View Full Version : HH ridge cord

03-06-2004, 18:05
Is there anyone that has made changes to the length of the ridge cord in their Hennessy? Is it possible to retie the ridge cord in order to tighten or loosen it? I have the explorer model and although I find it comfy and roomy I'm wondering if it's possible to optimize it to my length. If I wanted to be able to lay more "flat" would I tighten or loosen the cord?


03-06-2004, 20:04
I am not any expert on hammocks. But if you lengthen the ridge cord I think that would cause more pull on the material on each end. Thus cause you not to lay as flat.

I don't know if that made any sense but this is how I look at the way a HH is made. If you look at it maybe you will come to the same conclusion or maybe not. But here goes. The ridgeline and the ropes that attach to it on each end of the hammock are pretty much all the ridgeline. Because they are in a fact all one line.

Now this is where some of you may disagree with me. But to me the material that makes up the hammock is all basically just hanging off the ridgeline and tied into it at the ends. If you lengthen the ridgeline it would be the same as tying the ends of the hammock further out from the center, thus creating the material to pull tighter causing the material not to hang a loosely and that would bring you closer the ridgeline when you lay in it. The loose hanging material is what lets you get the laying flat ability.

I am sure I will get some disagreements on this. If any of you could understand what I was even trying to get across here.

03-07-2004, 01:53
I was actually thinking along those lines. But since I wasn't sure at all I thought it best to ask.

03-07-2004, 09:06
It is possible to make minor adjustment. There is a small range of functional variability. To understand it, one must understand that besides the lenthwise degree of tension there is a cross tension caused by the curve established by what is essentially a rectangle of material gathered at the hammock knots. The cross tension is primarily a function of the with of material and the length tension secondarily. Because Smee and I built three hammocks based on the Byer Amazona model (now introduced as the Moskito). we worked the distance between end points (finally setting on the use of a fixed ridgeline to ensure our optimal). Byer recommended that the distance between end points not exceed 10 ft, so that one would lay diagonally. Theory seemed to suggest that the closer the knots the more one could approach laying flat on perpendicular....The rubs were: first, most of us are too tall for this, and second, the cross curve quickly comes into play. We found that at our heights 5-11 & 6-0 an angle of about 10 degrees off center was best. For us that translates to right shoulder right under the center line and feet from about the knees down right of the centerline. IOHO if one is considerably shorter, say 5-0 or so they might find a slight improvement by shortening the ridgeline and adjusting to 13-15 degrees off center. If you are taller the only way to lay flatter is to use a hammock of longer materiel length. That is why HH come in so many sizes. Yes HH models vary fabric for strength but check the lengths and widths and note the stated height limits. Experimentation is fun. But if you are "knot challenged" and you have the right HH for your size and weight you will probably just get back to Tom Hennessy's answer in the end.

Hike your own hike....make your own bed.