Author Topic: What 5 knots should I learn?  (Read 19194 times)

Offline mitten

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What 5 knots should I learn?
« 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.

Offline Cedar

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #1 on: January 15, 2013, 08:11:59 PM »
Bowline
Quick Release
Granny
Slip Knot
Clove Hitch

Cedar

Offline mike77

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #2 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.

Offline Nate

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #3 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/

nelson96

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #4 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".

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #5 on: January 15, 2013, 08:38:54 PM »
Bowline
Slip
Cats paw
Clove
Timber hitch
Sheepshank

Offline mitten

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #6 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"?

Offline ID_Joker

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #7 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!

Offline LdMorgan

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #8 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.


Offline Cedar

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #9 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

Offline archer

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #10 on: January 15, 2013, 11:06:14 PM »
i'll add the constrictor knot and transom knots to the list

Offline Erigorn

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #11 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.

Offline Morning Sunshine

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #12 on: January 16, 2013, 01:05:46 AM »
I am also doing knot tying.  great list folks!  thanks

Offline SeePhour

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #13 on: January 16, 2013, 09:17:26 AM »
Monkey Fist!

Mostly cause its fun to say.

Offline ttubravesrock

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #14 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).

Offline ant

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #15 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

Offline Nate

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #16 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.

Offline learnplando

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #17 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

Offline mike77

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #18 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.

Offline mike77

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #19 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.

Offline ant

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #20 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

Offline Morning Sunshine

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #21 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?

Offline mike77

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #22 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?

Offline Oil Lady

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #23 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. 






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.

Offline Oil Lady

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #24 on: January 19, 2013, 07:15:26 PM »
The official website for the International Guild of Knot Tyers.

http://www.igkt.net/

Offline Morning Sunshine

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #25 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

Offline mike77

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #26 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.

Offline Morning Sunshine

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #27 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

Offline mike77

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #28 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

Offline AlanB

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Re: What 5 knots should I learn?
« Reply #29 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