Paracord Snow Shoes

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Introduction: Paracord Snow Shoes

About: My whole life I have thought of ways to make things that you can only go out and buy, follow me and I will teach you how to make all sorts of things. Praise carbon!

This is a traditional style snow shoe with paracord for the webbing. My intention was to give a modern twist to classic style that almost everyone is familiar with. This instructible will be split into two groups, the first being a step by step for the frame and the second showing the basic weaving for the net.

Step 1: Step 1

First gather the following items: knife or cutting tool, hacksaw, philips screwdriver, drill with drillbit, 4 screws, 4 1in by 1in by the length from the ground to the top of your shoulder planks of oak wood, and finally 4 1in by 1in by the width of your foot plus 3in.

Step 2: Step 2

Take your cross bars (the short wood planks) and measure 1 in then Mark a line with a sharpie, or a pencil. I used a sharpie because you can see it better than a pencil.

Step 3: Step 3

Use the hacksaw and the knife/cutting tool to carve a dowl shape. You don't have to be perfect, just the closer you are to the center the better, any mistake can be corrected when you drill the hole later.

Step 4: Step 4

Take your sharpie and Mark the letters A B C D in the spots where you want your cross beams to go. Then do the same to the corresponding ends of your cross beams. Next you trace the dowel of your cross beams on the side of the longer board. Using a drill bit the same diameter as the circle you just traced drill a hole in the side of the long board. If the cross beams don't fit file down the edges of the hole until it does fit

Step 5: Step 5

Once the boards are put together, fill up your bath tub with very hot water and place your snow shoe inside the tub to soak for a couple of hours. To keep it from floating put some rocks on it to weigh it down.

Step 6: Step 6

Take some spare paracord and slowly start bending the ends. Every 10 minutes tighten the rope slowly.

Step 7: Step 7

Drill a hole in the ends and take a screw and hand screw it in. DO NOT USE THE DRILL TO SCREW IN SCREWS it will result in mistakes and at this point no one wants to start over. Once it's screwed in use the hack saw to cut off the ends.

Step 8: Step 8

Take your knife and shave down the tip to make it thin so that it will bend in the next step.

Step 9: Step 9

This part is hard to explain so I will do my best to use detail. First take a ladder or something with an edge to bend the tip. Then take some rope and attach the two ends to make them bend around the edge of the ladder. Next your going to slowly tighten the rope until the tip of the snow shoe is bent at the preferred angle. Now let it sit until it's dry then take it out.

Step 10: Part 2 Step 10

For the weaving you will need the finished frame or frames, some rope, pliers, scissors, and some leather.

Step 11: Step 11

Start the tip by tying a slip knot on the cross bar near one side. Then go diagonal to the long plank ( as seen in photo) and tie the knot showing the second picture we will call it a day knot because I can't remember what its called.

Step 12: Step 12

Go across to the other side and and tie another day knot.

Step 13: Step 13

Next go to the cross bar and tie another day knot

Step 14: Step 14

Now follow the long beam to the tip and tie another day knot

Step 15: Step 15

Now go to the other side of the of the long board and tie a day knot

Step 16: Step 16

Now continue following the pictures and tying day knots

Step 17: Step17

Keep going

Step 18:

Now almost finished, and done ( with the tip) the back is done the exact same way now for the middle and the foot strap.

Step 19:

Start by tying a slip knot next to the first one (done on the tip) and start following the pictures and tying those day knots

Step 20: Step 20

Keep going 

Step 21: Step 21

Almost done

Step 22: Step 22

Just a few more and done.

Step 23:

How for the last part the leather straps. Start by cutting two long strips of leather long enough to go around your foot 2 times. Next cut a point on one of the ends. Then cut two slits below it. Next you go to the other side and punch holes an inch apart, you can punch as many as you want. Next you put the strap through the holes shone. Finally follow the photos on how to tie it

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    35 Discussions

    great project used army surplus bindings instead of using a leather strap

    Great instructable, but how do you attach them to your boots? I live 765 miles south of you down I-35. We don't get much snow, but I would still like to make a set.

    1 reply

    Thank you, It's kind of hard to explain but I will take some pictures and show you how soon.

    Approximately 15 years ago I made a pair using 1/2 inch steel Electrical Conduit.

    I made 2 ovals 24x12 inches then joined the ends at the outer side with a coupler.

    I cut some flat material made from commercial rubber roofing membrane (shower liner might work doubled or Tough Duck work pants) with fingers long enough to pass over the conduit in multiple spots and 1/8 inch Nylon rope to tie it all together, no holes were drilled in conduit the knot I used was the half-hitch knot (It only works one way, it must get tighter when you pull in the direction of travel) the two rope ends were pulling against each other.

    I adapted some 16 gage angle (big snarly teeth) for gripping teeth at the toe.

    Sorry that's the best I can do. I have no picture someone borrowed them permanently years ago.

    But they looked a lot like the store bought ones.

    2 replies

    I would have loved to see them. It's a real shame when people borrow things then don't return them, thanks for sharing.

    I would have loved to see them. It's a shame when people borrow things permanently from you, Thanks for sharing.

    I suggest using ash which is the traditional wood for snowshoe frames. You want material which is nominal 1 inch by 3/4 inch. The 3/4 dimension is the one which will be the width of the side frames and the 1 inch will be the depth.If you trim the insides of the tips at an angle you will get a better mating and a stronger union.

    I believe from the pictures what you are calling a day note is a Prussic knot.

    1 reply

    Sounds like a good idea, thank you.

    Wow, thank you. I can tie over 50 knots and I can never remember what any of them are called.

    Wow great job. My dad use to make snowshoes. I can tell you that using Para Cord is a great idea. Our Para chutes use this cord and it has very little stretch. I would suggest that you would spray the cord with varathane so the cord doesn't absorb water and become heavier while your using them. Assume Jop !!!

    2 replies

    That sounds like a good idea, thanks for the suggestion. I made these last year and only got to use them twice.this year I hope to use them more, but unfortunately we currently have no snow here in Minnesota. A good thing to try in the mean time though. Once again thank you and have a happy holidays

    That sounds like a good idea, thanks for the suggestion. I made these last year and only got to use them twice.this year I hope to use them more, but unfortunately we currently have no snow here in Minnesota. A good thing to try in the mean time though. Once again thank you and have a happy holidays

    Did you ever find out what the day knot was actually called? Having a little trouble...

    I've heard that the paracord can stretch a little after your done and use the shoes, I like the fact it's way more durable than rawhide .have you had to retie them or had any issues?

    1 reply

    No issues yet, but I don't doubt that over Tim the paracord will stretch.

    Quick question, unless I missed it in the article, at what points to you place the short cross bars? Is there a percentage for placement or a measurement you used?