What is paracord?
Paracord, also known as parachute cord or 550 cord got it’s name from originally being used in the suspension lines of US parachutes during WWII. Paracord is made out of a braided nylon cover or sheath with 7 inner strand made out of nylon as well. The mainstream diameter of paracord you find today is typically 4mm and gets the nickname 550 cord due to the fact that it is rated to have a minimum breaking strength of 550 lbs.
Please note that not all paracord is created equally as not all have the 7 inner strands or the standard 550 lbs of tensile strength. Real Mil-spec paracord is made of 7-9 inner strands and each strand is 3 ply. Commercial paracord may not have all 7 inner strands or be 3 ply.
Benefits of Paracord
- Strength-Only 4mm in diameter with a tensile strength of 550lbs
- Durability-It can be used multiple times without any significant wear and tear on the cordage while remaining flexible.
- Versatility-Each piece of the paracord can be used independently.
- Lightweight-Paracord is extremly lightweight making it easy to carry or take with you without any added bulk
- Water and mildew resistant-paracord is naturally anti-bacterial
Uses of Paracord
Here are some examples of what Parachute cord can be used for:
- Used in your survival kit
- Building shelters, or supporting existing shelters such as a tent
- clothes line
- tow line
- Used in place of boot or shoe laces
- The inner strands can be used as fishing line
- The inner strands can be used as dental floss
- The inner strands can be used for snares or trapping
- Can be used to make a survival bracelet
- Can be used to make a splint
Do you need paracord?
For any emergency or survival backpack, paracord is a must because of it’s versatility and usefulness in so many situations.