If you have shock cord that has gotten stretched out, gone limp, snapped, or is just tired and in need of some replacing, then you have come to the right place! This is actually a repair that can be done pretty easily and quickly at home. Shock cord can be found at most hardware stores, outdoors stores including REI and Moosejaw, and at Quest Outfitters.


DIY Shock Cord Replacement

You will need 1/8” thick shock cord and about 1-2 ft. longer than the length of the entire pole for each pole (if you have a 10ft pole get about 12ft, some say a ¾ 1. ratio might be better). 

  1. Remove the end tip, and the shock cord will be tied in a knot (either on a washer or on the end tip of the pole). Cut the knot and you are ready to remove the shock cord.
  2. The most important step to remember is to keep the sections of each pole in the order that you removed them, as you remove the old shock cord.
  3. You are now ready to re-string the new shock cord. Remember to re-string them in the same order. Gently push cord thorough entire length of pole, then tie off at one end (either just a knot or attached to pole tip.
  4. Then to tension the shock cord, pull out about 25% the total length of the pole in slack (for a 10ft pole pull out 2-3ft) and tie off at the pole end. You can then test the tension and adjust as necessary, the pole sections should seat themselves gently. Remember this is not an exact science, use your best judgement and common sense.
  5. Then trim off excess shock cord, and you’re done.


Here is a link to a great guide from REI that goes into repairing tent poles and has a section dedicated to restringing shock cord at the base.  Copy and paste into a new browser: https://www.rei.com/learn/expert-advice/how-to-fix-a-tent-pole.html