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  1. #1
    Senior Member DaleW's Avatar
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    Going Ultralight with a Grand Trunk Ultralight

    I pulled out all the stops on my Grand Trunk Ultralight to make the lightest, simplest rig I could.

    I was using Wild Country Nitro carabiners in the channel, like the Nano 7, but I took those out and ran the fixed eye on a 6' whoopie sling though the channel twice and finished it with a lark's head hitch. I went through twice to help relieve stress on the light cloth of the GTUL.

    I cut toggles from a carbon fiber shaft golf club I found at a thrift store--0.5oz per pair.

    I used 1.5"x42" tree straps with the whoopie slings and the toggles run through the free eye of the tree straps. I am partial to carabiners, and I will probably continue to use Camp Nano carabiners instead of toggles, Of course they could be used in a marlin spike hitch too. Toggles are light and cheap, no doubt about it. The Camp 'biners are all of 0.8oz each-- and they won't fall out

    I rigged a Dynaglide whoopie sling for an adjustable structural ridge line. I captured the eyes of the ridge line in the lark's head hitch on the suspension whoopie slings.

    The hammock and suspension parts are 14.9oz total. I might shave a bit off using some 1" polypropylene straps. Switching out the carabiners saved 3.5oz.

    I found a 26"x50"x1/2" segmented CCF pad and rounded the corners to use in the hammock. It is 9.7oz. I would use my Z-sit foam sit pad for my feet to make up for the 50" length of the pad.

    I have a great insect head net from Little Fly that has shock cord to go under your armpits so it can't climb up. It is 1.4oz. Check it out: http://www.littleflydesign.com/2-pocket.html. I really want to get a super light bug sock of some sort.

    For now, I can use the standard tarp from my Hennessy at 11oz with guy lines. I'd love to add a Cuben tarp to my kit. For someone on a budget, a blue poly tarp will work. I use MSR Groundhog stakes.

    My $0.02!

  2. #2
    Senior Member Joey's Avatar
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    I and a few others use pretty much the same set up. I go between my GT Ultralight and my WB Traveler, depending on if I'm using a pad for insulation or not. The GT U being the lightest set up, but both being extremely comfortable.

    I'm amazed more folks aren't using the GT U as it's a fairly large hammock, very light, and inexpensive at around $20.

    I'm taking mine GT U set up on a 3 day, 2 night trip the end of this month and plan on making a video showing my UL set up. I have the cuben tarp and pack and will be heading to Blackburn Trail center on the AT. There's a scale there where I will weigh and then set up everything while making a short video to share. Mostly for my son, but for folks here that may be interested. My load has been so light, I've not even used the hip belt on my back!

    Congrats on working out this UL set up. Light weight without sacrifice, awesome!

  3. #3
    MAD777's Avatar
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    To go lighter, make your own soft shackles & substitute for the biners. Also change out the amsteel whoopie suspension for dynaglide. If you're worried about cutting the hammock fabric, just cut a small piece of paracord, gut it and use it as a sleeve where the dynaglide goes through the channel.

    DON'T go to polypro straps!! DIYGear.com has lightweight 1" wide polyester straps rated at 1500 lbs.

    What amazes me is that you can get away with 42" long straps in Washington! I thought all the trees there were 3' plus in diameter.

    Keep up the good work, Dale!
    Mike
    "Life is a Project!"

  4. #4
    dragon360's Avatar
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    Very nice work Dale. I love my UL. Its still one of my go-to hammocks.
    The key to immortality is first living a life worth remembering. - St. Augustine

    Some people feel the rain. Others just get wet.
    - Bob Marley

  5. #5
    Member SticksBlog's Avatar
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    Jul 2011
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    Corinth, MS
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    I have recently been introduced into the hammocking world a few weeks ago when I picked up a GT UL with a suspension from someone over on Whiteblaze for a good price. Once I got it in my hand, I immediately knew I wanted to lighten it up, and I figured the suspension was the only place I could really do so...

    I picked up a new suspension set (2 - 6 ft poly tree straps, 2 toggles and 2 - 6 ft Amsteel Whoopies) and an adjustable ridgeline from Whoopie Slings, made a DIY black bishop bag and added a small ridgeline pouch. Before suspension change out I was at 19.5 oz. After these changes I am now at 14.3 oz!

    I also cut off the stuff sack/pocket that came on the hammock. Now that I have the DIY bishop bag, I find the attached pocket to be unneeded. Also, if I put anything slightly heavy (such as a phone) in it it feels to me like it changes the way the hammock feels when I lay in it. So I hacked that baby off! I really like the way I can stuff and unstuff it using the bishop bag though. It seems to make more sense than having the sack in the middle of the hammock...

    I have also made my own Bug Sock thanks to Randy Smith. If you are handy with a sewing machine I certainly recommend trying to make your own. I bought the material (Tulle) for less than $10 at WalMart, plus it is fun making my own stuff. Inside a stuff sack it now weighs 2.6 oz.
    Jus' Sayin'

  6. #6
    Senior Member finskie's Avatar
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    harrisburg, pa
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    Good to know peoples weights on this rig. I just got my GT UL and am using chain links with 12ft webbing straps and triglides. It comes in as 16oz even, so i dont feel as though i am blowing it by not using whoopies. I recently made a whoopie sling, and it is pretty cool, but for now i will keep my rig and take the 1.5oz penalty. If i was going to go whole hog, i'd definately go the dynaglide route.
    What saves a man is to take a step. Then another step. - C.S. Lewis

  7. #7
    Member SticksBlog's Avatar
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    I would have used dynaglide, but I am right at 200 pounds so I went the safe route and went with the Amsteel. I think the only real way for me to drop more weight off of this set up would be to go with a lighter hammock, such as the Nano 7. But I am pretty durn happy with my GT UL so far and have no reason to "need" to replace it...
    Jus' Sayin'

  8. #8
    Senior Member DaleW's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SticksBlog View Post
    I would have used dynaglide, but I am right at 200 pounds so I went the safe route and went with the Amsteel. I think the only real way for me to drop more weight off of this set up would be to go with a lighter hammock, such as the Nano 7. But I am pretty durn happy with my GT UL so far and have no reason to "need" to replace it...
    From what I have read, the Nano 7 is 6" smaller in both dimensions, which I wouldn't want. The bare fabric on the GTUL is only 9oz, so I don't think you will get much lighter and hold my 220 pounds in the air safely It is a very breathable polyester fabric and great for lounging on hot days. I really like the smooth single panel design. You can buy one for $18 at Campmor.com as of this posting. The fabric is worth that much, IMHO. The suspension supplied with it is junk, but I knew that.

    I wouldn't use Dynaglide for suspension, but I think it is great for ridge and guy lines. I use 1/8" Amsteel for my whoopie slings. It is so much easier to work with and has the extra cushion of strength. The weight difference is small when working with such short lengths,

    IMHO, the GTUL is one of those pieces of beginner equipment that will be kept, even when other hammocks are purchased. Add some whoopie slings, a couple toggles or carabiners and tree straps and you have a working platform. Any bug screens, insulation or tarps added can be used with any other gathered end hammocks, so the upgrades are never wasted. a blue poly tarp and a wide CCF pad will make a full system on the cheap:

    GTUL: $18
    1''x6" tree straps: $6
    6' whoopie slings: $15
    Blue poly tarp: ~$15
    4 stakes: ~$8
    1/16"x60' guy line: $12
    Wally World 26"x70" CCF pad: $6?
    DIY toggles: $0
    Total: $80

    Well under $100, but it needs some bug protection. Do you know that the cheaper (read lighter) poly tarps weigh about the same as a shaped PU coated nylon tarp? I was surprised!
    Last edited by DaleW; 08-09-2011 at 11:26.

  9. #9
    Member crazy_dave's Avatar
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    Just wondering how the GTUL compares to the ENO DN? I love my DN to hangout with the G/F but I’m always looking to try new things and for the price…………………….
    If you obey all the rules, you miss all the fun.
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  10. #10
    Senior Member DaleW's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by crazy_dave View Post
    Just wondering how the GTUL compares to the ENO DN? I love my DN to hangout with the G/F but I’m always looking to try new things and for the price…………………….
    The ENO DoubleNest? Totally different hammocks. The GTUL is a single panel of very light and very breathable polyester and 4' 6" x 9'6" with a 250lb rating and advertised weight of 12oz, vs the ENO DN which is 6' 8" x 9' 10", three panels of nylon, 400lb rating and 22oz advertised weight. The GTUL comes with a short rope and S-hook through the gathered channel and the ENO DN uses a similar gathered channel and short rope with two "nautical grade" carabiners.

    For one averaged-sized person, I prefer the fabric on the GTUL for comfort. IMHO, both have suspensions that say "start over." I would expect the ENO DL to be more durable and of course it has much more room-- at the expense of the higher weight.

    This was my starter hammock and I'm keepin' it for summer hiking and day hikes and ultralight overnighters. It is perfect for lounging on a hot day. I understood right away how great a hammock is when compared to the flaky lightweight chair and sleeping pad chair concoctions.

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