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How to Tie the Impossible Knot

Instructions for Tying the Double Fisherman's Knot

So you're not too scared to try the double fisherman's knot? Remember, only proceed if you're joining two pieces of rope or cording that you'd like to stay permanently tied. Here's how to do it:

Instructions for tying the impossible knot.
Instructions for tying the impossible knot.
© HowStuffWorks 2015
  1. Set your two pieces of rope side by side. For ease of explanation, let's assume one is gold and the other is blue.
  2. Take one end of the blue rope and wind it loosely twice near the end of the gold rope.
  3. Now take the blue rope and pull it back through the inside of the loops or coils that you've just created and pull to tighten. That's one knot.
  4. Now take the short end of the gold rope, and pull a little to give yourself more rope to work with. Take that lengthened gold rope and repeat the earlier steps, only wind the gold rope in the opposite direction than you'd wound the blue rope. So if you started winding the blue rope by moving it over the gold rope, take the blue rope and start winding it by moving it under the blue rope.
  5. After you've created and tightened the second knot, pull each rope's main ends (not the short ends by the knots), and the two knots will slide together. Voilà!

If you've properly tied a double fisherman's knot, each knot should have an X on the same side. The other side should show four neat rows of wound cord [sources: A Site About Nothing, Net Knots, YouTube].