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Super 8 Knot - Is The Bunny Ears Knot Actually Redundant?

Is the bunny ears knot redundant if one eye fails? The Ashley Book of Knots (ABOK) #1085 names it the Double Figure of 8 and it's also known as the super 8, all three names are the same knot. We show you how to tie it, how hard it is to untie, how strong it is in a few variations and where it can be used.

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Can You Untie a Welded Bunny Ears Knot?

We slow-pull the knot to 4kn and 9kn to see how difficult it is to untie it. Some knots are just impossible to untie, and some are very easy to untie after being weighted. This was pretty much in the middle. Being fatter than a normal figure 8, we were able to untie it, but not without a hammer and a timelapse.

How Much Force Does it Take to Break a Super 8 Knot?

super 8 knot break test
it breaks in on the load strand under the knot

Since the rope coming out hasn't changed, the load strand, it broke the same as any normal figure 8 in with this rope, in the knot and 18kN. When clipping one eye, the Beal Spelenium 10mm static rope doesn't slip and it breaks the same as if you clipped both eyes - super redundant enough.

  • Both Ears: Broke on the load strand in the knot at 18.30kN.

  • 1 Ear: Broke on the load strand in the knot at 17.33kN. It seems super redundant enough if one anchor point blew or if a rock magically cut one of your bunny ears but left you unscathed.

  • Slip Test: Dyneema has a low coefficient (it’s slippery) which helps us demonstrate how it would fail if it could slip. If you clip one eye, it slips into a normal figure 8 but if you clip the other like we did in our final test, it slipped and completely undid itself.

super 8 knot break test
Just clipping 1 eye, it still broke on the load strand like normal

How to Tie a Super 8 or Bunny Ear knot.

Bunny ears, or the super 8, is simply a figure 8 with an additional bight used to create two loops at the end instead of one.

  1. Create a figure 8 on a very long bight of rope.

  2. On the last pass through, instead of passing through the end of the bight, create another bight from it and just poke it through the last pass through a couple inches.

  3. Then, wrap the trailing bight up and over the entire knot.

  4. Pull the double bight all the way through.

  5. Adjust the ears and dress the knot. It doesn't matter if one ear is shorter than the other.

Super 8 knot
Put the bight through the last stage and flip the end over all of it. That bight you put through is now your bunny ears.

Where can I Use a Super 8?

If you want to fix a rope to rappel or ascend on, but want it to be attached to more than one piece such as a 2 bolt anchor, this can be simpler than building an anchor and clipping to that.

Behind the Scenes

I was super nervous about releasing this as a knot break test video - even though we have done knot videos in the past. After those earlier videos, the knot nerds came out with their pitchforks and picked apart the videos, pointing out every little thing we said or did wrong. They are a very passionate and engaged group. Despite my nerves, I wanted to make more videos for an engaged group (however brutal they are), but I wasn’t sure how it would go. But it went better than I hoped, it had 100% likes in the first 5000 views!

As far as the format goes, I only used one rope instead of introducing a bunch of other diameters and types to keep that a constant so we could isolate the variables of the knot itself. Originally I wanted to break 30 things for one video to comprehensively cover a knot, but the wet rope video below didn't do that well because we introduced too many variables in it. That video is rad go check it out, link below.

I like untying tests because they’re helpful. Some knots are really easy and some really difficult to untie and it’s nice to know which before you’re 1,500 feet up a wall and wondering if there as a better knot you could have used that would have been easier to untie.

This video was an experiment in viewership as it had only 3 break tests. I wanted to keep things simple to see if that would get more views and how engaged the viewers were with the video. I'll be comparing it to the next video we do on BUTTERFLY KNOTS with 10+ break tests.

What's Next

Rope labels say the rope is weaker when it is wet. Well, we tested that bs.

How Not 2 video on if wet ropes are dangerous or not


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