Cutting Wood for a Hammock Stand
The big advantage of a hammock stand is that you hang your hammock anywhere--just about! Many people opt for a metal stand, because it is light and easy to put together. Steel frames are less expensive than stainless steel, but they do rust, and are usually high maintenance. Wooden stands can be elegant, and the look of natural wood is hard to beat. Wooden hammock stands are heavier feel more stable.
The weight can make them more difficult to move around and wooden stands are more expensive. One way to keep the cost down is to buy a hammock frame kit, which can usually be found among the hammock accessories on sale. The kit will provide the connectors and caps needed to assemble the stand. All you need to provide is the wood. The directions for assembling the stand will come with the hammock frame kit. Cutting the wood accurately is crucial.
Step 1 - Wood
Cyprus wood is good for stands because the natural oils in the wood protect it. Pine is economical, readily available, and easy to work with. However, pine is a soft wood, which means it will mark easily and it is porous. Oak, maple and teak are more common hard woods you can choose. They are more expensive but are extremely durable. Mahogany shorea is grown in protected forests and has been a popular choice for centuries. It is very hard and, like cyprus wood, it has many protective natural oils, making it highly resistant. Any natural wood can be used but pressured timbers are the most durable for exterior use.
Step 2 - Preparation
Depending on the wood, painting, varnishing or applying treatments will help it stay looking good, for longer periods of time. In some instances, this is vital. You should paint or varnish before assembling the stand.
Step 3 - Measure Accurately
Dropping a tape measure on a hard surface can cause the tip to bend. This is one of the main reasons measurements can be wrong, and is all too easily overlooked. If the tip is bent, you can straighten it easily with a pair of flat nosed pliers*.
Step 4 - Cutting Wood
Cutting a straight line in wood does not need to be a problem so long as your measuring tape is accurate and you stay on the right side of the line. Using a carpenter's pencil, mark the measurement required with an ARROW first. Use a framing square to establish a straight line through the centre of the tip, of the arrow point. Mark an X on the side of the wood that is to be cut off. This is the side where the saw blade must skim to make the perfect, straight cut. When you cut, the blade cuts should be on the side where the X is. Cutting down the center of the line, or on the other side, will shorten the wood and your cut will not be accurate.