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We’ve all heard the term “paracord” within the prepper community. It’s one of the most sought after forms of survival cordage known in modern times, but what is it, and why should we use it?
Paracord or 550 Cord is actually a lightweight nylon rope that was originally used as suspension lines for parachutes in WW2. It was eventually discovered that this 5/32″ diameter cord could be utilized for other purposes in the field as well as in survival situations. Lanyards are often made of paracord, and tied to important items so they will not be lost. A length of 550 cord might be used to tie items to a rucksack or to the top of a vehicle. The finer inner strands may be used, for example, for sewing applications or as fishing line. It can also be used as a tourniquet to control bleeding.
Paracord is often made into bracelets and belts, used as a dog leash, or even wrapped around a knife handle Within the preparedness community, if you will, 550 paracord is widely known to be the cordage of choice in bug-out bags and emergency kits. It is durable, and has a very reliable breaking strength of 550 pounds, hence the name.