Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Yurt Plans, Part 1: The Structure

Now to get into the details of the yurt. First, some vital stats:

Diameter: 24'
Area: ~450 square(round?) feet
Wall height: 5' 8"
Peak ceiling height: 10' 2"
Volume: 3259.9 cubic feet (I can't fathom how this would be useful info, but oh well)

After a lot of thought, I set 2 main design goals for the yurt:
  • It needs to be as inexpensive as possible(notice I did not say "cheap")
  • It needs to be as sustainable and low-impact as possible
Fortunately, those two things happen to intersect in several ways, the most obvious being recycling. Thus, my yurt will be made of reused, recycled or recovered materials whenever possible.

Here's the design so far:

Who reads alt text, anyway?

The yurt will be built on a wooden deck of standard construction, but of reclaimed wood. I intend to get this from demolition sites, but other sources may reveal themselves...

The lattice-like wall sections(the khana) will be made from the rough edges trimmed off boards during milling. These are typically ground up and sold as animal bedding or simply thrown away.This is a plentiful resource available across the States.

The rafters(uni) will be made from standard 2x4's. I hope to get these at the same time as the deck material.

The center compression ring(tono) that the rafters fit into will be made from scrap lumber scrounged from construction sites.

Insulation will be concrete blankets. These are used by construction companies in cold climates to keep concrete from freezing after a pour(this would ruin the concrete). Most companies throw these out as they get tattered and worn by heavy use. They have an r-value of anywhere from 3-8, and should be sufficient if doubled up. These are readily available in northern US states. If you can't find them where you live, you may not need insulation! :)

The outer weatherproofing will be discarded billboards. Billboards are made of a very strong fiber reinforced vinyl that should be perfect for this. They're also designed to be UV resistant and last many years exposed to the elements. Again, billboards should be plentiful and easy to obtain.

Finally, I will also line the inside of the yurt with a natural fabric of some sort, the purpose of which is twofold. First, it should take care of any condensation issues I have; second, concrete blankets are ugly. I would rather look at a nice, natural fabric than a tattered black tarp

Next time: the electrical system!

1 comment:

  1. Nice, I now love yurts made of recycled material because
    1. No tax
    2.Quite en-expensive
    3.They can be quite cozy for long hunting trips or long camping or living.

    I am under 18 (my age shall remain anonymous too) and am still in school and I think it would be cool and quite fun to build one and live in one and also escape my parents for unknown amount of years. Although I would only be a hundred to four hundred feet away from them.