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Picture of Bind a net bag or a fishing net

Binding fishing nets is an ancient craft that have been done for thousands of years. I will teach you the way that my grandfather taught me when I was a kid. He had been doing this as a kid for extra income to the family and for their own use.

Basically the technique is the same for big rectangular fishing nets and for small net bags or landing nets, the difference is just size and how you finish the net.

Step 1: Tools

Picture of Tools

You basically just need two tools: The shuttle (or binding needle) and the gauge.
The shuttle holds a length of yarn and is pointed so you can thread it between tensed pieces of yarn. The gauge decides the size of the holes in the net. Each square hole in the net will have four sides that each are the width of the gauge.

Start by winding up some yarn on the shuttle. For the first round of loops you should not have too much yarn on the shuttle if you are making a net with small holes, because that first round will as you shall see have half size loops, and then an over filled shuttle wont pass through.

jimclass7 months ago
Thanks for posting this. It's a useful skill and it's great to find some authentic family lore on the subject.
jgreeff2 years ago

Would you be able to make a video of this? I am struggling to follow the photos. Thank you!

ScrappyGirl made it!2 years ago

I love this! I have 11 shuttles and 4 different sized gauges, plus a lot of fishing net line all with written notes on different nets. Including smelt, herring, Kippie and a dip net, but notes don't give the actual instructions, they just say how many 'meshes' across. I am including photo's. Look on the envelope where the notes are kept and it says 'How to Sim fish nets'. Do you know what Sim means? These came from Prince Edward County on Lake Ontario here in Canada.

Jörgen Lindell (author)  ScrappyGirl 2 years ago

Interesting to see how similar the tools are in different parts of the world!
I never seen the word "sim" before, but then I'm not a native English speaker so that's no surprise..
Thanks for sharing the picture.

Thanks for your response! Because of you I will finally be able to use these tools!

fixmystuff2 years ago

Love your instr. You just give me a reason to fix my fishing net. Thanks!

EvelynH202 years ago

thank you for a great tutorial.

compmend2 years ago

My stepdad (RIP) was from Mexico near Acapulco and he used to make me cast nets to throw as a young man. Unfortunately, I never learned how he made them and this Instructable brought back memories because I remember him carving the tool you call the "shuttle" in preparation of making a net.

MarlonS132 years ago

Great Instructable. Thanks.

Very cool!

OldGuy522 years ago
Wonderfully done! Thank you.
Jörgen Lindell (author) 2 years ago

A comment on the very last point: I learned another, probably better, way to make slippery yarn hold the knots from another instructable ( )

Instead of just doing the second half of the knot two times, it is probably better to do it twice, but the first time theading up, not inside the loop from the previous row as normal, but to the left of it, and then the second time as normal inside the loop. That will probably create a knot with more friction..

jimcathers2 years ago
I feel like my own father just passed down some what-would-otherwise-be-lost wisdom. Neat skill. Great instructable.
Swansong2 years ago

That's awesome that he taught you how to do this! It's a really useful thing to know :)