Updated: Jul 23, 2019
In recent years paracord survival bracelets have become as much a fashion statement as a survival necessity. Their origins are practical; carry extra cord for emergency use, in such a way as to be easily accessible, lightweight and comfortable. The idea has now blossomed into a multi-million pound business market for soldiers, law enforcement, emergency responders, to amateur walkers, hikers and campers.
What is Paracord?
Parachute cord also known as 550 cord is a lightweight nylon rope used in the suspension lines of parachutes. This paracord is useful for many other tasks and is now used as a general purpose utility cord by both military personnel and civilians.
Five hundred and fifty refers to the breaking strength of 550lbs or 250kg. Which is the standard cord used in British army parachutes for man plus kit, plus spare.
Parachute cord is also available in a variety of strengths and for average adventurers 3mm cord is more than sufficient for camping and hiking needs.
Love them or Loathe them.
I am a member of many outdoor enthusiast forum groups and recently I asked other members for their thoughts on wearing paracord bracelets. Here are some of the responses.
Ashley: I’ve got 4 :) One was taken apart and used for tying up some tarp and some branches, definitely a must have for camping :) better to have and not need then to need and not have.
Stu: I do, but not as part of my survival gear. My dad was in the household cavalry, so I wear their colours, as a memory to him.
Ben: Yes I have one on me all the time last used 2 weeks ago when I forgot my dogs lead and used one for a guide line on my awning.
John: Yep, I wear one,especially when travelling. Mine has a little ferro rod in the clasp and it gets through airport security. Never needed it but bet I will the day I leave it at home!
Art: Never wear one don't see the point in them.
Sandy: I have two and attempted to make one but don't wear them.
10 uses for paracord other than as a bracelet.
Use to string a bushcraft bow or as snare noose or trap trigger for hunting food.
Bow string for a bow-and-drill friction fire.
Spare / replacement boot laces.
Shackle buckle can be used as a ‘lock’ for your backpack/tent.
Guy line for tent or tarp shelter.
Inner strands as thread for sewing repairs.
Plastic buckle can be used to repair rucksack or broken belt buckle
Pulley food cache up a tree.
Reins to keep group together in adverse weather conditions.
We are sure there are lots more uses, and in fact had many suggestions offered, but we chose not to include several as we are a family friendly business and blog. If you have other top ideas you would like to share, please comment below or find us on social media using hashtag #AdventureWild.
Paracord Bracelets - Cobra and Trilobite Weave
There are many amazing weave patterns you can create using paracord. You can make a range of products too such as lanyards, key chains, belts, straps, dog leads and collars.
The two most common weaves that I use are cobra weave in single and bi-colour options and the trilobite weave also in one or two colour varieties.
The Cobra Weave bracelets use approximately 3 metres of cord, whereas the Trilobite pattern uses almost 5m. Which is why there is a price difference between different weaves and cord strengths.
Often these lengths are not long enough to be of use in some of the situations we have mentioned, but if other group members also wear the bracelets you can use them together for the bigger projects.
Dog Collars and Leads
I have been asked numerous times to make paracord collars and leads for our ‘fur-legged’ adventure buddies but the amount of cord you would need to make the items are not currently economical for me to produce. However, plenty of handmade business do offer them and I have listed my favourites in my Amazon Storefront
Are Paracord Bracelets a Gimmick?
I personally love my paracord bracelets. I have several styles, and thicknesses and
wear them while hiking, but as all the ones I own are handmade gifts, I wouldn’t want to unravel all the hard work that went into making them. Although, I am sure I would think differently in a survival situation, but that begs the question:
Is there a better or easier way to carry emergency equipment than round your wrist?
Of course you can carry a reel of paracord with you in your kit, but where is the fun in that? Yes, I hear you shout, it is practical and I am all about functional gifts, so if you would prefer to have a go at making your own paracord bracelets I now sell diy do-it-yourself kits and instructions.
Even our youngest son has a paracord bracelet, which he chose as a present last Christmas. His is a gimmicky one with whistle, flint and steel incorporated into the buckle. You can also buy ones with compasses built in, but we find that these extras do not tend to work as well as separate items do.
Paracord bracelets and keychains are available in my Adventure Accessories online store. Featuring plastic or adjustable metal shackle buckles, in either cobra or trilobite weaves. If you are feeling crafty I offer a free paracord instruction leaflet when you sign up to the exclusive VIP members club and there are make-your-own kits to buy from my online store.
Over to you.
Do you wear a paracord bracelet? If you have any thoughts/opinions or funny stories you’d like to share regarding paracord bracelets, we would love to hear them. Comment below or find us on social media using the hashtag #AdventureWild.
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