Fruit Hammocks

Fruit Hammock

I know some people think fruit hammocks are rubbish but I find them really useful onboard Sumara. They are very gentle on soft fruits and everything can be inspected. I use one to store little evil snacks, one for healthy veg and one for fruit. They normally collect a couple of mobile phones, sunglasses and wallets too. You will be surprised how much a small hammock will hold. My old ones were getting a bit aged so I decided to knock up three new ones. I suppose they took about 45 minutes each but I wasn’t rushing.

Firstly cut out the netting. It is rather wonderful as you just follow the squares! I once thought that the hammock netting was cut to a fancy shape but concluded that a simple rectangle was easiest and works best. Make it about 6″ short of the distance between the hanging points. The width is up to you. The squares on this netting are about 20 mm square which feels about right. This one is 40 squares long by 27 square wide. I actually wanted white netting but it was out of stock but I have grown to like the brown colour.
Measure out your rope so it meets the hanging points and there is a good long overlap. My rope is 8 mm three strand matt polyester. The overlap was about 200 mm.
Cut the rope and make a kind of point with some electrical tape or Sellotape. This will just help with the threading.
Thread the rope through the long edges of the netting. Then mark the centre of your short splice with some tape ensuring the distance is correct between the hanging points. If it is too long there may be more sag than you want. If it is a bit too short you can always add a little shackle or lashing.
Bunch up the netting and do the short splice
Trim off the tails and tape up one end to help threading it through the netting. If you have a hot knife to hand you can always melt the ends.
Thread the short splice back through the netting and arrange the net so it is equally spaced.
Now take about a fathom of a nice round thread. 2 mm diameter seems about right. Thread it in and out through the loops of netting.
Using one end of the same threaded cord do a constrictor knot at the point where the netting is going to finish.
Then do a tight seizing around the netting. It won’t look perfect but we don’t want to emulate the Gods. I then use the diabolically expensive Liros splicing needle. You could make something yourself but the needle needs to be really well secured as it will take a lot of wriggling to get the cord rammed through all that netting.
Finish the tight seizing with the “reef knot” type hitch and pull up tight. Trim off any excess ends and bingo you have a nice new hammock – well you will have once you have seized the other end.
They are “designed” to hang between two points but actually they also seem to work fine just hanging from a single point too.

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