7 Best Hammock Carabiners of 2019
|Top Pick & Best Ultralight Hammock Carabiner: CAMP USA Nano 22||
|Runner-up: Mad Rock Ultralight Wire Gate||
|Metolius FS Mini II||
|Black Diamond Neutrino||
|Mad Rock Super Tech Screw||
|Trango SuperFly Screwlock||
We headed out to the woods to test 7 of the best hammock carabiners. After hanging in hammocks, checking the carabiners’ compatibility with various hammock straps, and seeing which were the easiest to clip, our favorite is the CAMP USA Nano 22.
It’s the lightest carabiner we tested, weighing in at a mere 22 grams (0.78 oz). It’s also nicely sized, affordable, and easy to clip and unclip.
However, you may not need to buy a pair of hammock carabiners. Most camping hammocks come with carabiners. The Kammok Roo Double has our favorite included ‘biners of all the hammocks we’ve tested.
Ultimately, carabiners are a minor consideration in your hammock setup. Most will work just fine. But if you want the best, read on for our full reviews.
Top Pick & Best Ultralight Hammock Carabiner: CAMP USA Nano 22
In a field of near-identical products, the Nano 22 was our clear favorite.
It’s the lightest carabiner we tested, living up to its name with a weight of just 22 grams. Hammock straps fit inside easily, and the gate is responsive and snappy.
We liked the Nano 22’s size better than the Metolius FS Mini II, the other ultralight carbiner in this test. It’s larger which made clipping and unclipping a little bit easier.
The Nano 22 is the best of both worlds: ultralight and easy to handle. It works great for backyard hammock users and ultralight hammock campers alike.
- Claimed weight: 22 g
- Our recorded weight: 22 g
Runner-up: Mad Rock Ultralight Wire Gate
Many climbers know Mad Rock as a producer of decent and affordable climbing gear. The Ultralight Wire Gate lives up to this reputation.
Its weight and price are both respectably low. Its size works with all the hammock straps we tried it with and makes clipping and unclipping easy.
It weighs 32 grams, so it’s not “ultralight” when compared to the Nano 22 and FS Mini II. (For the purposes of this review, we defined an “ultralight” hammock carabiner as weighing less than one ounce, or 28.35 grams.) Unless you’re an ultralight backpacker, though, this hardly makes a difference.
- Claimed weight: 32 g
- Our recorded weight: 32 g
Reviews of the 5 Other Hammock Carabiners We Tested
The FS Mini II is the second ultralight carabiner in this review. It’s not lighter than the Nano 22, but it is tinier.
It fits 1-inch hammock straps but would struggle with wider ones. Its size makes it just slightly harder to clip and unclip, too.
The FS Mini II could be right for you if space is at a heavy premium and you’re looking for the tiniest carabiner you can find. Otherwise, go with the Nano 22.
- Claimed weight: 25 g
- Our recorded weight: 24 g
The Phase is similar to the Mad Rock Ultralight Wire Gate. The biggest differences are the weight — a scandalous 2-gram difference — and ease of clipping.
As of this writing it’s also tied for cheapest carabiner in this test with the Metolius FS Mini II.
You can’t go wrong with the Phase. But beyond price there’s no compelling reason to choose it over any of the other options.
- Claimed weight: 30 g
- Our recorded weight: 31 g
The Neutrino is average when it comes to size, price, and ease of clipping. Where it differs is weight.
It’s slightly heavier than the other non-locking carabiners in this test. In practice, however, the difference is negligible to all but the most weight-conscious backpackers.
The Neutrino is perfectly adequate. But it doesn’t stand out when compared to the other options.
- Claimed weight: 36 g
- Our recorded weight: 35 g
Most hammock campers don’t need a locking carabiner. Locking carabiners, aka lockers, are carabiners with a locking mechanism that, when engaged, prevents the gate from opening.
Lockers are used by climbers to secure points that must not fail in their climbing systems. Hammock campers — and hammock users in general — will rarely be hammocking in a situation where their carabiners are stressed to the point of failure. Rarer still is a situation where a carabiner failure would spell serious injury or death. (Unless you’re this guy.)
Regardless, there might be some of you out there who need or want a locking carabiner for your hammock. They do provide extra safety. So we threw a couple into the mix to see how they fared.
The Super Tech Screw was our favorite. We liked its hook-free nose which made clipping and unclipping easier. It’s also the lighter of the two lockers (by a trivial amount).
But who is this the right hammock carabiner for?
Ultimately it will fill a very specific niche: hammock users who hang their hammocks high off the ground or in otherwise precarious situations.
But based on our experience this use case is so small that we wonder who this would even apply to. We’re not even sure we’ll include locking carabiners in the next update of this review.
If you’re considering the Super Tech Screw because of its hook-free nose, look at our climbing carabiner reviews first. They include some lighter carabiners with hook-free noses.
- Claimed weight: 43 g
- Our recorded weight: 45 g
The SuperFly is the carabiner in this test least suited to hammocking.
It’s the heaviest one we tested. It’s a locking carabiner, too, a type that is largely unnecessary for hammock users.
Plus, despite being a locking carabiner, the SuperFly still has a nose hook which makes it more likely to snag when clipping and unclipping it.
- Claimed weight: 45 g
- Our recorded weight: 46 g
Here are the best hammock carabiners:
- CAMP USA Nano 22
- Mad Rock Ultralight Wire Gate
- Metolius FS Mini II
- Trango Phase
- Black Diamond Neutrino
- Mad Rock Super Tech Screw
- Trango SuperFly Screwlock
How to Choose the Best Hammock Carabiner for Your Needs
Types of Hammock Carabiners
Non-locking carabiners are what most people think of when they think of carabiners. They have the typical D or asymmetrical D shape and a spring-loaded wire or solid gate. (We only tested wiregate carabiners for this review because they’re typically lighter and less likely to freeze shut in winter.)
Ultralight carabiners are simply lightweight non-locking carabiners. They are usually smaller as well.
Locking carabiners are carabiners with a locking mechanism that, when engaged, prevents the gate from opening. The locking mechanism can be manual or automatic. Manual locking mechanisms usually involve a screw-lock that, when tightened, holds the gate in its locked position. Auto-locking mechanisms engage when the carabiner gate is closed.
Brand-specific carabiners: Many hammock brands include carabiners with their hammocks. These range in quality from great to mediocre. The Kammok Roo Double has our favorite included carabiners of all the camping hammocks we’ve tested.
Non-locking carabiners (typically 29-40 grams) are usually lighter (and cheaper) than locking carabiners. The ones we tested range from 30-36 grams.
Ultralight carabiners (<29 grams) are, of course, very lightweight. For this review we classified ultralight hammock carabiners as weighing one ounce (28.35 grams) or less.
Locking carabiners (typically >40 grams) are the heaviest of the three types. The locking mechanism adds weight, and they’re designed for use at critical points in rock climbing so they’re beefier as a result. The two we tested for this review weigh over 40 grams.
The rule here is simple: buy carabiners whose weight capacity exceeds the weight you’ll suspend with them.
Since your hammock has a weight capacity too, you could also get carabiners whose weight capacity matches or exceeds that of your hammock.
Brand-specific carabiners and hammock carabiners usually have a weight capacity of 400 pounds or greater. Consult a brand’s product pages to find out exact numbers.
Climbing carabiners have strength ratings measured in kilonewtons (kN). Ratings are different along the major axis (along the spine) and minor axis (spine to gate). They also include a gate-open rating (along the spine with the gate open). The ratings are printed on the carabiner, often along the spine.
Most non-locking climbing carabiners are CE certified, which means they must meet the following minimum requirements:
- Major axis: 20 kN
- Minor axis: 7 kN
- Gate open: 7 kN
There are countless cheap carabiners available on Amazon from budget brands. We didn’t test any of them and instead stuck to carabiners from top climbing gear brands.
Over the years of testing outdoor gear, we’ve learned that some of the budget brands on Amazon have poor quality control. Our advice: stick to gear brands with a solid reputation when buying your ‘biners.
How We Tested
We went into the woods to do the backbreaking work of hanging in a hammock using each carabiner. In addition to simple lounging, we rocked in each hammock to see how the carabiners held up to this strain.
Hammock Strap Compatibility Check
Most hammock tree straps have a 0.5-inch or 1-inch width. Because of this, we wanted to check that each carabiner could fit straps of these widths.
Every carabiner was able to fit both 0.5-inch and 1-inch straps.
Clipping & Unclipping Tests
We hung a hammock with some straps then, to test the clip-ability of each ‘biner, we unclipped and reclipped it to various strap loops.
(Four of these carabiners were also included in our guide to the best carabiners for rock climbing. Our climbing gear tester conducted similar tests in that review, so we incorporated his results alongside ours in our scoring.)
Overall, ease of clipping was a minor consideration. Hammock users, unlike climbers, aren’t clipping and unclipping their carabiners often enough for us to weight this performance metric heavily.
We expect that for most of you weight isn’t a critical consideration. But for the ultralight hammock campers out there, we double checked the weight of each ‘biner on our trusty kitchen scale.