Superknot – The Easy Way to Tie the Zeppelin (Rosendahl) Bend

A uniquely simple way to tie the Zeppelin (Rosendahl) Bend

The Zeppelin Bend (Rosendahl Bend) might be the only knot you ever need again for joining two ropes. It is easy to tie, jam resistant, jerk resistant, and easy to untie even after being under heavy load. And don’t be fooled by the seemingly complex method for tying this knot — it’s actually very, very easy and quick.

There is a rather complex way to tie this knot, and people learn it because it’s easier to teach by this method, not because it’s easier to learn. In fact, the common way of doing this is a bit ridiculous, as it requires you to lay out the two ends of the ropes on the ground and contort them into shape. But when you’re tying two ropes together, you need to be able to hold both ends and whip them together right quick. This video will show you how.

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Photo instructions for tying the Zeppelin Bend

I know this looks like a large number of steps, but it’s not. The other methods teach you how to tie the Zeppelin bend by laying out your ropes on the ground, but if you learn my method, you’ll do it standing up in under 10 seconds.

 

Zeppelin (Rosendahl) Bend history and trivia

Remember the Zeppelins? These were hydrogen-filled aircraft like the Goodyear blimp (which is filled with helium). It is said that the Zeppelin Bend got its name because it was the only knot authorized by Commander Charles Rosendahl to tie down his dirigible, the Los Angeles. It’s a cool story, but it authenticity is disputed by some. Whether or not it’s true, the story does illustrate what is so well appreciated about this bend — it’s the fact that even when you put it under tremendous tension, it still unties very easily. In any event, this knot has recently surged in popularity, and you need to know it because it really is exceptionally useful.

Further reading on the Zeppelin Bend

Mother Earth News

Survival Topics

Skytopia

David M. Delaney

~SnoMan

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  • NBF

    One of the worst methods I've ever seen.

    Just form a "b" in your left hand and "q" in your right hand:
    http://notableknotindex.webs.com/Zeppelin.html

    Why complicate a simple bend?

  • http://www.survivalnewsonline.com sn0man

    Are you serious? This is the simplest, easiest way to tie the knot I've ever seen. It's the way we actually tied it on the boat. I can't believe you think it's the worst ever. Weird. Anyway, thanks for watching.

  • Jim

    Snoman….Great knot. I like NBK's explanation. Makes it easier for a dumbass like me to remember. Keep up the good work.
    Jim

  • Dan

    You start with a flat thing and you say do a full turn. Then you have it vertical and say put something through it toward’s you. So was it a 1.25 turns or 0.75 turns because flat + 1 turn equals flat, not vertical. And it gets much worse from there. The thing is, I know exactly what a zeppelin bend is and not from memorizing a couple of letters but I can’t even figure out how you’re trying to say to tie it and those photos in the middle area don’t help. 15 photos to explain a zeppelin bend and it still isn’t clear?

    You just overlay two easy overhand loops wrapped the same direction with back loop’s tail back and the front loop’s tail forward (much like a cow hitch). Rotate the loops enough that the ends don’t interfere, and tuck. The end. It’s just a zeppelin knot, not crocheting a scarf here.