Cordage from Plastic Bottles

“Recycle, reduce, reuse.” That’s a motto drilled into me as a kid and a mantra that we all should start living by. I know we’ve all seen some sort of plastic soda bottle or similar while out hiking and maybe it’s time to look at that garbage a little differently. Plastic bottles have some obvious uses and some that aren’t so obvious like making cordage. Some people have gone as far as making floating island habitats out of these things.

recycled plastic rug
A great example of recycling – this outdoor rug is made from plastic and weaved using a similar method to create the fibers

This is one of the cooler videos that I’ve stumbled across. I’ve fashioned cordage from plant fibers before but never thought to fashion cordage from a plastic bottle. Being from California, there’s plenty of garbage out in our wilderness areas. If you ever watch knife-only videos, those guys tend to find a ton of man-made items laying around in the bush as long as they keep their eyes open for them. Plastic bottles have many obvious uses. We can use them to boil or pasteurize water, make a water filter, make a water still, fashion a fish trap, hold bait, and plenty more.

This is the first time I’ve seen a plastic bottle made in to cordage. I’m familiar with the concept but never looked that deeply into it. My immigrant grandmother used to bring home a ton of products fashioned from recycled plastics including rugs, chairs, brooms, and even sandals. Using a plastic bottle to make fibers of varying widths has some far-reaching possibilities.

Maybe I’m late to the party, but the video of this guy making cordage using a homemade jig and a pocket knife BLOWS MY MIND. Just seeing him do it brings a bunch of ideas that this could open up, were you to find a bunch of plastic in the wilderness.

As mentioned in the video, he got the idea from a Russian company recycling plastic bottles to make plastic fibers for brooms. Check out the video below and see what I mean.

 

 

 

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