long piece of paracord; while tying the Fist, try and get it as close to the center of the piece of cord as possible; this will save a lot of cursing and swearing later on when dressing / tightening the knot.

Using the fingers, make 3 turns around the hand; as part of Mountain Ops training, we called these verticals 'wraps'

Step 3: Start the Fraps

Start the turns passing outside the middle of the first three turns; these horizontals I call 'fraps'

Step 4: Complete the Fraps

Complete the three horizontal 'fraps'

Step 5: Add the Last Wraps.

Make three more vertical wraps, passing inside the first set of turns and outside the second set.

Step 6: Dressing the Knot

Dressing the knot (tightening) is the process of using the knot itself as a 'standing' or anchored end (clumpy bit), and taking the 'running' or working ends (dangly bits) and running them 'through' the knot.
With the marlin spike / pokey object, tighten the Fist accordingly. I made two or three of these before I got it right. This is where getting the knot centered on your piece of paracord is important; there's less waste, as well. Be careful not to stab yourself with the pokey object. You really get to understand the knot dynamics as you tighten it.

Step 7: TallyMans Body

To make the body of the TallyMan, determine how long you want it to be, and measure out the appropriate length of double paracord from the monkey fist, about 3 inches.

Step 8: Body, Continued

From the loop you've made, ladder weave back to the monkey fist, as close as possible to the knot...

Step 9: Body, Continued

Ladder weave back to the monkey fist, as close as possible to the knot. TallyMans head and body are now complete. (Leave small loops for his pelvis.) I've flipped the picture for this step.

Step 10: TallyMans Arms.

To complete his arms, and hands, tie thumb knots at the shoulders, tightly to the body to prevent loosening. Do thumb knots for hands at the end of the arms. Kinda gives him a 'flipping the bird' look.

Step 11: Square Braided Legs- Start

To make legs, take two pieces of paracord, each about 18 to 24 inches, and lay them on the floor, in a crosshair layout. Run the vertical rope through one of TallyMans Pelvis loops. (I've left the body out of this photo for clarity. See step 16 for pelvic attachment photo...)

Step 12: Legs, Continued

Drape the horizontal cord to left and right of the vertical cord.

Step 13: Legs, Continued

Now, bring the vertical line running ends down through the loops formed by the horizontal cord

Step 14: Additional Leg Info.

Dress this knot by gently pulling on the verticals and horizontals; you know you're on the right track, when it tightens into a checkerboard pattern, as shown in the photo. This is especially cool when using multi-colours.

Step 15: In Colour!


Step 16: Legs Attached to Pelvis.

Here's a pic of how the legs attach to tallymans pelvis.

Step 17: Finish the Legs...

Carry on square weaving until the 'leg' is proportional; snip and melt the ends of the square braided legs. Repeat for another leg.
Heres a pic of TallyMans pelvic attachment, with both legs on.
(I can't resist...this is where you can get naughty with TallyMans Tallywhacker...maybe a Tally-Ho companion...sorry ladies and gents..I couldn't help it!! :) )

Step 18: The Face

This is an optional step; I was tightening the head after TallyMan was made, and left this loop loose, to prevent messing up the length of his neck. A close up of his head reveals the loop I left in the head, which helps represent the face.

Step 19: Finished!!!!

So, now you have it; a completed Paracord TallyMan Action Figure, suitable for use as a USB flashdrive sentry, a key fob, conversation starter, backpack accessory, etc...! Have fun with this one!!