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  1. #11
    Member Caconym's Avatar
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    Jan 2012
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    Dream Hammock DangerBird
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    Aah, I was wondering what the "VT" in your first post was referring to. Yes, of the dozen or more friction hitches I watched being tied on YouTube, the valdotain tressee really stood out as a handsome knot and one I'd like to try.
    I really want to expand my knot work repertoire. I don't seem to pick them up nearly as easily as I did decades ago when I was a scout (and I still remember and use most of those).
    Aesthetically, I much prefer the VT in your video (personal choice) and I'd like to teach myself to splice, so I can see myself making a few continuous loops larks-headed to my tarp corners and VT'd to the guys.
    I can see the value of the soft shackle for people who own more than one tarp, lol. The one handed operation seems quite clever, but perhaps a bit superfluous since the only time I can think of needing to adjust a guy one-handed is if I'm filming myself doing it.
    Still, I'll give it a go. I may be pleasantly persuaded.
    I have to say though, soft adjusters located at the tarp tie-outs like your system here and my old prusik loops are certainly superior to the old plastic or aluminium replacement for a tautline hitch. Like you say, full adjustment, less bending over, generally (I'm too old for this ****) and you can adjust it from under your tarp if it's bucketing down (actually, one handed might be easier in this scenario).
    HYOH.
    Corvis natum est.

  2. #12
    cmoulder's Avatar
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    Nov 2017
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    Ossining, NY
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    Quote Originally Posted by nanok View Post
    ah yes, i recall now, when i said "some people here like and use the blake" i meant "namely cmoulder" (seems we're in a club of 2), i just wasn't sure who it was.

    i'd be really curious how you like this way of using it that i propose, if you'll have a chance to try it. (the "uni-shackle" is described here, but it's basically just a butterfly loop, and a stopper knot, with one more butterfly loop added in this case to make the tending loop). this way you obtain a blake hitch based detachable lineloc 3, so you get ease of use, no hardware, and the full adjustability (down to nearly the tarp tieout, instead of just half the guyline length). what i particularly like about these solutions (and where it all started, in fact) is that you can tie one of these at camp, having just a piece of string and knowledge, and then hand it to somebody/install it on their tarp, and they can just use it from that point on without your intervention, basically until it breaks (so it has the advantages of knots, but doesn't force the user to learn knots). actually, maybe that's the disadvantage of it?
    I like it and I immediately grasp the concept, which I think we discussed early on as coming from the crevasse rescue Z pulley. (Which, in turn, no doubt came from somewhere else where it was used for millennia before.) I'm wondering if friction might cause some wear on the alpine butterfly loop, however. In mountaineering, you actually use a little pulley due to the friction problem.

    But for myself I prefer a slipped midshipman's hitch for this application because I always keep ridge and guy lines attached to the tarp, and therefore do not need the ability to disconnect quickly. I can, and have, tied the midshipman's while wearing 200wt polartec gloves with liners, so it is an all-weather, all-season knot for me. The only other knot I need to tie is the clove hitch (at the stake) since the Prusiks and Blakes are 'tie once and done'... although hopefully not 'forget'

    And if I mention slipped buntline and lapp hitch, that covers my entire knot repertoire for hammocking. I do know a few other knots, though.
    Five Basic Principles of Going Lighter (not me... the great Cam Honan of OZ) Instagram (me!)

    “To equip a pedestrian with shelter, bedding, utensils, food, and other necessities, in a pack so light and small that he can carry it without overstrain, is really a fine art.” ~ Horace Kephart, 1906

  3. #13
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2018
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    Quote Originally Posted by Morelia View Post
    Aah, I was wondering what the "VT" in your first post was referring to. Yes, of the dozen or more friction hitches I watched being tied on YouTube, the valdotain tressee really stood out as a handsome knot and one I'd like to try.
    I really want to expand my knot work repertoire. I don't seem to pick them up nearly as easily as I did decades ago when I was a scout (and I still remember and use most of those).
    Aesthetically, I much prefer the VT in your video (personal choice) and I'd like to teach myself to splice, so I can see myself making a few continuous loops larks-headed to my tarp corners and VT'd to the guys.
    the VT is still one of those knots that make me grin every time i use it. i kind of understand how it works, but it still feels magic in use. the reduced friction when released, compared to the holding power when loaded is, as far as i know so far, unparalleled by any other friction hitch. and i agree with you it's pretty. it's just a bit less convenient for some purposes compared to a single tail hitch (which is why i think the blake still has its place).

    in the original thread here, where i describe the VT variant, a forum member (shichimi, second page in the thread) shows a very interesting take on rigging with the VT, and he's using dyneema indeed. i prefer to avoid dyneema for friction hitches, because it is so slippery and has such low melting point, but shichimi says it works well for him with smaller diameter dyneema line for the hitch than for the guyline, and he likes how smooth and frictionless it feels when released, so maybe it makes sense to try.

    I can see the value of the soft shackle for people who own more than one tarp, lol. The one handed operation seems quite clever, but perhaps a bit superfluous since the only time I can think of needing to adjust a guy one-handed is if I'm filming myself doing it.
    Still, I'll give it a go. I may be pleasantly persuaded.
    I have to say though, soft adjusters located at the tarp tie-outs like your system here and my old prusik loops are certainly superior to the old plastic or aluminium replacement for a tautline hitch. Like you say, full adjustment, less bending over, generally (I'm too old for this ****) and you can adjust it from under your tarp if it's bucketing down (actually, one handed might be easier in this scenario).
    HYOH.
    the soft shackle part is handy, especially as it "comes cheap" with using this solution, and makes it very versatile (i will show in a bit an even more funny way of using these uni-shackles for tarp rigging, which takes the versatility one notch up still). i agree for many purposes it's not needed, but can be nice to have. one use is to quickly retrofit a tarp which comes with some sort of hardware that's sewn in, without having to do something permanent, just to try.

    though, i do agree with you: once you try a decent soft solution at the tieouts, it's difficult to not like it. there's stuff that comes close (like the famous around here linelocs 3), but i still think friction hitches are more versatile. the stuff many cheap tents come with as you say intended to replace the tautline hitch are typically hardly worth mentioning, it's one of those things that make you go "so, we're replacing a simple, useful knot with a hardware solution that barely works. hmm" (some hardware solutions are great though, not all though)

    Quote Originally Posted by cmoulder View Post
    I like it and I immediately grasp the concept, which I think we discussed early on as coming from the crevasse rescue Z pulley. (Which, in turn, no doubt came from somewhere else where it was used for millennia before.) I'm wondering if friction might cause some wear on the alpine butterfly loop, however. In mountaineering, you actually use a little pulley due to the friction problem.
    yeah, i wonder about friction damage too. i haven't been out last year as much as i'd have liked, but i was some. my impression so far is that it will not be a problem, the loads are typically very light, and also very brief: for guylines, typically, most of the "distance" travelled is under no tension to speak of, and then when some tension on the tarp is achieved, very little distance is travelled to achieve the final result. similar when releasing, after only a few cm, the tension is typically gone.

    but more testing will be needed.

    But for myself I prefer a slipped midshipman's hitch for this application because I always keep ridge and guy lines attached to the tarp, and therefore do not need the ability to disconnect quickly. I can, and have, tied the midshipman's while wearing 200wt polartec gloves with liners, so it is an all-weather, all-season knot for me. (...)
    the midshipman/taut line is special like that, and it is the reason why i think it is still, and will remain relevant: this is a friction hitch which is effective, and not only can be tied with gloves in extreme cold etc, but is the only friction hitch i know of that can be tied under line tension, so it is one i think anyone should know, even if i like to use more "fancy" friction hitches for most purposes. i hear knowing it might come in handy if you find yourself, i don't know, having to repair a huge telescope in orbit? just every day stuff that could happen to anyone

    The only other knot I need to tie is the clove hitch (at the stake) since the Prusiks and Blakes are 'tie once and done'... although hopefully not 'forget'

    And if I mention slipped buntline and lapp hitch, that covers my entire knot repertoire for hammocking. I do know a few other knots, though.
    yeah, one definitely doesn't need much for hammocking, knowing a few knots well should do the trick nicely. but i just can't help myself, so many interesting knots, can't just ignore them.

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