Please select your home edition
Edition
Protector 728x90

Animated Knots by Grog - Part 1

by Jeraldine Kennedy on 11 Jul 2011
Basic Knots - Animated knots by Grog .
By far the most popular way of learning how to tie knots, be it for boating, fishing or climbing, is via the internet where the animation allows you to see and follow every twist and turn.

The website and now iPhone app that leads the way is Animated Knots by Grog. You can click through to those animated knots on our website where you will also find links to the iPhone apps.

What has Grog got to do with it?
British Naval sailors in the 1700s gave the nickname ‘Grog’ to Admiral Vernon because his coat was made of a coarse silk called Grogram. When the Navy Admiral introduced the practice of diluting the sailors' daily rum ration, his nickname was applied to the drink - and his nickname survives for drinks to this day.

For the British Grogono family, ‘Grog’ has been a frequently used nickname. Today, three brothers (Alan, James, and Andrew Grogono) all call each other ‘Grog’.


A doctor by trade, Alan ‘Grog’ followed his father and grandfather into medical practice and became an anaesthesiologist. He also shared the family passion for sailing. Grog's surgeon brother James started what became a successful high speed sailing project. James, Grog and brother Andrew, with their father and two friends, created 'Icarus' a hydrofoil modified Tornado catamaran and progressively increased the World Sailing Speed Record in ‘B’ Class between 1977 and 1985.

Grog explains. ‘James was our leader and designer and driving force. However, he seemed to have a tough time getting away when the wind was right so I held the B Class record a number of times. I think my brother Andrew finally put it up to 28.6 knots which at the time seemed really, really fast.

‘It started as a standard Tornado and we still have it. It has had several new hulls, new masts, everything, but we call it the same boat. In fact, until you add on the foils, it is still a standard Tornado, so we didn’t wreck the boat.‘

Grog, along with his dentist wife Anthea and their four young children, migrated to the USA in 1974 from the UK.

A technology freak, Grog owned the first colour computer in the USA.

In 1995, when Grog was running the anaesthesiology department in Tulane Medical School, in New Orleans, Louisiana, he announced to his astonished department, that they must have a website. As no one else had any idea what he meant, he created his first departmental website, followed soon after by the family website.

Alan recounts the story. ‘I built a family website, mostly family photographs and I had a few other things that amused me that I knew something about. One of them was magic squares. It is still on our family website to this day. The other was knots from my sailing days.

‘I had this idea about teaching people how to tie knots, using sequences of still digital images turned into an animation. I launched the Animated Knots by Grog website in 2001. It quickly became too busy for our website host. We were taking up too much bandwidth, so we had to move it.

‘My reference was Ashley’s Book of Knots from 1944. There are nearly four thousand knots, with duplications - a monumental work.

‘When I started the knots website it was really only boating knots, for a good reason, as it was the only thing I knew anything about. I didn’t know anything about climbing or fishing. As soon as the website began to get busy I got endless emails, please do fishing, and please do climbing.

‘I was by then retired. Naturally all retired people are far too busy so I didn’t find any time until my knee wore out and my hip wore out and I had to have a replacement surgery for both of them. I had them done about six weeks apart. That forced me twice to sit still for a month.

‘My wife converted the kitchen table into a photo studio. She moved my computer down there and a rolling desk chair.

'I have yet to tie a single knot in fishing line. I am not a fisherman, I am not a climber: I haven’t even got fishing line in the house. But I managed to learn enough about fishing knots and about climbing knots to take all the photographs for those two sections.

‘Actually Ashley is not that good on climbing and fishing knots. I went online and I also phoned people up in university departments, climbing clubs and said ‘I need your help.’

‘When I went live with it, I got hammered. I got some of the toughest emails I think I have ever had; you are an idiot…. You don’t know what you are doing... You have never fished in your life.

‘I wrote back and said that is true. Would you be kind enough to help me? They did!

‘These critics spent ages editing, looking, and advising me. This helped me convert both these sections from being highly criticized. Now the fishing knots are my leading section.

‘These days comparing it to Ashley’s day there is obviously different technology in rope material and coverings on rope that affects what knots will work and not work.

In part 2 of this feature Grog expands on this knotty problem and takes us to the iPhone app. But you can jump ahead and order it by clicking Animated Knots website

Mackay BoatsProtector - 660 x 82Barz Optics - Melanin Lenses

Related Articles

She’s still here with us, and now we can be there for her
Of the many endearing qualities in Lisa Blair, the one that is paramount is her effervescence. Of the many endearing qualities in Lisa Blair, the one that is paramount is her effervescence. Yet it is what lies behind that which could be her most incredible characteristic. Sometimes you can almost overlook her steely determination, but not for long when you start talking with her. Catching up with her live from Cape Town surely was a vivid reminder of not only what this sailor can accomplish
Posted on 24 Apr
Gladwell's Line - Timeout in Bermuda and a decision OTUSA will regret?
With Emirates Team New Zealand's AC50 now in Bermuda and being re-assembled, it is time to take a breath With Emirates Team New Zealand's AC50 now in Bermuda and being re-assembled, it is time to take a breath from what has been a hectic couple of months, both in Auckland and Bermuda. The third major Practice Session has concluded in Bermuda. This was conducted almost entirely if winds of around 16-25kts - starting to get close to the top end of the range for the AC50's.
Posted on 20 Apr
America's Cup - Glenn Ashby on hitting the AC50's sound barrier
These boats are incredible. The performance that can be achieved in light airs is the amazing thing. The big difference between the AC72, the America's Cup Class, used in the 2013 America's Cup in San Francisco and the smaller AC50 to be sailed in Bermuda, lies in their light and medium air performance. 'These boats are incredible. The performance that can be achieved in light airs is the amazing thing. In 7-8-9-10 knots of breeze, you are sailing at 30kts at times.
Posted on 18 Apr
America's Cup - Bernasconi on expected winning factors in Bermuda
ETNZ's Technical Director, Dan Bernasconi has let out a few clues as to where he thought the differences might lie Emirates Team NZ's Technical Director, Dan Bernasconi has let out a few clues as to where he thought the differences might lie once the six teams entered in the 35th America's Cup. 'We have had a great run', he says. 'We've had a few hiccups along the way, as always. But the boat is going really well. We are getting through manoeuvres very well. And we think our straight line speed is good.'
Posted on 18 Apr
A Q&A with Nicole Breault about women’s match racing in the USA
I caught up with Nicole Breault to learn more about women’s match racing in the USA and about her upcoming Clinegatta. I caught up with Nicole Breault to learn more about the state of women’s match racing in the USA, and to also hear more about her upcoming Clinegatta, which is set to unfurl on the waters of San Francisco Bay this July, and which could be a great resource for other talented female match racers who are looking to sharpen their skills.
Posted on 17 Apr
America's Cup - Team NZ return fire at Coutts' social media bullets
Emirates Team New Zealand have corrected the allegations made by America's Cup organisers Emirates Team NZ have corrected the allegations made by America's Cup organisers in a media release on Thursday (NZT) over the team's daggerboard use. In the release, replayed by America's Cup Events Authority and Oracle Team USA CEO Sir Russell Coutts on his Facebook page. It was claimed that the Kiwi team had an issue with daggerboards and were using a rule they had not supported to keep sailing
Posted on 2 Apr
A Q&A with Charles Pessler, the regatta director of the legendary STIR
I corresponded with Charles Pessler, STIR’s regatta director, to learn about the event’s recent changes and evolutions. I recently corresponded via email with Charles “Chuck” Pessler, who is serving as the regatta director of the legendary STIR, to learn more about the changes and evolutions that have taken place at the event since my 2010 trip to racing paradise.
Posted on 22 Mar
New Pacific 52 class makes its debut in San Francisco
The first of two new-build Pacific 52's from Auckland's Cookson Boats is now sailing in San Francisco. The first of two new-build Pacific 52's from Auckland's Cookson Boats is now sailing in San Francisco. Invisible Hand for San Francisco's Frank Slootman replaces his earlier RP63 of the same name. She will soon be joined by a second Cookson build, Bad Pack (Tom Holthus) from the same moulds. A third, RIO 52 is for RIO 100 supermaxi owner Manouch Moshayedi.
Posted on 18 Mar
A Q&A with Chris Woolsey, regatta chair of the Miami to Havana Race
I talked with Chris Woolsey, regatta chair of the Miami to Havana Race, to learn more about this exciting race to Cuba. The 2017 Miami to Havana Race is set to begin on March 15 and promises high adventure-both sailing-related and cultural-for the sailors lucky enough to be participating in this historical-and for now legal-race. I talked with Chris Woolsey, regatta chair of the Miami to Havana Race and SORC race chairman, to learn more about this exciting race to Cuba.
Posted on 13 Mar
Gladwell's Line - Of Carnage, Characters and Colour
About this time of an America's Cup season, the sap begins rising as new boats are launched About this time of an America's Cup season, the sap begins rising as new boats are launched, and Cup fans get their first sight of the various team designers' response to the latest America's Cup Class rule. In the monohull days, of course, we initially only got a partial glimpse thanks to the shrouding practices adopted by all teams to hide the nether regions of their America's Cupper
Posted on 13 Mar