Book Reviews

International Guild of Knot Tyers

Handbook of Fibre Rope Technology

By H A McKenna, J W S Hearle, N O’Hear           ISBN-10: 9781855736061

The reference work on fibre ropes, written by experts in the field.        

It covers the history of rope making, different fibres and their properties, goes on to describe different rope structures, their manufacture, testing and use.It provides a lot of different equations and, of course, an extensive glossary.

Its coverage of knots is minimal, however, but for those of us who want, or need, to learn about ropes, it is a great source. Did you know that a rope wet with sea water and then dried contains salt crystals which can lead to massive internal abrasion? What happens when nylon ropes get wet? (Hint: Abrasion becomes a bigger problem when the line is stretched.) Did you know that the best termination of a rope is almost always the eye splice? Would you like to learn more about the theory of backtwist? Or about what backtwist is, in the first place? Then, this book might be for you. But given the price, I would look at the previews on the Internet first.

Bundle: £434 Print: £212 eBook: £222


Jens Stark KM Editors’ Note: Jens lives close to Hamburg, Germany and the River Elbe. Involved in sailing for decades, he always had an interest in knots and ropes. He joined the IGKT this year and is now trying to find out if and why knots we use work or fail, even if he thinks he is unlikely to succeed.