Paracord Fid




Introduction: Paracord Fid

About: Jack-of-all trades, master of some. I would probably be much more modest if it wasn't for these delusions of granduer that I suffer from.

After seeing some of the amazing projects made from paracord here on Instructables I decide to try my hand at making some. One tool I would need that I lacked is called a fid. A fid is a tool that has one end hollowed out and threaded to grab onto the paracord. The other end is tapered for inserting paracord into an existing weave.

I went online and ordered a set of fids for making paracord projects since I couldn't find a local retailer.

no problem.

Then I had to wait for them to be delivered from the other side of the world (literally)


So HI HO HI HO it's off to the big box store I go.

Step 1: Don't Screw Around

I was hoping to find a 3 inch Chicago screw to make my fid since that was the size fid that I ordered. Unfortunately, the largest I could find was a 2 inch.

It turns out the 2 inch was a very good working length.

Step 2: Off With His Head!

Lacking a guillotine or a proper lathe, the quickest way I had to remove the head was to chuck the post in the drill and apply liberal amounts of hacksaw blade to the problem area.

Step 3: Smoothin' Right Along

At first I tried to use sandpaper to taper the end of the fid, but the edge of the metal was just cutting right through the sandpaper.

A quick switch to the metal file made taking excess material off much easier.

Once I had the shape I wanted for the point I used the sand paper to remove the grooves left from the file.

It doesn't have to be a mirror finish, but you do want to make sure there are no bits sticking out to snag on the paracord as you work.

Step 4: It's a Twister .. It's a Twister

Using the fid is easy.

take the end of your paracord that you melted to prevent fraying.

Insert it into the threaded end of the fid.

Twist the fid down onto the paracord until the threads grab onto the melted end of the paracord. When you are all done you simply twist the fid the other way to remove it from the paracord.

Now I can make something cool .. like a lighter holder.



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17 Discussions

yes, you can see the packaging for the product in step 1

I have made some of these with various points, but I have no picture to show because I can't find where I put them.

I used the photo album extender posts from Hobby Lobby. That way if you need it longer, just screw another section on.
I had a dril press and did the same thing to sharpen the threaded end and the back end is threaded for screwing the paracord into it.

For polishing the point, I used various sizes of steel wool until there were no rough spots and polished enough to slide easily.

Great Instructable!

4 replies

Thanks for the comment. Unfortunately it looks like the nearest hobby lobby to me is over an hour away. I originally was looking for the photo album extenders at my local arts and craft stores (michaels, etc) but they didn't have any in stock at the time so I went to Lowes and got the Chicago screws instead.

This is an old discussion but I thought I'd put in that an album extender is actually called a chicago screw and can be found in most hardware stores. comes in all sizes........

You are correct, these screws have several differnt names (some more disturbing than others) one of them being Chicago screws

Just leaving an option for other readers.
I also tapered a hollow aluminum arrow shaft (aluminium for the Brits).

Both ends are solid for the head and nock strength. The tubes aren't threaded though.

Glad you liked it. Start to finish the whole thing took about 10 minutes to make .. mostly because I was being picky about the contour of the end. If you make one don't forget to leave an "I made it" comment

Thanks for sharing, I just made myself a shorter version and it works like a charm.

Cheers Alex

1 reply

Looks like they came out great .. good job.

What is the full name again? 2 inch aluminium threaded post screw?

1 reply

there are several different names these fasteners are know by:

Chicago screws

binding post fasteners

sex screws

mating screws

barrel nut or barrel bolt

this particular package is labeled as "threaded post with screw"

pretty much

Very cool project Vince!

I was actually thinking about buying some of these but will instead make my own now!

Thanks for sharing.

Cheers Alex