Hammock Shed (aka Outdoor Storage Box)




About: I'll try to fix or build anything.

I wove my own hammock a few years ago and since then I've been very paranoid about leaving it out in the elements. If you put that kind of work into something you get a little protective. If I see rain clouds on the horizon I unhook the hammock and drag it back into the garage. I can count on both hands the number of times I've left it out overnight. In the winter it slumbers in a large plastic bag in my attic. It's excessive. It's compulsive. It's obsessive. It has to stop. And here's the solution - a hammock shed.

Step 1: Alternate Uses

What brings more pleasure than swinging lightly in a shaded summer breeze? Not much. Maybe a small basketball (as see in the picture). But this need not be just a container for a hammock. Think of things you constantly bring in and out of your house, garage, shed and into your yard. Any of these things could fit into a custom made storage box and fitted to a tree in your yard (or to a 4x4 post set in concrete wherever you like). The two big uses for this kind of container that I can think of are for yard games and garden tools. If you and your family have one of those badmiton/volley ball sets, croquet sets, horsehoe sets or whatever then this might be a great storage solution for you. If you enjoy gardening then a well placed box with your shovels, hoes, and miscellany might be a time and energy saver. Could also be used to hold garden hoses, drip irrigation hoses, loads and loads of things.

Step 2: The Needed

* 4 - 1" x 10" x 6ft boards

* 1 scrap piece of 1" x 12" board

* Outdoor screws - here I used stainless steel

* hinges

* weather stripping gasket

* lock latch

* A drill

* A compound miter saw helps greatly, but a hand saw would work nicely.

* Chisels

* Wood glue

* Shop vac or broom for the horrid mess this makes

Step 3: The Wood

I decided to put a sloped roof on this box. I settled on a 15 degree slope. I cut the two sides accordingly and gave the back piece an angled cut to match as well. While I had the saw set to this angle I cut the 1"x12" scrap piece to be the roof board.

Step 4: Glue It, Screw It

Drill the holes that the screws will go in so that you won't risk cracking the wood. Apply a thick coat of glue before screwing them together. I used one screw per foot.

Step 5: The Bottom, the Top

I measured the bottom and cut the wood to fit, then I drilled, glued, and screwed it. With the top I used the 1"x12" scrap piece to give a little overhang. It too was drilled, glued, and screwed.

Step 6: Hinges

Upon reflection I think I should have used 3 hinges. I may add one eventually if the wood decides it wants to warp. Cutting the wood away for hinges is called mortising. There are a number of machines and "jigs" out there for routers and other tools. I have none of those things and opted for a chisel and hammer. I marked the length of the hinge and then the depth and slowly worked the wood away. The hinges were then screwed on (the holes were drilled first; always pre-drill). You'll have  to do this on both the door and the box.

Okay, you don't actually have to mortise for the hinges, but it will make less of a gap and hence a tighter seal if you're interested in that.

Step 7: Stripping

There are a number of ways you can attach this vinyl weather stripping. I chose to go with a staple gun. If I'd have had a pneumatic stapler I'd have gone with that. I didn't bother putting glue or silicone beneath the stripping, but you certainly could do this. I stapled about every 2 to three inches.

Step 8: Latch and Hole

I drilled and screwed on the latch and then drilled a hole in the back of the box for the large lag bolt hook that I use to hold the hammock chain.

Step 9: Mount and Finish

Here it is mounted to the tree and the hammock installed. I'll probably post another picture once I paint it.

You could make these out of cedar. The cost will be higher, but you could probably get away with not putting any kind of finish on it at all. Plus whatever you put inside of it will smell like cedar. And it'll keep some bugs away.

In all I spent less than $60 dollars on this project.

Happy hammocking.



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    5 Discussions


    7 years ago on Introduction

    I like how it is connected to the tree and the hammock can just be rolled right into it... now if only I had two trees close enough together in my little yard

    4 replies

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    You could make a box like this on one of your trees and then opposite from it in your yard, ten feet or however long the hammock will be, you can dig a hole, put a foot long piece of 2" or 3" pipe in the hole level with the ground, then pour concrete around it. You'll then use a smaller pipe that just fits into the one in the concrete and this will be your other post for the hammock. Put an eye bolt or hook or something at the top of it. In the evening or when it rains or whatever you could put the hammock up in the box and the metal post as well. It'll make it easier to mow too. Remove the pipe and just run right over the concrete in the ground.


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    If you don't have a second tree in a good spot, instead of attaching your box to a post as you mention, you could overbuild your box using a treated 4x4 or 6x6 for the back wall. A 12' 4x4 would probably be tall enough to hang the hammock at the appropriate height while leaving ~3 feet to bury; that's enough to support the occupants of the hammock without concrete in my experience. But soil conditions vary.

    You could also get dramatic and slant the post away from your tree, perhaps making the support even steadier. And then you could build your box on the "underneath" side, further protecting it from the weather.

    I use eyebolts to hang my hammock and use carabiners ("real" ones) to attach to the eyebolts. If the distance isn't quite right, it's easy to put a double loop of rope through an eyebolt and tie off with a Double Fisherman's Bend.

    One of my supports is my garage wall. In addition to the eyebolt screwed through the siding into a stud, I put another eyebolt ~5' away. My hammock lies flat against the garage wall when not in use hanging from both eyebolts, mostly protected from the weather by the eaves of the garage.

    Or spread the two garage eyebolts further apart to get all the material tucked higher under the eaves. And then you could attach a horizontal box to the garage wall to stuff the -- oh heck, this is getting to be way too much work when I could be dozing in the hammock! 

    Okay, now where is your hammock weaving instructable? :-)


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    I've wanted to make another hammock . . . but I have one. I could make one for a gift, but I don't know if any of my friends might want one. Or I've got other projects to mess with. Love messing with different things.


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Know what you mean. I blew off a hammock making class this summer; already have three of 'em and not enough places to hang them.