(A) Natural Cordage Student Practice

Discussion in 'BushClass USA' started by Sgt. Mac, Oct 14, 2013.

  1. atlastrekker

    atlastrekker Supporter Supporter Bushclass III Bushclass I Bushclass II

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    Natural cordage part 1. Two strand twist with cattail. Ended up with about 12 feet. I didn't have anything 10 feet high to suspend this from, but I lifted it over half way on each side just to make sure it would lift it without breaking. It held just fine, and I'm confident it would hold more.
    2017-12-03 15.41.02.jpg 2017-12-03 15.39.51.jpg 2017-12-03 15.40.36.jpg 2017-12-03 15.45.31.jpg
    I have learned a great deal during this lesson. It took me quite a bit of time to figure this out, but I've got a good handle on it now.

    I made up some nice 3 strand twist today, but forgot to splice in the eye! I'll have to go back again and do it over, but I'll get it done soon and make another post for that one.

    Thanks for an excellent lesson @Sgt. Mac!
     
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  2. atlastrekker

    atlastrekker Supporter Supporter Bushclass III Bushclass I Bushclass II

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    Natural cordage part 2. Three strand twist with blackberry vines.
    2017-12-04 14.09.18.jpg 2017-12-04 14.09.34.jpg 2017-12-04 14.09.50.jpg 2017-12-04 14.10.17.jpg
    This was an excellent lesson. Thank you @Sgt. Mac
     
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  3. rsnurkle

    rsnurkle Supporter Supporter Bushclass I Bushclass II

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    2-strand twist
    Material: Basswood inner bark
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Preparing the material just involved separating the inner and outer bark, which I did mostly by pulling the layers apart. I sometimes also lightly buffed the material between my hands to help disintegrate the drying outer bark and help process the inner bark down into finer fibers.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]


    Twisting:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Testing breaking strength:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    3-strand braid
    Material: Cattail leaves
    [​IMG]

    To prepare the cattails I took each leaf and split it lengthwise into about four pieces, then let them dry out for about a week.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Braiding (in-progress shot):
    [​IMG]

    The eye:
    [​IMG]

    Testing breaking strength:
    [​IMG]
     
  4. Bushcraft-kelso

    Bushcraft-kelso Am are Supporter Bushcraft Friend Bushclass I Bushclass II

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    Hey all! If y'all are from the south then y'all are aware of the Kudzu
    I thought this stuff would make good cordage.. I was right! IMG_20180415_155025.jpg its just starting to get leaves so it is green still. These vines are 20' easy. IMG_20180415_160131.jpg so I whomped fer a bit fibers separate easily. IMG_20180415_160425.jpg then I separated the lengths, one vine makes alot more than I originally thought. I used the piffy center pieces as well as the bark. First was my 3 braid IMG_20180415_184356.jpg Holding a gallon of water @ about 8lbs.
    I used the left over from the vine I processed thinking I would need it for my braid. But I took only the bark for my 2 stranded twist. IMG_20180415_190818.jpg This wasn't as agrivateing as the 3 braid getting all tangled and separateing as I tried to un tangle it but as I twisted, it would twist in the opposite direction and being wet it stayed twisted as it started to dry out. IMG_20180415_184250.jpg Both were easily strong enough to hold up the jug. I used the 3 braid to pick up a duffle bag my sister brought me full of magazines my great uncle gave me that was a good 40 lbs. Tho this is one of my least favorite things to do because of how slow going it can be, it's a good skill to know. That's my natural cordage lesson!
     
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  5. OMRebel

    OMRebel He who piddles Hardwoodsman Bushclass I Bushclass II

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    Two strand twist with Tulip poplar.
    20180528_144014.jpg 20180528_172949.jpg 20180528_173318.jpg

    Here is the 3 strand twist using Virginia Creeper vine:
    20180610_080536.jpg 20180610_081928.jpg 20180610_090934.jpg 20180610_090616.jpg 20180610_091628.jpg

    @Sgt. Mac
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2018
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  6. jptelthorst

    jptelthorst BCUSA Friend Bushcraft Friend

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    I didn't do 10 feet so I'll need to start over. Nettle cordage holding a gallon jug of water.

    IMG_3649.JPG
     
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  7. Seahunter

    Seahunter Scout Bushclass I Bushclass II

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    I used cattail leaves for my 2 strand twist and 3 strand braid. I picked green leaves in June and split them with a dinner fork before letting them dry for a month.
    01splitting.JPG
    Then I soaked them for 15 min to get them to twist without breaking.
    02soaking.JPG
    I twisted up 10 feet of 2 strand twist. I was careful to keep the two strands the same thickness so it would lay up right. That is why there are so many splices even when working with 4-6 ft long material.
    03 2 strand twist.JPG
    I braided 10 feet of cattail cordage as well and spliced often to keep the strands even thickness for good layup.
    04 3 strand braid.JPG
    05 3 strand braid.JPG
     
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  8. Seahunter

    Seahunter Scout Bushclass I Bushclass II

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    Here is 10 feet of each along with 20 feet of 2 strand twist I made to use with my canoe. that I added a 3rd strand to the 20 ft piece to make it stronger.
    06 10 feet.JPG
    The 2 strand twist holding up a 5 lb dive weight.
    07 2 strand twist weight.JPG
    The 3 strand braid holding up a 5 lb dive weight.
    08 3 strand braid weight.JPG
    I learned a lot from this excersize. The first natural cordage I made was pretty rough looking. I found that splitting the leaves down made it easier to splice in new material since split leaves didn't taper as much as whole cattail leaves do. Splicing often and keeping the strands equal diameters is key to getting cordage with a good lay up. Here is my first attempt (the brown cordage which used whole leaves) next to my most recent stuff (green cordage which used split leaves). The lay up was really bad on the first stuff I made and was only as strong as one strand. The brown 2 strand twist broke when I tried to lift a 5 pound weight. The new stuff is much stronger. 11 improvment in 3 stand braid.JPG

    12 improvement in 2 strand twist.JPG
     
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  9. Red Yeti

    Red Yeti Mostly Harmless Hobbyist Supporter Bushclass I Bushclass II

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    Hello Bushcraft friends!

    I have been putting this task off for a while. I don't make cordage very much and don't feel very good at it. All the more reason to practice I recon...

    For my cordage I decided to use the inner bark of western red cedar. I harvested it from some downed logs I found in a slash pile.

    IP21.jpg

    I collected a big pile of it for processing

    cb1.jpg

    and I took some time to separate the pliable inner bark (left two piles) from the stiff outer bark on the right. The center pile is the inner bark that is split into strands for cordage making.

    cb0.jpg

    I processed each piece by running it over my finger the good material for cordage makes the bend easily, the stiffer woody stuff pops off like the fiber point straight up from my finger below:
    cb2.jpg

    I started with the two strand twist, (aka reverse wrap) Here's my progress at about 5-6 feet. I like the sunset lighting in this pic.
    cb3.jpg


    here's the completed hank:
    cb4.jpg


    Next up, the three strand braided piece.

    Cb5.jpg

    The eye splice was difficult because the fibers are pretty soft and hard to push through the braided fibers, but I ma
    de it work.

    cb6.jpg

    here's the measurement documentation. The 2 strand twist one was about 13 feet and the braided one was about 16 feet.

    cb7.jpg

    More to come..
     
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  10. Red Yeti

    Red Yeti Mostly Harmless Hobbyist Supporter Bushclass I Bushclass II

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    Here's the weight test, two 2.5 lbs weights on each rope.

    Cb8.jpg


    They actually could hold over 10 pounds:

    cb9.jpg


    Here's the final completion picture:
    cb10.jpg

    This was a fun project. I actually enjoyed getting into the groove of repetitious process of twisting the fibers and fitting in new sections ad I went. I liked the feel pf the end product. I think it would be pretty usable for lashing or other uses around camp.

    Thanks for looking!

    :38:
     
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  11. notoiletpaperinthewoods

    notoiletpaperinthewoods Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend Bushclass I Bushclass II

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    This was different for me and I'm enjoying it only got the first 2 strand twist cordage done, but hopefully will have the second one completed soon. This has definitely been the most challenging lesson for me so far!

    Link to the thread on gathering the roots:
    https://bushcraftusa.com/forum/threads/digging-for-treasure.237721/

    Sweetgum and Yellow Pine root two strand twist cordage whipped with dwarf palmetto: 20181206_092932.jpg 20181206_092922.jpg VideoCapture_20181206-092242.jpg VideoCapture_20181206-092409.jpg
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2018 at 3:41 PM
  12. notoiletpaperinthewoods

    notoiletpaperinthewoods Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend Bushclass I Bushclass II

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    Finished my braided cordage. I used dwarf palmetto stems. Can't stress enough how much I learned from this lesson.
    20181210_104333.jpg 20181210_104404.jpg VideoCapture_20181210-105438.jpg 20181210_104738.jpg
     

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