Author Topic: Securing the Bowline  (Read 8625 times)

Dan_Lehman

  • Sr. Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3956
Securing the Bowline
« on: April 30, 2006, 12:50:03 AM »
In km90:14ff, Rob Chisnall presents an overview of rockclimber tie-in knots, which are
pretty much either of two general loopknots:  the bowline & Fig.8 loopknot.
The bowline has been a problem for use in some firm & slick cordage as it will
loosen, resulting in capsizing or complete untying; it is also vulnerable to what
is called ring-loading and I think Rob calls through-loading (though
I have another meaning for this--loading only the side of the eye from the SPart).

Below are some images of some other ways to redress the bowline's failing, as have
just been posted to RC.com forum.  These were discovered by me & Heinz Prohaska
(and who knows how many others--though it's been a long time before someone
managed to figure 'em out and make images for posting!).



And also in a bowlinesque manner, my sketch of a secure alternative:



Then came a sort of compromise/blending of bowlinesque ease of untying with the
apparent strength of a Fig.8, and some resistance to loosening coming alon g
for the ride:



--dl*
====

KC

  • Sr. Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 297
    • latest project
Re: Securing the Bowline
« Reply #1 on: April 30, 2006, 03:53:48 PM »
Pretty slick Dan!

Kinda a conjoining of securing strategies.  It even looks like Double-Tuck and Janus might be able to take pulls not inline with the Standing Part / pulls spreading apart in the loop eye?  i don't think 'regular' bowlines are maid for that.

Perhaps this Bowline Museum might like'em too!
Rope-n-Saw Life
"Nature, to be commanded, must be obeyed" -Sir Francis Bacon
We now return you to the safety of normal thinking peoples.
~ Please excuse the interruption; thanx -the mgmt.~

bazz

  • Guest
Re: Securing the Bowline
« Reply #2 on: April 30, 2006, 04:59:24 PM »
How Do All ;D

Thanks for sharing the knot diagrams, some interesting alternatives you have there :D

Can I also add; no matter how slip resistant a knot may be, or appear to be, even if it is tested and shown to be 100% slip resistant, I do and would recomend finishing off any tie in loop that you life may depend upon, with a double overhand knot, or similar around the Standing Part / End for the figure 8, and around the partof the loop which sits along side the Working End in the bowline.
Unless of course you are in the middle of a roped party ;)
The above is just what works for me and gives me piece of mind.

There are many other tie in loops and configurations of tying, and also ways to back them all up. in the end it is personal choice, and what works for you.

Take Care,
Barry.

DerekSmith

  • IGKT Member
  • Sr. Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1530
  • Knot Botherer
    • ALbion Alliance
Re: Securing the Bowline
« Reply #3 on: May 01, 2006, 01:35:01 AM »
Hi Dan,

In my rock climbing days, I once saw a bowline fall apart.  It put the wind up me and for a while I was forever checking to see that my tie-in was tight.

I tried a number of ways to 'fix' my bowline tie-in but eventually finished up with a bowline tied on the bite - I suppose this is a double bowline,



then feed the two loops through the tip of the bite to make the knot safe. Note - do not draw up or tighten the safety loop - it is just there to stop the knot.




Two disadvantages are that it adds a few extra ounces to the weight of the knot and it shortens the length of the rope by another foot.

Against this, it offers the following advantages:

1 - It is tied exactly the same as a bowline - no new knots to learn or safety wraps to get wrong.
2 - It unties just as easily as the bowline (in fact I think even easier)
3 - It gives two loops to spread the load on the 'bina.
4 - I believe that because the Spart enters the knot and wraps around four thicknesses of rope, the curve is less tight than in the standard bowline and therefore it may weaken the rope less.
5 - I believe this knot is safe from falling apart.  No matter what I have tied this in (even Spectra), I have NEVER been able to shake it apart.  At worst, all it does is walk up the loops and close around the 'bina'.

Do you know if this knot has a formal name or any assessments made of its performance?
« Last Edit: May 01, 2006, 01:40:48 AM by DerekSmith »

Dan_Lehman

  • Sr. Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3956
Re: Securing the Bowline
« Reply #4 on: May 01, 2006, 10:35:56 PM »
Quote
In my rock climbing days, I once saw a bowline fall apart.  It put the wind up me and for a while I was forever checking to see that my tie-in was tight.

Indeed!  And hence there have been various attempts to redress this failing of the
Bowline by means of "safety"/"back-up" knots, or some further entanglement
in the main knot itself (e.g., Dbl.Bwl, Bwl w/Yosemite finish).
I have some tactics that have not yet been presented (or not well so):
jam a lightly jammable component against the Bwl body from either side, to make
a loosening-precluding binding, this "jamming" in the way that the Fisherman's
knot jams Overhands into each other, building sufficient friction of ends against
SParts to stem loosening pretty well.  (These I've yet to show.)

One however often hears of a Bwl failing which ultimately must come down to some
conjecture about how the failure occurred, what it was, exactly.  E.g., I'm
really skeptical about this so-called inversion Rob (et al.--Chisnall) asserts,
for two reasons:
1) It's hard to conceive of practical circumstances in which the end of the knot
would be so seized by some object to capsize the knot;
2) even if done, so long as the end remained held, the capsized knot would work;
3) or, if the end then came free, the capsized knot should return to the Bwl
(it is one method put forward for tying a Bwl, after all--make an Overhand noose
(usually mis-called "slip-knot" and poke the end in and then load the noose)!

Rather, I surmise that such failures were in fact ring-loading, which converts
the Bwl to a wrong-way Lapp bend, which can spill (can hold sometimes, too).
When the result of failure is an untied end of rope, one is left to some conjecture.

Quote
a bowline tied on the bite

Written like a true climber!  => "bight" !

Quote
I suppose this is a double bowline,

Better, a "Bwl WITH a Bight".  And then you make a securing of the loose bight end.
But note that one cannot do this for a hitched loopknot--by which I mean
when the eye must be run around an endless object (climber's harness).
It is now regarded as bad practice to clip into a loopknot's eye with a 'biner,
even locking.  Perhaps this is more mythical fear, but any suggestion or showing
of this gets sharply attacked in at least RC.com.

Yes, it can't fall apart; it could capsize (into a Pile Hitch on Spart) and close down
upon whatever, as you note.

Quote
Do you know if this knot has a formal name or any assessments made of its performance?

Ashley shows this knot partially--with the use of bight begun after forming the
gooseneck in SPart.  I've not seen it presented with the bight-end brought around
for security.

Quote
no matter how slip resistant a knot may be, or appear to be, even if it is tested and shown to be 100% slip resistant, I do and would recomend finishing off any tie in loop that you life may depend upon, with a double overhand knot

If you don't trust knots, tie lots?   ::)
Should we back up the Strangle knot with something (... ad infinitum)?!
A couple of rockclimbers on rec.climbing responded that sometimes their Strangles
come loose (!).  Goodness!!
The EBDB wants no further securing; if the cordage is such that it's insecure,
hmm, maybe some small stuff to seize the end is best.  The Bwl with the
Doubly Tucked H.H. doesn't work so well in firm/stiff cordage, but is pretty good
otherwise.

Quote
Perhaps this Bowline Museum might like 'em.

Ha, note that the nasty-killer penetrated even the URL to change what rhymes
with "trick" to "thingy"!  tsk, tsk
First thing to do is figure out a good definition for what a "bowline" is, rather than
let the namings define the line--too many things get called "bowline" as a way
to (try to) garner credence, methinks!

--dl*
====

fred

  • New Member
  • *
  • Posts: 3
  • FRED
Re: Securing the Bowline
« Reply #5 on: May 07, 2006, 07:56:44 PM »
 ;D hi dan its fred, re securing the bowline + other loops i use the bowline daily (im a tree surgeon) and i read the article in the latest km issue re the above and im a firm believer in the KISS principle ,Keep It Simple Stupid, sorry im not being rude to you but with all loop knots a simple stopper knot should be applied, so even when you are tired and fed up you still get it right.  
cheers fred  ::)  

KC

  • Sr. Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 297
    • latest project
Re: Securing the Bowline
« Reply #6 on: May 07, 2006, 08:10:16 PM »
There is change happening in the acceptability for a bowline in specifically some tree operations; that should carry over to other disciplines as well.

Non-shrinking/ open eyes of bowlines, eye splices etc.; that don't choke down on a karabiner; allow the karabiner device to re-orintate to possibly leveraged angle of carrying loadforce towards/ over the gate weakness.

This is mostly for climbing operations, whereby the moving up/down/around and intermittently loading, unlaoding and pushing the connection around can let this happen.  On single use lowering; during which connection is not unloaded until end, or jostled around, this is not seen as a problem.  

This defect awareness is aimed at krabs and not snaps; because a snap will automatically re-orintate to carry the load correcty in it's more rounded and isolated connections for the equal and opposite forcepoints.

Bowline w/Karabiner Warning for Climbers
Rope-n-Saw Life
"Nature, to be commanded, must be obeyed" -Sir Francis Bacon
We now return you to the safety of normal thinking peoples.
~ Please excuse the interruption; thanx -the mgmt.~

Fairlead

  • Sr. Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 334
  • IGKT Member since 1984 - IGKT Librarian
Re: Securing the Bowline
« Reply #7 on: May 07, 2006, 11:49:48 PM »
KC
The naming of knots aside - will you check that your diagrams are correct - I think you should end up with a double fisherman's knot to tie a scaffold hitch.  If you have followed GB's picture in The Ultimate Encyclopedia the second diagram is confusing as it does not show the two turns crossing.  Funny, but I was only talking to my son about this topic, this very morning (he will not use bowlines either)

Gordon

Dan_Lehman

  • Sr. Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3956
Re: Securing the Bowline
« Reply #8 on: May 09, 2006, 02:25:06 AM »
Quote
i read the article in the latest km issue re the above
Quote

Incidentally, there are some errors in Rob's article.
Firstly, what he presents as the prior-published, misnamed "Compromise Bowline",
has the finish backwards--i.e., the end should form its bight-collar in the opposite
direction.
Secondly, the presentation of the series of tying steps for "Fig.21" or the Inline
Fig.8 runs across the top of the page EXCEPT for the leftmost, which should've
been put below, the upper ones shifted leftwards, and the below one as their finish
put uppeRight!  (whew)  --though, yes, that breaks the 2-column format.
I.e., the Comp.Bwl isn't = Inline Fig.8 (though IS better seen as a Fig.8 than Bwl
variant).  Fig.25 is the Comp.Bwl.

Quote
and im a firm believer in the KISS principle ... with all loop knots a simple stopper knot should be applied, so even when you are tired and fed up you still get it right.  
cheers fred  ::)  

I remain unswayed.  The secure Bwl.s I presented are quite simple, although they
are new to most people, and might thus take half a moment to learn. ESP. the
EBDB is simple, and as much effective.  Breaking/loosening the knot takes a little
extra effort:  first, bring a bit of slack SPart through the collar; second, make a wish
by pulling apart the end and the side of the eye nipped by the turns--to pry looser
the turns (and this will draw down the collar, hence the first step!).  Work loose.

Simple Bwl.s are often shown with a simple (Overhand) stopper; one might see this
as a competition to see which knot will loosen first!

But if your heart is so set on a stopper/Overhand, I can give you better ways to
secure a Bwl with that (tying it halfway down one leg of the eye seems a damn
lame excuse for back-up!), too.

One quickly verbally illustrated variant is to tie the Bwl with the end long enough
to make a second eye (reeved through climbing harness beside the first, e.g.),
and bring the end up through the Bwl's nipping loop/gooseneck/rabbit-hole and
tie off with a single or dble. Overhand around the SPart, which can then be pulled
tight/snug INTO the Bwl's "nub" (Chisholm term), like for a Fisherman's knot.
Now the back-up is actively securing the Bwl and being secured itself.

--dl*
====

Dan_Lehman

  • Sr. Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3956
Re: Securing the Bowline
« Reply #9 on: May 09, 2006, 02:42:37 AM »
Quote
KC ...you should end up with a double fisherman's knot to tie a scaffold hitch.  If you have followed GB's picture in The Ultimate Encyclopedia the second diagram is confusing as it does not show the two turns crossing.  Funny, but I was only talking to my son about this topic, this very morning (he will not use bowlines either)

Half of "a fisherman's knot", you mean--a dbl. Overhand, Strangle.  Well, he HAS
this, but for dressing.   ;)
The use of the Fisherman's Bend(hitch) vice F.Knot aspect is my idea:  better
to bring the end to the noose-SPart at a right angle, as it:
(1) might be a tad stronger;
(2) should allow the noose to work over broader objects;
(3) should be easier to untie.

In fact, I find that if the end is passed out of the turns early, like a miniature Blake's
Hitch, the knot seats better against a ring (and maybe is more secure).

One fellow's testing of the usual way, with 8mm low-elongation kernmantle around
a standard 10mm 'biner, IIRC(if I recall correctly), showed the noose to be quite
strong, with the break coming in the noose-SPart at the point where the Strangle
strongly nipped around it!  So, my thinking is that bringing this loaded part down
around the noose-SPart near the object will improve the distribution of forces.

Geoffrey's images seem clear enough to me; but he there I think is first to show
the Scaffold knot as a dble vs. triple Overhand, and thereby introduce the "multi-"
prefix to handle a series.  (A workable idea.)

As for you son, well, in this thread are several bowlinesque loopknots change
his mind.

--dl*
====