Just e-mailed them about the ridgeline. Will let you know what they say.no matter what, you will never be able to lay flat in an end gathered hammock. even my Mayan hammock, which is at least 8 feet wide, and allows me to lay completely crosswise, has a slight concave position no matter if i'm laying on the diagonal or completely perpendicular. it's just a chacteristic of that style of hammock.
that being said, as long as you don't lay in-line with the suspension axis, but lay to some degree of diagonal, your position should "flatten" enough so that you are properly supported. in my bed, i sleep on my side and stomach, but in the hammock my back is properly supported, and i can lay like that all night.
just figure out some different variations of sleeping on your back (different positions of arms and legs. and if you wanna sleep on your side, you are probably stuck with the fetal position. a bridge hammock is probably about the only thing you could really lay on your side in. others may dissagree.
it sounded like you just tested it in the yard. have you slept all night in it yet? if not, i'll bet you'll find your back feels great in the morning, and that you wake up less than when in bed, even though you may feel a little restricted before you fall asleep. the true test comes after you've been in the thing for 7 or8 hours. sometimes i find i don't want to get out.
someone suggested a factory flawed ridgeline, which it may be the case seeing as how that part of the process is probably done by hand, i'll bet that's the least consistent feature on the whole hammock. the website lists the correct ridgeline length. just ask them exactly where the measurements start and stop (might be several inches inside that binding cover) either way, shouldn't be too hard to figure out if yours is the correct length.
also, as has been discussed elsewhere, if the ridgeline is nylon, it may stretch if you pull real tight. this could cause the hammock to have not enough sag, and setting it up without pulling hard may give you more sag and a better lay.
hey franticfinger, you should call or email hh and ask em what material the ridge is made of. this topic seems to keep coming up. i know the old symmetric exped. had a nylon ridge.