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  1. #1

    Nature loving hangers? Are you sure about that?

    I think it's safe to say that a great many hangers are also campers, hikers, fisherman, boaters...to name a few of the activities that we incorporate out hanging into. Or is it that we incorporate other activities into our hanging? I'm think it may be the latter, for one or two of you. Regardless whatever other activities we are participating in while hanging, or perhaps escaping from in our nests, it seems much of it is going on outside. Often heard are the claims of loving, nature, enjoying the scenery, being out there, getting away... or something along those lines.

    Here comes the part some of you aren't going to like. I'm here today to challenge those claims of love of nature, and submit to you that it's actually a love of many things that are killing nature that you actually have. At this point I'd like to challenge you to keep an open mind. Or just hit the back button, and find another thread to read, perhaps something you won't perceive as a threat to your "comfort zone". If you continue reading, please keep in mind these are just words on your screen, I have not come to your house and confiscated any of your so called "property". No reason for you to feel threatened.

    Materials.

    Nylon. I looked at the wiki for nylon, and the manufacture process was beyond my understanding, but it makes use of all sorts of chemicals, toxins, acids and such and the result is material that doesn't recycle well,

    "Various nylons break down in fire and form hazardous smoke, and toxic fumes or ash, typically containing hydrogen cyanide. Incinerating nylons to recover the high energy used to create them is usually expensive, so most nylons reach the garbage dumps, decaying very slowly[3]. Some recycling is done on nylon, usually creating pellets for reuse in the industry, but this is done at a much lower scale[4]."

    As it relates to hammocks, nylon was seen as a replacement to for silk after world war 2.
    Used for such things as rope, tents, ponchos... Also replacing to a large degree, natural fibers such as cotton, wool, hemp....

    Note worthy here, since strength is so oft talked about, some comparisons,

    Some typical tensile strengths of some materials:

    Material | Yield strength | Ultimate strength | Density
    | | |
    | | |
    Spider silk (See note below) | | 1,000 | 1.3
    (See note below) | | |
    | | |
    Darwin´s bark spider silk | | 27,600 |
    Silkworm silk | 500 | | 1.3
    Nylon, type 6/6 | 45 | 75 | 1.15
    Polypropylene | 12-43 | 19.7-80 | 0.91
    Human hair | | 380 |

    from, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ultimate_tensile_strength

    Polyester, sadly wasn't on this strength list, but but the manufacture is every bit as toxic as that of nylon, and then there is this bit to boot,

    Couldn't find much easily/quickly on rope strength on the net but here is is one quicky from,
    http://www.memphisnet.net/product/19...twisted_manila

    3/8 in. Manilla Rope, This rope has a tensile strength of approximately 1,215 lbs.
    that will give a 5 to one safety factor (meets OSHA standards) for a person weighing 243 lbs.
    No, you can't lift your jeep off the ground, but that's not the objective, is it.


    Health effects

    A study published in 1993 found that polyester underwear reduced sperm count and sperm motility in male dogs.[6] Similar studies have shown similar results in humans and rats. The cause is not known but is believed to be due to an electrostatic field created by the fabric.[7]

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polyest...ter_processing

    Some other materials.

    Silk, cotton, hemp, sisal, wool, hemp, ramie, jute, down (at least people like this one.) to name a few.

    Silk has very similar look and feel to the nylon typically used for a hammock body, as well as ample strength. While I don't have any experience with it myself, I have felt it at the fabric store, and suspect it would dry out when wet rapidly, one of the often touted benefits of nylon and polyester. Clearly it possesses the required strength, again I suspect this would be so in comparable weight per yard comparisons. I'm now wondering if it could be oiled or waxed for use as a tarp, perhaps with the correct weave no treatment would be necessary.

    Hemp could be used for virtually all of the components of a hammock system, body, tarp, suspension, netting, insulation... though, now considering a silk down peapod..hmmm. Possible??
    Hemp has well known for it strength, rot resistance, durability, as a fiber, superior to the socially acceptable cotton (see, immature, ignorant policy).

    Wool is another material that has a well proven record for strength, durability, insulative quality. An excellent choice for blankets/quilts, it will retain much of it's warmth even when wet, not true of the much more expensive down quilts, which become useless when wet.

    Ok, I'm kinda loosing my train of though here, never been much of a writer.

    Discuss.

  2. #2
    Bubba's Avatar
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    We destroy faster than we can create and preserve. I believe we are changing but change is slow.
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  3. #3
    Senior Member animalcontrol's Avatar
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    thanks for the info...i too agree that a hemp hammock is an idea that has merit.
    Of course, I disagree with the context you've chosen to wrap your idea in.
    I'm 100% confident that given the opportunity, many here could turn a myopic eye to a specific area of your life and question your motivation and dedication, and then ask you to overlook the intrusion.
    That's OK, all opinions are welcome here...even ones that are trying to stir the pot.
    "Every day is a new day to a better future"
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  4. #4
    Ramblinrev's Avatar
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    So sell your gear. It'll be okay with me.
    I may be slow... But I sure am gimpy.

    "Bless you child, when you set out to thread a needle don't hold the thread still and fetch the needle up to it; hold the needle still and poke the thread at it; that's the way a woman most always does, but a man always does t'other way."
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  5. #5
    Member AduroNox's Avatar
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    Silk hammock? Mmm....

    -Aduro
    Set fire to the night, for light is only made bright by darkness.

  6. #6
    Senior Member KerMegan's Avatar
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    Dear Weed; have you seen this article?

    http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2009/09/spider-silk/

    incredibly strong, but rare, expensive and very localized resource.

    all you say is true, and is why hemp/wool/silk gear was 'da bomb' in the 1700-1900 era of exploration- if I recall correctly, hemp cloth/canvas is actually stronger when wet than when dry, making it optimal for sails and ropes, before Steam took over in shipping. the main point is all these thing weigh so much more than modern/technical substances of equal strength; and most folks on their vacation are more about comfort, which is increased when the load you are hauling about decreases...
    My historical group embraces the use of canvas tents, with wooden poles and manila ropes, cooking over fire and cast iron cauldrons, but -not- for a hiking trip into the mountains. Daniel Boone could get along with a knife, an axe and a blanket, but he had a lot more survival skills than modern urban folk, and his style was most likely not "Leave No Trace" in execution.
    and there is a lot less wilderness today than there was then.
    there is plenty we could do to reduce our impact on the remaining wild lands; (starting with staying away; but that would pretty much defeat the purpose of going in the first place..) perhaps if we look to cleaner/alternative technologies, that can reduce the impact on the earth both locally and totally, we would be able to enjoy (and preserve) the wilds we still have.
    (come to think of it, most camp grounds do an excellent job of concentrating the damage into a smaller area, leaving the larger, less accessible places for those willing to make the effort.)
    Just a few thoughts..KM

  7. #7
    Senior Member Cannibal's Avatar
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    This is a valid discussion. Although, the tone and context of the OP may be a bit off, the points raised have some merit. Let's learn some facts about the materials we use and let's do it in a civil manner please.

    Mod duties done, I think it was headchange4u that made a silk hammock. Use the search function and I believe you'll find at least a couple of threads on that topic specifically. As for a hemp hammock, I'm onboard with that for sure! I'm going to start looking for a hemp hammock. I've no doubt they exist.

    I'll leave the other stuff to the chemists.

    Edit: Here's the thread from HC4U that I was thinking about: Best Silk Material For Making A Hammock
    Trust nobody!

  8. #8
    Member nicholasyax's Avatar
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    The thing is, we use nylon specifically because it doesn't break down. We could use a thin wool or cotton cloth, but it breaks down over time, and would stop supporting us after a year or two of use. It's a trade-off we need to make: a material that is durable enough for our short term use, or a material that will brake down when we are done with it.

  9. #9
    Senior Member flair4040's Avatar
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    I am all for conservation and taking care of our planet. But, I do enjoy my gear just the way it is and I do not believe it will cause our world to end. Lighten up brother and try out a Warbonnet Blackbird. It will elevate your perspective.

  10. #10
    mbiraman's Avatar
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    Weedeater ; frankly i thought that was pretty tame but thanks for posting.
    Odds; i think what you said is an understatement. In the world today society is doing next to nothing compared to the polluting , resource usage, ( trees,fish,animals, plants etc) are all being wiped out at an alarming rate and next to nothing is being done. People like to say "every bit helps" but in fact it doesn't unless its enough, otherwise it ends up being a hindrance because we feel its going alright. We turn on the tap and get water and wake up breathing and feel the worlds great and although i feel its good to feel appreciative for what we have our footprint is way too big and modern consumer middle class society it driving that car right over the cliff and like Thelma and Louise there's no sequel, at least in a way we can relate to. And "leave no trace", well its good to leave things as you find them in the woods but its kind of like preserving a closet in your house while the rest of the house is collapsing. The trouble is we are all too spoiled, materially addicted, whatever, and we don't understand enough that things are going to collapse. I guess this is a bit of a rant, ,,,,,,,,,but not directed at anyone . I was out for a perfect fall paddle today in the mnts in my plastic kayak with my plastic camera, nylon pants, neoprene skirt, nylon dry sacs, ect,,,,,,,,,,it was brilliant ,,,as doc holiday said, well at least in the movie, , " my hypocrisy knows no bounds".
    " The mind creates the abyss, the heart crosses it."

    “The measure of your life will not be in what you accumulate, but in what you give away.” ~Wayne Dyer

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