Knots are frequently a foreign subject for new leaders. However, taking the time to learn them will serve you and your Scouts as well on campouts and other occasions.
Knots are a skill taught at every level of Scouting from Cub to Boy Scout. The Wolf Cub will find them in Elective 17 - Tie It Right. The Bear will encounter them in Achievement 22 - Tying It All Up. Webelos will have a chance in the Outdoorsman requirements. Scouts will have some of them as requirements for rank as noted in the table below.
Knot name Scout Level Knot Type Comments and uses Bowline Bear, Webelos, First Class Loop The bowline is the universal fixed end loop. It may be tied in a variety of sizes for many uses. It is frequently referred to as a rescue knot due to its use in rescue harnesses. It does not slip. If you look closely you will see that it is related to the sheet bend. Clove hitch Webelos, First Class Hitch -- like hitching your horse The clove hitch is a quick method for securing a line to a post. It may be tied very quickly with two overhand loops dropped onto the post. Load should be applied perpendicular to the post. Overhand Wolf Stopper Temporary whipping. End of line stopper knot. The simplest knot. Overhand bend Wolf Bend Simplest bend to join two lines. Hard to untie. Sheet bend Bear, Webelos Bend The sheet bend, while not required, is illustrated in the Bear, Webelos, Boy Scout Handbooks. It is reliable under load and particularly good for joining ropes of different sizes (the smaller line should follow the pattern of the light line in the illustration).It is a must know knotting basic. Slip knot Bear Loop Actually an in line loop . One way of tying this is actually a noose. Can also be a simple hitch. Square Wolf, Bear, Webelos, Joining Scout Joining or also known as a bend The square knot is generally uses for tying bandages and general bundle tying. It is NOT a reliable method for joining two ropes that are under strain as the knot can be broken easily and creates a risk. Outside the US this is known as a reef knot. Square bow knot Wolf Temporary Keeps your shoes tied. If your bow lays square to your shoe then this is what you are doing Tautline Webelos, Tenderfoot Loop adjust The tautline is versatile because it is an adjustable loop which holds its adjustment under tension. Relieve the tension, adjust to size and reapply tension. This used in conjunction with two half hitches will provide a taut hold for tent and fly lines. Timber hitch First Class Hitch Beginning for diagonal lashing, drawing the spars together. Two Half Hitches Bear, Webelos, Tenderfoot Hitch Two half hitches will serve well in attaching lines to eyes on tents, dining flies and other items where an attachment of a line is needed.
There are literally thousands of knots recorded. However, the basic Scout knots will do for nearly any occasion. The various Scout handbooks have excellent instructions for tying them. Learn them and use them.
11 KNOTS - BASICS FOR SCOUTS AND SCOUTERS The "40 KNOTS" card for the knot impaired