Well, I think I’ve come up with the rope that I’ve been looking to create. Lynn Doughty also gave me a terrific suggestion with the use of gun bluing that he’s used very successfully in his carving sculptures ( Outwestwoodcarving ) and I do want to give that a try at some point.
I took a bit of a different path and decided to take a stab at using plastic insulation coated wire. This wire is probably 20 gauge or lighter wire but has a plastic insulation coating surrounding it. You’ve seen this kind of wire sheathed in a bundle of six or more individual wires and used for telephone hook-ups, 12 volt door bell installations, etc.
I took three of the multicoloured wires, ran some sandpiper over the insulation to roughen it up and wound them together using the portable drill process that I described earlier and that I’ve seen Lynn use. I then looped and bent the wires into the shape that I was looking for and epoxied them together in several points in the loop.
The roughened up wires looked just terrific as they looked like the actual fibres that you’d see in a rope. After a bit of priming and painting of the rope, I did find that the roughened plastic coating took the paint well and I’m pretty happy with the finished product.