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If you are anything like me, it can be frustrating to have a figure-eight knot shake out of the end of a Genoa sheet and disappear through the block! Use this new, stronger stopper knot for worry free sailing in any type of weather – day or night.
Most of us learned how to sail a boat with certain standard knots. The figure-eight knot has long reigned as the one and only knot to be tied in the end of each headsail sheet to keep it from slipping through the sheet blocks. But in gusty weather, the figure eight can and will untie through a process called “spilling”.
Make this ten second “spill” test
You can get any marine knot to spill–or untie itself–if you tug it, shake it, squeeze it, or shock it enough. But some knots spill a lot faster than others. As a sailing skipper, this handful of dangerous knots could prove to be disastrous in some situations. For example, a quick-spill knot tied in a mooring line might shake out after a few wakes, tidal rises, or storm surges jerk and pull on the line.
Take the square knot, for example. How fast do you think this famous knot will spill? You’re in for a surprise. Make this quick and easy experiment to answer this question:
* Take two pieces of line.
* Join them together with a square knot.
* Hold one of the standing parts in each hand.
* Push toward the knot and then away from the knot.
* Count the number of times until the knot starts to untie.
This proves that some knots are more reliable than others. And so it is with a stopper knot, used to keep a line–such as a headsail sheet–from slipping through a block or some other piece of sailing gear.
Three steps to a powerhouse stopper knot
1. Pick up the end of your Genoa or jib sheet with your non-dominant hand. Hold it about 12″ from the end with your thumb and second finger. Drape the 12″ end of the sheet away from you.
2. Wrap the end twice around your palm toward the fingertips. Take care not to overlap these wraps.
3. Pass the bitter end over the two wraps (back toward the wrist), and then thread it back through the wraps (toward the fingertips). Pull it tight.
Add this sheet stopper to your list of “must have” marine knots today. Make it the standard “end of the line” stopper knot on your small cruising boat for confident, worry-free sailing.
Captain John Jamieson shows small boat cruising skippers how to reach their sailing dreams today! Get his popular free report “Save Hundreds on Marine Ropes for Sailing with These Seven Tips” at http://www.skippertips.com/public/231.cfm