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Geodesic Quonset design for buildings

Gail Moore


Joined: Jul 09, 2011
Posts: 142
Location: south central Appalachia, southwest Virginia, US zone 6/7
    
    1
http://www.green-trust.org/products/
about half way down the page is a photo and this description of plans for building a geodesic quonset.

It seems to only take a few hundred dollars in lumber and nails. Can be covered with various skins. I wonder if it could be covered with some kind of surfacing, a waterproof membrane and earth, kinda like an earthen mound such as indigenous cultures used and lived in.

What a great idea for different kinds of out buildings or even to cover over a trailer or small home with vertical side walls and the quonset on top. I bought the plans back in the winter, and am wondering if anyone else has ever built anything with this design.

Steve Spence used it for an outbuilding for his generator and firewood and a chicken coop. He covered it with polyethelene.



Here is the description:

Geodesic Quonset Plans- $40 (Electronic Download). The first (and only?) example of a linear geodesic structure. Very strong, light weight, and inexpensive structure, ideal for garages, workshops, greenhouses, even homes. Can take a very heavy snow load, and extremely resistant to wind.

Can be used to connect Geodesic dome structures, or freestanding on it's own. (Free preview)


The world needs all kinds of minds. --Temple Grandin http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fn_9f5x0f1Q
Weird or just different? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1K5SycZjGhI&feature=endscreen&NR=1
Andrew Parker


Joined: Feb 13, 2012
Posts: 350
Location: Salt Lake Valley, Utah, hardiness zone 6b/7a
    
    4
Given the catastrophic failure of his metal design from a heavy snow load, I would have an engineer review the plans before loading it with dirt. His wooden structure may have survived the same conditions, but it does not mean that it would not have failed catastrophically if loaded beyond its capacity, which is unknown.
Gail Moore


Joined: Jul 09, 2011
Posts: 142
Location: south central Appalachia, southwest Virginia, US zone 6/7
    
    1
Thank you for your input, Andrew.

There are numerous reasons that mounds appeal to me. One is the longhouses of indigenous cultures.

Thinking also of how structural bamboo could be used to build longhouses.

Not sure how to explain and i don't know how to use the sketching applications available.

Blessings,
GAil

Andrew Parker


Joined: Feb 13, 2012
Posts: 350
Location: Salt Lake Valley, Utah, hardiness zone 6b/7a
    
    4
The closest modern equivalent to the longhouse is the hoop house, used primarily for greenhouses. You may have to split the bamboo to make the hoop arch. You could laminate it or make a simple truss, like this: http://www.by-the-sea.com/stimsonmarine/bowroof.html

The Marsh Arabs build a structure similar to the longhouse, made of bundled reeds.

If you want to build an earth covered structure using Native American designs, you should find a good book on the subject. I just bought a copy of Native American Architecture, by Peter Nabokov. It should get here this week. I reviewed some excerpts from it on Google Books and found it very informative.

Lately, Richard Thornton has done a lot of writing on Native American architecture, particularly, Creek. He seems to be knowledgeable, but then, so do I.
Gail Moore


Joined: Jul 09, 2011
Posts: 142
Location: south central Appalachia, southwest Virginia, US zone 6/7
    
    1
Yes, Native American Architecture is a GREAT BOOK! I've had it for a couple of years.

I also have looked for Earth Lodges online. There are some indigenous folks building them now.

THere are many pages on Earth Lodges starting somewhere around page 130 (don't have the book handy) and shows actual photos from villages with numerous lodges.

Thank you for the other resource and person. I will go check those out...
Andrew Parker


Joined: Feb 13, 2012
Posts: 350
Location: Salt Lake Valley, Utah, hardiness zone 6b/7a
    
    4
I remember seeing something similar to the geodesic quonset design, 32 years ago, in the Uintah Basin while driving along US 40 to Vernal in an area of ranchettes near Fruitland. I stopped to take a look, but it was about a half mile off the highway. It was a cylindrical or oval geodesic greenhouse made of lodgepole pine, or pinyon or juniper. The geodesic quonset design seems more likely because of the complex calculations needed for an oval shape.

Still waiting for my copy of Native American Architecture. I think they may have sent it by mule.
Andrew Parker


Joined: Feb 13, 2012
Posts: 350
Location: Salt Lake Valley, Utah, hardiness zone 6b/7a
    
    4
Gail,

I finally received my copy of Native American Architecture and have been spending the last couple of days digesting it and searching the internet. I am going to start a new subject titled "Adaptations of Pit House, Earth Lodge, Hogan, Kiva." So that we can continue discussion there.
Gail Moore


Joined: Jul 09, 2011
Posts: 142
Location: south central Appalachia, southwest Virginia, US zone 6/7
    
    1
Hi Andrew, I'm glad you received your book. There is SOOO much to digest, yes.

I look forward to discussions in the new thread. and I'll meet you there.

 
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