Timber Hitch

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Timber Hitch

The name of this knot describes its main use: to attach a rope to a piece or bundle of timber. It is also used to start the Diagonal lashing. When finished with an extra half hitch, it becomes the Killick Hitch, and is then suitable for dragging a log.


To tie a timber hitch:

  • Pass the rope around the object.
  • Pass the running end around the standing part,
  • Then make three or more turns (or twists) around the working part. Pull on the standing part to tighten around the object.
Classical Guitar Bridge Bone.jpg


With natural fibre rope "three tucks or turns are ample" - but with the wide use of synthetic fibre ropes then five or more turns may be needed for a more secure hitch. Nylon, Polyester ropes give less friction than natural fibre ropes.

Interesting info

  • The timber hitch is one of the few knots that can easily be tied in a chain, leading to its use in applications where ropes lack the necessary strength and would break under the same amount of tension.
  • This knot is also known as the Bowyer's Knot - it is used to attach the lower end of the bowstring to the bottom limb on an English longbow.
  • The hitch is also one of the methods used to connect ukulele and classical guitar strings to the bridge of the instruments.

Similar knots