Introduction: Counterweight Hanging Hammocks

Picture of Counterweight Hanging Hammocks

This is an Instructable on how to install interactive counterweight hammocks which adapt to almost any space with a ceiling. The only requirement for using them is to have one other person sit in the hammock along with you.

Step 1: Determine the Number of Hammocks You Want

Picture of Determine the Number of Hammocks You Want

The minimum number of hammocks possible is 2 since you need at least one other person to be your counterweight. The most I have set up is 5, which worked out pretty well. But you can experiment with more hammocks.

It is best to plan out how you will connect the hammocks together. Start out with a plan of your space – the more detail you have of the space, the better.

You need to figure out where you have to avoid columns and where you can mount your hammocks on the ceiling beams.

Step 2: Hammock Configuration

Picture of Hammock Configuration

The image provided for step 2 shows the columns (colored in dark gray), where I should not mount a hammock nearby. Stay at least 5 to 8 feet away around the columns. The image also shows where the beams span across (the lines connecting the dark gray columns). This is where you can mount your hammocks, represented by the circle.

The red lines represents the rope which connects the hammocks together. There is a separate rope for each connection between each point. For example, the connection between point A to point B is a separate rope, while point A to point C is its own connection using its own separate rope.

Step 3: How to Mount Your Hammocks to the Space

Picture of How to Mount Your Hammocks to the Space

After you have determined the number of hammocks you want to use and how you will configure them in the space. You will have to mount your hammocks in the space. In order to start mounting you will need to know what material your space is made out of –is it wood or is it concrete?

More importantly what kind of ceiling do you have to work with? Is it a drop ceiling or is it exposed? Are there beams from which you can mount your hammocks? Or are their unistruts? Is there electrical wiring or pipes in the ceiling? You have to be very observant and knowledgable of what condition your ceiling is. A detailed knowledge of your space will help you avoid problems when you are installing the hammocks.

For step 4 and step 5, I will provide 2 options for mounting your hammocks.

Option 1 is mounting your hammocks to wooden or concrete beams.

Option 2 is mounting to the ceiling with unistruts.

Step 4: Option 1 - Mounting Your Pair of Hammocks to Wooden or Concrete Beams

Picture of Option 1 - Mounting Your Pair of Hammocks to Wooden or Concrete Beams

Materials Needed:

  1. 4 D-rings
  2. high performance wire rope
  3. 4 sets of thimble and clamp (1 for each D-ring)
  4. 2 pulley (1 per hammock for each connection between hammocks)
  5. 2 rock climbing carabiner (1 for each hammock)
  6. 1 rock climbing static rope (1 for each connection between 2 hammocks)
  7. 2 hammocks

The most important requirement for the D-ring is that it is capable of supporting the load of more than 1 person. The Anchor Point D-ring (see image) holds up to 3,666 pounds.

Step 1

You will have to screw in the 2 D-rings on to the vertical sides of the beams, at a straight angle (180°) to each other (see illustrations). D-rings can be found in most hardware stores such as Home Depot. Do this 2 times – 2 D-rings per hammock.

Center your D-ring at the vertical center of the column. If your beam is wooden or concrete, use at least 3/8" x 6" long lag bolts to secure the D-ring to the beam. You will have 2 D-rings for each hammock. One D-ring on each vertical side of the column.

Step 2

Attach high performance wire rope from the 1st D-ring to the 2nd D-ring. The length of the wire should be long enough so that there is at least 1 inch to 2 inches of slack from the bottom of the beam to the wire rope. (see 3D illustration). You will have to do this twice, one for each hammock.

Secure the wire rope to the D-ring with thimble and clamp. (see image of thimble and clamp on how to secure wire)

Step 3

From the high performance wire attached to both D-rings, secure a pulley onto the high performance wire. You can use either rock climbing pulleys or sailing pulleys. Both can bear the load of a few thousand pounds. You will have to do this twice, one for each hammock.

Step 4

String the rock climbing rope from one pulley (on the 1st hammock) to the other pulley (on the 2nd hammock). From each end of the rope, you will have to attach a carabiner, by tying a figure-8 knot and looping the carabiner through it so that it is secure. (see image of figure 8 knot) Also go to www.animatedknots.com for detailed instructions.

Also recommended is tying a dead knot at the very end of the rope after the figure-8 knot has been looped through the carabiner.

You will have to do this twice, one for each hammock.

Step 5

Attach both ends of the hammock through the carabiner and secure the carabiner. You will have to do this twice, one for each hammock.

Voilà!

You now have a pair of counterweight hammocks.

Repeat these 5 steps for another pair which can be connected to the existing pair. The combinations are endless and are flexible enough to fit into any space as long as you plan ahead the hammock configuration.

Step 5: Option 2 - Mounting Your Pair of Hammocks to Unistrut

Picture of Option 2 - Mounting Your Pair of Hammocks to Unistrut

If you have unistruts mounted in your ceiling, you will want to follow the Option 2 instructions for installing your pair of counterweight hammocks.

Materials Needed:

  1. 2 eyehooks (1 for each hammock)
  2. 2 unistrut plates with threaded hole for eyehook (1 for each hammock)
  3. 2 hexnuts for spacing eyehook and unistrut plate (1 for each hammock)
  4. 2 pulleys (1 for each hammock)
  5. 2 rock climbing carabiner (1 for each hammock)
  6. 1 rock climbing static rope (1 for each connection between 2 hammocks)
  7. 2 hammocks

The most important requirement for this option is that the unistrut installed in your ceiling is capable holding the load for a few thousand pounds similar to the D-rings. Also make sure your eyehook is rated to hold enough load.

Step 1

Insert your unistrut mounting plate into place. Before screwing in your eyehook, make sure your hexnut spacer is in place. The hexnut keeps the eyehook secure in plaec. You will have to do this twice, one for each hammock.

Step 2

Screw in your eyehook into the unistrut plate. You will have to do this twice, one for each hammock.

Step 3

Attach your pulley through the eyehook. Most pulleys come with a secure connection or use carabiners (found at places such as REI) to attach the eyehook and pulley together. You will have to do this twice, one for each hammock. (see illustrative diagram for more detail )

Step 4

String your rock climbing rope from one pulley to the other pulley. From each end of the rope, you will have to attach a carabiner at the end, by tying a figure-8 knot and looping the carabiner through it so that it is secure. (see image of figure 8 knot) Also go to www.animatedknots.com for detailed instructions.

Also recommended is tying a dead knot at the very end of the rope after the figure-8 knot has been looped through the carabiner. You will have to do this twice, one for each hammock.

Step 5

Attach both ends of the hammock through the carabiner and secure the carabiner. You will have to do this twice, one for each hammock.

Voilà!

You now have a pair of counterweight hammocks hanging from a unistrut ceiling. Repeat these 5 steps for another pair which can be connected to the existing pair. The combinations are endless and are flexible enough to fit into any space as long as you plan ahead the hammock configuration.

Comments

bomboy (author)2015-08-25

nice idea. check my my hammock designs.

Hot tub dude (author)2015-08-23

That is so cool

DIY Hacks and How Tos (author)2015-08-23

Awesome design.

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