How to Choose a Proper Stand for My Hammock?

how to choose hammock stands

Enjoying time lapse in a cozy hammock is definitely a relaxed leisure, wherever in the wild, your backyard, or even in the home. So, hammock is popular for its versatile functions as an outdoor shelter and even an indoor bed.

However, hanging a hammock off the ground is a somehow small or big “technical” problem every hammocker would face. Usually, people hang the hammock between two trees or man-made fixed anchors, like poles and stands. In the previous article, I’ve talked about how to hang a hammock between two trees and some useful tips.

In this article, we’ll talk about everything about hammock stands, and guide you to choose a proper stand if you consider owning one for yourself.

When Should I Use a Hammock Stand?

Have you ever met the below circumstances when you prepare to hang a hammock:

  • In the wild, there are no trees in your hammocking spot, distances between trees are not ideal for hanging, or even it’s legally forbidden to hang a hammock at the site.
  • In your backyard, you have a higher chance to meet the same problems like in the wild — no proper trees.
  • Someone might like to enjoy sleeping and resting in the hammock at home, but don’t want to drill holes and build anchors on the walls, ceilings and poles in a room.
  • Although some people have a good pre-condition for hanging, they aren’t specialized at fiddling with various hammock straps and knots.

If you have above issues, I suggest you could consider having a hammock stand to help you solve these dilemmas.

Hammock stands, also called hammock bases or hammock frames, have developed in multiple shapes and functions to meet various needs for both lounging hammocks and camping hammocks.

How Many Types do Hammock Stands Have?

Hammock stands can be categorized in backyard and portable two main types.

Backyard hammock stands refer to those made of wood or heavy duty steel, somewhat cumbersome and can’t move around easily. They are often placed in the backyard or in the house all year round, like a permanent fixture or decoration.

backyard hammock stand
(Left: wood backyard hammock stand; right: steel backyard hammock stand)

Portable hammock stands mean hammock frames made of light-weight and durable metal including steel and aluminum, fiberglass and even wood, weight often ranges from 15-35 lbs. They are usually adjustable, collapsible and foldable, specifically friendly for easy carrying in the bag or car trunk for travel, yet they can also be used in the yard or indoors.

The most seen portable hammock stands nowadays are those steel stands with a U-shape fork at the top of the end, or those with supporting beams and adjustable anchors at two sides. Both can be split down into pieces for easy transportation, and are compatible with almost all kinds of hammocks in different lengths by altering hanging measures.

portable hammock stands
(Commonly seen portable hammock stands)

Except above two normal types, in recent years, some manufacturers also produce some innovative and peculiar new design hammock stands to meet diversified market needs.

Like KAMMOK’s Baya Triple Hammock Stand, it’s created for three hammocks hanging simultaneously, complimented for its bolded contemporary design and central table function, aesthetic appealing and practical, a great gift for family hammocking.

ENO’s Pod series is renowned for its curved frame appearance, two eye-catching streamline supporting frames made of time-tested powder-coated steel, ensuring durability and quick hammock setting. If you have a high budget for an all-round relaxation, it won’t let you down.

Are Hammocks Stands Universal for All Hammocks?

No doubt, there are multiple kinds of hammocks existing on the market, some of most popular ones, like Mayan, Brazilian, Rope, Quilt and Camping hammocks, are compatible with hammock bases. Except merchant explicitly points out the stand is only for non spreader-bar or spreader-bar hammocks in its instruction.

hammocks on the wood stand
(Gathered-end and spreader-bar hammocks on wood stands)

Mayan, Brazilian, and camping hammocks generally don’t have spreader bars at each end, their hammock ends called “gathered end“.

People should lay diagonally in the hammock, and form a cocoon shape, in order to keep balanced and stay comfortable. They are great for long time resting and sleeping for both indoor and outdoor occasions.

Rope and quilt hammocks are commonly to be seen at the yard, beach and poolside, they are widely accepted for relaxation and decorations. The biggest feature of them are having two wood or plastic bars at each end, called “spreader bars“.

hammocks on steel stands
(Gathered-end and spreader-bar hammocks on steel stands)

However, when you lying on a spreader-bar hammock, you should avoid tossing and turning intensely, since spreader-bar hammocks are prone to tip, and might flip you over on the ground. For this reason, spreader-bar hammocks are not suitable for night sleep, but daytime amusement is ok.

What Size of Hammock Frame Should I Choose?

For length and width:

Most hammock stands are 4-5 feet wide to keep the base balanced. For length, choose the stand 2 feet longer than your hammock’s body length is appropriate, 9-15 feet long hammock stands are prevalent on the market, they can meet the length requirements of almost all hammocks.

About how to measure hammock’s length, just pull the hammock taut on the ground, measure the distance between two end’s loops. For camping hammocks, don’t include continuous ropes or carabiners in the measurement, see details about hammock’s size in this post.

If the hammock holder is far too longer than your hammock’s length, don’t worry about it. You can add steel chains and s-hooks at the end of the stand, to compensate for the length shortage and help the hammock reach the stand.

For weight capacity:

Due to made of different materials, such as wood and metal, hammock stands normally can bear the weight from 350 to 550 pounds. This capacity can safely hold any single and double hammocks, even for 2 adults lying in the hammock at the same time.

Anyway, checking the hammock frame’s specification thoroughly before purchase will do no harm, and might save your time in the later.

How to Hang a Hammock on the Stand?

Like hanging a hammock between trees, when you set a hammock between the stand, ensure the bottom of the hammock is about 18 inches high above the ground, and the connecting ropes are about 30 degrees down from the horizon.

In this way, you can lay comfortably in a diagonal position, get in and out the hammock, and use the hammock as a “sitting chair”.

Many hammock frames, especially those made of steel with support beams and movable anchors, are adjustable in length for hammock hanging in several ways. If the stand is too compact, put the adjustable anchor downward, let the hammock rope run over the top part of the stand. If the stand is too apart, you can add a piece of suspension chain between the stand and hammock, connected with an s-hook is also well done.

(Adjustable hammock stand)

Is Hammock Stand Safe?

If people ask this question, mostly they concern about hammock stand’s weight capacity and whether is easy to flip the hammock over.

For the first regard, as we talk above, following the instruction to choose a stand, most hammock stands can hold the weight from 350 to 550 lbs, it shouldn’t be a worry for our hangers.

For the second regard, any spreader-bar hammocks are tending to flip more often than gathered-end hammocks, because the former’s relatively flat hammock surface raises the gravity center higher than the latter’s.

Thus if you lie in a spreader-bar hammock, whatever it is hung between a stand or trees, make sure not to toss and turn violently. For a non spreader-bar hammock, just lay diagonally, you won’t have any safety concerns.

In conclusion, taking a rational and scientific way to hang and sleep in a hammock, whether it is hung between a stand or trees, is safe for every hanger.

How to Do Maintenance for Hammock Stands?

Like the hammock, hammock stand needs your maintenance and regular care to prolong its life.

Using the stand in the house, no matter it’s made of wood or metal, the stand will have a better condition and longer life than placed outdoors. Just keep attention of bolts junction and connection, whether having a crack on the main body, and cover it from dust when not in use.

If you set the stand outdoors, you’d better keep it from direct sunlight and raindrops, and bring it back to the house in winter. If the hammock stand is too heavy to move, at least cover it to reduce weather damage.

Wood is tending to rot and deform, you should care more about it and seal it with oil every 1-2 years to keep it clean and complete. Steel hammock frame’s most challenging issue is rust and corrosion, except avoiding direct rain and water, sealing it with oil or finish is also necessary.

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