Yet Another Tensegrity Stand (YATS)
While I was awaiting some amsteel for my other tensegrity stand, I thought I would try to build a new design that Blackshadow mentioned. An emergency trip to Utah provided me the opportunity to try something out.
My two requirements for a stand are 1) inexpensive, and 2) easy to construct. This new stand meets the first requirement and I would say it is moderately easy to construct.
I used the instructions from bweebweebwee.com and found the design to be rock-solid, even with cheap rope. Here's what I did to construct this stand this past weekend.
Yet Another Tensegrity Stand (YATS, pronounced "Yahtzee!")
3 - 2" x 3" x 8 ft boards @ $1.50 ea -- $4.50
6 - 3 ft rebar for stakes @ $1.35 ea -- $8.10
~250 ft of rope (I purchased 300 ft of 3/8" poly rope; 100 ft @ $8 ea; 3 different colors)
I purchased everything at Home Depot for about $36, just under the "too expensive" radar.
After arriving at my relatives, I borrowed their tools and drilled two 1" holes on the top of each board and one 1" hole at the bottom. After building the stand, I realized I needed better attach points for the hammock so I drilled a third hole (1/2") on the top where I placed a dowel.
The top triangle is constructed of 14 ft lengths or rope. For the top triangle, I left it as one continuous line, with some extra length to tie the truckers hitch -- about 50 feet total.
The side and bottom ropes are both 10 ft 7 inches long. I cut each of these at 13 feet, to allow a few inches to tie knots.
I took each rebar and bent one end into a crook shape.
1) Set up the stakes in a hexagon shape. The radius should be 14 ft. The easiest way to do this is to have two 14 ft strings. From the center point, measure out for your first stake point with the first string. From there, use the second string from the first stake and the string from the center point to determine the next stake point. Use this pattern to determine the six stake points.
2) Tie off the side and bottom ropes. I just used two half-hitches on both ends. I think it is important to the structural integrity that the side ropes are single ropes, but the bottom rope could be a continuous rope about 24 ft long that threads through the pole.
3) Thread the top rope through the top holes. Pull the rope to take up the slack and the stand will rise. I tied a figure-8 on a bite on one end and used this as the anchor point to tie a truckers hitch to get the structure taut.
I made some minor tweaking in the knots to make sure the posts were at a 60° angle.