OK! It happened. In spite of your best intentions you wore buttons or belt loops into your hammock, and broke one or more of the strings. What do you do now? In this article we will cover the repairs of three of the most common mishaps that can befall the Mayan hammock.
- Mishap number one, and the most common, is the breaking of one or two string because they snagged something on your clothing. The repair is pretty simple. Take both ends of the string and tie a single weaver’s knot. What is that? Make a U shape in one of the strings. Then bring the end of the other string up through the back of the U, around the back, and then under itself. Pull tight. Trim the edge; and work the string back into the weave. Repeat for any other broken strings.
- Mishap number two starts out like mishap number one except you have nylon or mercerized cotton strings that don’t break easily. In this case you end up with a long loop pulled out of the weave. In this case you will carefully pull the string from each side of the loop so the loop almost disappears, and you have two smaller loops, one on each side. Then pull the string from the far side of each loop making further smaller loops. Keep doing this, tracing the string through the length of the hammock until you have only a series of small loops along the hammock. Then take the end of the hammock and shake it vigorously. If necessary, you can gently tug and spread the weave around the subject string until the weave looks good.
- Mishap number three is the bad one. It can happen when your teenagers have their friends over; and no one quite knows how almost a third of the hammock was sliced open! Trying to retie and weave this mess together would make a grown man cry. So don’t try. Get some fishing line or other thin but strong string. Go just past one end of the wound and tie the weave tightly shut with a strong knot. Then evenly and carefully spiral stitch along the full length of the wound, making sure to get at least a couple of strands of good hammock cord on either side of the tear. Continue past the end of the tear and tie another tight knot. You can trim off all the string beards hanging down, and you are done. This is not a beautiful repair, but it will last for years.
The beauty of these repairs is that even when they don’t look so great, the comfort of the hammock is generally not affected at all.