These were my first two "whips"...the one on the left was made before reading "How to Make Whips" by the Late, Great Ron Edwards. Below is pictured a more recent effort- hopefully you'll agree that I've improved some since then...
In addition to these, there is a huge and growing list of colors available. I'm more than happy to order anything I don't have in stock, so if you had a special color in mind please let me know and I can get it.
On our drop down menu, we're limited to 10 choices. If you don't see what you want, select "other" and e-mail me with the color you'd like
I obviously enjoy experimenting, and that's also true with falls. Early on in my whipmaking, I normally used the snake-head hitch. It's a good hitch, but once I got it tied on, if I decided I might like to try a different length of fall, or a different weight-well, that was problematic. One day I came across a picture of an English Hunt whip, and when I saw the English Eye hitch I had a "lightbulb" moment. It's essentially the same as a keeper loop on a stockwhip, and you can literally change a fall in seconds without ever having to untie anything. This is not just good for experimenting with different falls- suppose you are a performer, and you perform with neon falls so the audience can easily see the action. You can keep those neon falls nice and clean for your show by practicing (in any weather!) with a black fall. My early English Eyes were formed by plaiting towards the tip, and then folding the end of the thong to form a loop, plaiting back over the end a bit, and then tying it off with half hitches like on a traditional fall hitch. It works, but sometimes the cracker can get caught in the loose ends that stick out. Eventually I realized that if I started plaiting at the loop and worked my way down towards the heel knot, I can get a stronger hitch and also a much cleaner one, so that's how I do it now.
For a long while, I had a hard time with naming the external belly. I had chosen the name Exowhips because the design reminded me of a bug's exoskeleton, and that led me to design and draw the scorpion logo that I still use. Finally, my friend Jonathan Lewis on the Whip Basics forum gave me the idea to call it the carapace, which is perfect. I see this as the most obvious feature that sets Exowhips apart visually from other whips. Customers may have their choice of up to two colors in the Cowtail pattern, which is the most popular, a V pattern, or simply a solid color. For those that choose a cowtail pattern, some whipmakers have a signature pattern that they use on every handle- My signature is the carapace itself, so I do a different pattern on every whip. So, if you run into someone who buys the same length Exowhip that you do, in the same colors, they'll still be unique to one another.
I went through many design stages and changes before settling on the current model for Exowhips. The earliest models were plaited with every layer visible from the outside with a stairstep taper. The first belly ran from the heel knot all the way to the hitch. The second belly started a quarter of the length down from the hitch and ran to the heel, and so on and so forth. I was concerned about the lack of color selection with Dacron being only available in black and white. Although I was using paracord for the knots and falls, that doesn't leave any room for contrasting pattern work. And then it occured to me that I could do some of the external bellies in parachute cord.
The first prototype of Exowhip had two dacron bellies and two parachute cord bellies. It cracked fine, but the handle was bulky and I wasn't happy with the way it came out. Another thing was that with all of the bellies being external, you can feel the loop roll in stages as it clears each section. They still crack the same, but it feels odd, and I was concerned that people wouldn't like it. I finally settled on combining my design with traditional construction, and using internal bellies for a smooth, traditional taper with the addition of one external belly that covers the bottom 25%of the whip. This makes for a stiffer, more heavily reinforced transition area and when they break in you can't feel the external layer as the loop rolls out. With further experimentation I eventually began using the flat braid polyester for the internal bellies. This produces a very smooth taper, and an equally smooth roll out.
Thanks for your interest in Exowhips! We've been in business since 2011, and I started plaiting about 10 years before that, refining my skills and developing my own personal style. Our mission is to make the best synthetic whips with the most unique twists that we are able. I want you to have a unique whip that stands out as your own. When you have an Exowhip, it won't be mistaken for any one else's whip. They also make wonderful personalized gifts!
Any quality tool, from the most basic mass produced hammer to the most exquisite hand made custom knife, requires quality materials. Here at Exowhips we have spent years experimenting with different materials in order to find a combination that produces a strong, long wearing whip that flows like water.
Flat Braid Polyester is almost paper thin, but strong. It's not as abrasion resistant as Nylon, but it's perfect for plaiting some of the internal bellies on our whips. Because it's so thin, it allows for more plaited layers without adding bulk, so that we can produce a whip with greater density as well as fluidity. Our current designs use some flat braid bellies, depending on the model, to smooth out the taper while keeping bulk down. All of our designs have at least one wave lace internal belly though for better weight distribution.
We've replaced Dacron with Nylon Wave Lace so we can add 8 color options, but the important thing is that the wave lace we use has a high strand count with a very fine weave, and it's approximately half the width and thickness of parachute cord. This means that Wave Lace is more fluid and supple than parachute cord and therefore a whip made from Wave Lace is more fluid and supple than a paracord whip would be.
Let me take this opportunity to clarify that I'm not knocking parachute cord as a material at all. All of the synthetic whipmakers that I respect and look up to use parachute cord in their work. But the first time I tried Dacron, I saw that I can make a much higher quality whip with it than without it. But parachute cord does fill a niche here at Exowhips too. We use it for all of the knots and falls, and on our Exowhip line it covers the lower quarter of the whip, adding visual interest as well as additional stiffness. Since paracord is stiffer, it made sense to me to use it around the transition area where you want the whip to be stiff to begin with. That also gives me a way to use one more layer of binding on the transition area.
For all our handles, we use Carbon Graphite, whether it's a solid rod, or a straight or tapered tube. Carbon Graphite is strong, lightweight, and has just a touch of flexibility.