Moss-covered Monk

Moss-covered Monk


Saturday, December 1, 2012

Secrets of Ninja (29)

The Ninja used a multitude of hooks, rakes, and collapsible
ladders to scale enemy walls when necessary. The grappling
hook is by far the best auxiliary tool/weapon for the individual.
It is small, easily concealable, lightweight and, in the proper
hands, noiseless. Further, the vicious hook can be used to flail
the enemy, to entangle his weapon, or simply to beat him; the
sageo (cord) can be employed as a whip, as a net, or to bind
and strangle the enemy. The primary use, however, is in extending
the reach of the user.
Hooks may be single, double, or multi-pointed. In an emergency
the sayo (scabbard) can be tied at the end of the cord
and wedged in a manner which will anchor the line. The cord
of the grapple is derived from sageo which the Ninja wore on
his scabbard. The hook is a derivative of the tsubo.
It is advisable to attach a short length of chain between the hook and the cord to prevent
fraying. This adds but little weight and actually increases the accuracy of the cast.
Fig. 41-Illustrated is the basic four-prong snatch-hook apparatus. The grapple consists Of
four steel hooks welded at right angles, ending in two rings; covered with approximately two
ounces of lead (for weight). These may be purchased at any fishing supply house at reasonable
cost, and of a size and nature to suit the user. The grapple is attached to the cord by means of a
short length of chain, which is linked to the double rings in the ends of the grapple and to a loop
in the end of the line by master links. The cord itself is nylon line, one-half inch in diameter.
All of the above apparatus is capable of supporting at least 200 pounds. All scaling apparatus
must be checked before use to insure safety. The grapple and chain are normally held in the
right hand, while the left holds the line loosely coiled.
Naturally, for the grappling hook to be effective, the implement itself
must sail over the obstacle, and carry the cord with it. Then the hook
may be set and the wall ascended. However, two things make this
difficult: the method of casting the hook; and the play-out of the line.
One can throw the grapple precisely into place, but if the line tangles
or hangs up, the toss is useless. Therefore, learn to coil the line.
Fig. 42-Hold approximately six inches of the cord between the
ball of the thumb and the first joint of the index finger of the left
hand. Take a similar grip about two feet down the cord with the right
hand, and pull the line taut.
Fig. 43-Bring the right hand to the left, twisting the rope between
the fingers of the right hand to impart a slight curl to the line. Slip
this coil between the fingers of the left hand, forming a loop about
eight inches in diameter in the left hand.
Fig. 44-Holding the loop in the left hand, slide the right hand
down the rope the same distance as before, and coil another loop into
the left hand, remembering to twist the line, until the entire twenty or
so feet have been collected lariat-style in the left hand.

~Ashida Kim