This project is sponsored by Cabot. All opinions are my own. This post may also contain affiliate links.
Only one thing beats sitting outside when the weather is nice and that’s laying outside…in a hammock. There’s something about swinging in a hammock that calms the soul and brings a true sense of relaxation.
If you’re looking for a DIY hammock stand to hang your new hammock in, look no further. In this post we’ll show you how to build a sturdy and stylish hammock stand to enjoy season after season.
This hammock stand is large enough to comfortably hang a 12’ double-wide hammock, but if you have a smaller hammock, that’s fine too. You can add rope or additional chain links to this hammock stand for it to fit your needs!
Though we are not engineers and cannot provide a specific weight limit for this project, I can say that we’ve personally tested ours up to ~350lbs so far and it’s done great!
One thing to note about this hammock is that you might notice that the edges of the stand come up when someone sits down in it. Fear not! That small flex is normal and to be expected.
Alright, let’s build a hammock stand using 4x4s!
- Drill with T-30 drill bit (this drill bit is not available in a standard drill bit set and will need to be purchased separately)
- Circular Saw
- Measuring Tape (new to DIY? Be sure to check out this post with measuring tips)
- Safety Equipment
- (3) 4x4x8s (we used pressure-treated pine)
- (1) 4x4x10s (we used pressure-treated pine)
- Exterior wood glue
- Exterior wood filler
- Sandpaper (150 grit)
- (2) ⅜ x 5.74” galvanized eye bolts
- (6) 5/16 x 5 ⅛” polymer exterior wood screws
- (8) 5/16 x 4” polymer exterior wood screws
- Cabot Siding and Fence Solid Color Stain and Sealer (we tinted ours to Spruce Blue)
- Purdy White Bristle Sprig brush
- Hammock (we got this 12’ 2 person hammock)
STEP 1: MAKE YOUR CUTS
Cut your boards down according to the cut list below. If you have one, feel free to use a miter saw to make these initial cuts. We found that route to be quicker than a circular saw.
If you only have a circular saw, fear not! You can make all of the necessary cuts with that. Use your speed square to mark the angled cuts.
For any measurements that involve angles, the length reflects the longer side of the board
|119 (we trimmed off a little bit from each end to cut off the rough eng grains)
|55.75(both sides cuts at 40-degrees to form a parallelogram- note: you might consider cutting one side at a slightly different angle (35 or 45-degrees) so that water can drip off the edge instead of sitting flat on top)
|15.25 (one side cut at 50-degrees)
Once you’ve made your initial cuts, it’s time to create a lap joint for the legs. To create the lap joint, first set your saw blade to cut 1.75” below the surface of the wood.
Mark 20.75” from both ends of the leg. Before cutting, I recommend lining up a scrap piece of wood between your lines to ensure it’s the right distance. This is the area that you will cut.
Start by running your circular saw blade through both of your marks. Then make a handful of cuts in between two marks. The more cuts you do, the faster it will be to chisel out. You can decide if you prefer to do more cuts and less chiseling or more chiseling and less cuts.
Bend the wood to remove it. Chisel out the rest until it’s nice and smooth. Repeat on the second leg.
Then mark 17.25” from both ends of the bottom stretcher. Line the leg up with the inside that mark and trace where the other edge of the leg ends. Cut these two sections out of the bottom stretcher.
STEP 2: INSTALL BOTTOM SUPPORTS
Place the bottom support 4.5” from the ends of the bottom stretcher, with the longer side closest to the outside ends of the bottom stretcher.
Add a generous amount of wood glue to the bottom of the bottom support.
Pro tip: since end grains tend to be super absorbent, add a layer of wood glue to the end grain and push it into the grain. Wait about 5 minutes and then add a second layer of wood glue to the end grain for a stronger hold.
Secure the bottom supports to the bottom stretcher with 5 1/8” screws.
We screwed ours in through the bottom stretcher and into the bottom support so that the screws were not visible. Screwing into an end grain isn’t the strongest way to make a joint. If you prefer a stronger option, you can add (4) 4” wood screws through bottom supports and into the bottom stretchers by drilling them in at an angle.
Do not test or stress any joints for at least 24-hours to give the glue ample time to dry.
STEP 3: ATTACH LEGS
Add glue to the lap joints you made in step 1. Place the legs in the bottom stretcher. You may need a rubber mallet to get the leg and bottom stretcher to fit snugly together.
STEP 4: INSTALL LEGS
To install the legs, apply wood glue to the top of the bottom stretcher, the bottom of the leg, and to the lap joint of the legs.
If you do not have a set of helping hands to assist at this step, you can clamp a spare board to the bottom stretcher to help hold the legs in place as you drill.
The screws will likely slip the leg back a little bit as they tighten, so place the leg a little further than the lap joint on the legs. Add (2) 4” screws through each leg and into the bottom stretcher and then add an additional 5 1/8” screw through the legs into the bottom stretcher. The reason the final screw in each leg is longer is because it sits further back in the angle, meaning it has more wood to get through before hitting the second board.
Then add (2) 4” screws through the bottom support and into the legs.
STEP 5: INSTALL HOOKS
On the inside side of the legs, mark 1.75” from either side and then mark 1” down from the top of the legs. Drill all the way through the 4×4 post and install a hook at this point on both legs.
STEP 6: PREP FOR STAIN
Now that the hammock stand is looking like a hammock stand, it’s time to prep it for stain. This step and the next are what are going to take your project from looking okay to looking beautiful.
If you want to, you can cover any screws with wood filler. We used Minwax Wood Filler because it stains well and works great on outdoor projects.
Wait until the wood filler is fully dry before moving onto the next part of the prep step: sanding.
Since this is an outdoor project, we won’t go through our entire sanding process to make the piece super super smooth. Instead, we just sand everything with 150 grit sandpaper. This will remove splinters and get it smooth.
After sanding, wipe the wood with a clean cloth to remove any dust. Once your hammock stand is clean, you can move onto the next step.
STEP 7: STAIN
We chose Cabot’s Siding and Fence Solid Color Stain and Sealer for a few different reasons.
First, you can get it tinted to about 100 different colors. We chose Spruce Blue and love it! It adds some color to our space while still remaining neutral enough to look great with everything else in our outdoor living space.
Next, it’s self-cleaning. Yup, it has Rainwash Technology™ which means that water (either rain or your garden hose) will just rinse away dirt for you. I don’t know about you, but cleaning outdoors is not on my top 5 favorite activities list.
Since it’s a solid stain, it also blends mismatched woods. Some of our pressure-treated wood was a little more green than other pieces, so having something that self-primes and looks consistent regardless of the wood color underneath was a big win in our book.
And finally, it’s designed to stand up against weather that is mold and mildew resistant. It’s a win-win-win-win.
To apply it, we simply brushed it on with a natural bristle paint brush. It went on quickly and only required one coat. It barely even made a dent in my stain can, so I’ll have plenty leftover for future projects!
STEP 8: HANG YOUR HAMMOCK
This step might look a little different based on what kind of hammock you have. We used the hooks that came with our hammock to hang it on the hooks added in step 5.
If you have a smaller hammock, you might need to add rope or additional chain links to get the hammock to fall just right.
There you have it! Now you know how to build your very own hammock stand! Here’s to soaking up the nice weather in comfort and style.