Yesterday, in my log I love teaching knots I forgot to mention the Sheet bend and the Sheep shank. Although these knots are used less frequently, they are very important knots too. The Sheet bend is used for joining two different sizes of rope together. The Sheep shank is used for shortening a rope without cutting it. The Sheep shank can also be used to temporarily work around a damaged part of a rope without losing the ropes strength.

While writing this article I found two websites that had some pretty good examples of tying these knots.

  1. I Will Knot! – has little video snippets that breaks down the knot tying into little bite sized pieces.
  2. Knots Gallery – has nice animations of various knots being tied

One note about the knots, the “Square knot” that is taught in Boy Scouts is referred to as the “Reef knot” elsewhere.  So if you want to see what that looks, you’ll have to lookup Reef knot.

In Boy Scouts we try to have the Scouts learn a skill, master it, then teach it to younger scouts.  In order to teach it, they need to be able to explain it in simple terms and demonstrate it in as simply as possible.

While it is great to see a student experience that moment of epiphany, when the light bulb goes on, it is even more rewarding to watch when the student becomes the teacher.  They teach the skills I have taught them, then their students experience that moment when they understand.  I hope these skills will be passed on to future generations.