Essential Knot Know How for Bushcraft
September 15, 2016

Different knots should be used in different situations.  Some are designed to come undone really easily, so shouldn’t be used when you want to make something totally secure.  Some are designed to tighten when weight is applied and others to slip along when you pull them, so make sure you always use the right knot in the right situation!

To understand instructions given for knot tying, you need to understand the terms used.  Here’s a handy guide:

  • The rope can be any type of rope, cord or string that you are using and may also be called the line in instructions you are following
  • Any rope will have two ends.  The working end or free end is the end of the rope you are using to tie the knot.  The standing end is the opposite end.
  • The standing part or standing line is the section of rope between the ends
  • A loop is made by turning the rope back on itself so that it crosses over the standing part
  • A bight is made by turning the rope back on itself so that it does not cross the standing part.

Knot Terminology

And once you’ve mastered a new knot, keep practising until you can do it without really thinking about it. You’ll soon be an expert!

Follow these links for instructions on tying different knots:

The Bowline

The Figure 8

The Half Hitch


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