TIE KNOTS THE FUN AND EASY WAY
Better to know a knot and not need it, than need a knot and not know it.
Clove Hitch Using Loops
Boating Index Boating Usage
Alpine Butterfly Bend Alpine Butterfly Loop Anchor Hitch Ashley Stopper Knot Bowline Bowline on a Bight Bowline, Running Buntline Hitch Carrick Bend Chain Splice Cleat Hitch (Deck) Cleat Hitch (Halyard) Clove Hitch (End) Constrictor (Twisting) Double O'hand Stopper EStar Stopper Knot Eye Splice Figure 8 Icicle Hitch (Loop) Halyard Hitch Heaving Line Knot Lighterman's Hitch Midshipman's Hitch Pile Hitch Rat-Tail Stopper Rolling Hitch Round Turn & Hitches Soft Shackle Soft Shackle Edwards Trucker's Hitch Stevedore Stopper Zeppelin Bend
Knot Terminology Knot & Rope Safety Rope Properties Contact About Facebook
Animation: Clove Hitch using Loops Tying
Use the Arrow Keys or hover over the Buttons above. View Video
Clove Hitch using Loops TyingForm a loop in the rope. Then form a second one - "the same way up". Both loops should be identical. Cross the loops one above the other so they form a knot - instead of just two loops stacked on each other. Place the knot over the post.
Clove Hitch Using Loops Details
Caution: The Clove Hitch (ABOK # 1245, p 224) was, originally, included here with the intention of condemning it. It does have two giant faults: it slips and, paradoxically, can also bind. It should be deeply distrusted when used by itself.
Uses: However, the Clove Hitch does have a few excellent applications: in the theater it is used to adjust the height of stage curtains hanging from a bar; and in boating it can be used to initially position a fender hanging from a rail. Both are described in the section about the Clove Hitch tied by Threading the End.
Dangers: As stated above, the Clove Hitch's problems are slipping and binding:
Slipping: I watched a friend trying to dock his 53' Hatteras. Each time the bow mooring line was handed to the marina assistant, he used a clove hitch to attach the line to the dock's post. The offshore wind was blowing the stern away so my friend used his engines to swing the stern in. Each time he did so the strain was too much for the Clove Hitch, which slipped undone. This process was repeated seven times despite increasingly forceful requests that some other knot be employed to secure the line. Reviewing the events later it became apparent that the assistant was using the only knot he knew. It is not a knot to be used alone.
Binding: Finally, if you make the knot secure by stacking on additional Half Hitches, i.e., multiple clove hitches, then you are inviting a major strain to cause the earlier turns to bind tightly and become impossible to untie. So, if on a boat you feel an urge to use a clove hitch - resist! Choose something else unless you are merely hanging a fender.
Alternatives: There are good alternatives available:
Paradox: When you tie this round turn and two Half Hitches, in the process you actually create a clove hitch round the standing end!
Disclaimer: Any activity that involves ropes is potentially hazardous. Lives may be at risk - possibly your own. Considerable attention and effort have been made to ensure that these descriptions are accurate. However, many critical factors cannot be controlled, including: the choice of materials; the age, size, and condition of ropes; and the accuracy with which these descriptions have been followed. No responsibility is accepted for incidents arising from the use of this material.