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Overhand, Reef & Shoelace

Figure 1

Figure 2

Figure 3

Figure 4


Figure 1 shows the humble overhand knot which needs no further explanation, but rather a clarification that this is not a knot but a bend.


The reef (Figure 2) is just two overhands, one above the other, according to the chant "left over right and right over left". This leaves the lines leaving each side of the knot on the same side. If they are on opposite sides then I regret that you have a 'granny'.


Tied in a single line it forms a loop. The reef may also be used to tie together two lines (Figure 3).


If the second of the overhand knots is tied with doubled-back ends for quick release then you have a shoelace knot. It was 50 years before I came to realise that I had been tying a quick-release granny on my shoes. Since then my laces stay tied all day long!