No sooner did I divulge my affection for knots, that I came across this beautifully done, frankly irresistible, play thing. The setting being stunning only adds to the effect.
How was it done? What combo of knots? Such a simple thing made of a single run of rope and one piece of wood with a hole in its center. And let’s take note, this swing is made in such a way as to not harm the tree. How would you go about rigging a timeless item like this?
The single line, around half inch in diameter, has an eye spliced into one end. Ok, that part is somewhat tricky to do. But you could get a similar effect with a bowline, it’d work the same way just be a touch less elegant. The line is heaved over the branch, the two halves made equal. Then the bitter end is put through the eye, and the whole thing is tightened-up. Note that no matter how much the branch expands, the loop will hold, grow with the tree, and not choke the limb.
View from below shows the rest of the job. Handholds are formed- in this case with simple overhand knots. If you look closely you might make out there are three holds. The top and bottom are overhand knots, but the middle one is a figure eight. The maker may have realized too late that once the overhand knots tighten, they will lock- especially adding weight and weather- and it’d be practically impossible to undo. OTOH The figure eight knot, which is just an overhand with an extra twist is easily broken and comes undone, if you need to salvage the line, nbd.
The end of the line is then passed through the hole in the bench, finished with a stopper knot. In this case a jumble, but it’ll do. I might have gone with an Ashley stopper, or barrel knot to finish, mostly for the sake of bulk, but with clean looks. This stopper will do the job and stand the test of time and weight. Speaking of which, the safe limit of double braided nylon is almost half a ton. The branch will break before the line.
The deva is in the details. A little artistry, and physics, resulting in something offering a moment of peace or bliss for swingers of all ages.