I’ve got a bullwhip in the works right now that has a 12 plait thong and a 24 plait handle. This bullwhip is being made in whiskey colored kangaroo hide.
The first plaiting challenge I ran into while working on the handle was that the pattern wasn’t giving me a lot of trouble. Then I counted my strands and learned that I was trying to do a 24 plait pattern with 22 strands!! So I added the two extra handle strands and it’s coming along much better.
When planning a design for the handle I did a lot of looking around on the internet at pictures of other bullwhip maker’s higher plait count bullwhips to get a feel for what I would like. One thing I noticed with my first two high plait count whips (20 plait bullwhip and 24 plait stockwhip handle) was that I was trying to cram in as many designs as I could. But after reflecting on those to projects and the pictures of the whips that I really liked I decided simplier is better.
For example here’s a picture of one of Joe Strain’s 16 plait bullwhip handles:
It’s simple and elegant.
I guess that throwing every design into a whip is part of the learning process for me. I’ll post some pictures of the 24 plait handle when I have it finished (probably later today)