Making Better Knot Ropes
As scout leaders, we teach a lot of knots. Using better ropes, can make teaching them a lot easier! Different groups have different ropes that they prefer for this reason. When teaching knots, scouts often need to remember which end of the rope they are working with. One easy way to do this, is by adding a stripe of colored duct tape to the end of the rope. Having each end a different color makes it easier to remember which is which.
Better Ropes Make Teaching Knots Easier
However, if you want to go a step further, today’s post has directions for making a 2 colored rope for teaching with! Before we get started, it is important to always use the same kind of rope for both pieces when doing this. Trying to fuse a nylon rope to a polypropylene rope doesn’t work very well. And of course, we can’t fuse cotton or other natural fibers, they will just burn! For our ropes, we used two colors of Paramax 5/16th rope which has a nylon cord and shell. We have found that this rope holds its shape well and is easy to practice knots with in addition to fusing well to a second color.
Cut the Ropes
Start by cutting 30′ of each color rope. Cutting with a a Weller style soldering iron with a rope cutting tip will both cut and fuse the ends in one motion. Each rope needs to be fused on both ends, so you may want to cut all of your pieces before moving on to the next step. You can save a little effort, by using your first cut piece to measure the others, instead of pulling out a measuring tape for each one. This isn’t rocket science, so it is okay if they aren’t perfect.
Fuse Them Together
Next, we fused them together with a creme brûlée torch. Other kinds of heat or torch will work, but we have found the creme brûlée one is just the right size to keep on hand, and stands up well while we use it. Heat both ends and press them together for several seconds to create a good hold.
Give it a Test
Lastly, test your rope that it doesn’t easily pull apart. Even otters tend to tug on ropes pretty hard while playing with them between knots, you want your fuse to hold. If it doesn’t, you can recut both ends and try again, heating it longer before fusing them together.