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  1. #1
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    Modifications...needed or neurosis?

    As a new guy looking to get a start in hammock camping, I have to admit, these forums are very overwhelming! It seems that everyone is into modifying their set up. In fact, they are modifying their modifications!

    My question, are these modifications really needed to make the hammock experience comfortable/functional? Or is this a case of taking on modifications to keep the hammock experience going when you are at home and not in the woods?

    My fear is that if I purchase/make a hammock, I will have to modify it to make it work for me.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Meriadoc's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Naples, ME
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    Ground!! Oh my.
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    MacCat/Superfly
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    N/A
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    A hammock can be taken out of the box and used as is. (Assuming tree straps, suspension, and tarp are included!)

    What most people find is that they can modify it slightly and tailor it to what they want. Since hammocks are modular for the most part, all sorts of customizations can be made fairly easily. It's not like a mass produced tent that can't easily be modified. Here the suspension, tarp, tarp suspension, and various accoutrement can all be changed independently. And that doesn't even touch the insulation varieties.

    So while you don't have to make modifications, modifications are very easy to make.

    With all that being said, some setups are more "fiddly" than others. For example, underquilts can have a learning curve. And the more knots there are, the more knots there are to learn to tie. Which again means there is some customization.

    For example: My first hammock and tarp combination was very simple. It used a strap suspension with cinch buckles for the hammock and a simple hex tarp. The hammock had a structural ridge line built in and basically couldn't be hung the wrong way. It worked very well for me. But over time I found that I wanted a hammock without a bug net, and with an adjustable removable ridge line. Then I wanted one that was more narrow. Then I wanted easier adjustability in length and created whoopie slings. As you can see, the setup progressed from simple to more complicated because of the ease of the changes and further identification of personal preferences. I would be fine still using my original hammock without any of those modifications.
    "Not all those who wander are lost."
    Appalachian Trail Thru Hike Blog

  3. #3
    Moderator
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    Jan 2011
    Location
    South Central IN
    Hammock
    WBRR, Lots of DIY
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    Lynx, Ridge Creek
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    5,144
    Quote Originally Posted by PokeEm View Post
    ...Or is this a case of taking on modifications to keep the hammock experience going when you are at home and not in the woods?...
    ^^^Mostly this^^^

    Quote Originally Posted by PokeEm View Post
    ...My question, are these modifications really needed to make the hammock experience comfortable/functional?...
    ^^And a little bit of this (sometimes)^^

    We just like to play.

  4. #4
    2Questions's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Lititz, PA
    Hammock
    HH Explorer w/ Zipper Mod #4
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    ZQ Special w/mods
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    Down
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    2,389
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    Hammock setups are in a constant state of alteration. Why? Some pursue the challenge to lower their packweight, some pursue the challenge to extent their camping season into late fall and winter, some just like to tinker, some collect gear and enjoy trading off from time to time for new gear and then the DIY crowd is always on the move with their creative juices flowing. Yes, it can become an addiction I suppose. I've found the word "budget" puts things into perspective for me. My setup has stabilized for now. The bigger challenge now is finding time to get out and go camping!
    2QZQ Hammock Specialties
    Specializing in:
    Hennessy Hammock zipper modifications
    Sewn on Tarp doors, Pole Pockets, and Grizz Beaks
    Ridgeline and gear organizers, peak storage bags, UQ protectors,
    and More!

    "The difference between genius and stupidity is.... genius has its limits" - Albert Einstein

  5. #5
    Syb's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Trenton, NJ
    Hammock
    WBBB 1.1 DL/DIY
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    OES/WB Superfly
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    Quote Originally Posted by PokeEm View Post
    My fear is that if I purchase/make a hammock, I will have to modify it to make it work for me.
    Nah, just get out there and hang.

    2Questoins summed it up pretty darn well. Go set it up, hang in it, expect some sort of learning curve to getting things right for you and then if you feel it necessary, mod away! I didn't and still haven't done any modifications to my first hammock and it's still very comfortable for me.
    Syb
    Enjoy the elevation

  6. #6
    flatline's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
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    high point, nc
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    Wilderness Logics Night/Lite Owls
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    i think modification is like scratching an itch...if you have no itch, then you have no need to scratch.
    my stuff is pretty much stock.

    >_please add your name to the world wide H F member location list_<


    _________f___l___a___t___l___i___n___e_________

    " just jump in where you can and hang on!" - briscoe darling

    ___the_cure_for_flatline_disease_can_be_found_here ____

  7. #7
    Senior Member StrawHat's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
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    Las Islas Filipinas
    Hammock
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    Quote Originally Posted by flatline View Post
    i think modification is like scratching an itch...if you have no itch, then you have no need to scratch.
    Bingo!
    I'm not asleep... but that doesn't mean I'm awake.

  8. #8
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Kansas City, KS
    Hammock
    HH Explorer Deluxe+2QZQ Mod #4
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    I think that it really depends on the person, as to the "why" that they're doing the mods.

    In my case, I've truly done only a couple of modifications to the base HH setup I purchased about a year ago.

    Swapped out the stock HH rope for whoopie slings, and like that change but then decided to use climbing rated carabiners in place of the toggles in the MSH...because I toss and turn a lot in my sleep and had a concern about the knot coming over the toggle.

    I've had zippers added to my HH (2QZQ mod #4) because while I like the bottom entry, I didn't like not being able to reach in/out of the hammock easily. Since found out that I also like using the side entry as well when the weather is nice and the tarp isn't that low to the hammock.

    I'm also pending a mod to my tarp, once 2QZQ is back to accepting orders. I've had a specific intent for how to use my tarp since I first got my hammock, and can now afford to have it modded to suit my needs.

    Beyond that, I can't see any other changes happening for a good while, unless gear gets damaged. My setup ROCKS for me, and this last change will give me the bombproof tarp protection that I've wanted (I'll post pics once I get it done...I'm gonna call it "Owl's Fortress of Solitude"...LOL!).

    I don't forsee any real changes in the rest of my gear either, in truth. I went through a major change over this last summer lightening my weight a lot by transitioning away from military to civilian gear. Losing much more will likely make me feel like I forgot something I need in the woods...LOL!

  9. #9
    Spogatz's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Lawrenceville, Ga
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    HH Expedition Asym
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    Some people would like to change the fins on a brand new Cadillac....

    My modifications have been mostly just to make the darn hammock a little easier and quicker to setup.
    -----------------------
    Wherever you go=====
    =======There you are
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  10. #10
    Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    north of Dallas, TX
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    So I guess the follow up question would be:
    How many hangers are using a stock set up?

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