About Leg Rolled Cordage, and Why You Should Learn it.

By Steven Edholm

For many years, Tamara and I would teach leg rolling at our classes and at various primitive skills events.  We were real excited about it and started to see the usual hand twisting taught by most books and  instructors at the time, as sort of grade school level cordage making.  Leg rolling was slow to catch on for some reason, but it now seems to be more common, as it should be.  This short post is about leg rolling as compared to some other methods, and why is it worth learning, even if you don’t use it all the time.

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Tamara demonstrating leg rolling cordage and net making at the Oregon Country Fair

For making cordage without any props or gizmos, leg rolling is the worldwide norm.  It may have been slow to catch on in the primitive skills scene, but it seems almost universal among traditional cultures.  Leg rolling is common because it’s fast.  The cord is rolled on the thigh or calf with the flat palm, usually in an up and then down motion. With a little set up, a push down the thigh with the flat hand, and a pull back up the thigh, you’ll usually have 5 to 6 inches of cordage or so. (more…)

Charcoal production and agave roasting

Some paleotechnics followers will probably  be interested in this turkeysong post about making charcoal for biochar in a simple pit, and then using the residual heat for roasting agave leaves to extract the fibers.

wood in pit burning before and afterroasted agave leavesagave fibers