How to Make a Fast Rope Eye Splice

by August 18, 2010 08/18/10
Paracord Paddle Wrapping 33
2 of 3 in the series Make a Fast Rope

Today on our Knot of the Week, we’re going to continue our Fast Rope construction with a demonstration of a 4-Strand Eye Splice.

On a previous KOTW we’ve shown how to create a 3-Strand Eye Splice, and while this may appear similar these are two very different techniques.

The Eye Splice is the strongest and safest method of terminating a Fast Rope (4-Strand Round Braid). It develops approximately 85% of the breaking strength of the line, which as we’ve mentioned is right around 28,000+ lbf (pound force) or 129 Kn (kilonewtons) with the 4 pairs of 7/16″ Blue Water Assaultline Static Rope used in construction.

An Eye Splice also enables the rope to be girth hitched onto a beam to climb. Traditionally in Military Fast Ropes, the eye splice is used to attach to the davits found on some helicopters.

Eye Splice Guidelines

According to MIL-F-44422, Mil-Spec construction for fast ropes, “The main rope shall have an eye splice on one end with a minimum of 4 inches and a maximum of 6 inches inside length. The eye splice shall be made using a minimum of three full tucks and two half tucks.”

Let’s break this down and tie it into our discussion on how to create the Eye Splice on a Fast Rope. First off, what they mean by inside length is the distance spanned across the inside of the eye. Ours actually sits right at 4″ relaxed and 6″ pulled open.

Tucks refer to the amount of times each strand pair tucks under the pair to its right or left. We state in the video below that the optimal amount of tucks is 4 full tucks and 2 half tucks, but we actually ran out of room on our Fast Rope and did the 3/2 minimum that the Mil-Spec construction requires.

Construction

Fast Rope Eye Splice 02The first thing you’ll need to understand when creating a 4-Strand Eye Splice, is the difference between right-laid strands and left-laid strands. While we go into this in the video, a quick glance at the image to the right should clear up the difference for you. The strands coming from the right down to the left are right-laid strands and the strands coming from the left down to the right are left-laid strands.

Understanding this difference is important when you bend the rope around to create the eye. Your working end should be to the right of your standing part and the same-laid strands should match up before securing your created eye with a string or whatever method you choose.

Again we’ll defer to the video, because it’s a lot easier to comprehend the instruction while watching than it is reading about it. The video is one of our ones, but an important one, especially considering you could potentially be trusting this Eye Splice to support your weight many feet up in the air.

One tip that we didn’t enforce enough in the video is to securely wrap your paired working ends, all four of them, tightly with tape. The tape should also come to a point as much as possible so it can be worked into the tucks better. This can be a somewhat frustrating experience, but stick with because the end result gives you a great feeling of accomplishment.

Next KOTW

Fast Rope Eye Splice 03In our next KOTW we’ll be showing you how to terminate the free end of the Fast Rope by searing and whipping to properly secure it, be sure to check back for the completion of how to make your own Fast Rope for Climbing!

Remember that when hanging your Fast Rope for climbing to ensure you have a proper girth hitch around a secure object like in the photo to the right.

Building a Fast Rope for Climbing: Part 1, 4-Strand Round Braid

Building a Fast Rope for Climbing: Part 3, Whipping and Fusing


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Annette
Annette

Thank you for your wonderful video it was so easy to understand and follow. It has taken me hours of searching to find one that was so easy. Will definately be using your site from now on.

Thanks again. :)

Annette
Annette

Thank you for your wonderful video it was so easy to understand and follow. It has taken me hours of searching to find one that was so easy. Will definately be using your site from now on. Thanks again. :)

Nicholas Rinell
Nicholas Rinell

One thing I have found that makes this knot easier is the use of hemostats or needle nose pliers (based on size of the rope) to pre-thread through the lays and grab your taped off working ends and pull them through.

Austin David
Austin David

Rather than chopsticks, why not use a proper marlinespike or splicing fid?

Rob Linger
Rob Linger

Your small para cord splice looked different than your fast rope splice because you only did a half tuck with 2 of the four lines due to running out of room. Great vid, and wonderful instruction!

Dave L
Dave L

Bryan, noticed on your paracord example of your first two full tucks, your running ends were on the same side. When you cut away you came back with two strands on each side. Did you go odd on one side even on the other? Thanks for a great video.

Daniel Meek
Daniel Meek

Thank you Bryan. I received your email and I will be in touch.

Daniel

Daniel Meek
Daniel Meek

Thank you Bryan. I received your email and I will be in touch. Daniel

Bryan Black
Bryan Black

Daniel, I'm sending you an email. I'd be happy to call you and try to talk you through the eye splice construction. We're all proud to have you as a reader on ITS Tactical and appreciate your support!

Thanks for the kind words!

Daniel
Daniel

Bryan

Awesome work... I have really enjoyed this series on fast rope construction.

I am legally blind with about 5% of my vision. By reading your instructions and listening to the video I have begun to master the four strand round braid; you did an excellent job of explaining what you were doing.

However, I have not yet figured out the eye splice. Do you know if there is a way I could count the strands, pre mark them, or some other method to make sure I am tucking the ropes in their correct place?

I am currently practicing on paracord. Hopefully, I will graduate to static rope soon.

Again, thanks for the informative article.

Daniel

Daniel
Daniel

Bryan Awesome work... I have really enjoyed this series on fast rope construction. I am legally blind with about 5% of my vision. By reading your instructions and listening to the video I have begun to master the four strand round braid; you did an excellent job of explaining what you were doing. However, I have not yet figured out the eye splice. Do you know if there is a way I could count the strands, pre mark them, or some other method to make sure I am tucking the ropes in their correct place? I am currently practicing on paracord. Hopefully, I will graduate to static rope soon. Again, thanks for the informative article. Daniel

CENTCOMSurvivor
CENTCOMSurvivor

I have the "kids" rope made. I cheated and just looped the top like that crossfit article we were talking about.

I'm going to practice the splice and wait for your next article on what to do with the end. Then build a new rope.

Thanks again for taking the time to put all this together!

CENTCOMSurvivor
CENTCOMSurvivor

I have the "kids" rope made. I cheated and just looped the top like that crossfit article we were talking about. I'm going to practice the splice and wait for your next article on what to do with the end. Then build a new rope. Thanks again for taking the time to put all this together!

Eric Soderlund
Eric Soderlund

This should be fun! What does the MIL do with the "tails" to make them disappear?

jellydonut
jellydonut

This reminds me of the splicing technique used for mooring lines.

Bryan Black
Bryan Black

Daniel, I'm sending you an email. I'd be happy to call you and try to talk you through the eye splice construction. We're all proud to have you as a reader on ITS Tactical and appreciate your support! Thanks for the kind words!

Bryan Black
Bryan Black

Roger that, looking forward to seeing your completed project too :) You're more than welcome for the article, it was a fun project and something I'd always wanted to do to test my knotty skills LOL

~ Bryan

Bryan Black
Bryan Black

Roger that, looking forward to seeing your completed project too :) You're more than welcome for the article, it was a fun project and something I'd always wanted to do to test my knotty skills LOL ~ Bryan

Bryan Black
Bryan Black

Eric, the military leaves tails on the eye splice too. If you search for some military fast rope images you'll see they're there.

How are your ropes coming along?

Thanks for the comments,

~ Bryan

Bryan Black
Bryan Black

Eric, the military leaves tails on the eye splice too. If you search for some military fast rope images you'll see they're there. How are your ropes coming along? Thanks for the comments, ~ Bryan

Bryan Black
Bryan Black

Eric, do you mean the tails in the eye splice?

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