550 Parachute cord is a very small kermantle rope (has a core and an external sheath) as you can see in this image. The minimum breaking strength of the cord is 550 pounds, hence the name.

It is sometimes mentioned that in a survival situation, these strands could be used to create snares or as fishing line.

Out of curiosity, how strong is one of the pictured strands by itself?


1 Answer 1


It looks like for mil spec (military specification) 550 parachute cord,

  • The paracord sheath is rated at about 300-pounds
  • 14 inner strings, each of which has a rating of about 17.5 pounds
  • 7 strands made up of two strings each for a rating of 35 pounds.


Basically, if the cord in the question was milspec than each strand would be rated to 35 pounds. However, it can be difficult to say if your cord is actually milspec.

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