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Old 11-20-2013, 11:52 AM   #1
Cueball
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Default Monkey Fist Query

I'm trying to master this knot. I had very little luck using just my fingers; so I popped for the wooden jig. That made the process a bit easier because of the stability it provided; however, I'm still having some problems.

On a 1" steel ball, I used a 5 strand wrap of 550. Despite everything I've tried - including watching the video time and again - I'm not getting it quite right.

Almost every time I wind up with a 4 strand wrap on one of the ends. It is easy enough to use forceps to put the end through, but I cannot figure out what I'm doing wrong to begin with.

Also, when tightening the loops I find that there is one under the other strands that goes crosswise leaving a screwy texture to the final knot.

If anyone can suggest what I might be doing wrong, I'd be much obliged to hear from you.

Finally, a question about where the ends of the line should be at the end. Do they come out on the same 'side' of the ball, at opposite sides, or quartered when the knot is properly tied?

This description is the best I could do but I hope it will trigger a thought in someone more proficient at his know than I am.

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Old 11-20-2013, 05:18 PM   #2
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With the monkey's fist knot it is best to start with a 3 ply version to get the idea of how the strands are placed. Once you are able to tie the smaller version you should have fewer problems going with the larger knot. Here is a good set of instructons for the basic knot. Tony
http://assumptionstl.org/boyscouts/Documents/MonkeysFist.pdf

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Old 11-21-2013, 08:51 AM   #3
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I learned by starting with a regular sized marble. You will make three wraps per side using about 5ft of paracord. I just had to 1 inch steel balls come in the mail yesterday because I want to make a bigger monkeys fist.

How much paracord did you use for the 1 inch steel ball?

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Old 11-21-2013, 11:52 AM   #4
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Default How Much 550 for a 1" Steel Ball

Quote:
Originally Posted by MrParacord View Post
I learned by starting with a regular sized marble. You will make three wraps per side using about 5ft of paracord. I just had to 1 inch steel balls come in the mail yesterday because I want to make a bigger monkeys fist.

How much paracord did you use for the 1 inch steel ball?
I didn't really measure the amount of cord that I used. My best recollection is that it was 10-12'. I first folded the cord into 1/3 lengths and used the first 1/3 where I started the first wrap and let the extra dangle. Then I used 5 strands for each of the 3 wraps and there was about an equal amount of cord in the weaving strand.

Sorry not to have better info for you.
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Old 11-21-2013, 11:56 AM   #5
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Making a monkey fist with 3 strands wrapped around my fingers was not too difficult, but when I went to a 1" ball, I had trouble keeping things symmetrical as well as having trouble weaving with only one hand. That was when I discovered the jig and bought one. It is with the jig that I'm having my problems. I was hoping that someone here who uses a jig frequently could offer tips from what they've learned. I'm probably missing something in transitioning from wrapping one direction to the next, but I cannot figure out what it is.

I bought some cheap re-furb golf balls yesterday to experiment with. If I have any success, I'll try to get some shots and post pics.

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Old 11-22-2013, 06:37 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cueball View Post
I didn't really measure the amount of cord that I used. My best recollection is that it was 10-12'. I first folded the cord into 1/3 lengths and used the first 1/3 where I started the first wrap and let the extra dangle. Then I used 5 strands for each of the 3 wraps and there was about an equal amount of cord in the weaving strand.

Sorry not to have better info for you.
10-12'. Ok well thanks for the info.
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Old 11-22-2013, 06:39 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cueball View Post
Making a monkey fist with 3 strands wrapped around my fingers was not too difficult, but when I went to a 1" ball, I had trouble keeping things symmetrical as well as having trouble weaving with only one hand. That was when I discovered the jig and bought one. It is with the jig that I'm having my problems. I was hoping that someone here who uses a jig frequently could offer tips from what they've learned. I'm probably missing something in transitioning from wrapping one direction to the next, but I cannot figure out what it is.

I bought some cheap re-furb golf balls yesterday to experiment with. If I have any success, I'll try to get some shots and post pics.
I never used a monkey fist jig before. I want to make one but I'm still working on another paracord bracelet jig that I might start selling. I've only made a monkey fist with a marble and without any core before. Anything larger than a marble I haven't tried yet.
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Old 11-24-2013, 01:14 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrParacord View Post
I never used a monkey fist jig before. I want to make one but I'm still working on another paracord bracelet jig that I might start selling. I've only made a monkey fist with a marble and without any core before. Anything larger than a marble I haven't tried yet.
The jig is simple and easy to make. Having a drill press makes it easier to get the holes perpendicular to the plane of the block. I practiced laying out the spacing for the hole centers by drawing a SketchUp model and working it out so that the diagonal formed between opposite posts would leave the desired diameter plus about 1/8" measuring from the outer circumference of one post to the outer circumference on the diagonally opposing one. You can make it exactly the same diagonal distance as the diameter of whatever ball you are going to use but I found that this does not leave enough room to manage the cord when wrapping. It's a trade off between the ball maybe slipping through the posts (have to make a set of wraps before inserting the ball) and having sufficient space for weaving without crowding the strands

Larger cores, of course, require more cord; but the larger it gets the easier it is to manage the cord as you wrap. I've done half-inch, one-inch, and inch-and-a-half steel balls and will try a billiard or golf ball next. BTW. The half inch needed 3 strands in each wrap, the one inch needed 4 and the inch-and-a-half needed 8 strands. I suspect that the billiard ball might need 11 or 12 strands and a golf ball (1.62" diameter) will need 5 or 6 strands.

HTH

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Old 11-24-2013, 01:50 PM   #9
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Today I made a self defense monkey fist using a 1 inch steel ball and 18 feet of black and 12 feet of red. Total length finished is 32 inches. I used the four strand round braid and connected the braid to form the handle using a cobra weave.

The hardest part was trying to figure out a good way to form the handle.

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Old 11-24-2013, 03:41 PM   #10
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I use a bent wire coat hanger for a jig. This is the one I use for a marble core.

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