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Knot from hell

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Flyboy
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Knot from hell

Postby Flyboy » Thu Jun 06, 2019 2:09 am

I've had my share of flying line knots to undo over the years, but this week I had the most stubborn #^&*!er I've ever encountered. Would NOT loosen up. 4 solid hours (four) of nibbling, crushing, teasing, poking, pliering ... & nothing. :angryfire:

Eventually I got a little bit of space on one side, but it still would not loosen up. Another hours of poking & pliering ... then suddenly it just gives way & undoes. I'm concerned that at this point the fibres are most likely weakened - & it's one of the centre lines. :-?

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Re: Knot from hell

Postby Herman » Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:07 am

If you decide to proof test the line to anywhere near its max working load it would be interesting to know how much the line stretches.

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Re: Knot from hell

Postby Matteo V » Thu Jun 06, 2019 1:33 pm

Knots in Spectra/Dyneema are typically easier to get undone because the line stretches so little. This seems very counter intuitive, but tie a knot in a large rubber band, and try to get that undone and you will begin to understand.

The bad thing about knots in Spectra/Dyneema is that with no stretch, one half (best case scenario) of the line strands on the outside of the bend take ALL of the load on a sharp bend. With Nylon or Dacron lines, the outer portion of the bend stretches significantly, and allows the inner portion of the bend to take some of the load. But this means the knot is more difficult to get undone because the internal tension is fighting you for longer.

If I had kiteline that started to behave more like Nylon or Dacron, than Spectra/Dyneema. I would replace it - at least with me being a heavier rider.

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Re: Knot from hell

Postby cglazier » Thu Jun 06, 2019 3:13 pm

Around here I am the knot undoing expert.. I never had a flying line knot that I couldn't undo in 2 or 3 minutes.. and I have undone many for people.
My secret is using small long nose pliers to pull the knot apart, but they must have serrations on the teeth (not smooth). I use common cheap ones (under $10).
My thumb nail is usually what I am pulling against in the process.

;-) CG
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Re: Knot from hell

Postby Hugh2 » Thu Jun 06, 2019 3:59 pm

My approach is to wet the knot, gently flatten with a hammer, then work a sharp needle carefully through the knot, attempting to ensure you get between the overlapping lines, not through one of them. Then just work that needle in every direction till things loosen up a little, if necessary reinserting it on the other side of the knot. Once the slightest bit of loosening happens you can generally get the knot out with fingernails or small pliers as above.

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Re: Knot from hell

Postby Flyboy » Thu Jun 06, 2019 4:07 pm

Hugh2 wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 3:59 pm
My approach is to wet the knot, gently flatten with a hammer, then work a sharp needle carefully through the knot, attempting to ensure you get between the overlapping lines, not through one of them. Then just work that needle in every direction till things loosen up a little, if necessary reinserting it on the other side of the knot. Once the slightest bit of loosening happens you can generally get the knot out with fingernails or small pliers as above.
Precisely what I did (& have done in the past). But for whatever reason, this knot just would not let go.

cglazier wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 3:13 pm
Around here I am the knot undoing expert.. I never had a flying line knot that I couldn't undo in 2 or 3 minutes.. and I have undone many for people.
My secret is using small long nose pliers to pull the knot apart, but they must have serrations on the teeth (not smooth). I use common cheap ones (under $10).
My thumb nail is usually what I am pulling against in the process.

;-) CG

pme-sugarcraft-long-nose-pliers-p6633-11307_image.jpg
Should have sent my line to you!

In the end I bought a pair of needle nosed pliers from CDN Tire. The tip needs to be very thin to get a good grip on the line. However, even with those, & after 4 hours of prior work, it still took me another hour to undo the knot. It almost defies belief how a simple, single loop could be so difficult to loosen. In retrospect, I think part of the problem is while trying to loosen one loop you effectively pull the other one tighter. I am thinking the answer may be TWO needle nose pliers & (preferably) two pairs of hands to simultaneously pry the two loops of the knot apart before pulling on one tightens the other.

In any case, the line does look & feel somewhat compromised, which is worrying as it is a front line.

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Re: Knot from hell

Postby edt » Thu Jun 06, 2019 5:21 pm

No matter what it's always better to remove the knot. Even if a few strands get damaged and you lose 10-30% of the line's strength that's still much much better than losing 50% of the line's strength from a knot. As said above, with nylon rope it's different but dyneema can't handle knots. if you are worried, fix the ends of the lines onto a post and then pull as hard as you can on lines, that way you can snap them while testing the line strength instead of on the water.

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Re: Knot from hell

Postby Herman » Thu Jun 06, 2019 7:14 pm

The reason I mentioned stretch associated with max load test was not directly related to the knot problem. I have had a number of line sets over the years and observed that lightly loaded steering lines tend to shrink. I have stretched uneven steering lines but have not had to stretch any frontline. I would be interested to know how much stretch you might get out of an old front flying, just out of curiousity really!


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