Boy Scout Troop 215 Anderson, SC
First Presbyterian Church of Anderson, South Carolina
A Scouting Tradition Since 1928
215 Knots and Lashings
Boy Scout Troop 215
Knots and Lashings
Below you will find Videos and Instructions to tie the basic Scouting Knots and Lashings
|Knots:||Lashings:||Other Knots & Stuff:|
Video on the Seven Basic Knots
ALL Scouts Should Know - Introduction Video
Scouting Knots and Whipping a Rope are Below:
|The Square Knot (Reef
||The Clove Hitch
Uses: Used to tie two ends of a single
line together such that they will secure something that is unlikely to
move much, such as furled sails or a bandage. (The knot lies flat when
tied with cloth and has been used for bandages for millennia.) With both
ends tucked (slipped) it becomes a good way to tie shoelaces. It is also
1) Tie a left-handed overhand knot and then a right-handed overhand knot or vice versa. (The Boy Scout instructions for this knot are: right-over-left and under; left-over-right and through.)
2) Pull the knot tight.
NOTE: In Scouts this knot has a special meaning - it is also called the JOINING KNOT. This is because it is the first knot you learn after joining scouts and because it joins items together.
Uses: The clove hitch is normally used for
securing objects, such as tying a load on a trailer or truck as a means
of reliably securing one end of the rope, especially when used in
combination with a sheepshank to ensure tension is maintained. The clove
hitch is the starting knot in most lashing knots. It is very fast to tie
and easy to adjust the knot for length, making it useful at belay
stations in rock climbing, where the belayer can maintain the necessary
1) Tie a half hitch around a rail or post.
2) Tie a second half hitch around the rail or post.
3) Tighten the hitch.
NOTE: It is formed from two half hitches around a rail or post where one is reversed or opposed to the other. This opposition causes the knot to grip against itself when tension is applied. It can be pre-formed in the middle of the rope, then slid over the end of a post.
Hitches or Double Half Hitch
Uses: The Two Half Hitches or Double Half
Hitch is commonly used to tie a line to a post or dock eye. The knot can
slip apart under high stress loads so it should NOT be used for
"mission-critical" things like tying a rode to an anchor.
1) After coming around the post, make an underhand loop (the loop goes under the standing part - attached or long end of the line.)
2) Bring the bitter end (free end) up over the standing part and through the eye which you created.
3) Next make a second underhand loop around the standing part, and run the bitter end through this eye.
4) Tighten the hitch.
Uses: The timber hitch is used to attach a
single length of rope to a piece of wood. This knot is easily undone
1) Wrap the rope around the log, then pass the running end around the standing part of the rope.
2) Twist the running end around itself three or four times.
3) Tighten the hitch.
Notes: A true Timber Hitch must have at least three tucks trapped against the object.
Uses: It is useful for tensioning lines
where the tension may need to be periodically readjusted, and typical
applications for this hitch is in securing loads on vehicles, and in
securing [tent] lines. The taut-line hitch does not work well with some
modern synthetic lines that are excessively slick or which do not knot
well, but works excellently with most line.
1) Pass the line from the load, loop it around the anchor, take the free end and loop it around in a half-hitch; that is, loop it around the standing line and pass it through the loop formed.
2) Pass the free end through the loop again in the same direction, so that there are two passes of the line through the loop.
3) Tie another half-hitch on top of the previous half-hitch going in the same direction; that is, pass the free end around the standing line above the hitch just tied and pass it through the loop formed.
4) Tighten the hitch.
Notes: Adjust the taut-line hitch by grasping the standing line in one hand just below the taut-line hitch, then pull the line against the load, and grasp the hitch with the other hand and pull it the other direction, away from the anchor and towards the load, to tighten. The knot can be repeatedly adjusted as needed.
Uses: Commonly used in sailing small craft to secure the top of
the main sheet to the main line. The Federal Aviation Administration
recommends the bowline knot for tying down light aircraft. Commonly
referred to as the rescue knot because it is used to lift people out of
Instructions: This knot can be tied in a number of ways, including in the air, around an object, and around oneself.
The 'Bunny' method:
1) Form the hole (a loop).
2) The bunny comes up through the hole.
3) Passes around the tree.
4) And then back down through the hole.
5) Pull the knot tight.
Single hand method:
1) Grasp the free end with the thumb of the dominant hand (leaving some free length) and place the line behind the victim.
2) Cross the free end over the line in front of the victim.
3) Twist the hand under the line and up to form a loop around the wrist.
4) Push the free end around the line.
5) Then pull it through the wrist loop.
6) Pull the knot tight.
Notes: This is an ancient knot non-jamming knot and is considered the 'King of Knots'.
Uses: Joining two rope of equal or
1) Take the larger rope in one hand. Make a loop in this rope about three inches long and hold both ends of the loop in one hand.
2) Take the smaller rope and thread it up the loop.
3) Wrap the smaller rope around the loop of the larger one.
4) Tuck it underneath the where the smaller rope comes up through the larger rope's loop.
5) Pull the free end of the smaller rope tight to secure the bend.
Notes: The sheet bend is very fast to tie and is also useful when joining two ropes of different diameters.
Uses: Whipping is a series of knots intended to stop a rope from
unraveling. As it can slip off of the rope easily, the common whipping
should not be used for rope ends that will be handled frequently. The
benefit of a common whipping is that no tools are necessary and the rope
does not need to be unlayed. The
problem is that it will slide off the end of the rope with little
provocation. Other whippings avoid this by interleaving the whipping
with the strands of the rope and creating friction with the strands to
avoid slipping. Normally a natural fiber rope is whipped with twine. The
size of the rope dictates the size of the twine. Any twine can be used,
but tarred two strand hemp (marline) is preferred. Unnatural ropes
should have their ends fused by heat rather than whipped to prevent
1) The rope should be whipped a short distance (2 or more diameters) from its end.
2) Lay the head of the twine along the rope and make a bight back along the rope.
3) Begin wrapping the twine around the rope and bight of twine securely.
4) Wrap until the whipping is one and a half times wider than the rope is thick.
5) Slip the working end of the twine through the bight. Carefully pull on the standing end of the twine until the bight and working end are pulled under the whipping (Note: It is normally necessary to maintain tension on the working end to prevent the bight from being dragged completely through and so destroying the whipping)
6) Cut the twine flush with the edges of the whipping and the rope end not less than half its width from the whipping to give the rope end a finished look.
|Lashings Required for Scouting|
Uses: To bind poles that are in contact
and cross each other at any angle from 45º to 90º. If the angle of
contact is greater than 45º, a shear lashing should be used. Thought to
be the most secure lashing available.
1) Tie a clove hitch to the vertical pole.
2) Twist the standing end of the rope around the running end. This is to secure the clove hitch so that it will not slip.
3) Bring the running end up and over the cross pole; then around the vertical pole; and back down over the cross pole.
4) Pass the rope behind the vertical pole and back up in front of the cross pole; this completes the first wrapping.
5) Take two more wrapping turns for a total of three wrappings and pull each turn tight.
6) Start the frapping turns by taking one complete turn around the cross pole. This turn prevents the rope from crossing the wrapping turns on a diagonal.
7) Take at least two frapping turns; keeping the turns parallel to each other and pull them tight as they are made.
8) When the last frapping turn is in place, take a half hitch around the cross pole, working it tight.
9) Add a second half hitch to form a clove hitch around the cross pole and work it tight.
Notes: The square lashing gets its name from the fact that the wrapping turns are at 90º or "square" to the poles. Traditional square lashing is the most frequently used and the most secure form of lashing. If tied properly, the square lashing will remain tight and secure; however, as with all lashings, if any steps are omitted or done carelessly, the lashing will loosen and create a dangerous situation.
Uses: Diagonal lashing is used to bind
poles together that cross each other but do not touch when their ends
are lashed in place in a structure. The diagonal lashing can be used to
bind poles that cross each other from 90° to 45°. If the angle between
the poles is less than 45° a shear lashing should be used.
1) Tie a timber hitch diagonally around both poles.
2) Start the wrapping turns on the opposite diagonal to the timber hitch, by pulling the rope tight so that the poles contact each other.
3) Take 3 to 4 wrapping turns; keep the wrapping turns parallel and pull each wrapping turn tight.
4) Start the second set of wrapping turns by going past and around the vertical pole. (Going around the pole allows the direction of the rope to be changed without crossing the first set of wrapping diagonally.)
5) Take 3 to 4 wrapping turns; be sure to keep the wrapping turns parallel and pull each wrapping turn tight.
6) Start the frapping turns by going past and around one of the poles. (Going around the pole allows the direction of the rope to be changed without crossing the first set of wrapping diagonally.)
7) Take 2 to 3 frapping turns; keep the frapping turns parallel and be sure to pull each turn tight.
8) End the lashing with a clove hitch. Take the first half hitch of the clove hitch by going past and then around one of the poles. Lock the half hitch tight against the lashing by working it tight.
9) Take the second half hitch around the pole.
10) Work the second half hitch tight against the first half hitch so that the clove hitch is locked against the lashing.
Notes: The diagonal lashing gets its name from the fact that the wrapping turns cross the poles diagonally.
Uses: A shear lashing is often used to
bind adjacent poles together. It is also a good way to reinforce a
broken or weak pole. A loose Shear Lashing made around the ends of two
poles will allow the poles to be opened out and used as an A-frame.
1) Lay out the poles. For most lashings you will want to lay the poles side by side with the butt ends aligned.
2) Tie a clove hitch around one of the poles.
3) Secure the standing part by wrapping it around the running part in a twisting fashion.
4) Pass the rope around the poles, pulling each turn tight making a series of turns until the lashing is at least as long as the combined diameter of the two poles (usually a set of 4 to 6 turns will be sufficient).
5) Tighten the lashing with 2 to 3 frapping turns by taking the rope down between the poles.
6) Pass the rope around one pole and tuck it under itself to form a half hitch. Pull this tight and make a second half hitch forming a clove hitch by taking the rope around the same pole and tucking it under itself.
Notes: The frapping turns used to tighten the lashing may be omitted and replaced with wedges inserted between the poles (round lashing).
Uses: Used to lash two poles together
(like in constructing a flagpole).
1) Tie a Clove Hitch around one pole.
2) Wrap the rope around both poles seven or eight times.
3) Finish with two Half Hitches around both poles making a Clove Hitch.
Notes: The lashing can be tightened by driving a small wooden peg between the poles. If possible force a wedge under the lashings to make them really tight. If the spars are vertical, bang the wedge in downwards
Uses: This lashing is used to create a
three pole tripod.
1) Tie a clove hitch around one of the outside poles.
2) Secure the standing part by wrapping it around the running part. (Wrapping the standing part around the running part prevents the clove hitch from slipping around the pole. If the clove hitch slips the lashing will loosen up from the inside.)
3) Start the wrapping turns by wrapping the rope around the poles. Take a total of 4 to 6 wrapping turns. Pull each wrapping turn tight as it is made. (The stiffness of the tripod lashing depends on the number and tightness of the wrapping turns. As the tightness of the wrapping turns or the number of wrapping turns increases, the stiffness of the tripod will increase.
4) Take the first frapping turn by passing the rope around the pole that the clove hitch was tied to, then between the outside pole and the center pole.
5) Take 2 or 3 frapping turns. Pull each frapping turn tight as it is made.
6) Start the second set of frapping turns by taking the rope around the center pole and pass it between the second outside pole and the center pole.
7) Take the second set of frapping turns. (Taking the second set of frapping turns in the opposite direction to the first set of frapping turns prevents the rope from crossing the wrappings at a diagonal. Unnecessary crossing of the rope increases friction between the strands of the rope making it difficult to tighten the lashing properly.)
8) Take a total of 2 or 3 frapping turns. Pull each turn tight.
9) Make the first half hitch of the ending clove hitch around the second outside pole by taking the rope past the pole and then around the pole. Work the half hitch tight so that it is locked against the lashing.
10) Make the second half hitch of the ending clove hitch. Work the half hitch tight to complete the ending clove hitch. (If very smooth rope is being used, a 3rd half hitch should be added to the clove hitch to insure that the lashing will stay in place.
Uses: To lash a series of poles to a set of stringers to form a
flat surface such as a deck or floor, a table top, or a road way.
1) Tie a clove hitch around each stringer (rafter).
2) Secure the short end of the rope by wrapping it around the running end forming a twisting pattern.
3) Place the decking poles on the stringers and take a bight around the first pole.
4) On the inside of the stringer, pull a bight up between the first decking pole and the next decking pole.
5) Place the eye of the bight over the end of the decking pole.
6) Pull tight.
7) On the outside of the stringer, place a bight over the next decking pole.
8) Pull tight.
9) Repeat steps 4 through 8 until all decking poles are lashed in place.
10) Tie the first half hitch of the ending clove hitch. Work half hitch tight.
11) Tie the second half hitch of the ending clove hitch. Work half hitch tight to form clove hitch.
Notes: When using a floor lashing, both ends of the decking poles must be lashed at the same tine to insure a firm even surface. When placing the decking poles on the stringers, lay the decking poles so that their butt end are in alternating direction. Alternating the but ends of the decking poles will compensate for the natural taper of the poles so that the length of the decking along each stringer will be equal.
|Other Knots, Fun Stuff & Pioneering|
Paw or Fist Knot
Uses: Can be used as a stopper knot; to
keep a rope from unreeving from a pulley block; to prevent a rope from
1) Form an overhand loop.
2) Form an underhand loop around the standing part.
3) Complete the knot by reeving the running end through the eye of the first loop.
4) Pull the knot tight.
Notes: Easier to tie and untie than an overhand knot and does not damage the rope fiber or jam like an overhand knot.
Uses: It is a stopper knot used to prevent
a rope from pulling through an object.
1) Start by wrapping the rope around four of your fingers.
2) Once there are three wraps, remove your fingers and wrap it three times around the three lengths where your middle and ring finger were. You can use more than three wraps (four or five) for a larger knot, and if the object you are using in the center of the knot is not fully covered by 3 wraps. Experimentation will guide you in the right rope weight and number of wraps to make a good-looking knot.
3) Then make three more turns by passing the end of the rope inside the first set of turns but outside the second set.
4) Finally, insert the weight and tighten the rope
|Pioneering: Building an A Frame||Pioneering: Building a Tripod with Supports|
|Pioneering: Building a Trestle Frame|