The Barrel Knot is a useful knot that can be used on its own or as the beginning for other knots such as the Double Fisherman’s Knot or the Blood Knot (though the blood knot is quite different).
The barrel knot is a friction knot that will tighten on its self as you pull or on the object that you have tied this knot around. It will not slip if tied properly.
What Are Barrel Knots Used For?
On thick rope, you can add multiple stoppers to create a climbing rope, the stopper can be used to keep items on your rope or even segment items onto your rope.
The barrel knot is also often used at the ends of rope and cord to prevent it from unraveling or fraying.
Uses In Climbing
Climbers often use the double barrel knot as a knot for closing the belay as a backup in case the belayer loses the rope. A belayer’s job is to feed line to a climber, the double barrel knot is so secure that climbers use it at the end of a line to prevent disaster.
Variations and Extensions
The barrel knot is the foundation of the Double Fisherman’s Knot, which is simply two ropes joined together by two barrel knots. Read how to make the Double Fisherman’s Knot here.
The barrel knot is often referred to as a Blood Knot or vice versa, but both are quite different. A Blood knot is really a variation of the double fisherman’s knot, but is designed to put as little stress on the knot as possible, making it a great way to join two lines without creating an excessively weak point.
The Blood knot is most usefully employed for joining sections of monofilament nylon line while maintaining a high portion of the line’s inherent strength. Other knots used for this purpose can cause a substantial loss of strength.
How To Tie A Barrel Knot
Take running end of rope where you want to create the Barrel Knot.
Create an underhand loop (behind the standing end).
Bring the running end around the standing end.
Pinch the loop with your fingers.
Create a second underhand loop.
As you bring the running end around the standing end, go through the loops you have created and are holding with your fingers.
Grab the running end with your fingers and pull it through the loops you created.
Pull both ends of the rope tight.
Dress the knot as you pull it.
A Barrel Knot.
How To Tie A Double Barrel Knot
Take the running end of your rope and pinch off where you want the double barrel knot to be.
Make sure to leave enough of the running end to make the knot.
Bring the running end behind the standing end of the rope and create an underhand loop.
Bring the running end back over the standing to create another loop. Pinch and hold this loop.
Bring the running end behind the standing end to create another underhand loop.
Bring the running end over the standing end to create another loop.
Take the running end behind the standing end one more time for one more underhand loop.
Now take the running end pull it through all of the loops you created. Follow your finger that was pinching out of the loops.
Pull both ends of the rope tight. Dress the knot as needed and make sure the loops stay parallel.
A Double Barrel Knot.
For a more in-depth tutorial on tying both the single and double barrel knot, check out our video!