Rope splicing for repair and making

I have a large yellow travel bag with a big shoulder strap. As recommended this has been taken off and put in a side pocket when it is checked in for flights. However, the rough treatment by the baggage handlers has broken the little clips on the end of the straps so that now they don’t stay hooked onto the bag.

A plastic strap

A plastic strap very similar to mine before it was broken

I did look at making a wire replacement for the clip but that did not work out. There were also replacement clips online but that would require unpicking and re-stitching the strap which would be hard work as it’s a heavy material, too much for our sewing machine.

Metal style clip

Metal style clip

So I decided on some heavy duty clips and some jute rope that could be spliced. I purchased a couple of different sizes, 8mm and 6mm natural rope. Modern nylon rope is easier to work than the natural but it is slippier so you have to do a longer length of splicing to get the same strength. I found some instructions for a short splice on Animated Knots. I did a practice piece with the larger rope and that turned out ok so I repeated it with my straps and the smaller ropes.

Strap Repair using rope

Whilst wondering what to do with the spare rope, my wife commented that it looked like quoits. So I made a couple more using the 8mm rope. Unfortunately I did not get them the same size, so it would likely help if they were all measured at the same time. Rob Ives suggested a rope work tower of Hanoi. I think you could probably get 5 quoits of the largest size here using 3m rope. I paid about £1.5 per meter.


My little helper painted a plank of wood and banged some big round lolly sticks into the holes I’d drilled. In no time we had a game as well as my repaired strap.


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