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Scouting Requirements (Merit Badges etc, below)

Instructions: Move the mouse over each knot. Look at the description to find out what it can be used for. Click on the knot you wish to see. On the new page wait until the selected knot starts to tie itself.

Knots Required by Scouting Organizations

Some national organizations specify detailed requirements for advancement and for various activities. These lists change with time and some are overdue for revision because they contain errors or knots of almost no value.

Other countries describe projects and activities that involve using knots, but provide no specified lists. The lists below were compiled from data on websites in the US and UK:

Required Knots, US

From (effective February 18, 2014):

Boy Scout Joining Requirement
Square Knot
Two Half Hitches, Taut-Line Hitch - see: Rolling Hitch
First Class
Timber Hitch, Clove Hitch, Square Lashing, Shear Lashing, Diagonal Lashing.

Merit Badge Knots, US

Thanks to Matt Sorensen and Willard Burt who helped me compile this this list from

Climbing Merit Badge
Double Fisherman's Knot (Grapevine Knot), Figure Eight on a Bight,
Figure Eight Follow-Through, Safety knot, Water knot.
Fishing and Fly-Fishing Merit Badges
Arbor Knot, Blood Knot, Clinch, Double Surgeon's Loop, Palomar, Loop to Loop,
Turle (omitted as it is one of the weakest knots).
Pioneering Merit Badge
Back Splice, Bowline, Diagonal Lashing, Eye Splice, Round Lashing, Round Turn with Two Half Hitches, Shear Lashing, Sheet Bend, Short Splice, Square knot, Square Lashing, Tripod Lashing, and Sheepshank (included very reluctantly – too high a failure rate).
Rowing Merit Badge
Bowline, Clove Hitch, Round Turn with Two Half-Hitches,
Mooring Hitch (omitted because there is a better alternative),
Wellman's Knot, p 39 Rowing Handbook (omitted because it is unstable and almost unknown)
Tumble Hitch (Added as the preferred alternative to the Mooring and Wellman's).
Small Boat Sailing Merit Badge
Bowline, Cleat Hitch, Clove Hitch, Figure Eight Knot, Square (Reef) Knot, Two Half Hitches.

Merit Badge Knots, UK

This list was compiled from

Basic Nautical Skills
Clove Hitch, Figure Eight Knot, Round Turn and Two Half Hitches.
Nautical Skills
Back Splice, Cleat Hitch, Eye Splice,
Round Turn and Two Half Hitches. Sailmaker's Whipping.
Advanced Nautical Skills
Bowline, Clove Hitch, Decorative Knot, Figure Eight Knot, Rolling Hitch,
Round Turn and Two Half Hitches. Sheet bend,
Pioneer Activity
Coil Rope, Splice, Whipping,
Outdoor Construction requiring Lashings, e.g., Diagonal, Round, Shear, Square, Tripod.

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.

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Version 7.0
May 21, 2017