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  1. #21
    dejoha's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hatchet-Jack1251 View Post
    Hi Dejoa:

    I recently bought a warbonnet hammock (built in ridgeline). But after setting it up I still find it uncomfortable and get no sleep. Pain in the neck and upper back.
    Can you offer any suggestions?

    Thanks

    Hatchet-Jack1251
    Hey, hatchet jack! I'm guessing you have the basic warbonnet? I wish I could give you an easy answer, but a lot of factors go into a comfortable hammock sleep. Ironically, as simple as hammocks are, it does take a lot to make them bombproof for a warm, dry, comfortable sleep.

    A lot of people find a "sweet spot" easily or early on, so hammocks become enjoyable quickly. I wish I could say the same is true for everyone. Personally, I went through a challenging phase during the winter when I struggled to figure out the warmth bit. Getting the "knack" is part of the allure for some people. I guess what I'm trying to say is that it is okay if hammocks don't work for you. If you find in the end that your body doesn't work in a hammock, don't worry about it too much. Your warbonnet has a high resale value.

    That said, let me see if I can give you a few things that may help. Knowing your height and weight will help a little, but let's rule out a few basics.

    Getting a near perfect flat lay in a hammock is the key to a good sleep. Laying off center in a hammock (aka the diagonal) usually drops you into the sweet spot, but that depends on the length and width of the hammock and how deep the hammock is hung (the sag).

    I am preparing a new illustration that clarifies the relationship between hammock size and the appropriate sag to get a flat lay in a hammock. In a nut, the wider and longer the hammock, the deeper you can sag it to get a diagonal lay. Small, narrower hammocks (e.g. GT Nano 7) must be hung with a shallow sag in order to get a comfortable, flat lay. In fact, if the hammock is wide enough, you could hang it in a "U" shape (really deep) and sleep perpendicular to the attach points and get the flattest lay possible.

    This new discovery goes against the standard "30" rule we often cite as the "golden rule" for hammock hang. Hammocks with fixed ridge lines attempt to set the sag permanently for that hammock, but you may find that adjusting the length of the ridge line (and therefor the sag) will change the lay and may give you the right lay you are looking for.

    Some people get sore backs and shoulders from getting squeezed by the hammock. Shoulder squeeze is common and is usually a result of having the wrong sag for the hammock resulting in an improper lay.

    To fix head strain, you may also try using a neck pillow that fits under the nape of your neck. I find this style more comfortable than no pillow, and better than a regular pillow that kinks my neck too much.

    One last caveat: I've observed that those people with the worst experiences in hammocks are best helped in person. Sometimes the descriptions make the most sense when seen in real life. Most of the folks on HF would be glad to demo and group hangs or boy scout camporees where hangers will be present.

  2. #22
    dejoha's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mikums View Post
    What type of line do you use to hang the hammock?
    I should check this thread more often! Sorry for the delay, but hopefully your question has been answered. For the benefit of the group, the line I most often use now is a 7/64 in amsteel blue whoopie sling. Other ropes will work. Before I discovered amsteel blue from this forum I was using 5mm climbing rope from REI.

    Some hammocks come with rope, webbing, or slings already, and all would work fine. I chose whoopie slings because they are light, pack small, and have a high breaking strength.

  3. #23
    Senior Member DemostiX's Avatar
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    Like Lewis & Clark: Wintrin' o/t Columbia again: PDX
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    One difference between your illustrated toggle and what Grizzly Adams, Shug, (and others, I'm sure) stress is that your toggle bears quite bending load. The rope is trying to snap it. They are explicit on the load being born on the knot which the toggle keeps open. The bending strength of their toggles can be minimal, as the knot transfers the hammock load to compress the material of the toggle.

    So, a beautiful illustration, as others have commented. But, not if the toggle is poorly chosen..

  4. #24
    dejoha's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DemostiX View Post
    One difference between your illustrated toggle and what Grizzly Adams, Shug, (and others, I'm sure) stress is that your toggle bears quite bending load. The rope is trying to snap it. They are explicit on the load being born on the knot which the toggle keeps open. The bending strength of their toggles can be minimal, as the knot transfers the hammock load to compress the material of the toggle.

    So, a beautiful illustration, as others have commented. But, not if the toggle is poorly chosen..
    Good observation. The illustration needs to be updated. In practice, the load is fully on the webbing, not the toggle. The drawing doesn't bear this out because I was lazy and just sliced in a line instead of showing how the webbing holds.

    The technique is solid, while the drawing needs attention.

  5. #25
    New Member
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    now all i gotta do is make the hammock and give it a whirl! Great Illustration!

  6. #26
    New Member
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    Thank you

    This diagram really helped me understand my hammock more. Thank you so much for creating it. Excellent educational material every newbie should read

  7. #27
    I drew this simple illustration to help my friends and family understand the basics of hammock camping. I've used similar illustrations on BackpackGearTest.org for hammocks I've tested, but I've updated and created this new version for Hammock Forums in the hopes that it might help others quickly understand how this all works.

    Hopefully this illustration is worth a thousand words.
    Very informative. Thank you, just what I needed for starters.

  8. #28
    New Member jamesrheney's Avatar
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    Oct 2011
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    Batesburg, SC
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    As a newcomer to hammock camping, I find this to be very informative and helpful. Since joinging recently, I'm constantly searching thru this site to glean more knowledge. Thanks for your efforts.

  9. #29
    dejoha's Avatar
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    Thanks jamesrheney! Check back in November when you can pick up the printed pocket guide!

  10. #30
    Senior Member bhinson's Avatar
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    Awesome, very well done.
    This is your one stop shop for all Hammock knowledge

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