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Speaks

which knotsmith lanyard

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Speaks

I plan to treat myself to a knotsmith lanyard toward the end of this year. The question I am wrestling with is which one. The T3 with the ability to turn it into a leash has a real appeal, on the other hand the t2 seems like it might be more practical for its day job as a lanyard. T3m also appeals to me as I like that type of snap better but not sure I want the heavier cord. Seeing them in person would make the choice easy, with ordering I am uncertain. From those who own one any thoughts on which to get? 

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Hammergun

I really like the simplistic and slim vintage T1 lanyard model that Larry brought out of retirement for me. He was great to work with on this special project. Whatever you get it will be great. I personally just didn’t want one of the larger ones with the flat profiles or hooks on them and lots of stuff on them. But that’s why he makes all kinds. It is a great piece of artisan work and compliments fine guns and dogs quite well. 

4B04FE9B-0729-4590-90E5-A3350CAECB11.jpeg

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Speaks

In terms of what I put on mine I am thinking the brass whistle, compass, and one flush counter. I do really like the simplistic look of that T1 though and could do what I want on that one. I dont want one of the flat backs or anything like that. I think I would go T1 over T2, although the leash option on the T3 does have an appeal. 

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rawhide

The choice of custom braided lanyard design, features and accessories, etc., is a matter of individual taste and personal priorities and preferences (that is the essence of the business).  It would be good to have feedback on how well various lanyard configurations are serving those who have them.  The following information may be helpful in your consideration of a new lanyard. 

 

First, the T1 Lanyard is a 4X braid of  1/8" lace over a nylon twine core (to minimize stretching) and has a nominal diameter of 5/32".  The  T2 Lanyard braid, 8X of 2.5 mm lace,  is nominally 1/4" in diameter, and it  has a core that was selected to give the lanyard a bit more body than the T1 Lanyard so as to lessen the pendulum swing of the whistles, etc., while walking.  The brass counters were designed to fit the T2 braids.  

 

Second, the obvious benefit of a T3 Leash Lanyard is that it converts into a 32 - 34" leash, i.e., one piece of equipment which serves two functions.  in the leash mode, the whistle is out of the way on the outside of the heel of the hand in the hand loop.  The braid diameter is also 1/4", so counters can be installed on one or both sides of the hand loop.  A compass can be installed in the fixed knot that forms the hand loop.  That configuration was requested by grouse and woodcock hunters about 20 years ago, was advertised and became rather popular.  With that accessory package, it was obviously a "dedicated use" lanyard.   In the lanyard mode, the T3 Leash Lanyard is about 21" (+/- an inch or two), i.e., the design affords very little latitude in length choice compared to the T2 design. 

 

Third, in recent years, there has been more emphasis on being able to put accessories on a lanyard when you need or want to carry them and to take them off and not carry them when they are not likely to be needed.  The innovation that serves that best is the hitch loop attachment, and as with most innovations, this was inspired by my customers.  The first hitch loops I made were a means to attach two call loops to a T2 Lanyard or a T3 Leash Lanyard,  thus converting it from upland to waterfowl hunting service.  From that beginning, hitch loops were made to carry counters and compasses (and anything that could be put on a clip). 

 

All this came together when a customer ordered a Versatile Lanyard System (his description!).  He had done his homework and had apparently made a cord prototype, because he was quite specific about the head loop and lanyard length dimensions and the dimensions of the hitch loop attachments.    He ordered a T2FL Lanyard, a lanyard with a fixed head loop with a single drop with a brass swivel for a whistle.  This simple lanyard was to serve in training exercises on an everyday basis (He trained Labs).  He specified two hitch loops attachments.  The first hitch loop was to have two call loops for use in field trial/hunt tests and waterfowl hunting and guiding (This is also called a Detachable Double Call Loop).  The second hitch loop, carrying  two brass counters and a compass,  was for hunting (and guiding for hunting) grouse and woodcock.  This lanyard system was the epitome of the philosophy of taking only what was appropriate for the activity or occasion. 

 

The best part probably is that I can make hitch loop accessories for your KNOTSMITH lanyard at a later date if you decide you need or want them.  Today I am making a hitch loop with a compass on it for a customer who bought his T2 several years ago.

 

So, in summary, choose a lanyard design and accessories consistent with your intended uses.  Choose one that will be comfortable to wear and use.  And finally,  choose a lanyard that will look good to you!  I will do my best to make it as you specify!   

 

Thanks!

 

 

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Crazy Horse

I  find my T3 KNOTSMITH lanyard very handy. Here in the East I'm often crossing roads and occasionally highways to get to fields.

 

 

Lanyard Smith.jpg

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Larry Brown

Having lost an ecollar transmitter when I took a fall in the grouse woods and it fell out of my shirt pocket, I'm really glad to have one like Hammergun's--except I have a split ring for my whistle and a snap for the ecollar transmitter, so I'm not likely to lose either.  Significant upgrade from the old boot laces I used to use for whistle lanyards!

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gunsrus

The workmanship is outstanding

IMG_1008.JPG

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gunsrus

With the whistle 

IMG_1028.JPG

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john mcg

They are indeed quality craftsmanship to be admired. I have long wanted to have one, but so difficult to justify the spending.

I like this general set-up with some black woven in for accents.

But they are all gorgeous and functional!

 

 

Screen Shot 2018-10-24 at 9.57.09 AM.png

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hexfly

Nice looking lanyards, as I have the  T2 and it proudly carries my $5.00 plastic whistle.  I think its time for some candy to hang on this thing. 

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SARGENT

I would love to see the T1, T2(it whatever variation, and a T3 next to each other in a pic.  They are all amazing but just can't seem to visualize the size difference. I realize length will be different upon request.  

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rawhide

Left to right below:  (1) A T1 Lanyard braid, nominally 5/32" diameter;  (2)  A T2 Lanyard braid or  T3 Leash Lanyard braid, nominally 1/4" diameter;   and (3) A T3M Leash Lanyard braid, nominally 5/16" diameter. 

 

85496789_T1T2T2Braids.thumb.jpg.38b4ba4c871a91422a0f844e190c02f7.jpg

 

As stated in my post above, the braids on  T2 Lanyards and T3 Leash Lanyards are both nominally 1/4".    Brass counters will fit only on 1/4" braids.   The braid on a T3M Leash Lanyard, as also shown in Crazy Horse's post above,  is made larger to be in harmony with the Loc-Jaw snap swivel, and it is too large for the counters.  T1 braids are too small, and the counters would wobble.  

 

Please note that there are no T1 Lanyards shown on my web page.  While I recently made a couple of exceptions, the lanyard I donated the auction last year and the lanyard I subsequently made for Hammergun because he came in second in that auction,  I have not offered or  made T1 Lanyards for almost two decades.  I have only a few remnant spools of 1/8" (3 mm) wide kangaroo lace, so choice is limited to a few colors.  (My current lanyards are all made with 2.5 mm (3/32") kangaroo lace.)  

 

If you must have a T1, I will consider making it  if the colors of lace I have are acceptable to you.    Since it takes almost the same time and effort to make a T1  as it does a T2, the price of a T1 will be only slightly less than the price of a T2.   And finally,  T1 lanyards come with nickel steel swivels and scissor snaps (as shown on Hammergun's lanyard above).  I do not provide accessories for T1 Lanyards.

 

 

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rawhide

I apologize for bluntly indicating that I am less than enthusiastic about making T1 Lanyards (i.e., a lanyard with a braid of four strands of 1/8" lace).  However, after firing off the above post, I remembered some history in the transition from offering both T1 and T2 Lanyards to offering only T2 Lanyards.    Nowadays when my memory works at all, it works slowly and then only after being jolted.  So the following points  materialized from the fog during the past 6 to 8 hours of grinding on the subject, and I offer them as a partial explanation for my truculence.  At least these points helped me to understand it!    I remembered a long forgotten lanyard design, a T2P2, that may be an option in the above discussion of T1 vs T2, etc.  Please bear with me in my recalling the evolution of my lanyards.

 

Originally,  my T1 Lanyards all had slides of wood, antler, or bone.  The braid was very simple, insignificant, something I had been making since I was 9 or 10.  The slides were  the "art".  I made the slide on the lanyard below in the early '60s from a chunk of red cedar.  The slide was originally on a 1/8" nylon cord rather than a braid because I did not have any lace at the time.  

 

T1J.jpg.cc64c7058f68204bbe5f25fe98461caa.jpg

 

 

In the '70's,  Dunn's catalog offered the whistle lanyard shown  below.  I saw the braid, went down to Tandy Leather and got some goatskin lace and made the braid shown above and, after slight adjustment on the holes, installed it on my slide.

 

1215035014_DunnsT1Lanyard2.jpg.745e7499fdc1116c5cb167a190d59073.jpg

 

I made slides from mesquite root knots (burls) that had unusual shapes and attractive grains.  All had the braid shown in my lanyard above made from 4X goatskin lace.  I gave these lanyards to friends and hunting companions in the '70s.  In the mid-'80s,  a sudden drop in oil price produces "a career dislocation" for me, and to finance my bird hunting, I decided to generate some cash that was not budgeted by selling T1 Lanyards at various field trials, etc.   They were well received.  Along the way someone stated that he did not care for any of  the lanyards I had on hand, and asked if I could make one especially for him.  Although I did not note it at the time, that was the beginning of "custom braided" lanyards.  The variations were all in the slides, carved, wood burned, laser engraved, etc., and a variety of woods, antler, horn, and bone.  

 

Then, in the '92 - '92 season, a customer asked me to reproduce a lanyard that had been his father's.  It had been made of rawhide in South Texas before WW2.   I agreed to work on that.  I decided I would make the braid of goatskin lace (which I had) rather than learning to braid rawhide.  I had to learn a six strand braid rather than the four strand braid in the lanyards I had been making, and I found that the braid needed a core.   Finally, I had to learn to tie the slide and terminal knots.  I learned all that from books and trial and error.  The result was the lanyard below.

 

1443408714_T2Original1993in2018.thumb.jpg.81ca8f32bb221d093356512d548e51b6.jpg

 

 

When I presented this lanyard to the customer, he immediately said that it would not work because it was too long.  I pointed out that it was the exact dimensions of the lanyard he had shown me.  He then said that he was short (~5'6") whereas his dad had been quite tall, and he wanted a lanyard that would fit.    So, I kept the lanyard above and made a lanyard that fit him. That was my first lesson in making lanyards to fit the customer!     Since this lanyard design was significantly different from the lanyards I had been making, I decided to call it a Type 2 Lanyard, and by default, the lanyards in the original design were Type 1.  Those designations became T1 and T2.

 

When presented the choice of a T1 or T2 Lanyard, customers consistently preferred the T2 design, i.e., the braided knots were more attractive to customers than my elaborate burled mesquite knot slides, etc.     T1 Lanyards with carved wooden slides were considerably harder and more time consuming to make than lanyards with braided knot slides, but putting braided knot slides on T1 Lanyard braids resulted in products too similar to catalog lanyards (such as Dunn's above), and I had already decided to make custom braided lanyards rather than catalog lanyards.  Therefore, I  stopped offering and making T1 Lanyards.  That is, making T2 Lanyards and T3 Leash Lanyards was the best use of my time.

 

I quickly altered the T2 Lanyard design of  by changing from a 6X braid of 1/8" lace to a 8X braid of 3/32" lace and selecting different slide and terminal knots.  As noted in the first post, I found a core material that produced a well behaved lanyard, one with less swing than the T1 Lanyards had.  Over the  decades the T2 Lanyard design options and accessories have evolved  to those shown on the web page.  The addition of counters and compasses and logo whistles were significant in building the brand and mark.  And of course, responding to customer requests, the call lanyards and fly fishing lanyards, etc., were added to the product line.

 

Now, since the original discussion was  focused on the diameters of the braids on the T1 and T2 Lanyards and the T3 and T3M Leash Lanyards,  I finally remembered  a bit of trivia: the T2P2 Lanyard.    At some point, about 15 years ago I think, there were requests to make a T2 Lanyard with a smaller diameter braid, a petite T2.  I responded by making a 6X braid of 3/32" lace, a braid that looks very similar to a regular T2 braid (and quite different from a T1 braid) and had a diameter of 3/16" rather than 1/4" (in a T2).  That is, the braid would be about half way between the T1 and T2 braids in the picture in my post above.   I labeled these T2P2 Lanyards.  I did not make very many of them and have few pictures of those I made.  One is shown below.

 

T2P2b.jpg.a650bafaa67d7f7c9d1f4d864ac2acc4.jpg

 

For anyone interested in a lanyard with a 3/16"  braid diameter, i.e.,  one smaller than the 1/4" braid in the T2 Lanyard, I will be pleased to make a  T2P2 Lanyard for you.  Select length, color etc.  I do not know, but doubt, whether the counters will work with the smaller braid, but all the other options and accessories will.  The prices are the same as the regular T2 Lanyards.   

 

 

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Hammergun

I sure like my T1 Larry. It’s exactly what I personally wanted and truly appreciate you making it for me. 

Jeff 

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rawhide

Jeff,

I am glad that you like your T1 Lanyard and am gratified that it works for you and serves you well.  My business is making custom braided lanyards according to customers' desires and choices (as nearly as possible).  I remember our discussions, and I remember making your lanyard to your specifications.    I remember enjoying making it too. It brought back some good memories. It is a custom braided lanyard made with some classic Tandy Leather 1/8" kangaroo lace that I have kept sealed in a plastic bag for 20 years,  and in your (and my)  pictures,  the braid has that classic T1 look.   However, classic T1 lanyards did not have that braided slide knot.  That particular knot makes your lanyard unique, not a catalog lanyard, and even unique among my lanyards.  So, I have pride and "ownership" in having made your T1 Lanyard as you wished.

 

For a price to be negotiated (as it was in your case), I will make an analogous T1 Lanyard for any customer who wants one for the reasons you gave me, i.e., your preference for a light, trim, simple, functional lanyard that has that classic look. (I too like the way it looks, but my personal tastes for how a lanyard should look and work are a bit different.)  Moreover, if someone requested a truly classic T1 Lanyard (or  T2P2 Lanyard) with a wooden slide (mesquite knot, black cherry,  etc.) with pyrography or laser engraving or with an antler slide, etc., I would negotiate a price consistent with the order and  produce a unique lanyard as requested.  I have done that (or something analogous), and produced some unusual lanyards over the years.

 

Even so, as I admitted above, I am not enthusiastic about producing lanyards with a 4X braid of 1/8" lace.  I don't have and do not want to keep a stock of 1/8" lace.  It is a personal thing I know, but I do not like to make 4X braid, and I like the looks of 6X or 8X braids of 2.5 mm (3/32") better than 4X braids.  But, since it is my business, I can be persuaded (negotiated) to overcome all that for a serious customer.  

 

It was good for me to spend some time remembering the evolution of the lanyard designs and making, revisit the T1 Lanyard era and rethink why the T1 was dropped from the old web page.  It was good to remember the forgotten  T2P2 lanyards (emphasizes my failing memory!) and ponder why I did not include them as an option on the T2 page (along with T2FL, T2FN, etc.) on the new web page.  (To repeat my offer above, I will be pleased to make a T2P2 lanyard, 6X braid, 3/16" dimeter,  for anyone who would like one.) 


That process of reflection also emphasized to me that nowadays I am making more than a few top-of-the-line, collectable lanyards that will likely never be worn in the field.  I am a bit uncomfortable with that, since I have had a life-long dedication to the principle that form follows function.  While  I have always tried to make lanyards that looked good (in several senses), I have also believed that how well my lanyards performed in their intended use was far more important than (had priority over) how they looked.   That principle has guided design and making of KNOTSMITH lanyards and will continue to do so; because it has served me and my customers well.   So, even though some customers apparently consider the lanyards they order primarily "works of art", I am not able or willing  to do that;  and given the chance. even the "collectable" lanyards will perform well in the field.

 

Jeff, thank you, first for ordering a T1 Lanyard  and, today, for prompting me to explain my conflicted feelings about my lanyards past and present.  I wish you well!

 

Finally, a heartfelt THANK YOU! to all of you who have allowed me to make lanyards for you over the years.  I appreciate the kind words you have offered on this forum.  Without good customers, my lanyard making would not have developed, and my business would not have prospered!  I like what I do, and I intend to keep on doing it as long as customers continue to challenge me and my thumbs hold out. 

 

I wish  all you  fine folk on UJ  good, safe  hunting, and I enjoy the pictures and accounts you share here on UJ.  Thank you!

 

Larry

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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