Thursday, September 13, 2012

Manly Knitting III: Vengeance

Here's a couple of adjustable-length bands I made with nothing but a single piece of paracord each - no buckles needed. The first uses the same pattern as my Derweesh Belt but without the loop-back step - the reason why I do this rather than use a regular sinnet is to get two lengths of cord at the end - and the second is a simple Cobra weave, just to show that it's quite easy to do with different patterns.

1. Getting Started
First measure off the spine - this should be about an inch or so less than the diameter of your wrist. Again I'm using carbiners to anchor the strands, in this case I used 4 spine strands.

Notice how one of the end goes in from above and the other comes out from below the carbiner.

2. The Weave
Like the "crossover" step from before, weave one working strand thorugh the spine strands, then the other so that they pass each other on opposite sides of the spine. Once you're done, pull tight. Notice that this time we went straight to the outside - in the Derweesh belt the first row starts with the working strands looping around the outer spine strands, but that isn't needed here.

3. The Loop
After you've woven two or three rows, remove the carbiner.

You'll have three loops that can be opened out.

Reattach the carbiner to the central loop.

Then pull the inner spine strands to draw the central loop tight, and pull the outer spine strands to get rid of the other two loops. You may have to adjust the spine and the anchor at the other end in order to keep similar tension in all spine strands.

Now continue weaving. Remember to pull the woven rows tightly towards the base as well as pulling tightly on the weaving strands.

4. Finishing Up
When you get near the end of the band, remove the second carbiner. You'll be left with two loops.

Keep weaving until the weaving strands finally pass through the two loops with no room for any more rows.

Now remove the first carbiner again and bring the two ends of the weaving strands back to the single loop at the start. Pull the ends through the loop. This might be difficult depending on how large the loop is. Bear in mind that it should be a tight fit, as the friction here is what holds the band closed.

Measure off a few inches of cord and cut the ends to the same length, melting the tips. Finally, tie the ends together with a simple  knot.

And you're done. There should be enough cord at the end to allow the band to be slipped over the hand, but the woven section should be short enough to allow the band to to be tightened to a comfortable fit.

The Cobra
This pretty much works the same way, but using the cobra weave and just two spinal strands.

You start off with a loop at one end and two at the other, but the two loops might to be too large to provide good tension.

So what you can do is remove the carbiner after completing two rows and, with a little shuffling, pull out the a loop from the first woven row and pull tight the original two loops to get rid of them.

Once you reach the end, pass the two working strands through the single hole from opposite directions.

Then pass them back through the first hole and tie a knot.

And you're done.

The nice thing about this kind of band is it's very easy to make; they don't need any buckles and are woven from a single length of cord, plus of course they are adjustable. The main disadvantage is obviously the hanging length of cord with the weight of the knot on the end, which could get annoying.

If you want to use this idea for a watch strap you should probably make sure the loop that the cord ends are pulled through is very tight, otherwise the weight of the watch could conceivably work the band open. Soaking the band after it's finished weaving might help, as this can shrink some types of paracord and so make it tighter.

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