Turk’s Head Knots Form The Head Of This Tassel Which Is Used As A Pull Cord.


Turk's Heads grace the head of a tassel -- making a fine pull cord.

Turk's Heads grace the head of a tassel -- making a fine pull cord.

I am tasked with tying knots every day as a form of physical therapy. No matter how much you like knots, you start running short of new projects. One day I saw My Lady Rose trying to reach the door of a high cabinet, and was inspired to make a pull cord. That way she can at least open the cabinet and ensure the thing she wants is there before commencing the acrobatics of getting it down. Or calling for her tall person to get it for her. I’ll give you 2,438 guesses who that is — not that I mind. She just hates to impose on me. The end result is this pull cord.

The knots used in this project are:

I first took two lengths of a Kern-Mantle utility cord, and after middling them, I braided a 4 strand round sinnet. I put a constrictor knot on the ends to prevent unraveling. Below the constrictor I stripped off the outer covering and combed out the inner strands. Too thin of a bundle to make the tassel, but a start.

I then took several strands of the same cord and gutted them to get the core strands. I middled them and laid them alongside the braid so that the center was slightly above the constrictor knot, making sure they were evenly distributed around the core. I then seized them to the braid just above the knot with another constrictor knot.

Using a piece of the same utility cord, I made a 3 Lead X 4 Bight Turk’s Head to act as a mouse. After hanging the braid, I let the top strands fall down over the Turk’s Head and the inner strands. Just below the Turk’s Head I clapped on another constrictor knot. I now had a tassel with a small bulb-shaped head and uneven strands.

To dress the head of the Tassel I put on a Turk’s Head of 5 Leads X 3 Bights, tripled with black paracord. I left the weaves slightly open so that the head of the tassel peaked through.

I then combed out the strands and cut them off evenly. I thought I was done.

After some thought, I decided it needed a hand grip to take the strain, rather than letting it fall on the tassel. I then tied a series of unseen and unsung Turk’s Heads to mouse out the hand grip. The covering knot on the hand grip is a Turk’s Head of 9 Leads X 8 Bights, doubled in black paracord. Because this was to be the grab spot, I didn’t leave any exposed white strands. I haven’t the foggiest idea in all of Hades — how do you wash a tassel?

To give you some scale, the tails on the tassel are about 10″. The largest black Turk’s Head is 2″ tall, and about 1 3/4″ wide.

This pull cord had been giving yeoman’s service for about 11 years when the picture was taken. It is showing some wear, and some staining, but is still serving. In the passing years I have researched, and carefully considered, the problem of washing. It still has me baffled.

And now, a question for the scientists, philosophers, or really smart people in the audience. Why do the synthetics they make these cords out of attract some types of soil/stains. Could you by careful selection of fibers make an air filter which targeted specific pollutants?

Thank you for coming by my site. Come back again; I’ll try to keep things quick-stepping along the route of march:

William

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Published in: on January 30, 2010 at 8:39 PM  Leave a Comment  
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Scissors Fob #2; Sinnets And Turk’s Head Variants Make A Handsome Fob


Scissors fob #2; Turk's Head knots, an 8 strand sinnet, and a tassel.

Scissors fob #2; Turk's Head knots, an 8 strand sinnet, and a tassel.

 

 

My Lady Rose makes allowances for my predilection for tying knots on anything that can’t outrun me and doesn’t bite me first. Over time she has seen the utility in some of the things I do. Lanyards, fobs, and leashes are some of the things she has grown to appreciate having on her own things. Its a fair trade deal: I tie them, and she cuts me slack on some of the other things I want to adorn with knots. I do suspect she averages in a testosterone fudge factor, but however she arrives at it, we have a deal.

All of the statements I have made in various posts dealing with lanyards and their kin also apply here. I seem to have a mental preset for what constitutes a proper size fob for scissors. I have made 4 or 5 of them, all without preplaning, or measuring — they are all within an ace of being the same length and look much alike.

The knots on this one are, from the attachment point:

I cut 4 strands of paracord in a neon green. I then made a short section of 4 strand braid and folded it across the handle. Next I seized the strands with a constrictor knot.

I plaited a 3″ section of 8 strand square sinnet next. At the outboard end of the sinnet, I tied another constrictor knot to act as a seizing.

I then fed 2 of the strands through the center of a wooden bead. I worked a short section of 6 strand crown sinnet over the bead. Then I seized all 8 strands close below the bead with another constrictor knot.

To help add bulk to the head of the tassel I put on a whipping, about 1 1/2″ long.

Finally, I returned to the handle end, and dressed the transition points with Turk’s Head knots.

The Turk’s Head just below the handle is one of my standards. It has 5 Leads X 4 Bights — this knot closes up nicely on small-diameter rounds.

The knot just above the bead is a 3 Lead X 8 Bight Turk’s Head.

The knot just below the bead is a Pineapple knot that counts out to 10 Leads X 8 Bights in its finished form.

I trimmed the ends of all 8 strands to give a rough, but very robust, tassel. Having a tassel on the end greatly increases the odds of seeing it even on a very crowded desk. After a day of shuffling papers it seems there are always a couple of strands of the tassel in easy view — even if the scissors have crawled off and tried to hide by burrowing under something.

Thank you for coming by my site. Sing out if you see any way I can improve either my site, or my knots. I always appreciate any thoughtful comments — and you don’t need to be a knot tyer to comment. Your thoughts on the looks of things are as important to me as your thoughts on the structure of the knots. After all, most of the people who end up with the knots that leave home don’t tie knots — they judge only on looks or usefulness. That is as it should be; it would be unfair to expect people to comment outside their area of knowledge. Come back again. If you see me in the parade, wave; it makes me feel better to know someone is watching:
William