Sailor’s Knife Lanyard Knot, As Used On A Prayer Rope: Take Two

A very short prayer cord to show the use of the Sailor's Knife Lanyard knot.

A very short prayer cord to show the use of the Sailor's Knife Lanyard knot.


I have to admit that when I posted the original article about the use of Sailor’s Knife Lanyard knots ( ABOK #787 ) I didn’t think it would generate the level of interest shown. I thought a few interested people might be saved some labor by using the sailor’s in-hand method of making prayer cord knots. There are evidently many more people interested in making prayer cords than I would have guessed. I don’t have a benchmark to measure from, so I don’t know if this is usual or not.

This level of interest, interests me. The traffic numbers, and any comments, give me a slow but fairly accurate indicator of what I should post. You have shown a strong interest in using the Sailor’s Knife Lanyard knot to make prayer cords — so On With The Show …..

One of the questions was if it were possible to tie the knots as close together as beads would be — the answer, by testing, is yes. It is easy to extend the normal working of the completed knot to the strands leading in from the last knot tied. It just adds 2 more tucks to the finishing process. Before I forced these knots into an arc to add the doubled joining knot, you could pick them up by an end knot, and they stood up straight.

Another suggestion, by a gentleman from Poland, was that the people tying them use wool yarns, not paracord, and that this may make working the knots down tight difficult, or impossible. I borrowed some yarn from My Lady Rose, and tied knots in both single strands and 3 strand laid cord. I did lay the cord up fairly tight — no surprise there — but not so tight that I thought it gave me an unfair edge. The knots did have a slight tendency to tangle where the stray fibers stuck out from the yarn. It was noticeable only because I was watching for it very closely. It only meant that you had to pull slightly harder on the yarn to seat it snugly. If I hadn’t been watching for it, I doubt I would have seen it.

There were also statements to back up my theory (SWAG) that the one-handed cat’s cradle technique was a form of prayer/meditation. It was suggested that the prolonged tying time allowed the completion of a short prayer over every knot. Personally I would rather finish the knot and then hold it while I finished the prayer — and then tie the next knot. Of course I am not a monk, and I don’t tie these for religious use. I just tie knots, and am always keeping a sharp watch for knot-related information.

The doubled knot that joins the four ends of the cord isn’t doubled in the usual way. Instead of following the lead with the same cord, it is tied using two ends as a single strand. This joins the cord ends handsomely and is very secure. It would make a good tool to put in your ditty bag for making lanyards.

Thank you for coming by my site. I’ll try to keep it interesting. You could help me steer that course by giving me guidance via comments. You can use the normal comment-under-post system, or the “Write To Me Directly, Here” link at the upper right of the page. Come back again; wave if you see me at the parade of knots:

Published in: on November 28, 2009 at 12:39 AM  Comments (4)  
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4 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Hi I see this has been a popular post for you and I am glad as it probably enabled me to find it 😀 Anyway off to get some cord tomorrow and see how I go, nice to know there is somewhere to turn for some tying guidance.

    tks again

    • Thank you for coming by my site. I like it when people visit regardless of how they found me. Also a particular thank you for leaving a comment. Making it complimentary is just icing on the cake. I hope that my site will continue to be helpful to you. See you next time you drop by … wave if I’m distracted and don’t notice you.


  2. After many attempts just succeed with my first knot, God is truly patient 😀

    Thank you again

    • I am glad for your success … whenever one succeeds we all profit. If there is any way that I could help your endeavour please let me know.


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