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Monday 10 December 2012

Figure 9 by Nite Ize

I would like to introduce a tool that provides convenience in tightening a rope. I once have a small Figure 9 rope tightener. And I have decided to complete my inventory by getting the large version as well. I find this simple and light device very helpful especially in camping where I need to tie a rope over tree trunks to provide a line for the flysheet. While it is usual to tie the common knots and hitches, this Figure 9 device does it quicker and uses less length of rope. Furthermore, it doesn't add a lot of weight since it is made of aluminium. 

The rope is secured using the Fixed End System (as opposed to Loop System) on the Figure 9 rope tightener. Fixed End System is appropriate for setting up a rope for flysheet.

As can be seen here, the standing end rests freely on the last prong and the inward-pointing notches keep the rope secured. If this part is loosened, the whole rope goes loose; so it is better to make another loop and thereafter tie a simple overhand knot to prevent the rope from unravel.

It is very easy to use... a couple of swings and pulls, the rope is quickly tightened. Less time is spent as compared to tying the conventional knots.

This small version can bear a load up to 22.5kg, which is about the weight of a moderate heavy backpack so you can imagine it is quite strong. Rope diameters range from 2mm till 5mm.

Important: They are not for use in climbing.

The other end of the rope is secured with the Bowline knot, a proper climbing knot.

The Bowline knot finished with a simple overhand knot to tidy up the excess rope.


The question arises as to whether 'slippery' raffia strings can be used. The answer is YES. Again, for prevention of accidental string unravel, it is advisable to loop over a couple of times before finishing with an overhand knot.


This just to contrast the small version with the large one which was bought recently. I hanged my small folding knife nearby. The large version (also aluminium) bears a load up to 67.5kg with rope diameter support from 3mm until 9mm.


This is the S-Biner (#4), also by Nite Ize. It supports a maximum load of 33kg. Here, I used it to hang my backpack. In camping, I sometimes hang my backpack (with the backpack cover over it) on the tree.

Important: This device is not for climbing.

An illustration of their sizes with a Malaysian 50 sen coin for scale and comparison.

Instruction leaflet on both the Loop System and Fixed End System. To see a video presentation on how to use the Figure 9 rope tightener, go to: The demonstration is presented by the President of the company that produces the Figure 9, Nite Ize, Inc.

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