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Hammock Installation Tips
2011-10-12 17:27:15
Guidelines for Hammock Safety
Hammock installation is an important first step to enjoying your new hammock. As a general rule, we feel a tree should be a minimum of 12" in diameter if being used to hang hammock. If using a post, 4"X 4" posts are the smallest size you should consider using. Be sure the posts are in good condition, without cracks or rot. Trees and posts both should be hardwood, not soft, and whatever posts you buy should be treated lumber, or a type of wood resistant to rot, from exposure to moisture. Posts should be planted in the ground a minimum of 2', deeper if the soil is sandy. Dig the hole, place the post in the center of the hole, fill with cement, and let it dry for a few days before use.
Distance. For hammocks with spreader bars, the minimum distance requirement for hanging a hammock is equal to the overall length of the hammock. If your hammock is 13' from hanging point to hanging point, then 13' is the minimum distance required for hanging your hammock. It is best to use a hanging distance that is 1' longer than the length of your hammock (excluding chains and ropes used for increasing hanging distance). If your hammock is 13'L, the optimal distance between hanging points is 14'. Hammocks should be taught and seem difficult to lie in when first hung, but will stretch to normal size once you begin laying. It may be necessary adjust chains to the desired height once your hammock begins to take shape.
Hanging distance is more flexible without spreader bars. Hammocks without spreader bars are designed to hang with a dip, so the minimum hanging distance for hammocks without spreader bars is less than the overall length of the hammock. The minimum hanging distance for hammocks without spreader bars is two thirds of the overall length of the hammock. If your hammock is 180' from hanging point to hanging point, the minimum hanging distance requirement is 120". For the maximum hanging distance, you would simply add 2' to the minimum hanging distance.
Keep in mind that these distances are only recommendations, and can be adjusted as needed. Also remember that when hanging hammocks without spreader bars, the higher you hang your hammock, the closer the trees can be together, and the lower you hang your hammock, the farther the trees can be.
To correctly hang your hammock, pull the chains firmly until the hammock is adjacent to the ground. You may need more than one person to ensure a snug fit, and if the hammock has any looseness to it, you should pull the hammock tighter until the hammock is taught.
Height. For hammocks with spreader bars, 4-5' off the ground is the average height for hanging hammocks. For hammocks without spreader bars, 6-8' off of the ground is the optimum height, but can be hung at different heights as well. Hammocks such as Brazilian Hammocks are designed to lay closer to the ground.
Hook Installation. First, choose a solid, sturdy surface to attach the hooks to. If attaching to a tree, the tree should be a minimum of 12" in diameter. If attaching to a post, use a 4x4 or larger. Also, be sure the hooks are screwed in completely so that contact is made between the hook's eye and the wood surface but be careful not over-tighten.
How to Install Posts: Posts are a great solution for temporary locations, such as for use with camping hammocks. Be certain to find a suitable location in your yard to install your hammock posts. The soil should be stable and compacted to provide proper support to ensure your hammock posts do not slide or move.
1.Step 1: Note the overall length of your hammock as indicated on the packaging.
2.Step 2: Add 24 inches to the overall hammock length to establish the distance required between the hammock post(s).
3.Step 3: Dig a hole for each hammock post. The hole will need to be a minimum of 18 inches in diameter and 26 inches deep. Purchase the necessary amount of aggregate concrete to fill the hole(s). Consult your local hardware store or lawn and garden center for assistance.
4.Step 4: Drill holes on the post before putting in the ground and pre install the hooks. The hooks should be placed about 4 feet off the ground (refer to height section above).
5.Step 5: Place post in the ground at a vertical angle. Pour concrete into the hole and allow concrete to set overnight before putting the hammock on the posts.
Caution and Safety Tips for your Hammock:
1.Do not exceed maximum weight capacity for you hammock.
2.Be certain when hanging your hammock that it is situated so that the angle of the hammock when someone is lying in it will exceed 25??.
3.Do not allow the chains supplied with your hammock to become twisted or allow the hammock to flip over (which will twist the chains). This dramatically reduces the strength of the chain.
4.Do not over tighten the hammock screws.
5.A hammock can be unstable unless you always place your weight in the center of the hammock. Do not sit on the edge.
6.Caution should be used when allowing children to use a hammock. Do not allow children to use the hammock without direct adult supervision. Do not place infants in any hammock.
7.Do not jump up and down in the hammock and do not use the hammock as a play-ground swing.

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