Skip to main content
Home Boating

Splicing Double Braid

gogittumgogittum Posts: 4,204 Captain
I damaged my bow line, so cut it and figured to splice it.  Trimmed the ends, bought a splicing fid at WM, went online for instructions and had at it.  For a while.

I bought the line as a 3/8" line so bought a 3/8" fid.  When it came time to feed the outer braid thru the shell it wouldn't fit in the hole in the fid.  I tried tapering it and wrapping very tightly with one wrap of thin tape and using a broken bicycle spoke for a pusher.  That spoke is very thin and very stiff.  No way. No, I did Not burn or melt the ends.

The metal of the fid is fairly thick around the hole, so I took a drill bit that was slightly larger than the existing hole and reamed it out.  Not a whole lot of gain, but some.  Still wouldn't go. the calipers out and measured the line.  Being very delicate and careful, it measured .375 in places; about .420 in others, so thought maybe it was really a 7/16".  I ordered a 7/16" fid from WM and it came in yesterday, so had at it again.

This time I got the outer sheath into the fid - barely, it's still very tight - and now this fid is too thick to go thru the outer shell where the inner core has been pulled out.  You can believe I put some pressure behind it.  Won't go.  Period.

The line is slightly damp from rain, but I'd dried it for a couple of days in the shop.  In this humidity it's still "very slightly" damp.  Would that be enuf to swell the fibers or make them grabby ??  I'm kinda baffled here.  Thanks in advance.


  • LostconchLostconch Posts: 1,130 Officer
    Don't really need a fid just untwist the end and reverse twist the line where you want the splice to be and weave it thru. I am sure there is a you tube video showing somewhere on the internet 
  • LostconchLostconch Posts: 1,130 Officer
    I apologize.  I just reread your post and realized you were asking about what we called yacht braid
  • gogittumgogittum Posts: 4,204 Captain
    In the Navy, I was on a Destroyer Escort and landed the job of Quarterdeck Seaman, which made me responsible for all rope and rigging work on the aft end of the ship - when I wasn't standing Sonar watches. 

    I'm still very good with splicing regular twist ropes and the like, still remember a lot of the decorative stuff like Turk's Heads, Monkey Fists and such and have no problems with polypropylene ski ropes and the like.....but this stuff is much different.  I'll post a couple of pictures of my efforts in a bit.
  • gogittumgogittum Posts: 4,204 Captain
    This one isn't quite as simple as I'd thought from the video. I watched the YouTube at:   and he just pushes the trimmed end into the fid. Then he slides the fid into the braid, pulls the end thru and he's done. Hah ! ! !

    Snake Scaled reptile Reptile Pattern Fashion accessory

    Here's what I've got....a little messed up now from 6 dozen failed efforts. That 3/8" fid can "barely" be forced down the center of the outer braid - and I did make very sure I was separating full strands and not trying to split a strand.. To get it all the way thru, I had to stand it on end, put gloves on and force it with full weight/strength to get it thru.

    The bitter end of the outer braid, I trimmed to a 45º taper and taped it very tightly, (red heat shrink) then stretched and milked it down to get the diameter as small as possible. You can see the diameter of the outer braid next to the fid - even with the core out, it's far larger.

    At one point, I anchored a length of boot stitching polyester thread in the end, then put heat shrink over it to squeeze it down more, then tried to pull it thru without the fid. Not a chance.

    Line Round-nose pliers Wire Jewellery Cable

    Didn't help, so I squeezed it as far into the fid as I could with the spoke, then put black heat shrink over it all (you can barely see it above the red) and tried to milk the whole thing over the fid. With tremendous effort, I got it in about 1½" and it pulled out of the heat shrink. Now I've got that in the core to try and remove. That's going to be fun. That section is so messed up now, I'll prob'ly just cut it and start over....if I start over.

    The effort before that one, I pulled that boot thread thru with the spoke, then tried to pull the cut end thru without the fid. Nope, far too tight and I didn't even get an inch.

    The eye splice in the picture is the factory effort, to show it Can be done.....but not by me, I guess. The 7/16" fid was a non-starter - the 3/8" can just barely be forced thru.
  • Android77Android77 Posts: 499 Deckhand
    I’m an electrician and we use the double braid ropes for pulling large wire all the time. One of our dummies cut the loop of a rope one time thinking it could be spliced back like a normal rope. We took it to the place where we buy the rope and they spent 12 hours with no success to put a new eye on it. They do this everyday to new ropes but when the rope has been used and pulled on they could not put an eye in it. This may be your problem. Try soaking the rope in fabric softener and it may help. I’ve heard that this can help.
  • gogittumgogittum Posts: 4,204 Captain
    Thanks.  Couldn't be done, so bought a new bow line the other day.  I'm going to see if'n the neighbor lady has one of those mesh bags to wash delicates in and borrow it to wash the line in.....with fabric softener.  Other ideas, too, but don't hold out much hope.
Sign In or Register to comment.
Magazine Cover

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!


Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

Preview This Month's Issue

Buy Digital Single Issues

Don't miss an issue.
Buy single digital issue for your phone or tablet.

Buy Single Digital Issue on the Florida Sportsman App

Other Magazines

See All Other Magazines

Special Interest Magazines

See All Special Interest Magazines

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get the top Florida Sportsman stories delivered right to your inbox.


Phone Icon

Get Digital Access.

All Florida Sportsman subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now