Forget about I-cord. Here comes Pli-cord!

My very recent post about making Turk’s Head knots led some CraftShack readers to want to know more, especially about how I made the cordage to begin with. Well, I used a little tool called a ‘lucet’. They’re easy to get hold of or you could make your own. But other means are available for those with a little imagination…

For instance, most people will have a pair of pliers in the house, shed, or garage. Big chunky pliers or dainty little round-nosed pliers. It doesn’t really matter. What matters are the hand grips. These are what we shall use in this ‘how-to’ post. You will soon be making your very own sturdy braided cordage.

It’s similar to I-cord (possibly stronger) but is more square in profile.

But because we shall make it using pliers, we shall from now on call it…

Pli-cord!!!

Grab some yarn and a pair of pliers and follow my simple instructions. I have used still photographs. However, if you prefer the medium of video. then just scroll up and down the page really really fast, and pretend it’s a vid. (No, it’s ok. I’m happy to have helped 🙂 )

First, put a rubber band round the bottom end of your pliers. This is to stop the grips from opening and means the business end won’t catch your fingers.  Then lay the yarn through between the arms and round the back as in the first pic.

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Then bring the yarn back round the other arm and round to the front again as in the next two pics.

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Next, pull the yarn forward as indicated…

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And place it over the right arm, thus…

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And pull it tight.

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That’s the uber-complicated start. Now it gets even easier 🙂 Next turn the pliers in a clockwise direction, while keeping hold of the yarn that you just pulled…

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And then bring a loop over the right arm again (yes, it’s really the rear side of what was the left arm before you turned the pliers. But for our purposes , as you look at it, it’s the right arm. OK?)

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And finally, turn the pliers clockwise once more, again keeping hold of the yarn as you do so, and repeat the ‘pull loop over right arm’ rigmarole. Do this again and again until you have as much cordage as you need. It shouldn’t take too long once you get going.

How fast can you make Pli-cord?
Well, I timed myself and made around eight inches in five minutes. I wasn’t rushing. On a ‘proper’ lucet I might have made even more. If you’ve made traditional I-cord before, you’ll soon see that Pli-cord is way superior as far as how quick you can produce it. Ideal for those who lead busy lives 🙂

How much yarn will you need?
I used a five-foot length of cordage to tie some of my turks head knots. After a quick test (you might get slightly different results) I found ten feet of yarn made about thirteen inches of Pli-cord. That sounds like a lot of what yarnies (people who knit, crochet etc) sometimes call ‘take-up’. However, it means you’re using all that yarn to make a good sturdy braided cord.

Go ahead. Make some Pli-cord today. You know you want to.

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4 Comments Add yours

  1. Lovely! Great use for some pliers and really clear guide. I’ll let you know how I get on, thanks so much.

    1. Chris says:

      You need to know how to cast off, otherwise you could be in limbo for weeks 🙂 Never fear: casting off instructions coming right up…

      1. Thank you for preemptively rescuing me!

  2. Thanks for this Chris, I’ve got a room-full of yarn, so I guess that gives me just about enough to give your instructions a go 🙂

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