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  1. #1
    Member AlabamaDan's Avatar
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    Question Newbie Questions about Making your Own

    Someone said I could ask all the dumb questions I wanted?

    Question 1I've been reading for several days and want to make my own hammock, but I have some questions. While I'm no seamster, I do know how to sew somewhat and I was wondering if you could just use a serger on the outside of the fabric instead of a rolled hem? Has anyone ever done that? Sure would be easier and faster.

    Question 2What do y'all use for the overhead canopy? Is it the same nylon stuff from walmart, but simply treated with more water repellantcy?

    Question 3What do you use for the bug netting that works the best and how do you attach it? Velcro? Direct stitch? A really long zipper?

    Thanks ahead of time.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AlabamaDan View Post
    Someone said I could ask all the dumb questions I wanted?

    Question 2What do y'all use for the overhead canopy? Is it the same nylon stuff from walmart, but simply treated with more water repellantcy?
    For the tarp you want silnylon. It is water proof vs. just water repellant. It is also lighter at 1.3-1.4osy vs. the 1.9osy fabric that is commonly used for hammocks. It is rumored to be available at some Walmarts sometimes.

  3. #3
    Member AlabamaDan's Avatar
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    Okay. Thanks. This is all starting to make sense.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlabamaDan View Post
    Someone said I could ask all the dumb questions I wanted?
    Question 1I've been reading for several days and want to make my own hammock, but I have some questions. While I'm no seamster, I do know how to sew somewhat and I was wondering if you could just use a serger on the outside of the fabric instead of a rolled hem? Has anyone ever done that? Sure would be easier and faster.
    I have never done it this way, but I think you could get away with it if you sealed the edge first. Use a candle or lighter after it is cut or cut it with a hot knife (DO NOT cut it on top of plexiglass!!!). Otherwise the edges will begin to unravel and it is easier to rip as well.

    Question 2What do y'all use for the overhead canopy? Is it the same nylon stuff from walmart, but simply treated with more water repellantcy?
    Yes, kind of. I use untreated fabric for the body (no water repellancy at all) and treated fabric for the tarp. Sil-Nylon is the best and lightest but I have used DWR for years without a hitch. Sil-Nylon can be found in the $1 bin but not very often, DWR can almost always be found in the $1 bin and usually in many different colors and patterns.

    Question 3What do you use for the bug netting that works the best and how do you attach it? Velcro? Direct stitch? A really long zipper?
    Black Noseeum works best, easier to see out of when you have a light on at night or during the day with the sun shining. I have used the cheap stuff called mosquito netting like the military used on cots for years; it works fine but is a bear to sew. Crossgrain ribbon helps some. As far as attaching it I have used all the methods you are asking about and a few others. My favorite is a simple tube that encompasses the whole hammock, I also have a tube with a zipper (like the Guardian), a HH with an added zipper and a quarter weight bug net that doesn't attach at all, it just hangs there. The tube type really seems to keep the bugs away from me the best and also keeps the rolly-pollies out of my boots, but it is also the heaviest option. I use the quarter weight with my Permethrine treated hammock body and it seems to keep them from biting thru the material pretty well.

    Thanks ahead of time.
    Yer Welcome!
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  5. #5
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    I would hesitate to use a serger. If you have another machine I would go that route.
    Is that too much to ask? Girls with frikkin' lasers on their heads?
    The hanger formly known as "hammock engineer".

  6. #6
    Member AlabamaDan's Avatar
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    What's DWR?

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlabamaDan View Post
    What's DWR?
    DWR is short for Durable Water Repellent, it is a coating on fabrics that make them water repellent but breathable. Common outdoor fabrics include Nylon and as well as trade names like Patagonia Deluge, Gore-Tex and the like. DWR can be applied to almost any fabric, from Cotton to Kevlar.

    Even tho the D in DWR is short for Durable, it doesn't last forever and needs to be re-applied every so often. Popular DWR products like Scotchgard and Nikwax fit the bill nicely and are easy to re-apply at home.

    Sil-Nylon (Silicon Nylon) on the other hand is a whole different animal; the fibers are impregnated by silicone which creates a truly water proof fabric. Originally developed by a parachute canopy maker to improve drag and glide coefficients, it has proven to be very usefull to the outdoor fabric market. One good side effect is that the Silicone improves the shear strength of the fabric, so lighter materials can be used where we used heavier materials in the past.

    Because DWR is breathable it is a better fabric for hammock bodies to minimize sweat and condensation. Sil-Nylon on the other hand will not let water vapor (sweat) permeate and condensation is trapped as well; so it is better to use this either as an outside shell, not touching the body or insulation, or as tarps, water proof (and light) stuff sacks and things of that nature.
    "I aim to misbehave." - Capt. Mal Reynolds
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  8. #8
    Member AlabamaDan's Avatar
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    Thanks so much. So, roll and hem, do not surge the nylon.

    I'll head to Wally world in search of some nice rip-stop nylon DWR 1.9 for my hammock. I was thinking about some Asymmetrical design. I saw a nice walk-through here somewhere, but can't find it just now.

    Later on I'll work toward some Sil-Nylon for the tarp.

    I'll find me some Black Noseeum and make a simple tube for the bug canopy. Some non-supportive ridge line should keep it off me. How do you close the ends? I guess one end is easy, but how about the other?

    I may have one before the weekend is over!

    I realize alot of this stuff it out there in other threads, but it's not quite as dumbed down as a newbie like me needs. Maybe this thread will help others as well.

  9. #9
    Member AlabamaDan's Avatar
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    Last edited by AlabamaDan; 03-27-2008 at 12:21.

  10. #10
    Senior Member GREEN THERAPY's Avatar
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    By the sound of it you have been bitten by the DIY bug. If thats the case before the year is out you will have tried all the varitaions on this hammock theme.
    What I lack in knowledge I MORE than make up for with opinions.
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