OT: knots

I like to practice knots.
My reference for knice knots is Ashley's Book of Knots, which I learned of thanks to Ted Edwards on this group years ago.
I much prefer rigging with rope to screwing around with nylon straps and ratchets, and I have it kinda down to a system. Attributes of a good knot include strength, reliability and ease of tying, but also include ease of untying. Some otherwise good knots jam under load and/or if they get wet can become very difficult to untie after the fact. That's a PITA when I intend to save the rope for future use.
Many "Boy Scout" knots and even many knots routinely employed by sailors are not nearly as good as some less-known alternatives. Example: the only variant of the bowline I'd ever use would be the bowline-on-bight and I don't think I've ever used that on an actual application. The bowline is OK if under contstant tension but it can shake loose quite easily. The "square" knot aka reef knot can be tied under tension so it's useful for wrapping packages (put your finger there, please, Dear) or reefing sails quickly, but it's otherwise a treacherous bend. (A bend is any knot used to join lengths of line.) The reef knot will upset and fail under significant load. Don't suspend your breakable self over Doomgurgle Gulch or from high in a tree with line that depends on a reef knot.
The bend I favor for my primary repertoire is the Hunter's bend. It is not easy to get right and very easy to get wrong at first, but it is easy to inspect and I've practiced it so I can about tie it in my sleep, hanging upside down in a driving rain and probably half smashed though I've no recent or anticipated need to tie reliable knots under those condx.
There is a method way of tying it that can be done in total darkness, which may be why the SAS (british Special Air Services, an elite commando force) adopted it as a standard.
Other good bends are the sheetbend and the Carrick bend, but the sheetbend can shake loose easily (being a very close cousin of the bowline) and the Carrick bend, while neat-looking, can get rather lumpy in any but the smallest line and is not as strong as the Hunter's bend.
Yesterday I discovered a new knot that I am adding to my repertoire. It will very probably replace the span loop for quickly making mid-line loops that are so handy in rigging and lashing, though Ted was a strong advocate of the span loop I've used for years.
It is the "alpine butterfly", used by climbers for creating sites for caribiners in a drop line. This is not to be confused with the "Venus butterfly" which was a technique for giving a woman intense sexual pleasure, hinted at but never quite revealed on "L.A .Law" years ago.
Another good thing about this knot is that it can be what I call a "method knot": there's a way to tie it that can be drilled into muscle memory, making it about a nobrainer to tie when there's actual work to be done. That may be why the SAS liked the Hunter's bend.
Threre is exactly one correct topology for any given knot. There are many ways to get it wrong, only one way to get it right. A "method knot" enables employment of muscle memory making it to augment visual memory of making it and seeing that it is right. Ease of "snapshot" inspection for correctnesss is an attribute of a useful knot. Two quick looks, less than 1 second, tell whether it's right or not.
Mary calls me "Don Knots" as I sit out on the deck in the shade or sunshine depending on temp, lookin' at the lake with my icey tea or Coke, my book, and my knot-practice bits of nylon and polypropylene line. Polyprop isn't as strong as nylon but it's considerably softer and more flexible, more abrasion resistant and more UV resistant. And it floats. That's why they use it for waterski tow line. It's also very nice for flagpoles and for lashing loads.
We miss Lois, our recently deceased neighbor.
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Thanks Don - another well composed "letter from Lake Wobegon" - by a curious coincidence, I went to a trial antenna mast erecting day, and got taught the bowline knot , come home, turn this thing on, and theres your exposition on the subject.. This brings my sum total of knots to..........three....
Will chase up the Hunters Knot you mentioned.
Andrew VK3BFA.
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On Wed, 21 Jul 2010 00:41:27 -0700 (PDT), Andrew VK3BFA

You should also learn the Hangmans Knot. It may come in handy when you decide to take a Big Step for Mankind.
http://www.ehow.com/how_4473852_tie-hangmans-knot.html
Gunner
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wrote:

Ahhh, yeah. That's real nice.
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Don Foreman wrote:

Hi Don,
I'm partial to the sheet bend - with an extra turn to lock it in. It doesn't shake loose then. It is preferred when the two lines are different sizes, but still works well if they are the same.
There are a half dozen or so that a lubber must learn to be promoted to mate (at least aboard my boat :) )
Reef Knot (Square knot to the squares) Bowlin Round turn and a hitch or two. Sheet bend Figure 8 Cleat hitch (not really a knot or a bend, but you have to learn it) Clove Hitch The next trick is knowing what to use when!
Animated knots - by Grog... http://www.animatedknots.com
My latest rope trick is splicing.
A young couple down the pier gave me a full set of Samson fids, et.al. for my birthday this year (how did I get to be 60 years old?) and said I could practice on them - they supplied the rope and I make new dock lines for their boat.
I've got 3 laid down cold. No problem from 1/4" to 1-1/4". 6 strand is the same, but they aren't coming out as pretty as 3 yet.
Double braid - now thats were the real fun starts! http://www.samsonrope.com/site_files/DB_C1_EyeSplice_Rev.pdf
I haven't tried splicing stainless steel cable yet. It looks like a nice simple way to bleed a lot!
--

Richard Lamb



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A guy can do a LOT with the set of basic knots you mentioned.
Steve
visit my blog at http://cabgbypasssurgery.com
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wrote:

My dad used to make bowstrings for sale, with a flemish splice in each end to form the eye that engaged the bow. This was long before compound bows, when archery was done with longbows and recurve bows like those made by Fred Bear in Grayling MI.
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On Wed, 21 Jul 2010 11:16:02 -0500, Don Foreman

Fred was my neighbor. Nice guy. I was just a kid then, but was in the 4H archery club, and the PAA (Professional Archers Assoc.)
Fred would go on a hunt someplace, like Africa, and when he came home, would have his staff have a big BBQ/feed for his factory and neighbors. Ate elephant, bison etc etc ..which was quite a treat for a 13 yr old <G>
Most of the kids shot latest greatest archery equipment in the leagues. Dad would mention their son or daughter needed a new bow and the foreman would pick what Dad was looking for, off the line, mark it "2nd" and either sell it for a sawbuck or simply give it to Dad. Arrows, etc etc...same deal.
Going down to Cobol Hall in Detroit for the tournaments was interesting...only the rich kids down there had the Good Stuff..and a bus load of nose pickers from the piney woods would show up, toting state of the art Good stuff and kick their asses. <G>
God I loved growing up there....sigh That and having access to all the national Guard ranges in the county. Everything from C-rats to 81mm would be buried by the guards during their 2 week training sessions. Fun stuff!!!
Gunner
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Nice read.
You didn't even mention my favorite class of knots with names like blood, surgeons, polaner, clinch, improved clinch, snell, trilene, etc. I practice these till perfect cause it really hurts when the big one gets away.
Karl
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Those are all monofilament knots. There's even special knots now for the firewire (?) new mono stuff.
Steve
visit my blog at http://cabgbypasssurgery.com
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Karl Townsend wrote:

Karl you need to learn the best Knot for fishing.... It's called a .223 knot. No hook needed but you do need a good net!!!
One of the places I go fishing a lot has some huge brown and rainbow as well as some good bass and pike in there. I have seen 20" and up rainbows swim past. Last weekend I watched a little pike (about 6" or so) sit in the shadow of my wader foot for a while. Didn't know if it was just hiding or thought I might make a good snack!
--
Steve W.

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On Wed, 21 Jul 2010 05:00:06 -0500, "Karl Townsend"

A guide taught me the Palomar and said that's the only knot I'd ever need (in a bassboat). He was right!
Later that day,when I lost a fish because my Trilene knot failed, he squinted at me and said in his Missouri accent: "Dawn, did ye use a Palomar knot like ah showed ye?" (Sheepishly) "No,Russ, it was a Trilene knot." "Dawn, you deserved to lose thet fish."
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wrote:

If you have a few minutes to spare sometime, get some big hooks and tie your favorite knot and others, wrap a damp cloth around each for a half-hour, and then test them by clamping the bend in a vise and wrapping the other end multiple times around the hook on a big spring scale. I've done this, with various line types, spaced decades apart.
Make sure you tie your Trilene knot correctly -- don't let the loops in the hook eye overlap, and make sure you make enough wraps. Then compare it with a Palomar knot and see what you think.
You may also want to try loading them with a shock load -- dropping weights from them.
--
Ed Huntress



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wrote:

I know the results in my case. If tied on shore, my trilene knot is superior. In a 25 knot wind in 200 feet of ocean, go with the Polomar or clinch. (You can't tie a Polomar in every spot) Also, tie up as much as you can ahead of time.
I do a lot of blood knots for yellow tail, the last six feet pure fluorocarbon. In rough water, I go surgeons knot.
BTW, has anyone else noticed they keep making the eyes in fish hooks smaller every year?
Karl
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wrote:

That's also my experience. I think that people sometimes tie Trilene knots, and clinch knots, with too few turns. They either slip out or they pinch off the standing end.
The Palomar knot seems to depend on the line. I've tried them with Ande, Trilene, and fairly recent Stren, but not with the new lines.

Get a magnifying glass. Without my glasses, I need binoculars. <g>
--
Ed Huntress



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wrote:

Learn a "San Diego knot". Is sort of an upside down trilene knot. Is what 90% of the lures on a San Diego fishing boat are tied on with.
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wrote:

Jeez. That's a backwards Uni Knot. <g>
Here's the San Diego (jam) knot:
http://www.netknots.com/html/san_diego_jam_knot.html
Here's the Uni Knot:
http://www.netknots.com/html/uni_knot.html
I used Uni Knots for a season, but then went back to the Trilene Knot, and back to the improved clinch for small flies.
--
Ed Huntress


>
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On Wed, 21 Jul 2010 14:16:13 -0400, "Ed Huntress"

I have ample time and inclination to fart around, but I don't need to do this test. Our data is that since we started using the palomar knot we have not lost a single fish or bit of terminal tackle due to knot failure in over 20 years with either mono or Spectra line. During that period we have hooked plenty of trophy-class docks, rocks, boathouses and tree branches, straightened some hooks and snapped a few lines, but never had a knot failure.
There's a Sliverado Trail pro bass tournament this coming weekend on our lake. A few guys were already out pre-fishing today, Wed. One went by here, close in, flippin' docks while I was sittin' on the deck tying knots, sipping an icey cold Mexican Coke and reading my book now and then.
I'm an old fart that knows where the fish are in this lake, but of course the young competitors don't think anyone knows as much as they. This young fella was smarter than most. I asked him what he was throwing, he said a popper. Ah, a good high-speed prospecting lure on some lakes, about worthless on this lake but I didn't bother mentioning that. He asked if there were ever any bass in the reeds nearby. Good question! I said "yes, sometimes there are." He didn't ask when so I didn't bother him with my opinions. Those reeds can be frantic bass-every-cast action at times. But not today. At the time of his question I think he should have been fishing a jig 'n pig on the outside weedline of the first dropoff or dragging a crankbait or Mepps spinner along it. What color? Well, shucks,wouldn't be any fun if I made it too easy. My 15 year old little green Ranger boat only has a 135 on it so whadda I know, right? <G> Ed. note, live bait may not be used in bass tournaments, only artificial lures.
I about never go fishing for more than an hour or so.
"Make no mistake, we are put on Earth to fart around." --Kurt Vonnegut, in Timequake.
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Nice piece Don. BTW, does anyone know what ever became of Ted Edwards?
Bob Swinney
I like to practice knots.
My reference for knice knots is Ashley's Book of Knots, which I learned of thanks to Ted Edwards on this group years ago.
I much prefer rigging with rope to screwing around with nylon straps and ratchets, and I have it kinda down to a system. Attributes of a good knot include strength, reliability and ease of tying, but also include ease of untying. Some otherwise good knots jam under load and/or if they get wet can become very difficult to untie after the fact. That's a PITA when I intend to save the rope for future use.
Many "Boy Scout" knots and even many knots routinely employed by sailors are not nearly as good as some less-known alternatives. Example: the only variant of the bowline I'd ever use would be the bowline-on-bight and I don't think I've ever used that on an actual application. The bowline is OK if under contstant tension but it can shake loose quite easily. The "square" knot aka reef knot can be tied under tension so it's useful for wrapping packages (put your finger there, please, Dear) or reefing sails quickly, but it's otherwise a treacherous bend. (A bend is any knot used to join lengths of line.) The reef knot will upset and fail under significant load. Don't suspend your breakable self over Doomgurgle Gulch or from high in a tree with line that depends on a reef knot.
The bend I favor for my primary repertoire is the Hunter's bend. It is not easy to get right and very easy to get wrong at first, but it is easy to inspect and I've practiced it so I can about tie it in my sleep, hanging upside down in a driving rain and probably half smashed though I've no recent or anticipated need to tie reliable knots under those condx.
There is a method way of tying it that can be done in total darkness, which may be why the SAS (british Special Air Services, an elite commando force) adopted it as a standard.
Other good bends are the sheetbend and the Carrick bend, but the sheetbend can shake loose easily (being a very close cousin of the bowline) and the Carrick bend, while neat-looking, can get rather lumpy in any but the smallest line and is not as strong as the Hunter's bend.
Yesterday I discovered a new knot that I am adding to my repertoire. It will very probably replace the span loop for quickly making mid-line loops that are so handy in rigging and lashing, though Ted was a strong advocate of the span loop I've used for years.
It is the "alpine butterfly", used by climbers for creating sites for caribiners in a drop line. This is not to be confused with the "Venus butterfly" which was a technique for giving a woman intense sexual pleasure, hinted at but never quite revealed on "L.A .Law" years ago.
Another good thing about this knot is that it can be what I call a "method knot": there's a way to tie it that can be drilled into muscle memory, making it about a nobrainer to tie when there's actual work to be done. That may be why the SAS liked the Hunter's bend.
Threre is exactly one correct topology for any given knot. There are many ways to get it wrong, only one way to get it right. A "method knot" enables employment of muscle memory making it to augment visual memory of making it and seeing that it is right. Ease of "snapshot" inspection for correctnesss is an attribute of a useful knot. Two quick looks, less than 1 second, tell whether it's right or not.
Mary calls me "Don Knots" as I sit out on the deck in the shade or sunshine depending on temp, lookin' at the lake with my icey tea or Coke, my book, and my knot-practice bits of nylon and polypropylene line. Polyprop isn't as strong as nylon but it's considerably softer and more flexible, more abrasion resistant and more UV resistant. And it floats. That's why they use it for waterski tow line. It's also very nice for flagpoles and for lashing loads.
We miss Lois, our recently deceased neighbor.
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Uncle, back in his young Marine on a ship days, liked to tie knots to kill time and for entertainment. He got to be pretty good at it. Better than those sailors. ;)

I don't like the words Lois and deceased in the same sentance. My moms name is Lois and so is my sisters mother in law.
You got me searching for my book of rope climbing knots. Haven't found it but I know it is here somewhere, maybe next to Ivan's book on gears I can't find.
Wes
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