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What do you do when you’re stuck on your boat on a day when the rain just doesn’t let up? After all the chores and cleaning are done, and we’ve had our fill of fresh-water showers, we tend to read. In addition to the Dirk Pitt novel that I’ve been enjoying on my Kindle, I also broke out our copy of The Pocket Guide to Knots which, in my opinion, is an excellent little book. I’ve been practicing how to tie some new bends and hitches, the Zeppelin Bend in particular is one that I have recently added to my knot-tying arsenal. I thought it only fitting that we listen to some Led Zeppelin while I was first working on it. Wouldn’t you agree?

Note: I just realized that this is not the first time I have posted about this knot. At least now I can say that I actually know how to tie it!

One of the commenters on the Zero To Cruising Facebook Page, Daniel, shared the following video link as an alternative, potentially-easier method to tying that bend* than what is illustrated in the book. Although I had no trouble following the book’s directions, I would agree that this is a more straightforward way to show it.

*A bend joins two pieces of line together.


  1. Mike,

    Just to let you know, your adventure is costing me money too. I just ordered the book for myself. But it was only $4.24 (used), with shipping, so I won’t go broke soon.

    We’ll be on the water ourselves this weekend. It won’t be at an exotic location, but the sails will be up. Might even get a picture or two.

    Happy sailing.

  2. Mike, all the great stuff you post and this one works for me, go figure? Needed some Zep background music, “The Ocean” comes to mind…

  3. The Video make that look easy… I’m still trying. Of course I don’t usually have a need to tie a “Zepplin” down. What other applications could you use this knot for on a boat? A longer docking line?

    • Yes, lengthening any line. Our friends just came and anchored beside us and, in order to tie to the shore, as boats here are required to do, they had two lines tied together. They used a sheet bend (I checked) but the Zeppelin Bend would have been an even better choice.

  4. Mike,

    Typically I’m a reader. Learn much better and faster than video.
    Except when it comes to knots! In that case, video works much better for me.

    Great little knot, not one I knew. One I’ve needed and one I’ll try and remember!

    Thanks for the tip!

  5. My brain hurts to look at that. Must try :).

    Are You the least interested in any streams from Canada-Finland hockey game (WC 2012) ?

    • You’ll find it easy once you grab a couple of lines and practice a few minutes.

      As for Hockey, no, not interested. We never watched it when we were back in Canada either. Not very Canadian, eh?!

  6. Please thank Daniel for that video, and thanks for posting it.

    I had ignored the Zeppelin as it seemed to difficult to do fast when needed. Sheet bend works well but has slipped on me (should have used the double), reef knots capsize too easily, so two bowlines it tends to be. But they take a lot of each of the ropes.

    The zeppelin, as in the video looks good. Thank-you.

    You might like to look at they have a good illustration of the Zeppelin too. And all the others, and its free!

    The Alpine Butterfly loop is useful, and its twin the Bend joins two ropes. Well recommended but I have not used it.


    • I just tried the Alpine Butterfly (from the book I mentioned) and it is also pretty easy. It would be nice to have a few of those at certain points on the ropes that are rigged on some of the climbs/hikes we do.

  7. If you haven’t heard it in a while, listen to Ten Years Gone next sunset! Then snuggle up to Rebecca and let Thank You roll. And of course next time you haul anchor, let Ramble On blast away!

  8. I have never used or tied this knot…..For me I get spoiled with just using the bowline, hitch’s and cleat knot……..Sailors obviously need to know more knots than us power boaters…..

  9. Nice knot! Quick bend! Buy that guy a beer!

  10. The bowline, the king of knots. Tie one, then tie the second thru it.

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