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  1. #1
    New Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Grand Island, NY

    Bar Tack or Box Stitch

    I was wondering if anyone knew if there was any science or something on which is better? I have made a few hammocks, tarps and other gear and have used both the box stitch and bar tacks. Just whatever seemed to fit the application. I have never had any failures, but I know there is a lot of over kill.
    Is one preferred over the other? What size and length? How many in a row?
    Inquiring minds want to know.


  2. #2
    Senior Member angrysparrow's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    near Memphis, TN
    WB Traveler
    ZPacks CF
    Te-Wa / HG / WB
    Whoopie Hooks
    In this post, Strapman (of StrapWorks) mentions that greater sheer strength is attained by using a larger stitch pattern. That would lead me to believe that the box stitch would have a greater sheer strength that the bar tack. I don't have empirical evidence to support that, though.
    I think that when the lies are all told and forgot the truth will be there yet. It dont move about from place to place and it dont change from time to time. You cant corrupt it any more than you can salt salt. - Cormac McCarthy

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    New Orleans, LA
    I have a failure store.

    I bartaked my tarp tieouts. After about 100 hangs with it I noticed the stitches popping out. Only the only on the ridgeline of my hextarp came out. I added 2 overlaping boxes with x's in them and hadn't noticed any problems with 40 or so hangs with it.

    I didn't see any problems with my guy lines. I will be setting it up this weekend. I'll double check.

    Looking about it comes down to having the forces pulling in different directions. The guy lines pulled in-line with the stitches. The ridgeline pulled inline and about 40 degrees out of line, so to speak.

    Moral of the story is that I am uses 2 boxes with X's now.
    Is that too much to ask? Girls with frikkin' lasers on their heads?
    The hanger formly known as "hammock engineer".

  4. #4
    Senior Member pure_mahem's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Trecklight Double
    JRB 11' x 10' Cat
    U.S. Poncho Liners
    Strapworks also sent a hand out on the stitch when I ordered my polyester sling straps. The box stitch is the shizzle, stick with it! The bar tack can inadvertantly cut threads and enhance the shearing factor if done inproperly. My sling strap came with two x box stitches on each end loop and is very strong. The handout shows how with heavy tow straps the number of x's inside the box is increased to increase strength. The two boxes with the single x in each appears over adequate fo this application. I would also reference the the thread wher angrysparrow pointed to. If you still have questions I would suggest sending a PM to Strapman.
    If your ordering, the slingstrap is an excellant deal just order twice the length of what you would need for a single strap and cut it in half then melt the end with a bic to keep it from fraying. I got the 3" loop on each end and ordered a 10' sling and cut it into two 5' straps to use as tree huggers. It works perfectly. Strapworks also does custom applications has super fast shipping and excellent customer service. It gets five stars from me!

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