Know Your Knots (2) - Figure of Eight

The most common Stopper knot of choice for sailors, and the simplest in our knot line-up, is the Figure of Eight.

Originating at sea in the 19th century, the Figure of Eight was first identified as a method to hold down sheet sails. A simple, multi-purpose and efficient knot to prevent lines from slipping through small spaces. The Figure of Eight is a good place to start if you’re a beginner, so let’s give it a go!

Step 1: Pinch the rope so that you have one long ‘standing end’ and one shorter ‘working end’. The working end is the part of the rope you will be using to tie the knot and the standing end remains in place...

Figure of Eight - Step 1

Step 2: Take the working end and wrap it around one full turn. The working end will be back on the side it started on...

Figure of Eight - Step 2


Step 3: Take the working end through the back of the top loop...

Figure of Eight - Step 3

Step 4: Pull tight and...voila, Figure of Eight achieved! 

Figure of Eight - Step 4

Stay tuned... Next week we'll have a go at the ‘King of the Knots’; a Loop which made its first appearance during the ‘Age of Sail’ in 1627, labelled in the book ‘Seaman’s Grammar’ as the ‘Boling knot’.