Hammock camping entry gear

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Scuba
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Hammock camping entry gear

#1

Post by Scuba » Wed Mar 30, 2016 3:10 pm

So, on the Texas Hammock Hangers FB page a member asked for and was given advice on gear purchases for someone trying to get into hammock camping Many posts were made with advice and of course I gave my opinion also. Below is my recommendation for Beginner/Entry level hammock camping gear.

Hammock Options
- Dream Hammock 10' Freebird - $40 for a single layer, $80 for a double layer. Add $10 for a cinch buckle suspension. $11.80 for 15ft tree straps
- Dutch 11' Gathered end hammock - $38 fr a single layer, $70 for a double layer. Add $6 for the ridgeline (included with the DH). Add $36 for a Dutch suspension.
My pick? Double layer Freebird for $101.80 + shipping vs $112 + shipping for the Dutch option.......Freebird hands down. Made to order by Randy and Deanna, the quality and workmanship is better than Dutch's. (not saying Dutch's are bad, just the Smurf's are better). Another reason, part of the $36 you spend for the Dutch suspension are for Dutch Clips which I personally think are a solution for a problem that doesn't exist. A pair of Dutch clips costs $18 and weigh 16g per clip. Why? Spend $5 each and use a Camp Nano 22 carabiner which has more uses and wont tear up your straps like Dutch Clips can. Or better yet, run the strap through the loop of the tree strap. It works and requires no extra hardware. Why the Double layer? Most people come to hammocking from ground dwelling. They already have a sleeping pad. This makes a quality double layer a way for them use their existing gear and not shell out the money for an UQ right away.

Insect protection
- Fronkey style net. Period. End of discussion..... Actually there is more. You can buy a Fronkey style net for around $60 or buy the material and sew your own (a very easy project) for less than $35.

Tarp
- Cheaper option about $70 for a Hennessey Hex, which weighs 27oz (as far as I know only one color available)
- Custom option, an UGQ Hanger 11. For $99, this is an 11ft ridgeline hammock that only weighs about 11oz and is available in MANY color choices.
Pick? The UGQ Hanger11 hands down.Yes it cost's a little more, but the weight savings and ability to get almost any color makes it the better choice.

Thermal Protection
I am not going to pick one here, because there are too may reasonable options and prices vary drastically. Instead I am going to list some popular options.
- Use your existing gear. If you come from ground camping, use your pad and sleeping bag. New money spent = $0
- DIY synthetic quiltage.
* Repurpose a down throw- Sarge shows you how to do it here viewtopic.php?f=50&t=713
* Build your own with a DIY kit from RipStopByTheRoll. Prices for a full length UQ kit start at $57 http://ripstopbytheroll.com/collections ... ull-length
- Purchase a set of synthetic quilts. Starting at about $150 for full length quilts, I recommend Kick Ass Quilts.
- Purchase a set of Down Quilts. More expensive, but a tad lighter and much more compressible than the synthetic options. Look to pay at least $200+++ for each quilt you need. I personally recommend either UGQ or HammockGear.


Please feel free to ask questions or comment.


"I come in peace. I didn't bring artillery. But I'm pleading with you, with tears in my eyes: If you fuck with me, I'll kill you all." - Gen James Mattis, USMC RET.
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Scuba
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Re: Hammock camping entry gear

#2

Post by Scuba » Wed Mar 30, 2016 3:21 pm

A quick blurb on why I recommend a cinch buckle suspension.

This is for an entry level hammock camper. Cinch buckles are easy to use and are foolproof. Yes you can save some weight going with whoopies or Dutch bling, but the fiddle factor can make some new hangers feel overwhelmed. Regular cinch buckles only weigh about 25g each (or less), cost $5 a pair and are easy to use. A lighter option is Dutch's ti cinch buckles at 9.5g each but at the price of $22 a pair.

Why i dont recommend whoopies for new hangers? You ever tried to adjust a whoopie that has been under load and is wet? Or when it is cold outside and your fingers are sorta numb? What about if the clearance between gathered end and tree is short? You are going to have at least an 8 inch bury, more likely 9+ inches. Forget using those trees.
"I come in peace. I didn't bring artillery. But I'm pleading with you, with tears in my eyes: If you fuck with me, I'll kill you all." - Gen James Mattis, USMC RET.
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Re: Hammock camping entry gear

#3

Post by Klynne70 » Wed Mar 30, 2016 3:50 pm

Scuba wrote:So, on the Texas Hammock Hangers FB page a member asked for and was given advice on gear purchases for someone trying to get into hammock camping Many posts were made with advice and of course I gave my opinion also. Below is my recommendation for Beginner/Entry level hammock camping gear.

Hammock Options
- Dream Hammock 10' Freebird - $40 for a single layer, $80 for a double layer. Add $10 for a cinch buckle suspension. $11.80 for 15ft tree straps
- Dutch 11' Gathered end hammock - $38 fr a single layer, $70 for a double layer. Add $6 for the ridgeline (included with the DH). Add $36 for a Dutch suspension.
My pick? Double layer Freebird for $101.80 + shipping vs $112 + shipping for the Dutch option.......Freebird hands down. Made to order by Randy and Deanna, the quality and workmanship is better than Dutch's. (not saying Dutch's are bad, just the Smurf's are better). Another reason, part of the $36 you spend for the Dutch suspension are for Dutch Clips which I personally think are a solution for a problem that doesn't exist. A pair of Dutch clips costs $18 and weigh 16g per clip. Why? Spend $5 each and use a Camp Nano 22 carabiner which has more uses and wont tear up your straps like Dutch Clips can. Or better yet, run the strap through the loop of the tree strap. It works and requires no extra hardware. Why the Double layer? Most people come to hammocking from ground dwelling. They already have a sleeping pad. This makes a quality double layer a way for them use their existing gear and not shell out the money for an UQ right away.

Insect protection
- Fronkey style net. Period. End of discussion..... Actually there is more. You can buy a Fronkey style net for around $60 or buy the material and sew your own (a very easy project) for less than $35.

Tarp
- Cheaper option about $70 for a Hennessey Hex, which weighs 27oz (as far as I know only one color available)
- Custom option, an UGQ Hanger 11. For $99, this is an 11ft ridgeline hammock that only weighs about 11oz and is available in MANY color choices.
Pick? The UGQ Hanger11 hands down.Yes it cost's a little more, but the weight savings and ability to get almost any color makes it the better choice.

Thermal Protection
I am not going to pick one here, because there are too may reasonable options and prices vary drastically. Instead I am going to list some popular options.
- Use your existing gear. If you come from ground camping, use your pad and sleeping bag. New money spent = $0
- DIY synthetic quiltage.
* Repurpose a down throw- Sarge shows you how to do it here viewtopic.php?f=50&t=713
* Build your own with a DIY kit from RipStopByTheRoll. Prices for a full length UQ kit start at $57 http://ripstopbytheroll.com/collections ... ull-length
- Purchase a set of synthetic quilts. Starting at about $150 for full length quilts, I recommend Kick Ass Quilts.
- Purchase a set of Down Quilts. More expensive, but a tad lighter and much more compressible than the synthetic options. Look to pay at least $200+++ for each quilt you need. I personally recommend either UGQ or HammockGear.


Please feel free to ask questions or comment.
AWESOME info. Very much appreciated! Definitely helps with trying to figure out what to get.

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Re: Hammock camping entry gear

#4

Post by UncleMJM » Wed Mar 30, 2016 4:28 pm

Good post Tom. I agree on all counts, especially your suspension recommendation. I too am a big fan of the folks you listed.

My only add in to this is to continue to encourage new folks to come to group hangs and really see gear as well as give it a test ride.

There are tons of options out there and I know of few people still using their same set up as they started with, which is not a commentary on early choices as much as a reality that many people like to try new things.

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Re: Hammock camping entry gear

#5

Post by WickedKlown2 » Wed Mar 30, 2016 11:53 pm

For the Tarp I have recommended in the past the Kelty Noah's 12 tarp. REI used to carry them but it appears that they make their own version now called the REI Camp Tarp 12 in Alpaca/Army Cot Green. Only place I have found the Kelty Noah's 12 is Backcountry and it comes in all green now (mine is coyote tan with orange boarder). I still use my Kelty Noah's 12 at Cub and Family Weekends (My Son and I both hang under it) and Cub Scout Day Camp in the summer.

REI Camp Tarp 12 ($69.50)with free shipping) : https://www.rei.com/product/893999/rei-camp-tarp-12
Kelty Noah's 12 ($69.95 with free shipping) : http://www.backcountry.com/kelty-noahs-tarp

I hope that helps :)
Dave aka WK2
Asst-Cubmaster of Pack 640 - Smyna, TN
Eagle Scout 1992 - Troop 86 Brentwood, TN
Tread Lightly and Leave No Trace :)

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Re: Hammock camping entry gear

#6

Post by TXyakr » Thu Mar 31, 2016 10:46 am

Great post and analysis. I agree with everything you wrote. Especially the issues with whoopie slings, I mostly just use them as emergency extension if the space between the trees that I want is too much (add short tree huggers), but they can be a pain to use in adverse conditions. They were fun to make however.

Technically polyester versus nylon for a tarp will last longer because it stands up to the sun's UV better. However, I purchased a WB superfly many years ago and it is still doing fine, and I actually like the builtin stretch which helps to reduce wind flapping also with some shockcord loops I added but both are unnecessary.

I.e. Hex Rainfly 70D Polyester should theoretically last longer with years of sun exposure than a Silnylon Warbonnet Superfly and the Hennessy Hex cost half as much.

http://www.diffen.com/difference/Nylon_vs_Polyester

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Re: Hammock camping entry gear

#7

Post by Scuba » Thu Mar 31, 2016 11:01 am

Here are my thoughts on the Kelty Noah, and why I didn't put it in my list. Yes it is fairly cheap but the price is comparable to the Hennessey Hex, and the Hex provides better coverage. If you are just using the tarp as a sunshade then the Kelty is fine, but in rain, especially if it's heavy, the kelty is an underperformer due to it's limited coverage. The other ding against it is the weight. A Noah 12 weighs over 2lbs, 35 oz to be specific. That is 1/2 lb heavier than the Hex and 3x as heavy as the UGQ Hanger.

If you only ever car camp I will concede the Kelty will be fine minus any rain. If you are backpacking, I would pick another option.
"I come in peace. I didn't bring artillery. But I'm pleading with you, with tears in my eyes: If you fuck with me, I'll kill you all." - Gen James Mattis, USMC RET.
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Re: Hammock camping entry gear

#8

Post by Scuba » Thu Mar 31, 2016 11:08 am

TXyakr wrote:Great post and analysis. I agree with everything you wrote. Especially the issues with whoopie slings, I mostly just use them as emergency extension if the space between the trees that I want is too much (add short tree huggers), but they can be a pain to use in adverse conditions. They were fun to make however.

Technically polyester versus nylon for a tarp will last longer because it stands up to the sun's UV better. However, I purchased a WB superfly many years ago and it is still doing fine, and I actually like the builtin stretch which helps to reduce wind flapping also with some shockcord loops I added but both are unnecessary.

I.e. Hex Rainfly 70D Polyester should theoretically last longer with years of sun exposure than a Silnylon Warbonnet Superfly and the Hennessy Hex cost half as much.

http://www.diffen.com/difference/Nylon_vs_Polyester
That's why the new silPoly is such a great thing. My new (as in just arrived this morning) is a 12ft silPoly WinterDream. With the silPoly there isn't the stretch inherent in silNylon, when wet it doesnt absorb the water (and thus weight) like silNylon does, and it is more UV resistant. It does weigh a TINY bit more that silNylon (21oz vs the 20.4 of the same tarp in silNylon) but to me that 1/2 oz is worth it.
"I come in peace. I didn't bring artillery. But I'm pleading with you, with tears in my eyes: If you fuck with me, I'll kill you all." - Gen James Mattis, USMC RET.
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Re: Hammock camping entry gear

#9

Post by TXyakr » Tue Apr 05, 2016 1:57 pm

These charts and the video are interesting from Strapworks. They only sell straps not tarps but the similar characteristics should apply. I tried to watch the video. Well done but I fell asleep multiple times, I didn't have any Diet Dr. Pepper, like John. B. John goes into a lot of detail but never puts any of the one year weather aged strap into a strength test, i.e. hang weight from it.
https://www.strapworks.com/Articles.asp?ID=144

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Re: Hammock camping entry gear

#10

Post by Idaho Hanger » Sat May 07, 2016 12:00 pm

Scuba wrote:A quick blurb on why I recommend a cinch buckle suspension.

This is for an entry level hammock camper. Cinch buckles are easy to use and are foolproof. Yes you can save some weight going with whoopies or Dutch bling, but the fiddle factor can make some new hangers feel overwhelmed. Regular cinch buckles only weigh about 25g each (or less), cost $5 a pair and are easy to use. A lighter option is Dutch's ti cinch buckles at 9.5g each but at the price of $22 a pair.

Why i dont recommend whoopies for new hangers? You ever tried to adjust a whoopie that has been under load and is wet? Or when it is cold outside and your fingers are sorta numb? What about if the clearance between gathered end and tree is short? You are going to have at least an 8 inch bury, more likely 9+ inches. Forget using those trees.
Amen. I have a Robic hammock with ns50 netting, #3 zipper on one side only..... I still use cinch buckles and 15' straps for our big trees. It's too easy and reliable in all conditions to worry about the bit of added weight. Thinking about the titanium ones but I'm not sure the weight savings is worth $17, especially when I don't really need a new suspension.
“Wilderness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit, and as vital to our lives as water and good bread.” - Edward Abbey.

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