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  1. #1
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    Just Another DIY Tensahedron Stand

    Jumping on the band wagon or drinking the Kool-Aid, not sure which yet. I'm a kayaker who is slowly adding camping to hos kayak adventurers. In the past 2 years I have kayak camped 3 times, once with a tent and twice with a hammock. so far I've been lucky to find trees to hang from, but I know that a few of the places I want to go there won't be, so I have been dreaming of kayak portable stands. finally pulled the trigger yesterday on the tensahedron stand after months of reading the other threads. $20 worth of 2x2's and paracord (and an hour shifting through the pile of 2x2's looking for knot free and straightest ones) later and a little geometrical magic a stand is born! I lashed the ends with 6' of paracord. I figuring this will be temporary while I figure out if this stand will meet my needs. Later i'll replace it with more expensive, durable cordage. I set it up with the hated Dutch 11' 1.7 wide and with the better big box store 9' hammock to see how versatile the stand is. then I folded it up and checked how it fits on the kayak. primo!! it adds weight to the front, but that just means I have to place a larger percentage of my 40 lbs of drinking water behind the seat. I still need to find a good tie-down stake for the foot end. using the tuck is fine for driveway camping, and I assume ill' be able to find at least 1 tree in the wild to tie down to, but just in case its a wind swept grassy isle that I discover, i'll need something better than an old screwdriver jabbed into the ground (hint: DON'T try it! I don't know where the screwdriver was launched to, but I wouldn't be surprised if it is in orbit!!)

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  2. #2
    Senior Member Floridahanger's Avatar
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    Looks nice enough on the kayak. When you get the means, get a real one from Tensa-4. The complete shebang is only 11lbs and fits nicely compact inside the kayak.

    Several things:
    - I don't know of anyone that thinks the Dutch hammock is hated and big box store 9' being better.
    - Paracord is stretchy and if you're using as the footend tie down, it could let you down.
    - You can get a big dog leash corkscrew stake for those grassy islands.

    Send us some of the island camping pics or vids.
    Enjoy and have fun with your family, before they have fun without you

    My fantastic Photographer wife: http://www.capturedhearts-photography.com

  3. #3
    Senior Member jeff-oh's Avatar
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    Looks real nice. Did you run a line to keep the feet from spreading while using? It may have been hidden in the picture angle. Para cord for the tie out line is fine. Loading is well below line limit and the stretchiness gives nice shock absorption. I like the lashings. If you do find a camp with trees you can easily turn it into a campfire tri-pod or camp table. Very versatile.

    Quote Originally Posted by Floridahanger View Post
    - I don't know of anyone that thinks the Dutch hammock is hated and big box store 9' being better.
    I guess, now you do. Wienerman had a whole thread discussing why he disliked the dutch hammock and the 9' is his HYOH choice.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Floridahanger View Post
    Looks nice enough on the kayak. When you get the means, get a real one from Tensa-4. The complete shebang is only 11lbs and fits nicely compact inside the kayak.

    Several things:
    - I don't know of anyone that thinks the Dutch hammock is hated and big box store 9' being better.
    - Paracord is stretchy and if you're using as the footend tie down, it could let you down.
    - You can get a big dog leash corkscrew stake for those grassy islands.

    Send us some of the island camping pics or vids.
    Thanks! I have some pics from my trip 2 weeks ago, but it had trees. I am planning an eventual camping excursion along Assateague Island, and previous scouting trips have shown trees to be few, far between, and dinky! thus a need for a stand.

    Unfortunately, I'll probably never be able to afford the "real" tenshedraon, it is WAAAY outside my budget. My hangups with the Dutch hammock....I was going to say that that is better left for another post....but I guess I have whined about it enough that at least jeff-oh remembers it!! short version is that it is uncomfortable and after 3 months it is already unraveling. I'm using paracord for everything right now, it doesn't seem to be all that stretchy, and definitely not nearly enough to collapse the rig. but, as I said, I do plan on replacing all the cordage with better stuff, just didn't want to waste my extremely limited stock of Amsteel on this trial run. i'm more concerned with the 2x2's snapping under load. after I've proven to myself that the 2x2's will hold up, then i'll start cutting up the amsteel. and, I do have a dog leash corkscrew....someplace in the back yard. if it is too rusted up, I guess that will be my next purchase.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeff-oh View Post
    Looks real nice. Did you run a line to keep the feet from spreading while using? It may have been hidden in the picture angle. Para cord for the tie out line is fine. Loading is well below line limit and the stretchiness gives nice shock absorption. I like the lashings. If you do find a camp with trees you can easily turn it into a campfire tri-pod or camp table. Very versatile.
    Thanks for the affirmations!! My first test with the 11' hammock, I somehow had a brain fart and forgot about the anti-spreading line! fortunately it wasn't an issue. with the 11', the apexes were far apart and thus the feet had to come in close and the forces were more down than out and nothing slipped. the 9' one brought the apexes closer and spread the feet out, so now the feet really want to spread!! and I do have a piece of paracord there to prevent it. in the pic with the blue/gray hammock, you can barely make out the yellow ratchet strap I temporarily used. I tried a couple different ways of lashing the ends, and this seemed easiest. I am depending on the stretchiness of paracord to allow the ends to flex and twist.

  6. #6
    cougarmeat's Avatar
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    Nahhh - that's way too simple Now the rest of us who are hardware challenged have no excuses.

    Looks like you took the time to sand those 2x2 edges rounded/smooth. As far as an anchor, I see a big green kayak in the photo. If I recall, the "anchor" isn't so much to hold a lot of weight as it is to provide a "balance" aid. In my kayak camping experiences, the No Trees situation usually occur when having to stay on a sand/shell beach or rock shelf. In other words, usually nearer the boat than away from it; the boat would be nearby.

    In other threads, there are descriptions of take-down models. Like if you cut the legs in two and have a strong sleeve you put them in to get the total length.

    I still can't get over it - one visit to a hardware store. Looks like a little sanding. Four lashings (and line to limit the spreading added later) and you're done.
    In order to see what few have seen, you must go where few have gone. And DO what few have done.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by cougarmeat View Post
    Nahhh - that's way too simple Now the rest of us who are hardware challenged have no excuses.
    This was a proof of concept test, had to follow the KISS principle! I was amazed this simple version held together. first time I slooooowly sat in it I was expecting the twang of cord breaking or the crack of timbers shattering. a dozen times later and I just plop my carcass down.

    Quote Originally Posted by cougarmeat View Post
    Looks like you took the time to sand those 2x2 edges rounded/smooth.
    I didn't sand down the edges. I bought the pressure treated 2x2s, which come more "finished" than the regular 2x2s. one possible drawback is that they are even thinner!! regular 2x2s are 1,5x1.5 actual, these are 1.3125x1.3125!! they are a dollar more each, but I wanted them to be able to be stored outside, but I was even more scared of the snapping than if I had used the untreated ones. just had the wife watch as I got in and she said none of the lumber flexed as I got in, tossed about and got out, so test successful!! and for the record, I'm 205#, so these should work for anyone comparable or smaller. wife wasn't willing to get in hammock with me to do a stress test!!

    Quote Originally Posted by cougarmeat View Post
    As far as an anchor, I see a big green kayak in the photo. If I recall, the "anchor" isn't so much to hold a lot of weight as it is to provide a "balance" aid. In my kayak camping experiences, the No Trees situation usually occur when having to stay on a sand/shell beach or rock shelf. In other words, usually nearer the boat than away from it; the boat would be nearby.
    so far in my very limited kayak camping experience, the shore is too far from the campsite. most areas around here the shore is a bluff or cliff that I have to scramble up to get to dry land. but I do like the idea of using my kayak has a counterweight!!

    Quote Originally Posted by cougarmeat View Post
    In other threads, there are descriptions of take-down models. Like if you cut the legs in two and have a strong sleeve you put them in to get the total length.
    I have visions of cutting the legs in half and using 2 one foot pieces of angled aluminum as splints that are lashed on. I may experiment on 1 leg first to see if it works, before cutting all 4 legs!!

    Quote Originally Posted by cougarmeat View Post
    I still can't get over it - one visit to a hardware store. Looks like a little sanding. Four lashings (and line to limit the spreading added later) and you're done.
    Yep, for a bare bones set up, anyone can have a hammock stand. its all the bling and other added requirements that add cost and complexity. I really like the collapsahedron idea, I like the portability of the sectioned emt poles of other mods, but at the end of the day, i'm cheap, I have a truck and kayak for transpo, and i'm cheap.

  8. #8
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    I have experience with similar material (2x2s, paracord). I've had slippage where the paracord didn't "grip" the poles. Although it could be my lashing skills, I've had greater success with the following:
    1) Use bankline instead of paracord
    2) Using a saw, cut a line around each pole an inch or two from the end (where you intend the lashings to go). You actually only need it on the "corners" of the 2x2s, doesn't have to go all the way around.
    Of course, if you're going to amsteel, and drilling into the poles, don't do the above (you don't want to weaken the poles just where you're drilling holes).

    Love your stand, though. Here's another thought: Depending on how your lashings work, is it possible to have half your stand pointed fore, and half pointed aft, but not have to undo the lashings? Perhaps this will work better with amsteel & drilled holes? That might balance it better, not sure (I've never kayaked)

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainGravity View Post
    I have experience with similar material (2x2s, paracord). I've had slippage where the paracord didn't "grip" the poles. Although it could be my lashing skills, I've had greater success with the following:
    1) Use bankline instead of paracord
    2) Using a saw, cut a line around each pole an inch or two from the end (where you intend the lashings to go). You actually only need it on the "corners" of the 2x2s, doesn't have to go all the way around.
    Of course, if you're going to amsteel, and drilling into the poles, don't do the above (you don't want to weaken the poles just where you're drilling holes).

    Love your stand, though. Here's another thought: Depending on how your lashings work, is it possible to have half your stand pointed fore, and half pointed aft, but not have to undo the lashings? Perhaps this will work better with amsteel & drilled holes? That might balance it better, not sure (I've never kayaked)
    Thanks for the comments! So far I have not noticed any slipping of the paracord lashings, but it has only been 24 hours since I made it. since it's knotted like a shoelace, it is easy to undo and relash it if things get stretched, loose, or slip. I have no clue what bankline is. I did think about cutting shallow notches in the corners to prevent the lashings from slipping. If they do slip I may have to do that. even if I use Amsteel, I will probably still lash the poles, I'm not too keen on drilling holes in the poles which may cause them to split. though I have seen other threads where that was done and it seems to hold up, so I may experiment with that, and if it does split, the poles were only $3.77 each. and finally, the way I lashed the poles prevents them from rotating 180 degrees so I can't flop it open and have it cover the entire length of the kayak. would be cool if it could and would solve the balancing problem, but then I'm afraid it will get in the way of the paddle. as it is, I can push it far enough forward that the paddle misses the end of the poles.

  10. #10
    cougarmeat's Avatar
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    At $3.77, did you get them at Big Box - Home Depot or Lowes?

    With that set up, you could still sleep next to your boat - don't have to go up on the bluff. But if it is ocean water, you may want a Tide Table ... just say'n.
    In order to see what few have seen, you must go where few have gone. And DO what few have done.

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