Extending Rope

Handling - Extending Rope

Many riggers only carry ropes of common lengths like 30’ and 15’.  These are useful for different purposes and are easy to handle.  (More on this at Rope Lengths & Thicknesses.)

We do this because it saves us time when tying for a scene.  Many common ties require you to pull the tail through multiple times.  With shorter ropes, you can pull the tail through in 1-3 moves.  But the longer your rope, the more moves (and more time) each tail pull will take.

However, there are many ties that require more than 30’ (9m) of rope—many chest and waist harnesses, for example.  You will either need a very long rope, or… you can just learn how to extend your rope when you need more!  Once you understand these simple techniques, there is no need to use extra-long ropes harnesses for most cases.  (That said, some riggers still carry extra-long pieces for cases where they specifically want to have no rope joins, for example if doing a rope corset for a photo shoot.)

Here are three techniques that will allow you to simply extend your rope and continue.

These techniques will allow you to simply add rope to your current tie and continue. No need to carry ropes 50 or 100 feet long just because you want to do some intricate harness…

Coil of Rope

For this tutorial, I used Natural and Blue 6mm provided by my affiliate Twisted Monk.

Check them out for some amazing hemp rope!

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Use a Lark’s Head to grab the old rope.  This is a very fast way that you can use if the ends of your rope are knotted and even.

Using this technique in action…

If the ends of your rope are not knotted, you can still use a Lark’s Head … by “collapsing” it into a Square Knot! This technique is also helpful if the ends of your first rope are not even.

Using this technique in action…

You can also completely end the first rope (use up extra rope and then tie off the end), and then add a brand new rope to any line that is under tension, the stem for example, or a chest or waist strap.

In this example, we have completed a Hishi Karada, used up the extra rope and tied it off. Now we want to add a new rope so we can do something different around the hips.

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1 Comment

  1. A 3rd Method i have been using on thicker rope is kinda the same as method 2 but instead of running both old ropes into one side of the Lark’s Head, run one from each side so they cross each other inside the Lark’s Head.

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