In this quick tutorial I demonstrate how to tie a paracord monkey fist.
This knot has been in use for a very long time. It was used by sailors to pass rope onto sailors on the shore. Due to the accidental injuries though, it phased out of use.
The monkey fist has a decorative use and can be used in many projects, from making keychains, bolas, flails and many other fun things.
It can be tied using a monkey fist jig or on you hand. There is a tutorial on making your own jig, but if you don’t have the time, simply using a couple of pencils and sticking them into cardboard or something similar will work just fine.
Once the knot is tied, usually a core is inserted into the center. I like to use wooden balls found in art stores, but ball bearing balls are also a very popular core for monkey fists.
The knot can also be tied with two colors, by adding the third pass (as seen in the tutorial below) using a second color.
Tying the knot is simple. But the first thing you need to do is figure out how many passes you need to fit your core. Different diameters of cores require different numbers of passes.
These are fairly reliable calculations on the required number of passes (wraps) for different core diameters when using paracord 550:
|Diameter of the core||Number of passes needed|
|1 1/8 inches||6|
|1 1/4 inches||7|
|1 3/8 inches||7|
|1 1/2 inches||8|
|1 5/8 inches||9|
|1 3/4 inches||9|
As you can see, there is a linear correlation.
So once you have a core and have figured the number of wraps, it is time to tie the knot.
This is done by following the few steps:
Insert the core into your jig.
Wrap around as many times as you have passes in the knot.
Then wrap around horizontally, again the same number of passes.
Reach the top.
Another look at what we have now.
Start wrapping in the third dimension, on the inside of the knot. Again the same number of passes/wraps.
Remove the knot from the jig to complete it.
Tighten it by starting on one end, gently pulling on the cords and removing the slack. If you pull too tight, the knot will not form properly.
That is all you need to tie this useful knot.
See the video tutorial, it may also help: