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Archived Boards (Read-Only) => 13Skills.com => Topic started by: mitten on January 15, 2013, 08:08:02 PM

Title: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: mitten on January 15, 2013, 08:08:02 PM
I decided to tackle knots as one of my thirteen skills. I first want to learn five knots, and then go from there. Which five knots should I start with?

Any advise from former boy scouts, sailors, or other folk knowledgeable about knots is appreciated.
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: Cedar on January 15, 2013, 08:11:59 PM
Bowline
Quick Release
Granny
Slip Knot
Clove Hitch

Cedar
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: mike77 on January 15, 2013, 08:32:25 PM
I'm assuming you already know how to tie an overhand knot and some form of shoelace bow, so I won't include those. My top three used knots and the ones I teach to students are:
Bowline
Clove hitch
Half hitch

A toss up for two more would be:
Square knot
Figure 8 and variants
Taughtline hitch
Some version of a trucker's hitch

I use others, but they tend to be specialized climbing and rigging knots so not likely to be useful to you. They aren't quite knots, but I'd also suggest learning a method or two to store rope. There is nothing worse than needing a rope and finding a tangled mess! If qualifications matter, my knowledge and use comes from being a former Boy Scout, current Scout leader, theater tech, and rigger.
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: Nate on January 15, 2013, 08:34:01 PM
Eagle Scout here.  I never really learned my knots until I was long out of Scouts.  I managed the waterfront for a YMCA camp and used several knots extensively.  I also lead wilderness trips for the same camp and used these same knots.  Here they are in no particular order.

Bowline (once you master it, learn to tie it one handed around yourself)
Trucker's Hitch
Sheet Bend
clove hitch
taut line hitch

Tying the bowline one handed is a knot I mastered in scouts.  We used to have races to see who could tie it the fastest.  If you plan on getting into climbing someday learn the figure 8 on a bight and a prussik knot.  I have used a prussik to fasten tarps to a ridgeline made from another rope.  It makes for an easy attachment.  Good luck.  Check out animated knots by Grog to learn more.  http://www.animatedknots.com/ (http://www.animatedknots.com/)
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: nelson96 on January 15, 2013, 08:37:40 PM
For a 'quick release' knot . . .  I suggest learning the "Bank Robbers Knot", also known as the "Highwaymans Hitch", or known as the "Getaway Hitch".
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: Louisiana Suvivor on January 15, 2013, 08:38:54 PM
Bowline
Slip
Cats paw
Clove
Timber hitch
Sheepshank
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: mitten on January 15, 2013, 08:40:21 PM
Thank you all for your advise on this. This should keep me busy for a while.

That being said, what other knots are a "must know"?
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: ID_Joker on January 15, 2013, 09:00:14 PM
I consider these absolute musts:

Bowline
Taughtline hitch
Clove hitch
Figure 8 follow through and figure 8 on a bight
Truckers hitch
Half hitch

Push yourself...you should be able to do all of those except the figure 8 follow-through with one hand if needed.  :)

More nice to know:
Butterfly
Surgeon's knot
Sheet bend
Barrel knot (I think this probably has other names too)

One thing a lot of people forget with their knots is to ensure that they are well-dressed.  It's important for strength and also helps you (or someone else) verify by sight or feel that the knot is right. 

Good on ya for following through on your skills!
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: LdMorgan on January 15, 2013, 09:36:50 PM
Siberian Hitch
Tautline Hitch
Bowline
Square Knot
Trucker's Hitch

For starts--you never outgrow your need for knots.

Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: Cedar on January 15, 2013, 10:08:36 PM
For a 'quick release' knot . . .  I suggest learning the "Bank Robbers Knot", also known as the "Highwaymans Hitch", or known as the "Getaway Hitch".

Is that how I tie my livestock???

Cedar
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: archer on January 15, 2013, 11:06:14 PM
i'll add the constrictor knot and transom knots to the list
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: Erigorn on January 15, 2013, 11:37:01 PM
I too am trying to improve my knot tying for one of my 13 skills. I'm going for 30 since i know several from my boy scout days. Also of good idea is to learn the application of each of them. There are some pretty good apps out there for smart phones/tablets that show how to tie them. Animated with descriptions and such. I really like "knots 3d" for Android.

Ok the 5 knots i tie the most or that I find most useful
square
bowline
clove hitch
figure 8 (2 different ways)
lanyard hitch

PS i imagine you already know 5 knots. (shoelaces, overhand, granny, etc)
 
Good luck. I'll look through the list people are throwing out to help me compile my list of knots.
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: Morning Sunshine on January 16, 2013, 01:05:46 AM
I am also doing knot tying.  great list folks!  thanks
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: SeePhour on January 16, 2013, 09:17:26 AM
Monkey Fist!

Mostly cause its fun to say.
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: ttubravesrock on January 16, 2013, 11:54:13 AM
Wow...

I use several different knots, but after going through these posts, I realize that I don't know the names of any of them other than square knot.

I think the knot I use the most probably has a name, but it is basically a slipknot that I tighten and then adjust/lock it into place. This is really hard to describe.

I also use the basic square knot quite a bit when I need rope/string to be longer. I have been messing around with a different method to connect two ropes that is kinda like two slipknots connected to each other.

Maybe knots needs to be one of my 13 skills (I've only selected 9 so far).
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: ant on January 16, 2013, 02:06:07 PM
They aren't quite knots, but I'd also suggest learning a method or two to store rope. There is nothing worse than needing a rope and finding a tangled mess!

Excellent point. Where would be a good place to start learning some methods?  I wouldn't even know what to search on. Maybe "rope storage?"

Ant
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: Nate on January 16, 2013, 04:38:15 PM
Excellent point. Where would be a good place to start learning some methods?  I wouldn't even know what to search on. Maybe "rope storage?"

Ant

It is rope coiling.  I can think of one in particular called the mountaineer's coil.
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: learnplando on January 16, 2013, 07:26:29 PM
The knot I use almost always is the taut line hitch its easy, its secure and adjustable.   
The surgeons knot I use when I need it to hold and I don't plan on untying it.
Back splicing a loop at the end of a rope is very convenient to cinch loads.
Another thing to learn would be how to secure the cut end of rope, melting nylon or crown splicing sisal rope. 
Frayed rope ends just make me unravel.

Hope that helps
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: mike77 on January 16, 2013, 07:36:40 PM
Excellent point. Where would be a good place to start learning some methods?  I wouldn't even know what to search on. Maybe "rope storage?"

Ant

An alpine or mountaineer's coil is what I use most often. A Google search should pull up a number of examples. I think ITS Tactical did a post on it. They also have a great series on knots and such. Animatedknots.com has a couple of coil methods, but surprisingly not the mountaineer's coil. I think every knot book I've seen has at least one or two methods of coiling and storing rope.
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: mike77 on January 16, 2013, 07:40:13 PM
Thank you all for your advise on this. This should keep me busy for a while.

That being said, what other knots are a "must know"?

I would say this depends entirely on what your intended uses are. The "must know" knots are going to be different for camping than for say boating, rock climbing or just daily use. I've even seen that there are different "must knows" between recreational climbing and rope rescue work. The knots I've seen listed most often will probably get you through most, if not all, daily situations.
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: ant on January 16, 2013, 08:46:12 PM
Thanks Mike and Nate for the advice about coiling.  Not only have I learned something, I have a new skill for 13! 

ant
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: Morning Sunshine on January 19, 2013, 06:05:50 PM
what type of cordage should I get for learning knots on?  I looked around the other day and found I have no rope or twine in the house  :o  I used to.  I think 11-yo boy happened to it :P
anyway, I need to go buy some.  where shall I start?
what would be the most utilitarian rope to have in the house?
what would be the best for learning knots?
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: mike77 on January 19, 2013, 06:36:37 PM
what type of cordage should I get for learning knots on?  I looked around the other day and found I have no rope or twine in the house  :o  I used to.  I think 11-yo boy happened to it :P
anyway, I need to go buy some.  where shall I start?
what would be the most utilitarian rope to have in the house?
what would be the best for learning knots?

Just about anything will work to learn with. I would recommend against going too small because it's harder to work with. What's too small? Depends on your hands. For me, smaller than para cord can be difficult to learn with. On materials, I would specifically avoid polypropylene since it's usually slick and hard to knot. My personal preference for teaching class is 5/8" diameter, nylon or nylon/polyester in a solid or diamond braid. I find it at both Lowe's and Home Depot on the bulk rolls. I've found it's a good balance of small enough to hold easily, but large enough to see the structure of the knot. It's soft enough that the knots grip well and you don't have to fight it into position. On length, I've found 3'-5' to be a good length for learning most of the basic knots.
For general use it will be hard to use one rope for all uses. I would suggest going with a selection of small, medium and large to cover most uses. For small (~1/16"), I'd say either nylon mason's twine or jute or sisal twine. They each have their pros and cons which I can go into if you want. For medium, I'd say probably paracord or braided nylon 3/16" or 1/4" diameter. If you're going to only buy one I'd suggest going for this medium range size. In large, I'd look at nylon in 1/2" or 5/8". If you expect to lift/pull go for the larger diameter even if a smaller diameter is strong enough. The larger diameter gives you a better grip and is less likely to hurt your hands.
OK, I admit I'm a bit of a knot/rope geek.  ::) Maybe I should start putting some of this into another post specifically about ropes &/or knots?
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: Oil Lady on January 19, 2013, 07:11:50 PM
This book was published in the 1940's and remains to this day THE quintessential book on knots for seamen. It has never been topped by any other knot book. Ever.

Enjoy.




The Ashley Book of Knots by Clifford W. Ashley. 1944, Doubleday. 


(http://mdnautical.com/25217-large/the-ashley-book-of-knots.jpg)



Amazon
http://www.amazon.com/dp/0385040253/ref=rdr_ext_tmb


Barnes & Noble
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/ashley-book-of-knots-clifford-ashley/1002138409



Wikipedia
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Ashley_Book_of_Knots

Quote
The Ashley Book of Knots is an encyclopedia of knots written and illustrated by Clifford W. Ashley. First published in 1944, it was the culmination of over 11 years of work. The book contains more than 3800 numbered entries and an estimated 7000 illustrations. The entries include instructions, uses, and for some knots, histories, and are categorized by type or usage. It remains one of the most important books on knots, as it is one of the most extensive, covering both good knots and bad, and noting which is which.
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: Oil Lady on January 19, 2013, 07:15:26 PM
The official website for the International Guild of Knot Tyers.

http://www.igkt.net/
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: Morning Sunshine on January 20, 2013, 06:46:24 AM
The official website for the International Guild of Knot Tyers.

http://www.igkt.net/

 :o wow - never knew there was such a thing. I think, OilLady, I wil be adding that book to my library.  ty
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: mike77 on January 20, 2013, 02:55:39 PM
As much as I love the Ashley Book of Knots(ABOK) as a reference, it's not the greatest for learning knots for the first time. For the most part it shows the completed knot and nothing about how to get there which leaves you to figure it out on your own. It can also overload a new person by the sheer size of book and number of knots. Once someone gets into knots it can be a great resource though. I believe it also has a lot of decorative rope work for those who enjoy that. For just starting out, I recommend animatedknots.com and any book by Budworth.
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: Morning Sunshine on January 20, 2013, 03:00:57 PM
yeah, after I got all excited about that bok, I went to Amazon, and decided it was a bit too big and maybe too complicated for me.  :D  that is what I get for not investigating a good idea on my own :P
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: mike77 on January 20, 2013, 03:09:39 PM
yeah, after I got all excited about that bok, I went to Amazon, and decided it was a bit too big and maybe too complicated for me.  :D  that is what I get for not investigating a good idea on my own :P

If you want to drool over it, a lot of libraries seem to have it. From what I've seen, it's pretty much considered the top book of knots available. To the point that people refer to knots by the number listed in the book, i.e. ABOK#98
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: AlanB on January 20, 2013, 07:39:37 PM
Knots is also one of my 13 Skills.  I am going with the "Pro-knot" cards.  One of the guys had a set in his bob, and they just work for me.  Yes, I should have them all memorized, but it is dang handy to have the cards when I need them.

http://www.amazon.com/PROKNOT-Outdoor-Knots-John-Sherry/dp/0922273227/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1358735743&sr=8-3&keywords=pro-knot+card

There are others available with more knots etc.  but I think for me, if I can memorize these, I will be good.

I use a White paracord and a green paraord about 6' in length to practice.

They made the "perfect Christmas Gift" cue music, for my neices, well, at least to me they did, they would have probably preferred I tunes gift cards. :D
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: PrepperJim on January 20, 2013, 08:16:24 PM
Knots is also one of my 13 Skills.  I am going with the "Pro-knot" cards.  One of the guys had a set in his bob, and they just work for me.  Yes, I should have them all memorized, but it is dang handy to have the cards when I need them.

http://www.amazon.com/PROKNOT-Outdoor-Knots-John-Sherry/dp/0922273227/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1358735743&sr=8-3&keywords=pro-knot+card


I have these cards and they are great. I am working my way through the knots as part of my 13 skills as well. I am up to four of the knots. I cannot seem to get the Water Knot from the card. I am going to Google it right now.
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: archer on January 20, 2013, 08:34:03 PM
Knots is also one of my 13 Skills.  I am going with the "Pro-knot" cards.  One of the guys had a set in his bob, and they just work for me.  Yes, I should have them all memorized, but it is dang handy to have the cards when I need them.

http://www.amazon.com/PROKNOT-Outdoor-Knots-John-Sherry/dp/0922273227/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1358735743&sr=8-3&keywords=pro-knot+card

There are others available with more knots etc.  but I think for me, if I can memorize these, I will be good.

i have one of those also in my bob.
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: markl32 on January 20, 2013, 10:03:33 PM


Square not and Bowline are used weekly here on the property.  The non slip loop in the bow line is handy for tons of stuff. 

Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: mike77 on January 21, 2013, 12:35:30 AM
I have these cards and they are great. I am working my way through the knots as part of my 13 skills as well. I am up to four of the knots. I cannot seem to get the Water Knot from the card. I am going to Google it right now.

The water knot is pretty simple if you think of it as an overhand knot tied in one end, then the other end traced through from the opposite direction. At least it was for me.
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: trekker111 on January 21, 2013, 03:24:55 AM
The boy scouts require 6 knots, and teach dozens more, assuming you can already tie a square knot then the other 5 are:

2 half hitches
taut-line hitch
timber hitch
Clove hitch
bowline

Additiinally there are 2 ways to do a clove hitch, depending on the situation. One way is used to tie the end of a rope to a pole, the other is to.tie the middle of a rope to a pole.

The bowline also has variations, such as the aforementioned one handed tying around your chest, which is used for rescues, and tying it on the bight, which makes a fixed double loop in the center of a rope.
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: PrepperJim on January 21, 2013, 09:13:48 AM
The water knot is pretty simple if you think of it as an overhand knot tied in one end, then the other end traced through from the opposite direction. At least it was for me.

I got it now. The diagram on the card was just bad or I was just being stupid. I interpreted the card such that the same end that one ties the overhand knot is the end used to retrace the knot from the opposite direction. Of course, is the opposite end which makes all the difference in the world.

I am now up to six knots from the card, not including the square knot which I already knew. ;-)
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: trekker111 on January 21, 2013, 04:26:08 PM
If you find the local boy scout store, they will sell a deck of flash cards with instructions for tying hundreds of knots. Or you can order it here. It has been invaluable in teaching knots to my scouts, and fun at home just trying out some of the knots.

 http://www.scoutstuff.org/deck-of-knots.html
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: MamaLeary on January 27, 2013, 06:18:45 AM
I am doing the Knot Mastery also, and deciding what qualifies as "Mastery" was my first question. Went looking and found "The Knot Master Program". Here is the link. It gives directions and what the knots are used for. Going to use this as my guide.  http://www.cpds.org/Docs/Knot_Master_Program.pdf
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: ant on January 27, 2013, 11:58:34 AM
I haven't seen this mentioned yet: there are a number of smartphone apps for free or cheap that you can download. I downloaded one called "How to Tie Knots" that steps you through each point with a little animation. Very helpful.

Ant
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: AshenChore on February 01, 2013, 02:16:22 PM
I don't think anyone mentioned this site.

I found this site very helpful, www.animatedknots.com.  I practice tying various knots just to know how.  It also has info about when to use the knot, where it is mostly used.
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: philbert on February 02, 2013, 03:41:19 PM
There's a great iPhone app called "Knot Guide" which is handy because wherever I go, I have it with me.

The knots I find myself using are:
 - Fisherman's Bend, for attaching the end of a rope to something
 - Double Fisherman's Knot, for attaching one rope to another
 - Trucker's Hitch, for applying tension to a rope to secure a load

Also, if you are fishing, knowing the uni-knot will be all you need in 90% of situations.
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: Fyrediver on February 02, 2013, 11:19:26 PM
I think knots being considered should be determined based on their use.  What can you do with a specific knot?  How is it useful to you?  What do you need to do and what knot will do the job needed?  Here are some of my favorites.


Bowline:  creates a fixed loop at the end of a line.  Numerous variants can create fixed loops in the body of the line, create multiple fixed loops, etc. 

Square knot: used to connect two lengths of the same size line

Sheet bend (prefer the double actually):  connects rope of different diameters

Butterfly knot:  creates a fixed loop in the body of the line.  Often used with a Trucker's hitch to tighten a rope or secure a load.

Water knot (overhand follow through):  connects two ends of webbing together

Figure 8:  creates a stopper, in a "follow through" mode it is used to tie in to a rope system for climbing etc. 

Clove hitch:  ties a line AROUND an object. 
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: North WI Thriver on February 14, 2013, 10:41:17 AM
We're doing this, too!  Family goal is for my son to learn these 7 knots and for me to "master" them (tie them with my eyes closed or behind my back). 

Square Knot
Bowline
2 half Hitches
Taut Line
Clove Hitch
Bow Line
Sheet Bend

There are vids for these knots here: http://artofmanliness.com/2009/06/24/7-basic-knots-every-man-should-know/
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: LELady on February 14, 2013, 06:42:02 PM
One of my 13 skills as well.  I bought a foldable laminated card (good for a BOB quick reference) at Amazon.

http://www.amazon.com/Knots-How-To-Guide-Purposeful-Pocket/dp/1583553231/ref=sr_1_fkmr2_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1360892352&sr=1-1-fkmr2&keywords=knot+tying+laminated
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: Breal191 on February 25, 2013, 06:23:34 PM
Bowline very dependable tough knot. Easy to untie. 
Square aka reef knot. used to tie the reefing lines of a sail on a sailboat
figure 8 aka stopper knot. used to stop the line from coming out of the block on a sailboat. East to untie. 
Constricter knot. gets tighter and tighter as you pull on ends. difficult or impossible to untie once tightened. 
Clove hitch.

Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: shane87 on February 26, 2013, 05:50:55 PM
Bowline and one hand bowline
Taughtline hitch
Clove hitch
Figure 8 follow through and figure 8 on a bight
Half hitch
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: AshenChore on February 28, 2013, 10:23:37 AM
I really like the Palomar knot when fishing.  Easy enough to do in the dark (at least I am able) and super strong, won't come undone. 

Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: archer on February 28, 2013, 12:15:04 PM
I really like the Palomar knot when fishing.  Easy enough to do in the dark (at least I am able) and super strong, won't come undone. 


i had to look that one up. interesting knot.
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: surfrescue on March 01, 2013, 10:47:07 AM
As a professional technical rescuer, the most common knots, bends and hitches I use are:
Figure Eight (including directional and on a bight)
Bowline
Water knot
overhannd
half hitch (usually two half hitches, then an overhand)
timber hitch for quickly moving equipment.
Munter hitch
Title: Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
Post by: Kilted Brewer on March 03, 2013, 07:18:43 PM
Thanks for all the resources everyone.  I listed this as one of my skills, and while I know lots of knots good for flyfishing, that's about it.

I think I have some clothesline type cord in the basement.  Time to cut up some hanks and start practicing!