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Posted: Why not use a metal tea ball (those balls made out of screen or usually metal with various holes cut in it) for the core and stuff it full of cotton, drill two holes in it to put the braided cable through and you should have monkey fists with a bit longer burn time.
Posted: As far as I know western sailors use turks heads knots, which are very similar to monkey fists.
They usually paint them white or orange or cover them in pitch to make them hard and heavy, although most people use sand bags now because turks heads can cause a lot of damage if you catch the end of a line with a turks head in the side of the head.
Posted: its a great idea very similar to bearclaw's design for hybrid wicks but its a good start if you tie a monkeyfist knot using that ball as a core you could potentially have a winner, only problem i can see is connecting the ball to the cord or chain your using safely and effectively without damaging the wick or the chain
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Posted: Well if you drill four holes, two in the bottom two in the top, reenforced them wish washer and ran the cable through it so the loop ends at the bottom of the ball, it would have to rip through the bottom, all the cotton then the top before it let go. EDITED_BY: robotface (1084218719)
Posted: You could probably use a metal ball in there with a spongey thing inside it, but you'd get heat damage from the metal against the inner wick pretty fast, i bet. If you want more absorbent monkeyfists, an easy thing to do is to try making them solid rope, instead of using a core of any type.
Start by tying a small overhand knot in the end of the rope, then tie a two bight monkeyfist using that overhand knot as the core. Then thread some cable through / around that two bight monkeyfist, cinching it down with a swage on one end, and using a swage to create a loop on the other end.
Then use that monkeyfist as a core for a 4 bight monkeyfist. Now you have a monkeyfist that is almost 100% absorbent material, and made from a single contiguous piece of rope. The only part of the wick that isn't absorbent is the short length of cable and two swages. Pretty damn efficient!
I learned that method from matthew at flamma aeterna, btw, and it works great!
Posted: eh. I really doubt much heat builds up inside the wick. Touch your wick after a burn, it's not that hot. The fuel actually burns off of the wicks surface, no combustion takes place inside the wick, any heat in the ball would be conducting down through the cable.
But with your idea you could use cotton rope for the core, and actually have a much superior effect then mine.
Posted: Back to the tea ball idea- How about taking two stainless steel salad bowls place them rim to rim making a ball. Hold them together with a large eye bolt and put the wick on the outside. What you get is huge surface area and hollow in the middle.
If you want to see a picture look in my gallery, there called Canon Balls
Were talkin big fire. The Canon Balls are anout the size of volleyballs. Chris's "testie" is built the same way with larger salad bowls. A little bigger than a basketball.