Monday, August 08, 2011

Some new stuff to play around with...


UPS dropped off a package from County Comm the other day. They carry some neat and unique gadgets, gear, and gizmos. I still use the Pocket Organizer that I bought from them five or six years ago.

I have more photos of my County Comm stuff stored on Xanga.

I used a small stainless steel Gate Clip on one end of a 'Stitched Solomon Bar' paracord key chain lanyard, with a large Yacht Clip on the other end. I know someone will ask what my vehicle key is attached to, it's an Amflo Coupler key ring.

The Improved (XL) Sat-Com Bag makes a great day-pack, even has a velcro space for name-tapes(1800nametape.com) or patches to personalize it, along with MOLLE/PALS webbing all around and on the padded shoulder strap too, for hanging some carabiners or an ITW Tac Link.


I got some polished stainless steel skulls/beads, that are different than the pewter, brass, and acrylic type that I've used with knot work before. There's the 'Yorick', the 'Ponderer', and the larger hefty 'Goliath'.

The Goliath skull is a larger than average sized bead, being around one and a half inches at it's widest, and the weight is just over 3 ounces. Instead of a horizontal or vertical drilled hole, like other beads, the Goliath has cord attachment points/holes along the jaw of the skull.

I tied a black and olive drab paracord crown sinnet and wall knot for the lanyard, with a 1.5" split ring on the opposite end. I imagine a swing with this thing at someone's noggin' would crack a real skull. It's a nice alternative to a weighted monkey's fist on the end of a lanyard.

I tied up a couple of the Yorick skulls with paracord to use as zipper pulls, and used some of County Comm's orange tether cord with the Ponderer for a key fob. Each of the skulls looks good for modding with some glow-in-the-dark epoxy in the eye sockets too...

The GT3 'Gear Ties' are great alternatives to simple twist ties and rubber bands for keeping a grip on bundled cords and wires.

The Blazer Gas Burner is like a Zippo on steroids for hands free use when melting cord ends. I think the Spyderco Ladybug is the perfect sized key chain knife, and the H1 steel means it ain't never gonna rust.




The twisted paracord wrap/grip used on the Ti Widgy Bars and EOD Breacher Bar were done with gutted paracord. I'd seen Swissbianco use the method on some of his neck knives at the Blade Show back in June, and wanted to give it a try.

The ACU SO-LED lights have a multiple position clip that makes them great for clipping to gear, MOLLE/PALS webbing, a car/truck sun visor, or the brim of a cap or boonie hat.

The Traveler RFID Wallet comes with a black cord zipper pull. The Tether Tip that came on the pull can be opened up, so I reused it when I replaced the black cord with some of County Comm's orange tether cord, then went over that with some 0.9mm braided nylon cord in a cobra stitch/Solomon bar/Portuguese sinnet. The smaller cord I used was actually white, but a blue Sharpie helped with making the zipper pull into Auburn University colors. War Eagle!

The Mini Utility Scissors have worked out great for trimming paracord, fishing line, and thread.

32 comments:

W19950 said...

I just got into paracord braiding and knotting (Idk if you call it macramè or not) and I can't believe how awesome of a resource your blog is, so in short, thank you! I did have a few or so requests, being a newbie, I'd humbly ask anyones opinion. First of which being where should I buy my paracord at and another is what's the best material to start out with. The other being more of a real request. I looked through all your archived posts but I couldn't find something I really thought would work for what I'm thinking. I would really like a case large enough and thin enough for something like an iPad. Another idea I'd like to bounce off you guys is an armband with a reliable way of attaching different items like lighters or small pliers or a cell phone maybe for when I'm running or working out. Thanks!

Stormdrane said...

@W19950, For paracord, the Supply Captain is a good place to start, but there are other sources in my blog's links list as well. You can use other types of cordage found at local hobby/craft/hardware stores, or smaller diameter mini blind type cord, it's up to you to find what you like working with.

Macrame is just another name for knotwork, traditionally using natural hemp cordage, cotton, or yarns, sharing the same basic knots to construct items. Kids learn boondoggle/scoubidou knot work at summer camps using plastic gimp straps, same knots/braids/sinnet/weaves with different names.

For making larger cases/pouches to fit something like an iPad, you might try following some crochet patterns, free examples can be Googled.

Looking through the picture gallery on KHWW.net, you can see some examples of work that might fit your needs for holding smaller items with an armband, using turks head knot variations. Here's some examples by JP Honeywell.

I've only done they type I've shown in my blog, but others may be able to help you further on the KHWW.net or IGKT.net forums.

Anonymous said...

How do you like the maratac flashlight? i was going to order one, wasnt sure the quality?

Stormdrane said...

@Anonymous, I like it. The build quality and fit/finish of the light are great, the LED on high is bright with a good mix of flood/throw, and the low is enough to get around in the dark, with an incredible long run time from a single AA Battery.

It's too big for a keychain, but just right for pocket carry. The diffuser cap that came with mine is pretty cool too, making the light output similar to a lantern.

indium said...

Excellent post- I think you've given an extremely reasonable response.

Anonymous said...

SD - Your work is great and you continue to amaze me with variations and old things in a new way.
Question: what is available in about the same size and function as the skulls (but not a skull)?
Have a fun day - Bill

Stormdrane said...

@Bill, There are all kinds of beads that can be used instead of skulls. The hard part is finding them with holes big enough for paracord to fit through them.

If you can't find a style/shape/size/material/design that you like online or at craft stores, you can make your own: carved wood, cast metals, glass/clay/ceramics, etc...

There are quite a few online tutorials on making different types, and different examples of handmade types can be seen on sites like Etsy.

Anonymous said...

SD, Ok you got me, How did you tie that spiral fob? I tried a couple things but I couldn't get the narrow pitch on the spiral like yours. Anyway it looks way cool and I like it.
Have a fun day - Bill

Stormdrane said...

@Bill, the spiral knotting is also known as a twisted Solomon bar. Instead of alternating the knots, like with the cobra stitch/Solomon bar/Portuguese sinnet/square knotting, you tie each half knot the same, which causes the spiral/twisting.

I posted a few process photos with a previous cross project blog post. After every few knots, push the work to compact it for a neater/tighter spiral, and make sure you untwist the core strands as you tie the knots.

For the tether cord lanyard/fob, I started from the center of my length of cord, tying a lanyard knot with a loop, slid the Yorick skull on, ran the two working ends around the split ring and started knotting down towards the skull.

The ends can be tucked, sewn, melted, or glued to finish.

Domenica Campbell said...

Awesome resource. My disabled vet husband and I are just getting into braiding and knotting as a hobby. It helps him with focus and memory (he has a brain injury from a car bomb in Iraq).

It is a rewarding and fun pastime, plus I think I can make a couple of bucks on the side :-)

Thank you for your time and effort.

Anonymous said...

SD,
Thanks for the knot info.
Regards - Bill

KD8KPT said...

I've been following you blog for a couple months now and I think it is awesome. I have a question, In this post you have a pack with custom name tapes on it. They look very very professional. Where do you get them?
Thanks

Stormdrane said...

@Domenica Campbell, Please tell your husband that I'm thankful for his service to our country and I hope and pray he recovers from his injuries. He's blessed to have your love and support. :)

@KD8KPT, I bought the name tapes from 1800nametape.com. I chose web tape with velcro, in black with olive drab text and olive drab with black text. I'd seen them mentioned on EDC Forums and they do good work.

Domenica Campbell said...

Thank you, your words and your blog are a blessing :-)

Keep on knotting!

Ebbs said...

I noticed you have some custom velcro milspec style name badges (that read "STORMDRANE" on the top pic attached to your duffle. Would you mind sharing where you ordered those from?

Ebbs said...

Scratch that last question. Found it in the post. :\

Stormdrane said...

@Ebbs, The 1800nametape.com site isn't the easiest to navigate, but if you're looking for the same type name tapes I chose, they're listed under the 'Color name tapes/Law Enforcement' link. Once there if you scroll down, you'll see the choices of: 5 inches, with velcro or without velcro, webbed or fabric, colors, etc...

Anonymous said...

How did you tie the two (orange and green) round lanyards? In the picture they are side by side in an "S" shape.

On an unrelated note, I want to connect a loop of Type I on the end of a lanyard of Type III paracord. Any ideas on how to do it so it looks neat? I want it to look like the lanyards that come with stuff that have a strap with a plastic piece that holds a smaller cord to put thru an eye on devices.

Stormdrane said...

@Anonymous, The orange and gray/black tracer tether cord lanyards were tied with a 3 peg knitting spool. Search my blog for 'spool knit' to bring up older posts on them.

Try tying a loop and lanyard knot with the 'Type I' cord, then a wall/crown knot(completion stitch) around the 'Type I' cord's lanyard knot, tightened up with the paracord. The smaller cord loop will be coming out of the paracord like those smaller cell phone lariat type attachments.

waykno said...

To Anonymous: regarding the Maratac lights--I looked inside of one of mine with a 5X and saw iTP branding on it. So, I figure it is a good one. I have a AAA and a AA one and so far they are A-OK.

MaG's Blant said...

Hey Stormdrane, Mag from the EDCForums here, quick question..

In the widgy bar photo, what type of cordage are on the spools ? Is that the Marshalltown Braided Mason Line ?

Thanks,
Mike

Stormdrane said...

@Mike, The 3/32" nylon tether cord wasn't labeled as to the manufacturer, but it looks very much like some 1/16" Atwood utility cord that I have. Both are better than the mason line I've come across.

MaG's Blant said...

Thanks Stormdrane, I didn't think it was, but wanted to make sure. I had already ordered this --=> http://tinyurl.com/3otoxml
In my favorite colors - Neon Orange, Neon Yellow and Coyote Brown

Kevin Cox said...

Great work! Looking over your site, I came across the breacher bar in the Kydex sheath. The photo is B/W, and the handle wrap looks like a Turks Head? Is this correct? Is there a tutorial in this breacher bar handle wrap? Thanks!

Stormdrane said...

@Kevin, It's a 2 bight Turk's head knot tied around the bar handle. I wrapped the handle first with paracord then tied the knot over the wrap, no specific tutorial for it, but here's my video on a 2 bight TH lanyard, where you'd tie the knot around the bar instead of the straw, and keep the pattern open but tight... ;)

Anonymous said...

Stormdrane i noticed that you made handles for knives with paracord. What is the best weave you recommend for a knife that the handle's skeleton is a bar.

Stormdrane said...

@Anonymous, You can go simple with doing common whipping for a handle wrap, or more complex with Turk's head knots, depends on the handle and what might feel right in the hand...

Anonymous said...

Thank you

Kwebber321 said...

Hey stormdrane, I got a question. Do you know where I can find some other good quality metal skulls for a cheaper price and in good sized lots. Scskulls has some very nice stuff but so expensive. Got any other places that you may have come across?

Stormdrane said...

@Kwebber321, You might find some individual skull beads for less on ebay, but I don't know of any other bulk/variety sellers other than Skullsville, which has mostly the acrylic(plastic) beads...

Mark said...

Ok, so based on what this blog post says, and what county comm said about this, did you get this stuff for free? Either way great job. You inspired me to get into decorative knots and EDC gear and survival and ll that. I purchased some things from county comm and hope to do some knot work on them.

-Mark

Stormdrane said...

@Mark, I'd been a customer of County Comm before they asked me if they could send me some items that I could use with knot projects, and I do have to report the value of things received when doing taxes, so nothing is really free, lol.

I have a disclaimer/disclosure notice at the bottom of every blog page, which is required by FTC. ;)