Saturday, 15 March 2014

Completing the Bale Shelter

March 15th. Today is the official start of the building season. It's still a little early for any lime-based bricklaying, but time to get on with some carpentry.

And before I do any large-scale carpentry I am going to need an outdoor store. Time to get my giant tarp out and cover the new dome.

I was going to do this job today, Saturday, but the forecast was a little breezy and I didn't fancy handling 100 sq metres of tarpaulin balanced on a ladder.  But a couple of days ago the forecast was just perfect:

Practically the whole UK was isobar-free. It was a cold night, a foggy morning and then warm sunshine without a breath of wind

The tarp measures 12m x 8m and the dome has a diameter of 7 metres and a height of 3.5m.  I've prepared the tarp with some extra eyelets along one of its long edges. So: chuck it over, and  get the mid-point of the prepared long edge lined up on the large base triangle that I have in mind for the entrance.

Lace up the edge to the struts with shock cord

Tie a couple of bricks on the opposite edge to keep the midline of the tarp under tension,

Work round the base of the dome, tucking the tarp under the bottom struts

Roll up the tarp to make it look a bit tidier; tack down some geotex fabric over the hubs to give the tarp some protection from the edges.

That's it! I've also put some ground pegs along the base, and four stakes inside with tie-downs on the hubs. It's flapping a bit in the breeze today (Saturday) so I plan to make a web or net to go over the top tomorrow, and keep the folds in place.

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