the hammock hanging

One day while I was in college, after I helped stock the hall soda machine, I started tinkering with a bunch of the leftover six-pack rings. One of my hall-mates saw me and told me about a hammock she had seen made of the same kind of rings. I had access to a lot of six-pack rings from my hall's soda machine and the soda machines and soda fridge at the desk of my dorm, so I decided to try to make my own hammock. At the time I couldn't find any instructions on the internet, so I decided to figure it out myself. My first attempt was made mostly of the rings, but all of the weight ended up being held up by rope that was strung in between the rings, and it wasn't very comfortable.

I continued to play with the leftover rings and I finally found an interlocking pattern which would allow for the hammock to be made almost entirely of rings. In this design almost all of the weight is carried by the rings and the ropes are only on the perimeter of the hammock. This method has the rings are folded into thirds, so it looks like an "8," with three attachment points per ring. Each "link" has four sides: the two holes and the two folds; however, one of the fold areas must be left bare in order to for the links to be connected infinitely (the pattern would "lock up" if you tried to connect all four sides). Rope is needed to hem the edges (to keep the links from unfolding) and attach the hammock to a hanging point, but the load is all carried by the rings.

The hammock itself is pretty comfortable, although the edges of the rings can poke into the skin over long periods of time, so I usually throw a sheet over it before I use it. The ring structure ad the material of the rings themselves cause the hammock to stretch a lot, probably over 10% of its length. The final version of the hammock is 20 links wide by 29 long, or 580 total rings; with a price of $3 per six-pack, this hammock is "worth" $1740, plus about $20 for rope, metal rings, and twisty ties (used in construction to keep the links on the edge from unfolding). I'd estimate the hammock took 16 hours to complete. However, the original design of the hammock was 24 by 35 rings, so 260 of the rings (almost a third of the original total, $780 worth) and the time it took to connect and then disconnect them was wasted. At the original 24 x 35 the hammock is so large it folds around you and makes it hard to get in or out. Spreader bars may have helped that, but I didn't want to bother trying to install them. I've started writing an instructable for the hammock, but I need to get some materials to mock up some of the construction steps so I can take some photos and make the instructions easier to follow.

me in the hammock a closeup on the link structure a ring-link