Examples of how to hang your spreader bar and non-spreader bar hammock.
To hang your hammock correctly, pull the chains taut until it is parallel to the ground. You may need two people to accomplish this. If there is any sway, pull it tighter.
The right way
The wrong way
Choosing a location
With the wide array of hammocks available on the market, you are sure to find the right one for any location you have in mind. Though most people think of a only hanging one between two trees but, there are a number of other ways. There are many types of stands for traditional styles with spreader bars and without spreader bars. There are also hanging kits allowing you to hang from the ceiling, from the wall, or on a porch, virtually anywhere you would like one, as long as the place you want to hang it will support the weight capacity. As a general rule, we feel a tree should be a minimum of 12" in diameter. If using a post, 4"X4" is the smallest size you should consider using. Be sure the posts are in good condition, without cracks or rot. Trees and posts both should be hardwood, not soft, and whatever posts you buy should be treated lumber, or a type of wood resistant to rot, from exposure to moisture. Posts should be planted in the ground a minimum of two feet, deeper if the soil is sandy. Dig the hole, place the post in the center of the hole, fill with cement, and let dry 48-72 hours before use.
How to Determine Hanging Distance and Height
Distance: For designs with spreader bars, the minimum distance required to hang your hammock will be equal to the overall length. If it's 13 feet from hanging point to hanging point, this is the minimum distance required for hanging. If the two trees are farther apart than this, you will need either rope or chain to extend your hanging points. The same would apply to a stand. We recommend extending the hanging points in equal lengths on both ends, and we also recommend extending the hanging points no farther than 18 inches on each end for a total of an additional 3 feet. The reason we recommend an additional 3 feet as being the maximum distance for hanging is, once you get beyond this amount, the tipping factor increases in direct proportion to how much farther you extend the hanging points.
For designs without spreader bars, the hanging distance is much more flexible. Hammocks without spreader bars will also have an overall length, determined by the hanging point to hanging point distance. However, the minimum hanging distance without spreader bars will be less than the overall length because styles without spreader bars are designed to hang with a "dip" in them, and will not be taut when no one is lying in them. In general, the minimum hanging distance without spreader bars is two thirds of the overall length. Therefore if it is 180 inches from hanging point to hanging point, the minimum hanging distance is going to be 120 inches. For the maximum hanging distance, you would simply add two feet to the minimum hanging distance. These distances are only recommendations, and can be adjusted to fit your particular circumstances. Models without spreader bars are flexible in how they can be hung in this way: the closer together you place the hanging points, the higher off of the ground you must go, while the farther apart you place the hanging points, the closer to the ground you can hang the them.
Height: For styles with spreader bars, 4-5 feet off the ground is the average distance for hanging them. For designs without spreader bars, 6-8 feet off of the ground is the optimum height for hanging. However, as stated above, styles without spreader bars are more flexible in how they are hung, and therefore can be adjusted to the space you have, assuming you are have adequate space to move both up or down, and in or out.