Author Topic: 6 year old firefighter's grateful mother ...  (Read 3036 times)

Mrs G Chew

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6 year old firefighter's grateful mother ...
« on: December 31, 2005, 01:56:16 AM »
Dear friends and encouragers,

Thank you!  After browsing the many intriguing and informative links, I feel much more hopeful of being able to teach Tim some knots.

I should have mentioned in my first post that we are located on the top side of Manchester, England.  If we are ever able to get to any international meetings, it will be a pleasure to do so.  And thank you too, for the encouragement over junior  firefighter training; I've not heard of any such thing in the UK, but I can make some enquiries.

Can I ask for some more clarification, though, as to the more general uses of knots.  All the sites I looked at classify by name, or by category, and I am finding it hard to envisage specific, but non-fishing/climbing/sailing purposes for even the basic 8 knots on the scout sites - although Mr Folsom's site has given me a better idea of purposes.  This may simply be because I only use a couple of basic knots myself: tying bags of leftover food to be dropped in the freezer is not exactly rock-climbing stuff.

To lift an example or two from my original post, what sort of knot or combination of knots should I suggest for hauling 18-inch long Tonka vehicles to the top of a six-foot climbing frame?

And as my son likes to perform 'cliffside rescues' by climbing up slippery ropes on the slide mounted on the side of the climbing frame, what would be the best knots to use for that?  I got a length of washing line rope some weeks ago, which is literally only about 4mm wide, but at 30m for £1.49 I don't mind how much messed up.  Could this be doubled up, or braided/plaited in some way to make it more useful?  I'm sort of thinking along the lines of  putting nice big stopper knots or figure 8 knots in it every so often, to give some purchase.

Anyway, by way of further thanks: my Dad has begun to reawaken his knotting knowledge, has made us a small knotting display board and has been lent a copy of Ashley's by a friend of his.  And more than this, when I showed him the Animated Knots site, I clicked on the Bowline as a random example.  "Oh," he said, "the rabbit and tree knot."  I've often remembered that there was a knot he once taught me, some 30 years ago, that involved the telling of a story about a rabbit and a tree, but I never knew the name or purpose of the knot.  Now I do!

Incidentally - my Dad has also constructed a simple wooden board with pins and layout for making flat Turks Heads.  Can I now find him any flat Turks Head instructions?  No, I have managed to mislay them all.  Could anyone direct me to some nice, simple, well illustrated examples please?

Regards and smiles,
Mrs G Chew
1 Corinthians 15:10


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Re: 6 year old firefighter's grateful mother ...
« Reply #1 on: December 31, 2005, 06:30:56 AM »
Hi, Glad you are still with us!  Working a bit backward... ABOK (Ashley) has flat Turk's Head Knot's for a start.  Then visit <> for Patrick Ducey's fine templates of more complex flat mats.  Now to the front of the post.  The line will work but alas, it is uncomfortable on the hands.  Every bit of doubling or trippling helps! so... braid, as you would your hair, or four strand round sinnet (ABOK) and then add knots (figure eight) or you can work the knots to be integral with the braid ... That is to have Tim braid a bit and add a knot, braid a bit and add a knot, braid a bit and add a knot.. The added knot to be as a  wall and crown in ABOK... )  If you want a "dedicated" climbing aid with knots then make them as you go.  If you want to recover the long sinett after Tim wants to move on to another rescue...  and use it for other setups... then work the line up to tripple or quadruple and add the knots (figure eight) to the finished sinnet.
 Folks always rail on about what they would do if they won the lottery.  I don't buy a ticket.. but if I win... I'd not go to the beach... I'd just send some cord and an ABOK to Tim.  Again;  I am so happy that you respect his quest and want to be a part of it.
 Ahh, now to the stranded Tonka.  Is he intent on a recovery of a classic vehicle or just getting the thing out of the rift?   The knots and slings to gently lift a classic Jag XK 120 drop top are different from the ones used to retrieve a milk cart.  And Tim is just about the age to understand the difference.  If you were to haul up a sack of oats... a bale sling will do.  If you are to haul up a vintage "2003 Tonka 4x4.".. Ahh.   More careful lifting from all corners and a line to keep "her" (cars are like ships... there is gender)  "bright work" off the cliff.  Perhaps Granddad can help.  A bowline on each extend end (bumpers) brought to a central point and catspaws in these slings...  a hand line to pull off the cliff face... hard jobs, all.
  I'm very happy that Tim has you as the Mom and I hope grand dad will play into the rescue.  Perhaps slings under the whole rig, two slings and some lashing, fore and aft, to keep them secure.  The knots I learned back then  (born 1945, thinking about 1949) and the interaction with my granddad (until I left the homeplace) .... good stuff, ehh?  Happy New Year and have Tim look at "Lashings and Slings" in ABOK. (yes, I know, firefighters don't recover the vehicle.. just they recover the good folks who drove off the cliff.. but then again....  Santa came to my roof on the Eve.)  So maybe firefighters are expected to recover the Tonka in Tim's World.  Good night and God Bless you and yours.
« Last Edit: December 31, 2005, 06:47:13 AM by PABPRES »


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Re: 6 year old firefighter's grateful mother ...
« Reply #2 on: January 02, 2006, 10:05:59 AM »
The 8 basic Boy Scout knots have some specific purposes, most are for general use, some have a specific purpose that you may never encounter.  This is the list of knots, and what their general purpose is for.

Bowline:  Placing a loop that will not slip on the end of a line.

Taughtline hitch:  Placing an adjustable loop on the end of a line.

Square Knot (Reef Knot):  Tying a bundle together, or tightening onto a package.  Also can be used to tie two lines of equal size together, but sometimes is not the best knot for this use.

Sheet Bend: Tying two ropes of different sizes together.

Clove Hitch: Used to seize or constrict a bundle.

Sheep Shank: Used to shorten a line without a permanent knot.

Timber Hitch:  Used to pull an axial load, like dragging a log out of the woods.

Two Half Hitches: Used to pull a radial load, like around the bumper of a Tonka truck.

I am sure that others will come up with other purposes, and knots, that may be of better use, but this is the list I learned in Boy Scouts, and for everyday use they should satisfy the needs of a six year old.

Eventually, your son may want to learn how to splice, or get into fancy knotting.  But for now, learning the proper way to tie some fundamental knots, and their proper uses, will be the most useful for him thruout his life.

Also, when I earlier mentioned that you may purchase rappelling rope on the SupplyCaptain website, I didn't think that a six year old would take up rappelling.  My thought was if you needed rope for a swing, or a foot bridge, that would be some sturdy line for that kind of use.

Pat Ducey
« Last Edit: January 02, 2006, 10:10:15 AM by Pat_Ducey »