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Monkey Fist Size Chart

Posted by Luke Quanbeck on Dec 5th 2019

monkey fist chart

Monkey fist knots can serve a variety of functions. They can be used as keychains, doorstops, drawer pulls, or decorations. For even more ideas, read our blog post Monkey Fist Ideas.

The difficulty with tying monkey fists often centers around knowing how many passes it will take to cover your core (often a spherical object like a marble or ball bearing). Let the chart below serve as a guide for designing your next monkey fist. If you make a lot of these, it might be a good idea to bookmark this page for later. Share it with a friend if you know someone who could benefit from it!

ball bearing sizes
These are the sizes of metal ball bearings we have available.

This chart is designed for use with 550 Paracord. If you use a different size, you will have to use alternate measurements.

Core Size # of Passes Cord Required
5/8" 3 1' 8"
3/4" 4 2' 6"
7/8" 5 3' 4"
1" 5 4' 4"
1 1/8" 6 5' 4"
1 1/4" 7 6' 8"
1 3/8" 7 8'
1 1/2" 8 9' 6"
Ping Pong Ball 8 10' 2"
1 5/8" 9 11' 2"
Golf Ball 9 11' 10"
1 3/4" 9 12' 10"
1 7/8" 10 14' 8"
2" 11 16' 10"
2 1/8" 11 19'
2 1/4" 11 21' 4"

A couple of notes on this chart:

  • Not all 550 paracord is identical. Depending on the brand, material, or even batch, it's width may vary slightly.
  • The lengths in the cord required column above are for the finished, tightened knot. You may need to use up to twice this amount of cord in order to tie it properly.

If you like making monkey fists, consider buying a monkey fist jig. Some of our jigs even have size charts right on them!

We try to guess at the needs of our customers, but sometimes we miss the mark. If this chart is missing anything essential, let us know! We'd love to update it for you.

For more tips on making monkey fists, read our blog post Mastering Monkey Fists.

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