Today I have something your going to really enjoy…
A Complete Guide To Monkey Fist Knots
Because most people think of them ONLY as a self-defense weapon.
And sure, that’s one way to use it.
But you can also use it as:
- a rock climbing tool
- upgraded zipper pulls
- to throw a rope further
- or a dog toy
So as you can tell, it’s a versatile knot worth learning:
TOPICS IN THIS GUIDE… ↓(click to jump)
- What Is A Monkey Fist?
- Brief History Of This Knot
- Best Monkey Fist Uses
- How To Tie A Monkey Fist Knot
- How To Video Tutorials
- Best Jigs To Help Make Them
Most people don’t even know what a monkey fist is, let alone how to use (or make one).
They’re a time-tested self-defense tool that’s dangerous and effective.
Like a miniature flail, a monkey fist comes in many sizes, shapes, and weights.
Some fit on a self-defense keychain or in a purse.
Others are larger and harder to conceal.
But they’re all a versatile means of self-defense.
Now, you can purchase various types from different vendors.
And IF you know where to look, they’re all over the place.
They’re also a device you can make yourself.
Learning how to make one will save you a couple of dollars.
The more weapons you can make yourself, the better.
The Legality of a Monkey’s Fist?
Well, it’s illegal in many States and Canada IF you wrap this knot around a hard object.
I mean, how is it different from a hammer?
Watch this video to learn how the monkey’s fist became illegal:
↓ THIS KNOT IS ILLEGAL!
And just for fun, here’s the “world’s largest one.”
↓ World Largest Monkey FistClick here to instantly download this Complete Checklist PDF. No purchase necessary.
Brief History Of This Knot
As with most knotted instruments, the origins of monkey fist is out at sea in the 1800s.
Sailors used them to throw lines between ships or to shore.
And in a pinch, they would use them in a fight.
Initially, the knot was tied around cannonballs to add extra heft.
And imagine what that would do to an attacker!
Getting slammed with a cannonball flail could cause severe damage.
Since then, they’ve spread widely as a survival tool for self-defense.
Most you’ll find today are not cannon-ball-sized.
Instead, they’re shrunk down to marble size.
This makes them easy to carry.
Or they can be attached to a zipper tab, keychain attachments, or bug-out bag loops.Click here to instantly download this Complete Checklist PDF. No purchase necessary.
It’s one of the most diverse tools in a survivalist arsenal.
Unlike other pocket weapons (like pepper spray), this knot can serve various purposes.
Here is a shortlist of the most popular uses:
There’s no telling when or where you’ll fall into a bit of trouble.
- It could be while walking home from a friend’s house at night.
- Or maybe around a town on vacation.
- It could happen in a deserted parking lot.
Wherever you are or whatever you’re doing, you need a means of self-defense.
Something to protect yourself from an attacker.
One who emerges from the shadows and demands your wallet or threatens your life.
There are many self-defense tools.
These devices make great.
Ones you can keep with relative ease and covertly.
You can stash them into pockets, purses, or bags with no problem.
And many can be attached to a wallet, zipper, or keychain, enabling fast access in tight situations.
Here’s how to use one for self-defense:
Hold the long end by the tip and swing the heavy knot hard – using it as a flail.
You want to strike your attacker with the blunt knot at the end.
Swing hard and follow through to generate the most power per stroke.
Aim for sensitive areas like the temple, trachea, or groin.
The more massive your knot, the harder your swing.
The more force, the more effective the weapon becomes.
↓ Monkey Fist testing
Back in the day, before rock climbing was as widely recognized as a sport, they were used as cams.
Cams, are the devices climbers jam into cracks to create points of contact.
Today’s cams are very technical.
But this knot can do the same for rock climbing.
You wedge the “fist” into a crack in the rock as tightly as possible.
Then you clip your rope into the other end with a carabiner.
I don’t recommend using this unless you have no other option.
Using makeshift climbing equipment is extremely dangerous.
↓ Monkey fists in rock climbing
Skydiving Parachute Ripcord
This is popular among people who deal with parachutes.
Skydivers attach these to their parachute ripcords.
This makes it easier to grasp the ripcord while in free fall.
You might buy very colorful ones (or use colorful paracord for your own).
That way, when the wind whips past your face, you can easily see your ripcord, grab, and yank it.
Then, hopefully, your chute comes out.
Have a zipper that lost its grip tab?
You can make small one and tie them to your zipper, even if the slider grip has fallen off.
Due to their shape, they make great little zipper knobs.
Plus, you can attach them to anything:
- tactical backpacks
- duffel bags
- and even pants!
↓ 8 Awesome Paracord Zipper Pulls
Tired of buying expensive rope toys for your dog at the store?
Make your own!
They make excellent pet toys.
Why? Because the material is cheap (rope or cord), and very durable.
Perfect for chewing or tug of war.
A well-tied monkey fist will make your canine companion happy as a clam.
And you can keep making new ones when they tear apart the ones they’ve got.
↓ Making a ‘Monkey Fist’ Dog Toy
This knot works well as a keychain for several reasons.
First, they are usually bright and easy to spot (thus making your keys easy to find and harder to lose).
Second, this puts an extra self-defense weapon at your fingertips.
Keys are one thing that’s almost always on a person.
Keeping one on your self-defense keychain ensures you’re always armed.
↓ 3 Ways To Finish A Monkey’s Fist Key Chain
This was the original purpose.
If you have ever tried throwing a rope a long distance…you understand the task is nearly impossible.
But when you add a heavy knot on the end of the rope, it adds a lot of extra weight.
This enables a much higher accuracy and power.
But rope is not the only thing you can throw with this knot.
You can also attach written messages to the handle to pass messages over a decent distance.
Or you can tie smoke bombs to smoke out an area within throwing range.
You could even use them to throw fire.
Douse it with gasoline, light it up, and throw it as hard as possible.
↓ How to use a monkey fist for rope throwing
Finally, most are made of paracord.
And Paracord itself has a ton of survival uses.
So if you’re ever in a tight spot and need some paracord, you can disassemble it.Click here to instantly download this Complete Checklist PDF. No purchase necessary.
How To Make A Monkey Fist Knot
- Paracord of your color choice
- Steel ball bearing, marble, rock, golf ball, pool ball or another round, heavy object
- (optional) Monkey Fist Jig
Note: A jig makes this process much easier.
We cover a few good jigs to consider after we show you how to tie one without first.Click here to instantly download this Complete Checklist PDF. No purchase necessary.
As they say, an image is worth a thousand words.
So there are several “how to make a monkey fist” tutorial videos:
Without A Marble
This video shows you how to make a monkey fist without an object on the inside.
This makes for a very small, keychain-sized fist knot.
However, be aware that these don’t provide much self-defense value.
How to Make a Monkey’s Fist with No Marble
With A Marble
This video shows you how to make a monkey fist with a marble on the inside.
↓ Paracord Monkey fist
Using A Jig
This video shows you the process of using the help of a simple jig to build your paracord monkey fist.
How to make a Monkey Fist using the Speedy Jig
The Process – Step By Step
1. Hold the cord
Wrap the paracord vertically three times around the fingers of your non-dominant hand.
This should create a loop that is three wraps wide.
Make sure the longer end is closer to your fingertips, as that will be the end you are working with.
2. Slide the triple-loop off your hand
First, make sure not to let the three loops fall out.
Next, pull the loops off your left hand and hold them between your right thumb and index fingers.
3. Warp horizontally
Continue holding the three original vertical loops with your right hand.
Use your left to wrap the long end through and around the vertically looped cord.
Do this three times.
You should now have three horizontal loops wrapped around three vertical loops.
4. Wrap vertically again
This step is somewhat optional, but it strengthens your knot.
(It depends on how much spare cord you have left.)
Once you’ve finished your horizontal wraps, make three more vertical wraps over the top of the ones you originally looped.
Now pass these second horizontal loops between the original vertical ones and the secondary horizontal ones.
5. Insert a round object
At this point, there should be an opening within the loops you have made to insert a round object.
6. Tighten the knot
You need to work through and tighten each loop individually.
Start with the loop closest to the short end of the cord and work your way through the horizontal loops.
And then through the secondary vertical loops.
Tighten each one, ensuring you don’t pull too hard on the first few loops.
This may take a little practice, and it will take some patience.
So try not to get too frustrated.
Work through the knot several times to achieve maximum tightness.
Once you’re finished, you’ll have a functional monkey fist.
This is not a project that will work the first time perfectly.
You’ll likely need several times before you’re successful.
But once you get the hang of it, it will come naturally.Click here to instantly download this Complete Checklist PDF. No purchase necessary.
Best Monkey Fist Jigs On The Market Today
Again, some jigs and toolkits to make life easier.
They serve as an extra set of fingers to hold the loops as you make them.
This also enables you to tie four-, five-, and even six-loop monkey fists!
You may want to invest in one, depending on how often you plan to make them.
With this jig, choose from 10”, 14”, 18”, 24”, 30”, & 60” sizes.
The Paracord Bracelet Pro Jig includes vertical dowel posts to support various paracord projects.
This jig will hold your projects in place for easier and faster finishes. It also includes etched measurements to provide accurate dimensions.
↓ Understanding and Using Paracord Bracelet Jigs ↓
This simple monkey fist jig can make monkey fists from 5/8" up to 2 1/4" (pool ball size).
It features a rugged full metal construction platform with (4) zinc-plated steel rods for exceptional strength.
↓ 3 Monkey’s Fist Jigs REVIEWED
This jig can make monkey fists up to 2.5" in diameter and paracord bracelets that are 4-13” long.
It's built with a sturdy powder-coated steel base that will stay in place while you work, thanks to rubber feet.
The built-in ruler makes it easy to correctly size your paracord survival bracelets when you're not making a monkey fist.
↓ Speedy Jig Monkey’s Fist Jig Review
Monkey fists are insanely versatile survival tools.
They’re cheap, they’re relatively easy to make, and they’re highly useful for survival.
Owning one is beneficial for survival, but knowing how to make your own is worth learning.
Few survival knots are as useful as this knot.
And even fewer can achieve such a wide range of survival needs.
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