As seasoned paracorders, you know the importance of a fid. For those of you that are new to paracord or have no idea what a fid is, here is a little background for you:
Fids are traditionally made of bone or wood--obviously the most readily available materials to people living in the rural parts of the world. The basic idea behind a fid is similar to that of a needle—to enable the individual to weave something that they are otherwise unable to weave with their hands—but with rope or cord rather than thread. This ability is particularly important when working with Paracord because of how fine the cord is and how tight the weaves generally are.
So why use a fid? Plain and simple, it will enable you to make
Paracord projects you currently cannot and it will make your current Paracord projects
easier. Everyday examples of this include finishing your bracelets. Yes, it is a
small thing, but tucking the ends of your Paracord back into the bracelet to
achieve a clean, professional finish can be frustrating; by utilizing a
Paracord fid in your work, this becomes a breeze. Another very real way a fid can
help you includes when you want to work that beautiful breast-cancer awareness
ribbon into your Paracord bracelet while maintaining the tightness and
integrity of the Paracord weave. The fid is great for getting in between the
Paracord without disrupting your bracelet. A fid can also be quite beneficial
for certain weaves such as the Turk’s Head and other tricky ties. A small tool
that can make a big difference.
So what if you don't have a fid? Here are some quick and easy solutions you may already have your disposal.
#1 Needle Nose Pliers
Image Source: amazon.com
I've seen this used in many Paracord tutorial videos and there are very clear benefits to using it. You're able to reach the end of your cord just as easily as with a fid, but you won't have to worry about the fid loosening up the inner strands. However, with a fid you won't have to loosen up the weave as much since the fid doesn't have to open up as a needle nose pliers does.
#2 T Pin
Image Source: amazon.com
T Pins are also a useful solution to have instead of a fid on the fly. Most people have T pins in their drawer with push pins. You can easily grab some of the thread of the cord to carefully fit through your weave without ruining the flow of it. Now, a T Pin won't be great to use for the entire weave, but if you need something for a loop or two, this is a fast fix.
#3 Fishing Hook
Image Source: greatvectors.com
While many people probably don't have a fishing hook handy - most probably have one somewhere at their house, pending they (or someone in their household) likes to fish. This can be used in much the same way as the T Pin above. I think the curvature of this particular needle could be helpful in some cases and a hindrance in others. But either way, this will help you when you're in a pinch.
Image Source: Instructables.com
If you have all the necessary tools, you can make your own fid without spending a dime. Check out this tutorial from Instructables.com.
Fids are a relatively inexpensive instrument to have in your paracord toolbox and if you're going to be doing a lot of paracord projects, it's something I recommend. ParacordPlanet has fids with various degrees of angles and various lengths as well.