Probably the most survival ready bracelet out there is the Gator. The Gator paracord bracelet is packed with cord and is truly a quick release survival bracelet, being capable of completely unraveling in under 20 seconds. Throughout this tutorial I will show you how to make your own quick release paracord bracelet.
What you’ll need:
Step 1: Measuring your wrist.
1. Wrap a string, cord, or small rope around your wrist. Make sure it is very snug. Not overly tight, but do not make it loose.
2. Take a marker and draw a line across the two crossing cords/strings.
3. I’ve darkened the lines in a photo editing software so you can see an example in part 3 of the diagram.
4. Now straighten out your string/rope and measure from the first line to the second line.
In this example my wrist measures around 8 inches. So when I go to measure for my bracelet, I’m going to add 1 inch to that measurement. This will be further explained in steps to come.
Step 2: Starting With A Cow Hitch
The numbers below correspond to the numbers in the diagram. Find the mid point of your cord, and fold it in half.
1. Take the loop that is formed at the mid point, and feed it through the shackle.
2. Locate the 2 end cords.
3. Feed the 2 end cords through the loop on the other side of the shackle.
4. It should look like this once completed.
Step 3: Creating Your Inner Cords And Measuring For Wrist Size
The numbers below correspond to the numbers in the diagram.
1. About 7 or 8 inches down your cords, use your finger to wrap the cords around and bring it up past the shackle.
2. Like shown in part 2 of the diagram, separate your cords into 2 separate “inner cords”. PLEASE NOTE: These cords will act as 1 cord each. Notice “inner cord 1” and “inner cord 2”. Although they each have 2 cords in them, them act as 1 cord each.
3. Take your tape measure or ruler and lay it down next to your setup. Measure from the middle of the “shackle bolt” to the end where the 2 loops are. **NOTE: You must add 1″ to your measurement. For example, the wrist for the bracelet below was around 8″, so we are measuring this around 9″ to end up with the right fit.
Step 4: Temporary Step: Taping Ends
1. Tape both ends of both inner cords.
2. You are now ready to start your braids.
Step 5: Stabilizing The Top Of Your Bracelet To Begin Braiding. Essential Step In Overall Outcome Of Bracelet
Make sure it’s nice and tight when you begin your first braid.
1. Place the left cord over both inner cords.
2. Wrap the same cord around the back of both inner cords back to the left side.
Make sure it looks like it does in part 2 of the diagram. You are now ready for your first Gator braid.
Step 6: Completing Your First Gator Braid
Please take your time as there is a lot going on in this part of the tutorial. Remember, the numbers below correspond to the numbers in the diagram. Please make sure to follow the arrows in the diagram as they will show where the cord goes and whether it goes over or under another cord.
1. Place the left cord over “inner cord 1” and under “inner cord 2”, ending up on the right side with the cord.
2. Place the right cord under the left cord you just brought over from the left.
3. Take the same cord and go over “inner cord 2” and under “inner cord 1”.
4. Continue with the same cord up under and through the loop that was formed. Remember to look at the part that corresponds to the number in the instructions.
5. This is a slightly tightened braid so you can see what it should look like when tightening it yourself.
6. Using your fingers, push up on the braid to make sure its tight up against the shackle.
Step 7: Completing Your Second Braid
Remember, the numbers correspond to the numbers in the diagram. Also remember to follow the arrows, as they will help you determine which cord goes where, and if they are going over or under other cords.
1. Thread your right cord under the “inner cord 2” and over the “inner cord 1”.
2. Thread your left cord over the cord you just brought over to the left.
3. Continue that same cord under “inner cord 1” an over “inner cord 2”.
4. Continue that same cord up, over and through the loop that was formed. Remember to follow the numbers in the diagram.
5. When tightening your braid, it should look like this.
6. A finished, tight Gator braid.
Step 8: This May Happen
When your braiding your Gator braids, this may happen to you. The numbers in the diagram correspond to the numbers below.
1. Your braids may start sliding down the two inside cords of each “inner cords”.
2. Grab onto the to inside cords of each “inner cord” and push up on the braids to correct it.
Step 9: Weaving Down To The End
Follow the numbers in the diagram. They correspond to the numbers in the instructions. Once you have a descent amount of braids, you can undue the tape.
1. This is a close up of what your braids should look like.
2. Close up of Gator braids.
3. Braid until your left with about a 1/2 inch left.
Step 10: Cutting And Melting The Ends
1. Using your scissors, cut the leftover cord with about 1/8 inch remaining. Do this for both sides.
2. Melt each side with the lighter, and using your finger rub the top of it in a circular motion to form the the melted cord, and form a mushroom shape on the end. The mushroom shape will make it so the “head” of the mushroom will hold in place and not be able to be pulled through.
3. It should look like this when finished. The side of the bracelet where you melted the ends should be the inside of the bracelet against your wrist. This will hide it from view.
Step 11: Putting It On
1. Slide the 2 end loops over the side of the shackle which has the threads.
2. Put the bolt on and tighten.
3. Pull loops back over onto the bolt.
Check out our entire selection of paracord kits here to get you started.