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Old 11-24-2013, 03:49 PM   #1
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Eye splice and back braid

Hello all. I have made a few attempts at different times to make different line splices with three strand line with limited success. Today I was attempting to put a fender board together using Grogs Animated Knots as a reference and failed miserably. I pulled Chapmans out, made some progress but still have far to go. I burned all three ends, marked each strand differently and held the "eye" in me left hand and worked away from me. Always threading the strand from right to left. I seem to have gotten it close to right, but I am sure on board there are some who have mastered this. Any suggestions on resources, or possible advice starting with "Don"t forget to....." To me this skill should fall under seamanship 101 and I'm not getting a passing grade.
I look forward to all replies.
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Old 11-24-2013, 04:36 PM   #2
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Sure looks better than a lot of my attempts. I've been doing the same thing while changing-out my blocks and tackle on the mast/boom, and also my dinghy davits in favor of 5400 lb. Amsteel 3/8" line. Amazing stuff, but I also have made a mess of the first few feet of rope learning on the job. There's some really good YouTube videos on the process. Just ask for Amsteel in the YouTube subject frame and the videos come up.
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Old 11-24-2013, 05:00 PM   #3
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This is difficult to put in words and I am going to skip a thing or two, but here is the gist of it.

The first strand is easy (the middle one) - no problem.
The second strand goes to the left of the first strand - the same over and under thing.
The third strand is what usually messes people up.
After the first and second strand, flip the whole thing over. When you look down on it, you will see where the first and second strands come out of each side. Looking real close you will see 2 existing strands in the rope (dead center) where no strand is coming out of. Pry these two apart and take the third strand and run it up (from under) and through the separated existing strands. It will feel awkward but when you pull it all the way through, you should have each strand sticking out of it's own 'hole'. If 2 strands are coming from the same 'hole'/slot you did it wrong.

Hope that helps
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Old 11-24-2013, 05:05 PM   #4
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I started making decent three-strand splices after meeting Brion Toss (author of Chapman's book of knots) at his booth at the Seattle boat show. With just a few hints he greatly improved my technique.

Some hints: flatten out each of the three strands after you tie on a constrictor and unlay them - don't keep them twisted and round. Cut their ends into a bit of a taper, and then tape around each end with masking tape making somewhat of a point. After each round of three over and under tucks, roll the splice between your hands to firm it up and even it out, then pull each of the three strands tight, and maybe roll again, before the next round of three tucks. You shouldn't need more than 5-7 rounds of tucks, if they're done right.

Best by far three-strand splicing tool is Brion's Point Hudson Phid - makes it so much easier than a basic fid! The directions for eye splcing that come with it are pretty good even without a book. Google Brion Toss to find his web site.

I don't have as frequent need for an eye splice, but I re-do my rope-to-chain splice annually (Google shackle splice, and you'll find Brion's detailed description). For extra durability, I finish the splice by putting a whipping around the section of the splice where the tapered ends wind up (with the masking tape removed - peeled off as I do the last tuck or two). It looks fairly spiffy, and lasts a summer of anchoring.
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Old 11-24-2013, 07:52 PM   #5
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Here's a great site for knots. Animated step by step interactions and lots of information about each knot. The eye splice - Animated knots by Grog

They also have a nice iPad app.
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Old 11-24-2013, 09:37 PM   #6
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Great advice guys, can't wait to get back to the boat and continue my education!
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Old 11-24-2013, 09:56 PM   #7
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I agree with Richard. Rolling the splice between your hands, or a hand and a flat surface makes a big difference.
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Old 11-25-2013, 02:20 AM   #8
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The rolling between hands allows the bunches to work themselves out. It will also tighten the lays over the just done tucks. On larger lines I've had to drop on the ground and roll them with some weight on my foot.

After each 2nd tuck pull the tails snug up to the throat. If you leave it to long to snug the tails, the slack will no longer pull up, certainly not easily

When you look down the standing part of the line after having put the tails through and under the lays the three tails should be at 120o to each other. If not you have made a mistake. If you are lucky it will be in the last seies of tucks. if you are REALLY lucky it will be further back.

Persevere. I have to do practice every once in a while or you do lose it.

The double braid lines I do myself and usually fight with it. Just don't do enough anymore.
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Old 11-25-2013, 06:41 AM   #9
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With as many tucks as you use , weather the start is proper is only cosmetic.

The fender board will never stress the splice near its breaking load.

Do more , you will get better.
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Old 11-25-2013, 08:38 AM   #10
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I have been doing my own for years including the anchor thimbles.
It gets easier ad the splices look less ugly. I was taught to roll the splice on the deck with my feet to smooth it out.

If you ever get to a MTOA rendezvous with George Kay he does a great job teaching the splice.
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