Icicle hitch

Last updated
Icicle hitch
Icicle hitch knot.jpg
Category Hitch
Origin John Smith, 1990
Related Prusik, Klemheist knot, tautline hitch, gripping sailor's hitch
Releasing Unload the working end
Typical use
  • Tying to a post when weight is applied parallel to the post
  • Tying to a rope when load is applied parallel to that rope
CaveatThe Kleimheist knot will look almost identical, but the load with the klemheist should be applied with the bight lying across the turns on the post/rope the knot is tied to

An icicle hitch [1] is a knot that is excellent for connecting to a post when weight is applied to an end running parallel to the post in a specific direction. This type of hitch will hold its place even when holding a substantial load on a smooth surface. One can even suspend from a tapered post (such as a marlinspike) with this knot (hence the name "icicle hitch"). [2] [3]

Contents

To tie an icicle hitch, bring the working end over the post, front to back, four or five times, working away from the end of the post (and the direction of expected pull). Bring the working end, back to front, alongside the standing end, leaving a substantial bight hanging behind the post. Bring this bight over both ends and over the end of the post. Tighten by pulling both ends perpendicular to the post. The pull on the standing end (running the direction of the post) will tighten the knot as more pull is given.

This knot is similar to the Prusik knot and the Klemheist knot. This class of knots is a "slip-and-grip" friction type that will pull tight when the load is applied in the correct direction and slide easily for placement with no load. The Prusik knot can withstand load in both directions, making it ideal for climbing situations. Upon examination of the icicle hitch, one finds that it operates under the same principle as the Klemheist knot and is in fact the same knot tied only with a bight in the end instead of the more common short loop used for climbing.

This knot was first demonstrated at the eighth Annual General Meeting of the International Guild of Knot Tyers in 1990.

Tying


See also

Related Research Articles

Knot Method of fastening or securing linear material

A knot is an intentional complication in cordage which may be practical or decorative, or both. Practical knots are classified by function, including hitches, bends, loop knots, and splices: a hitch fastens a rope to another object; a bend fastens two ends of a rope to each another; a loop knot is any knot creating a loop, and splice denotes any multi-strand knot, including bends and loops. A knot may also refer, in the strictest sense, to a stopper or knob at the end of a rope to keep that end from slipping through a grommet or eye. Knots have excited interest since ancient times for their practical uses, as well as their topological intricacy, studied in the area of mathematics known as knot theory.

Constrictor knot

The constrictor knot is one of the most effective binding knots. Simple and secure, it is a harsh knot that can be difficult or impossible to untie once tightened. It is made similarly to a clove hitch but with one end passed under the other, forming an overhand knot under a riding turn. The double constrictor knot is an even more robust variation that features two riding turns.

Clove hitch

The clove hitch is a type of knot. Along with the bowline and the sheet bend, it is often considered one of the most important knots. A clove hitch is two successive half-hitches around an object. It is most effectively used as a crossing knot. It can be used as a binding knot, but is not particularly secure in that role. A clove hitch made around the rope's own standing part is known as either two half-hitches or buntline hitch, depending on whether the turns of the clove hitch progress away from or towards the hitched object.

Although the name clove hitch is given by Falconer in his Dictionary of 1769, the knot is much older, having been tied in ratlines at least as early as the first quarter of the sixteenth century. This is shown in early sculpture and paintings. A round turn is taken with the ratline and then a hitch is added below. The forward end is always the first to be made fast.

The difference between two half hitches and the clove hitch is that the former, after a single turn around a spar, is made fast around its own standing part, while the latter is tied directly around the spar.

Truckers hitch

The trucker's hitch is a compound knot commonly used for securing loads on trucks or trailers. This general arrangement, using loops and turns in the rope itself to form a crude block and tackle, has long been used to tension lines and is known by multiple names. Knot author Geoffrey Budworth claims the knot can be traced back to the days when carters and hawkers used horse-drawn conveyances to move their wares from place to place.

Marlinespike hitch

The marlinespike hitch is a temporary knot used to attach a rod to a rope in order to form a handle. This allows more tension than could be produced comfortably by gripping the rope with the hands alone. It is useful when tightening knots and for other purposes in ropework.

Taut-line hitch

The taut-line hitch is an adjustable loop knot for use on lines under tension. It is useful when the length of a line will need to be periodically adjusted in order to maintain tension. It is made by tying a rolling hitch around the standing part after passing around an anchor object. Tension is maintained by sliding the hitch to adjust the size of the loop, thus changing the effective length of the standing part without retying the knot.

Klemheist knot

The klemheist knot or French Machard knot is a type of friction hitch that grips the rope when weight is applied, and is free to move when the weight is released. It is used similarly to a Prusik knot or the Bachmann knot to ascend or descend a climbing rope. One advantage is that webbing can be used as an alternative to cord. The Klemheist is easier to slide up than a Prusik. The klemheist is also a way to attach a snubber to the anchor rope of small boats, with the advantage that it is easy to undo.

Overhand knot with draw-loop

A slipped half hitch is a knot in which the weight of the load the rope carries depresses the loop sufficiently to keep it in place until the load item is placed in its location. When no longer required the free end may be pulled and draw the loop through and so release the load.

Highwaymans hitch Quick-release draw loop knot

The Highwayman’s hitch is a quick-release draw hitch used for temporarily securing a load that will need to be released easily and cleanly. The hitch can be untied with a tug of the working end, even when under tension. The highwayman's hitch can be tied in the middle of a rope, and so the working end does not need to be passed around the anchor when tying or releasing.

Cats paw (knot)

The Cat's paw is a knot used for connecting a rope to an object. It is very similar to the cow hitch except there is an additional twist on each side of the bight, making it less prone to slipping.

The cat's-paw is the common hook hitch for slings. It is the same basic form as the bale sling hitch but has additional twists. Brady says "two or three altogether," and Steel, who mentioned the name in 1794, says "three twists." It is the best of all sling hitches and is often recommended for a slippery rope. But no hitch can slip when tied in a slings since it has no ends. All that is needed is a hitch that cannot jam, and this requirement the cat's-paw fills admirably. The knot spills instantly when removed from the hook. It is the hitch always used for heavy lifts.

Munter hitch Adjustable knot used control friction in a belay system

The Munter hitch, also known as the Italian hitch, Mezzo Barcaiolo or the Crossing Hitch, is a simple adjustable knot, commonly used by climbers, cavers, and rescuers to control friction in a life-lining or belay system. To climbers, this hitch is also known as HMS, the abbreviation for the German term Halbmastwurfsicherung, meaning half clove hitch belay. This technique can be used with a special "pear-shaped" HMS locking carabiner, or any locking carabiner wide enough to take two turns of the rope.

Blakes hitch

The Blake's hitch is a friction hitch commonly used by arborists and tree climbers as an ascending knot. Unlike other common climbing hitches, which often use a loop of cord, the Blake's hitch is formed using the end of a rope. Although it is a stable knot, it is often backed up with a stopper knot, such as a figure-of-eight knot, for safety. It is used for both ascending and descending, and is preferred by many arborists over other hitches, such as the taut-line hitch, as it is less prone to binding.

Rolling hitch

The rolling hitch is a knot used to attach a rope to a rod, pole, or another rope. A simple friction hitch, it is used for lengthwise pull along an object rather than at right angles. The rolling hitch is designed to resist lengthwise movement for only a single direction of pull.

Prusik knot

A Prusik is a friction hitch or knot used to attach a loop of cord around a rope, applied in climbing, canyoneering, mountaineering, caving, rope rescue, ziplining, and by arborists. The term Prusik is a name for both the loops of cord and the hitch, and the verb is "to prusik". More casually, the term is used for any friction hitch or device that can grab a rope. Due to the pronunciation, the word is often misspelled Prussik, Prussick, or Prussic.

Autoblock

An autoblock is a rope device used in climbing and caving for both rappelling (downward) and ascending (upward).

Highpoint hitch

The highpoint hitch is a type of knot used to attach a rope to an object. The main feature of the hitch is that it is very secure, yet if tied as a slipped knot it can be released quickly and easily with one pull, even after heavy loading. The highpoint hitch is a buntline hitch with an extra half turn, making it more secure.

Gripping sailors hitch

The gripping sailor's hitch is a secure, jam-proof friction hitch used to tie one rope to another, or a rope to a pole, boom, spar, etc., when the pull is lengthwise along the object. It will even grip a tapered object, such as a marlin spike, in the direction of taper, similar to the Icicle hitch, but superior. It is much superior to the rolling hitch for that purpose. It is similar to the Michoacan-Martin friction knot used in climbing; The finishing wrap for Michoacan-Martin is in the opposite direction of the Gripping Sailors knot, both ends are then made to carry weight.

Farrimond friction hitch

The Farrimond friction hitch is a quick release adjustable friction hitch for use on lines under tension. It is useful when the length of a line will need to be periodically adjusted in order to maintain or adjust tension whilst remaining quick and easy to untie; such as when hanging the ridge line for a Basha. It can be used in very effective conjunction with the Siberian hitch for this purpose. It can also be used as a mooring knot.

References

  1. The Complete Guide to Knots and Knot Tying — Geoffrey Budworth — p.104 ISBN   0-7548-0422-4
  2. Brion Toss, The Complete Rigger's Apprentice (Camden: International Marine, 1998), 55–56.
  3. "The Amazing Icicle Hitch". Archived from the original on 2015-07-22. Retrieved 2016-07-09.