Paracord survival sling
It’s a survival tool turn fashion statement — the paracord bracelet seen on many outdoors enthusiasts’ wrists. While the bracelet will carry six to 20 feet of paracord, depending on the weave, a gun sling made the same way easily holds up to 80 feet of useful cordage. The sling is made using a weaving technique called the ladder stitch. When done correctly, you can unravel a sling in seconds for emergency use. — P.J. Perea
Photos by Matt Lindler
- 1" x 4" x 4' board
- a set of sling swivels
- 100 feet of 550 paracord
- small screws, washers or sling swivel studs
- crochet hook
- stiff wire
- electrical tape
- measuring tape
- a lighter or matches
From string to strap
- Find a strap that comfortably fits your shoulder while it is mounted on the gun. The survival sling will not be adjustable, so the measurement needs to be precise. Measure the sling length between the swivels. If you do not have a sling, substitute a string to estimate length, or measure the length between the swivel studs on the gun and add 10 to 12 inches.
- Transfer the measurement to the weaving loom made from the board and sling swivels. Attach sling swivels using screws and washers or mount sling swivel studs directly to the board and clip in sling swivels.
- Run four parallel lines of paracord, called runners, through each swivel, wrapping the sling swivel once on each turn. This creates two runners in the upper position and two in the lower position. Tie off the ends on the sling swivels with half hitch knots to maintain tension and tape the ends to the board to keep them out of the way.
- Wrap the remaining paracord in a bundle that can easily pass through the paracord loom.
- Tape one end of paracord to the board and create a needle on the other end using wire and electrical tape.
- Weave paracord through runners, using an in and out pattern in one direction, passing the paracord bundle through the loom each time.
- Going the opposite direction, use the same in and out pattern, but weave through the opposite runners as the paracord passes through the loom.
- Tighten the paracord and check the pattern to make sure you are weaving correctly. The paracord runners will disappear in the pattern when woven and tightened correctly.
- Weave up to 10 passes of paracord and tighten. Be patient, as the paracord will pass through the loom up to 300 times to create the sling.
- Near the end, use the needle to weave the final rows of paracord.
- Tuck the tag ends of runners and main line through woven paracord loops in the sling. Use a crochet hook to create space in loops and pull through tag ends.
- Use lighter or matches to seal the tag ends of paracord.
To access the paracord, pull the tag ends loose from the woven loops. Cut one end of the runners at the sling swivel with a knife and pull the main paracord line off the runners.
A looming concern
Don’t worry if the woven rows are not perfectly uniform or slightly loose. As the sling is used and exposed to the elements, the paracord will shrink and the loops will tighten up.