Bowline Success - Page 2 - SailNet Community
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post #11 of 26 Old 09-15-2015
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Re: Bowline Success

To me the bowline is to knots as teak is to wood - quite simply the best, the king of knots.

The method I learned was to put an overhand loop in the line and then recite "the rabbit comes up the hole, round behind the tree and back down the hole"

I, myself, personally intend to continue being outspoken and opinionated, intolerant of all fanatics, fools and ignoramuses, deeply suspicious of all those who have "found the answer" and on my bad days, downright rude.
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post #12 of 26 Old 09-15-2015
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Re: Bowline Success

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Originally Posted by DivingOtter View Post
As a former climber, I never used a bowline for termination life support. I always used a double fisherman with about a 4 inch tail.
I agree. During my years as a prof. ski patroller we often discussed this for the knots used in lift evacuation, where you're lowering people 150' to the ground. I always thought the fishermans (improved) knot was a better alternative although equipment manufacturers and NSPS recommend a bowline. If I want a knot to securely bind around a piece of steel or shackle I'll choose a fisherman's. A very similar knot is the halyard knot, with less turns and more likely to bind up permanently (good on a halyard). There are too many places for a Bowline to go wrong BECAUSE it doesn't bind. Great for some stuff, not for others where untying from friction or movement is possible.

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post #13 of 26 Old 09-15-2015
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Re: Bowline Success

My previous boat had sheets permanently cow-hitched onto jib clews, so I never ever tied a bowline for anything. Now I use it for that purpose only. If you're going to use it, might as well learn the method that you can show off to your friends: One-Handed Bowline Knot | How to tie a One-Handed Bowline | Climbing Knots

As for the king of knots, hands down it's the noble rolling hitch.

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post #14 of 26 Old 09-15-2015
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Re: Bowline Success

The bowline indeed can spill. It's a sinking feeling singlehanded sailing and watching a bowline you forgot to tighten shake out of a jib clew. Sailmakers hate the lark's head for jib sheets, but I've never had a failure. It catches less on hatch rims and shrouds. If you use a furling Genoa, you could remove the single line when you're done sailing. Replace it with sacrificial sheets. Like your sacrificial leech and foot covers on the furling Genoa--the sacrificial sheets will take the brunt of damaging UV rays. Sure, it's one more step when you're rigging to go sailing, but it could add extra life to your expensive sheets.
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post #15 of 26 Old 09-16-2015
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I believe there are far too many knots used.
Keep it to the bare minimum of bowline, reef, Clove hitch and ditch the rest.
Climbers may need a better knot than the bowline but on boats its fine. Introducing something extra to your crew means something can be done two ways. Then when another crew member needs to undo it at night without light he will be slower, less safe.
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post #16 of 26 Old 09-16-2015
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Re: Bowline Success

I concur with Mark. None-the-less, I've had crew who could not master a bowline. In that rare instance, a "figure eight follow through" is a readily mastered alternative.
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post #17 of 26 Old 09-16-2015
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Re: Bowline Success

The simple bowline is notorious for capsizing when the load is not in direct line with the knot, capsizing it into a 'slip' knot ... ie.: a sudden side load. Such can easily happen during tacking during a F8 and above blow.

If you MUST use a bowline, consider to at least consider to tie it up 'Yosemite Style' wherein the doubled 'hole' (for the rabbit to crawl through) prevents/lessens the possibility of a 'capsize' into a slip knot: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yosemite_bowline
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post #18 of 26 Old 09-16-2015
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Re: Bowline Success

Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkofSeaLife View Post
I believe there are far too many knots used.
Keep it to the bare minimum of bowline, reef, Clove hitch and ditch the rest.
Climbers may need a better knot than the bowline but on boats its fine. Introducing something extra to your crew means something can be done two ways. Then when another crew member needs to undo it at night without light he will be slower, less safe.
I basically agree but your list is a bit short - I use figure eights for stoppers, rolling hitches on occasion and I just discovered and plan to use the halyard knot to replace some bowlines.

The crew knowledge factor doesn't matter much to me because for anything even semi-important I never trust anyone else to tie the knot.
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post #19 of 26 Old 09-16-2015
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Re: Bowline Success

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Originally Posted by davidpm View Post
The climbing community has switched from the bowline to the figure 8 because of several high profile falls.

Bye Bye Bowline: Time for a New Knot | Outside Online
Some fire departments too. They'll use a line once and throw it away, so they don't care about untying the knots. They mostly use manila due to its better heat resistance, and it's rough texture holds knots better.
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post #20 of 26 Old 09-16-2015
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Re: Bowline Success

Being fairly new to sailing, I needed to learn the bowline, also. My husband kept telling me about rabbits running around trees and going down holes, and WHA!!?? Finally I decided to "just learn it," I liked this video:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zfQQWng889o
But your video shows me an opposite way-- which has other uses.
The day I learned it I also did it about 100 times. Then I practiced the next day and the next day. I'll never forget it,
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