190 posts

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.

squarefishSILVER Member
(...trusty steed of the rodeo midget...)
403 posts
Location: the state of flux, Ireland


the term "Monkeyfist" actually comes from the type of knot that the Kevlar rope is tied in at the end of the poi. It's also known by sailors and fishermen as a "heave knot"

Other than that I think it's a pretty damn good idea! biggrin clap

You could have a few short tufty wicks protruding from the surface of the ball, and have a huge fuel store inside eek

The only problems that I could forsee are;
1. The suface of the metal sphere getting overheated, the fuel vapourising and the fuel vapours escaping and burning outside the sphere.

2. The fuel might last so long that you wish you had a bucket of sand to save your aching shoulders! ubbloco

......actually point1. might be a bonus, it might be nice to have poi that get brighter and flamier during a burn rather than weeding out like the normal firepoi do!


190 posts

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.

darkpoetdarkpoetBRONZE Member
525 posts
Location: Dallas.........ish, USA

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

Jesus saves sinners and redeems them for cash and

Co-Founder of Keepers of Light

Educate yourself about the Hazards of Fire Breathing STAY SAFE!

190 posts

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)

10 posts
Location: St. Louis, MO

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!


190 posts

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.

CodyCodySILVER Member
That guy from Reno
556 posts
Location: Reno, Nevada USA

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 eek

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.

Cody Canon
Controlled Burn, Reno Nevada

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