Introduction: Square Lashing

A square lashing, or "Kfita Meruba'at" in Hebrew, is one of the fundamental lashings a young Israeli Scout learns when he or she joins the movement. It can be used in various field conditions - from tying bamboo rods together to create interesting shapes all the way to binding together two wooden logs that provide the base of a 10-foot structure.


Two rods / spars / logs and a handful of rope. The specific materials used differ based on the situation, but for the sake of this instructable we used two 70-80 cm long bamboo rods and about ~2-3 meters of white nylon rope.

Step 1: Clove Hitch + Overhand Knot

A Clove Hitch, or "Kesher Mot" in its Hebrew name, is the basic knot for most lashings. It can be performed by wrapping the rope twice around one of the rods - in the shape on an X - and then sliding the rest of your rope through that X. The little bit of rope left should be tied off in an Overhand Knot - known as a "Kesher Bohen", to prevent the hitch from coming loose. The hitch should be made approximately 10 centimeters below the desired location of the lashing, to account for the diagonal rod and the lashing itself.

Step 2: Over-And-Under

Place the second rod in a 90 degrees angle to the first rod - the one with the clove hitch on it. Then start going "over-and-under" across the the two rods:
1. First slip the rope over the upper rod,

2. Then under the bottom rod

3. Then again over the other side of the upper rod,

4. And then finally under the bottom rod again.

Repeat for 4 times, until you have something the looks like the final image in this step.

Step 3: Choke the Lashing

"Choking" a lashing is the practice of applying rope pressure across a previous step of your lashing, in order to prevent it from unraveling and tightening it properly. Just loop the remainder of your rope across the space between the upper and the bottom rod, as seen in the image, a total of 4 time. Don't forget to tighten your choke at every loop, and you should get something like the last picture of this step - a very tightly coupled together lashing.

Remember to hold the remainder of your rope tightly at all times - specifically when you're done with the choke - to prevent the lashing from unraveling.

Step 4: Final Clove Hitch + Overhand Knot

To "finalize" your lashing, it's required to maintain the rope pressure by adding another clove hitch on one of the rods. While it's common to do the clove hitch on the upper rod - the one you did not put the first clove hitch on - it does not really make much of a difference.

Perform the exact same clove hitch on the rod. In this example I showed a nice technique for making fast and secure clove hitched - I'm using my middle finger to hold the final rope left from the choke in place, while making the X for the clove hitch over my index finger. This allows my other hand to quickly slide the remainder of the rope through the X, and tighten the rope with one fell swoop.

Don't forget the overhand knot at the end!

Step 5: Finishing Up

Now you have a square lashing in place!

While not necessary, it's common to cut off the remainder of the rope away (cut away from your body please, not towards it!) to make the whole thing neater.

And... you're done!