Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Knot Tying: Seamanship: Knots, Bends, and Hitches pt1-2 1973 Dept of Defense 14min

video for embedding at http://outdoor-gear.quickfound.net/

NEW VERSION in one piece instead of multiple parts: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zL8ZYNuVMLM

“Teaches how to tie the square knot, figure 8, bowline, half hitch, timber hitch, rolling hitch, clove hitch, cats paw, single and double sheet or becket bend, fisherman’s bend, and double carrick bend.”

Public domain film from the National Archives slightly cropped to remove uneven edges, with the aspect ratio corrected, and mild noise reduction applied.
The soundtrack was also processed with volume normalization and noise reduction.

Department of Defense training film TF55-4738

part 2: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K2jbT9faFaY

from US Army Field Manual FM 3-97-61

The rope is a climber’s lifeline. It must be cared for and used properly. These general guidelines should be used when handling ropes.

a. Do not step on or drag ropes on the ground unnecessarily. Small particles of dirt will be ground between the inner strands and will slowly cut them.

b. While in use, do not allow the rope to come into contact with sharp edges. Nylon rope is easily cut, particularly when under tension. If the rope must be used over a sharp edge, pad the edge for protection.

c. Always keep the rope as dry as possible. Should the rope become wet, hang it in large loops off the ground and allow it to dry. Never dry a rope with high heat or in direct sunlight.

d. Never leave a rope knotted or tightly stretched for longer than necessary. Over time it will reduce the strength and life of the rope.

e. Never allow one rope to continuously rub over or against another. Allowing rope-on-rope contact with nylon rope is extremely dangerous because the heat produced by the friction will cause the nylon to melt.

f. Inspect the rope before each use for frayed or cut spots, mildew or rot, or defects in construction (new rope).

g. The ends of the rope should be whipped or melted to prevent unraveling.

h. Do not splice ropes for use in mountaineering.

i. Do not mark ropes with paints or allow them to come in contact with oils or petroleum products. Some of these will weaken or deteriorate nylon.

j. Never use a mountaineering rope for any purpose except mountaineering.

k. Each rope should have a corresponding rope log…

l. Never subject the rope to high heat or flame. This will significantly weaken it.

m. All ropes should be washed periodically to remove dirt and grit, and rinsed thoroughly…

n. Ultraviolet radiation (sunlight) tends to deteriorate nylon over long periods of time. This becomes important if rope installations are left in place over a number of months.

o. When not in use, ropes should be loosely coiled and hung on wooden pegs rather than nails or other metal objects. Storage areas should be relatively cool with low humidity levels to prevent mildew or rotting. Rope may also be loosely stacked and placed in a rope bag and stored on a shelf. Avoid storage in direct sunlight, as the ultraviolet radiation will deteriorate the nylon over long periods…

When using ropes, understanding basic terminology is important. The terms explained in this section are the most commonly used in military mountaineering.

a. Bight. A bight of rope is a simple bend of rope in which the rope does not cross itself.

b. Loop. A loop is a bend of a rope in which the rope does cross itself.

c. Half Hitch. A half hitch is a loop that runs around an object in such a manner as to lock or secure itself.

d. Turn. A turn wraps around an object, providing 360-degree contact.

e. Round Turn. A round turn wraps around an object one and one-half times. A round turn is used to distribute the load over a small diameter anchor (3 inches or less). It may also be used around larger diameter anchors to reduce the tension on the knot, or provide added friction.

f. Running End. A running end is the loose or working end of the rope.

g. Standing Part. The standing part is the static, stationary, or nonworking end of the rope.

h. Lay. The lay is the direction of twist used in construction of the rope.

i. Pigtail. The pigtail (tail) is the portion of the running end of the rope between the safety knot and the end of the rope.

j. Dress. Dress is the proper arrangement of all the knot parts, removing unnecessary kinks, twists, and slack so that all rope parts of the knot make contact.


  1. SlickNick33 says:

    1973 was a good year 😀 Thanks for sharing!

  2. Anish hudson says:
  3. This is so awesome. Practices every knot bend and hitch. Love the cats paw feels like magic.

  4. Leo Poldo says:

    thanks for sharing! 

  5. Oscar Stone says:

    its good

  6. CocacolaCowboy1919 says:

    Bunny goes out of the hole around the tree aye aye chief.

  7. RightKnight21 says:

    great video!

  8. Harley Quinn says:

    What's the most difficult knot to undo?? I'm doing a project and they're going to try and undo it!! Thanks :)

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