Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Paracord Jess How To

Over the years I have made hundreds of paracord jesses for personal use and for work.  I can whip one out in less than 5 mins now and I think that the finished product is functional and not bad to look at.  I put these jesses on everything from a Coop to Bald Eagles and they are plenty strong.  So hopefully this how to will be helpful.

Here are the supplies I use from left to right:  Lighter, pick (cut piece of hanger with rounded ends), Snub nose pliers, paracord, scissors

First I take out the inside of the paracord.  Next I melt BOTH ends of the paracord so it it looks like the pic above

I find the top edge of what will be my loop (about 1 1/2" from the center of the paracord piece) and I use the snubnose pliers to gently push all the way through the paracord.  You can also put the pick inside the paracord about an inch from the melted tip by gently working it between the paracord's weave.  Do not cut slits in the paracord because it can fray and weaken the cord's integrity.

Pull out the pliers and then use the pick to push the end all the way through the paracord
(you do this back and forth all the way up the jess if you want to make Daniel's woven ones seen at the bottom of this post: )

Cut off this melted end

pull the end you pushed through until your loop is the size you want it.  Then use the snub nose pliers to push a hole just above where you pushed the cord through and insert the pick into the other melted end.

Fish the other melted end into the center of the paracord tube gently.

use the pick to push the end of the cord all the way through itself and out the now unmelted side until you can take the pick out.  Then work the "weave" you just made tight.

what the loop and weave should look like when tight.  The weave locks off the loop so that it cannot go back inside of itself which will happen from time to time if you dont lock it off and it can be very difficult and annoying to pull back out

For a really nice looking end knot you first tie a simple overhand knot to make a slipknot with a loop.


Then you take the end of the cord and come back through the slip loop. Pull down on the jess to shrink the loop down tight over the end of the cord

Then cut off the excess leaving about 3/4" or so and fray it out a bit

use your lighter on the fray and it will melt down to look like this.  You want the melted part to "soak in" a little into the knot.  If you don't over do this it will not affect the integrity of the knot.

Your finished jess will look like this.  Now repeat and make the jesses the same size.
*hint*  I dont cut off the excess or melt the knot until I have made both jesses.  Then I can adjust the knots until both are the same size.  Hard at first but gets pretty easy with practice.

Hopefully I have explained myself well.  Please comment if anything need further clarification.



Ab Wilkinson said...

Hey Ryan, I first saw this how to on Nafex and really appreciated it. I started doing somethign a little different which helps me and I thought I would share it. I make a couple of complete passes through the tip of the jess at the loop end before making the loop. This gives me a very easily accessable "tab" to slip through the grommets without having to pinch and push the jess through. I use 1/4 inch grommets, so the traditional loop has always been tough with one hand, especially in low light conditions.
Thanks a ton for posting this how to. I burned up a lot of paracord before seeing this and getting it right.

Ryan said...

I'm glad this helped you Ab. I too often put a tab at the end of the jesses especially if I am using an extender as well. I didn't include them on this walk through for simplicity's sake. You can see the tabs in the pics of Daniel's jesses.

Thanks for reading.


Anonymous said...

Hi all, I'm still desperatelly trying to make these paracord jesses but I am having terrible difficulty passing the cord through it self when trying to make tabs or to lock it off, I'm following your instructions to the word but its making my hands and fingers sore .I'm using the small aerican 550 paracord and when pushing the snub nosed pliers through the weave is that tight it doesn't seem to make enough of a hole to pass the material through. I would be most grateful if you could help....kevin

Ryan said...

push the pliers through and twist until the hole is open. Then carefully remove the pliers so that the hole stays open. Push the end though that hole again with a twist and use your finger nails to work any stray threads away. Should pass through fairly easily, otherwise you might need remelt the end of your cord into more of a cone.


Anonymous said...

thanks ryan,
ihave been finding it really difficult,im sure im missing something and its probably really easy.the sore fingers should dissappearin a day or so,are your snub nosed pliers completely round,smoothe and tapered?.sorry for not introducing myselfbut my name is kevin a falconer from hertfordshire,england.many thanks

Ryan said...

No problem Kevin. I'm glad this tutorial is somewhat useful to so many.

The pliers I use are round and taper wider from the point back. I have used needlenose pliers and hemostats before and they work 0k too.

Just curious as to how you found out about the blog?


Anonymous said...

hi ,just did a google search on how to make paracord jesses and up you sprung,had been wracking my brain prior to that :-)

Anonymous said...

it must be very time consuming to braid them the full length.obviously i am new to this and need a lot of practice and will probably wreck a lot of paracord in the process but i will keep trying as the charge £4.50 for a single leash here in the uk,i'm not sure about jesses.

Ryan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
jean said...

Hi from North of Montreal Canada, my nean is jean and i am a apprentice falconer i check your jesses made whit paracord it looking cool and strong my probleme is what kind of paracord you use to make it?

thank you ... excuse my englis i am french learning englis.

Taylor Hopp said...

I've made the mistake of cutting holes.. sadly a number of jesses I could not use but I do have a question. A falconer mentioned that he used a hot blade to cut/melt a hole. What's your opinion on that method? Here's where I saw it.
Also what brands of paracord do you recommend?