I started working with paracord this week. You can see my first projects here. Today, I’m going to make a Monkey Fist. I’m not scared when I go out hiking on my own but there’s no reason I shouldn’t carry some kind of self defense item. A paracord monkey fist is easy to conceal and will slow down any attacks long enough for me to get away.
- Golf ball
- 6 feet 550 paracord for main color
- 4 feet 550 paracord for secondary color
- Monkey Fist Jig
You will need to connect the 6 foot and 4 foot pieces fo paracord so that you will have one 10 foot strand of paracord. I do not melt the ends and smash them together. In the short time I’ve been working with paracord I’ve found that this makes a very weak bond. I have images below of how I mate the ends and their is a video tutorial.
Making a Monkey Fist Jig:
The monkey fist jig was very easy to make. You can buy them here but if you have any spare 2x4s and some pencils, you can make one yourself. You will also need a drill. I drilled my first hole and placed the ball next to the hole with a colored pencil in it to drill the second, third and fourth holes.
Directions for Making the Monkey Fist
Using your jig, line the paracord up so that the joined section of the paracord is in the center on the inside of the two pegs that are closest to you. (You will want the main color on the right side and the secondary color on the left side.
Start the weave with you secondary color. Hold the main color in your right hand so it is kept in place, use your levt hand to wrap the secondary color out and around the four pegs (counter clockwise). You will wrap the cord around the pegs 9 times.
Hold the paracord so that your loops don’t unwind and place the golf ball inside the loops. You will have to hold the golf ball in place until you make the next loops.
Now you will wrap the main color around the first loops you made with the secondary color. You will wrap in a clockwise direction. Make sure you are wrapping outside the secondary color. Once you have made a few loops your golf ball should stay in place. Continue wrapping the main colored cord until you have 9 wrappings.
NOTE: You will need to make sure the loops do not overlap one another. The loops should be side by side. If you keep your loops side by side now, it will be easier to tighten the monkey fist.
The next step is the last “wrapping” step. You will continue using the main colored cord. For these loops you will be going inside of the secondary colored loops and outside of the main colored loops. Just like the other wraps we have made, you will make 9 wrappings.
NOTE: It will be much easier to make these loops if you use a paracord needle.
The monkey fist is now complete! Remove the monkey fist (carefully) from the jig. Once the monkey fist is off of the jig, you will start tightening the cords but do not make them too tight – just snug.
This can be a slow process but it will make your monkey fist secure.
Once you have tightened all of your paracord and are happy with the way it looks, you will want to create a handle for it. I wanted my handle to be a little long so that I could swing it a something scary! I started by tying a diamond knot. Then I made the lanyard using a SeeSaw braid. Finally, I made the handle using a double cobra braid.
I’m planning on taking this on my solo hikes 🙂 I’m including the videos I watched while learning to make the monkey fist incase you want to make your own! Enjoy!