The Hammock Hang Calculator FAQ
The purpose of the Hammock Hang Calculator is to help you take the guesswork out of hanging your hammock to get a perfect setup every time. However, there are a few things you need to know about your hammock before venturing out into the field!
The first is the length of your hammock itself. The best thing to do is to measure your hammock when it is spread out flat on the floor - its best to measure the actual length of your hammock as it will sometimes vary from what the manufacturer's stated length.
The second bit of information you need is whether or not you are using a structural ridgeline. Some hammocks come with built in ridgelines and others don't. You can very easily add a ridgeline to your hammock - once you get your hammock dialed in, a structural ridgeline will make it much easier for you to get a consistent, comfortable hang every time out. If you already have a ridgeline, measure how long it is. If not, be sure to enter a value of "0" (zero) in the field for the ridgeline length.
The last bit of information is your preferred sit height. When you are sitting up in your hammock and using it as a chair, the preferred sit height is the distance from your bottom to the ground. You can experiment with different heights to see what you are comfortable with, most folks start with a value of 18" (46 cm).
With this information handy, you are now ready to venture out and find your perfect hammock setup by using the Hammock Hang Calculator!
Once you find a good looking spot with some sturdy trees nearby, be sure to make sure and check that there are no dead branches hanging overhead.
Next, measure or estimate the distance between the two trees and keep the other information you have collected about your hammock handy.
Start up the Hammock Hang Calculator app. You will notice on the right hand side of the screen you can pull out a tab that lets you enter your information into the calculator. Go ahead and enter all the information into the appropriate fields. You can switch between metric and english units by using the slider at the top of the input screen.
If you enter your weight, the calculator will also determine how much force is being applied to the trees and along your suspension. This information is there to help you make sure that you are picking a suitable tree that can withstand the amount of force required to hold you up and that you have an adequate suspension system in place.
Lastly, the hang angle represents the desired angle between the horizon and your suspension system where it connects to the tree. Most hammockers stick with the default value of 30°. You may want to experiment with a few different values here once you are more comfortable with your hammock, but pay close attention to how much force you are putting on the trees and your suspension.
Once you have entered all the information into the Hammock Hang Calculator, click the "Done" button (or swipe right) and the input tab will close. Now you are ready to get the perfect hang!
The first thing you want to do is to attach your suspension to the tree. Look at the value for Hang Point in the calculator and hang your suspension at that height off the ground on both trees. The next thing you will want to do is to adjust your suspension length to match what is shown in the calculator. Depending on your suspension system, it might take a few tries to make sure you get things adjusted to the specified length.
Once you have attached your hammock and adjusted the suspension length, take a few steps back to take a good look at your setup. You should see your hammock hanging perfectly centered between the two trees, with the angle of the suspension matching what you entered into the Hammock Hang Calculator. Note the values for shear force and cord tension, and ensure that both the trees you have selected and your suspension system can handle the projected load. If anything doesn't look right, go back and make sure you have entered your information correctly and that you are using the right units for each input field.
If everything looks good, walk up to your hammock and ease into it slowly to make sure that the suspension is secure. When you sit in the hammock, you should find yourself sitting at your preferred sit height.
If you don't have a structural ridgeline, you should also note that the Hammock Hang Calculator has calculated what it would be given the current setup. You can use this as a starting point if you choose to add one in the future. Some users find that small adjustments in the structural ridgeline length can make a big difference in how your hammock hangs and how flat of a lay you get, so you may want to see what feels most comfortable.
If everything is secure, lay back in your hammock and enjoy the perfect hang!