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Boat Shoe Knot

Often used on boat shoes (deck shoes) or moccasins with leather laces, the "Heaving Line Knot" creates decorative coils instead of knots: Each end is simply coiled around itself until all remaining lace is consumed. Also known as the "Barrell Tassel" or "Eastland Knot".

Boat Shoe Knot diagram 1

Step 1:

Unlike almost all other shoelace knots, the Boat Shoe Knot does not begin with a Starting Knot. Instead, one end is formed into a "loop" by simply doubling it back onto itself, leaving a fairly long trailing end.

Boat Shoe Knot diagram 2

Step 2:

Wrap the end of the shoelace once around the bottom of the loop. The direction is not important; it can be wrapped either way (around the front or around the back).

Boat Shoe Knot diagram 3

Step 3:

Wrap the end of the shoelace once more around the loop, with the second wrap immediately above the first wrap.

Boat Shoe Knot diagram 4

Step 4:

Continue winding the end around the loop until it reaches the top. Try to wrap very tightly around the loop and snugly against the previous wraps, forming a tight coil of lace.

Boat Shoe Knot diagram 5

Step 5:

Feed the end of the shoelace through the top of the loop. The whole "coil" can then be pulled upwards, which will tightly pinch the top of the loop and secure the loose end.

Boat Shoe Knot diagram 6

Step 6:

Repeat steps (1) through (6) with the left (blue) end, resulting in two separate coils.



Finished Knot
Finished Boat Shoe Knot picture 1 Finished Boat Shoe Knot picture 2

Unlike the above diagrams, which are somewhat "open" in order to visualize what goes where, the actual knot should be tightly coiled so that it holds together firmly.



Technical Details
Looks versus Security:

Note that this knot does not secure the ends, rather, the boat shoe becomes a "slip-on". This knot is simply a decorative way to consume the excess length of those loose ends. For extra security, begin by tying a permanent Reef Knot, then continue with this knot.

Starting Loop Length:

It may take some experimentation to create the correct length starting loop in order to achieve the optimum number of wraps.

If the starting loop is made too long, the trailing end will be too short and the shoelace will run out before reaching the top of the loop. This will result in a tiny coil with very few wraps, which will be sitting at the end of a long lace.

On the other hand, if the starting loop is made too short, there won't be enough room for more than a couple of wraps. This will again result in a tiny coil with very few wraps, with a long trailing end protruding from the top of the knot.



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Related Links
Halloween Knot Halloween Knot

Another decorative coiled knot for Halloween or other creepy occasions.

User-controllable Boat Shoe Knot animation Flip Book

User-controllable animation of the Boat Shoe Knot sequence.

Ian's Secure Knot Ian's Secure Knot

A secure shoelace knot that works well even on the square leather laces of boat shoes.


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