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Rope Or Cord Grips

15007 Views 14 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  Fordj
I hope this topic isn't posted anywhere else, but if it is, sorry. Anyway, does anyone know of a website where different ways of making rope grips for walking sticks is discussed? I'm interested in possibly braiding the rope, and in different kinds of rope (or even other things) as well. I also think it would be really interesting to see really old sticks with rope grips.

I made a very simple stick yesterday, using rope for the grip and loop handle, and am very satisfied with the result. Unfortunately, I exhausted my knowledge of how to use rope :D

I simply wound 10' of 1/4" rope around the shaft, tucked in the ends and burned the rope tips for the grip. That cost .69 cents, and it feels fine.

For the loop handle I wound another 10' of rope above the grip, using a prussik knot and a small carabiner clip to hold the loop. It works great! I can move it up and down the shaft almost instantly, yet it stays in place when I'm using it. The only drawback is I wish the rope was a bit softer, or maybe flat and wide. Other than that, I'm completely sold on making loop handles this way.
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There are a lot of great knot sites out there and I'm sure those guys in the Navy, with lots of cordage and time on their hands, came up with something that would work.

The trick is finding something soft enough for your hand, and yet not so slick that you slide right off. Let us know what you find.
Wow, I just found this. These look incredible!


Not much specific instruction, but he mentions "Creative Ropecraft" by Stuart Grainger. I'll have to look for that.
Very nice weaving! I've been experimenting a bit with cord wraps with paracord. Nothing fancy but just did a search on youtube and found a few

different ways in which to do particular wraps.

Good luck they sure look nice once done.
I've been looking for a local supply of paracord, but so far no luck. There's an airfield not too awful far from here that promotes skydiving. I suppose I should try there. The rope I used was just about the cheapest stuff Harbor Freight had. I figured I would try that stuff to see how I liked it, and if I did like it, find some paracord. But I have to say: the cheap stuff worked pretty darn good. It's fairly soft, and yes it's slick, but the turns around the staff give a comfortable grip. But then, I normally use a hawk and trowel everyday, so just about anything would work for me lol.

Oh, I'm downloading that pdf right now. Thanks!
Wow, I really liked the one entitled, "Grafting and Coachwhipping." It has a ball on the end, with the coolest knot ever. I didn't even think to look into fishing pole handles.
That knob is a decorative knot called a Turk's Head knot. It's a particularly fancy closed version, but it definitely falls in the same family of knots.

I ordered the book mentioned. We'll see what I can actually do. I've done some simple lashing and decorative knots that would work for a grip, but nothing terribly fancy. the biggest I tried was when I needed to join two bamboo poles together at their ends. I cut a spline joint and then lashed them together with cotton string and then covered it in wood glue. It was rough, but very strong. It's still very strong years later
Well, after several (probably 4) hours of web searching I finally found a good tutorial on coachwhipping. http://www.khww.net/articles.php?article_id=35

I bought some #18 black and tan nylon thread (one roll each) and I'm going to try it on my stick, with turks head knots on both ends. We'll see how it goes. It might take a while. This looks like something that will take some serious time.

The stick is walnut (I think) but I think this will make a fabulous grip. I've already stripped the bark and sapwood, sanded it smooth, and applied one coat of tung oil. But I need to practice on a dowel first, before I prepare the stick for coachwhipping. My plan for preparing the stick is to choose the proper place for the grip, sand flat any knot protrusions (or cut them off) so as to make the shaft as round as possible, spray adhesive on the work area before I begin, then work the coachwhipping.

I hope I have the patience for this (-:
I haven't yet figured out fancy paracord braiding. So for my grandkids, I relied on what I remembered from a year in the boy scouts nearlt 60 years ago:

I thought you might be interested in reading this web page: http://walkingstickforum.com/gallery/image/109-honey-locust-sticks-still-green/
How cool is that? I have to say I really like what you did there. I bet your grandkids liked them too!
I've been buying mine somewhat locally and he has a good selection.

So it took a while, but I managed to learn how to make a nice grip out of black 550 paracord. It's in a coachwhipping pattern that spirals around the shaft for about 14", and is capped on both ends by turks head knots made of the red and white quarter inch that I first used. It came out pretty nice. I'm very happy with the result.

It took about a week of playing with rope and string just to wrap my mind around the totality of what I wanted to do. I learned to tie about half a dozen knots, and practiced by making other things before starting on my stick. It was about making mistakes and learning how to avoid them, or how to fix them. I was surprised at just how difficult it was. For instance, yesterday I spent about six hours loearning to tie turks head knots.

I'll see what I can do about posting a pic.
I finally figured out how to post pics. Cool!


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I viewed your honey locust sticks earlier today, and was impressed with your handles. I hadn't thought of frapping a stick with cord before, but that is just "up my alley". In my toolbox at work, I keep 7 different lengths of rope, and use about a dozen different knots with them to do what needs to be done. Only the Volunteer Firemen I work with have any knowledge and appreciation of the rope work I do. That is very much working ropework, not the frapping and decorative knotwork in the fishing rod link(though I love it!).


A Prusik knot? Very good choice. Where did you learn it? Confined Space Training is where I first was exposed to this knot. What did you you use as the closing knot of the endless loop used for the Prusik? I mostly use figure eights, or interlocking bowlines. My shortest rope in my toolbox is used for Prusik knots, to pull heavy wire through conduit in re-routing situations in the manufacturing plant I work in. Slide it where you want to grip, pull your length, slide it forward, and pull again.

I prefer braided rope over twisted rope. Braided has strands running both left and right, creating a neutral twist, and is much more supple. A twisted rope is stiffer, and won't stand much knotting, as it doesn't accept the tight bends required in knots, more than a few times.

Both braided and twisted rope is available at every hardware store I know. You just have to decide before you buy. One of the cheapest is 1/4" braided cotton clothesline rope, so if you used that to frapp your stick, and make your Prusik knot loop, you chose well.
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