4290down pad hammock
- Jan 3, 2004I had a number of hours to think through the great conversations I had
with Ed Speer at Springer this week. He and I thoroughly discussed
sewing lines in hammocks, among many other topics.
I believe we disagree for now on the possibility of sewing lines in
the hammock body. Ed has had failures of several sewing lines made
for different purposes. It seems the thread does not stretch at the
same rate that the hammock body of nylon stretches. There is also the
matter of the holes made in the fabric which may weaken the hammock.
We agree it may be possible that the majority of the failures he has
found in his research can be attributed to the difference in stretch
between different materials. A strip of velcro sewn to the edge of
the hammock almost certainly stretches at a different rate than the
hammock nylon it is sewn to. This may lead to the threads pulling out
of the weaker hammock material and starting a tear. Also, a straight
stitch with polyester thread will not stretch as easily as the nylon
I propose to sew a prototype single layer hammock with an integral
down pad and wind bumpers. The stitching will be made with a zigzag
stitch to relieve the component of linear stretch differential. The
bottom shell of the down pad will be made of 1.1 oz ripstop which
should have very little problem stretching with the 1.7 oz hammock
body. It will still have sewing holes, but the needle should be
dividing the threads instead of cutting them. It will take a while to
see how this hammock holds up. I ordered the materials today to make
the test. I believe it has the potential to decrease pack weight by
about 8 ounces, by eliminating the double bottom and the entire pad
If this does not prove to be possible, then a double bottom hammock
can be used, though the improvement in weight would not be so great.
Sometimes a modicum of risk needs to be undertaken to search for
improvement. I will let all know how the test works over the next 6
months or so.
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