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Geodesic dome greenhouse build

 
Posts: 136
Location: Romania
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Here i present my geodesic dome greenhouse made following the calculations of Buckminster Fuller ( the kind genius of the Earth).
In it i will grow verry rare tropical and subtropical fruit trees in a cold place like Romania ( zone 6).
It will have double polycarbonate walls for thermal insulation and i used 4 mm double wall poly on the exterior and 3 mm on the interior.
The frame its made of wood that has 2 coats of boiled linseed oil,2 coats of alchidic paint and lastly a coat of paraffine mixed with linseed oil wich repels water.
The dome itts a 4V frequency dome and its sealed with aluminum adhesive tape.
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master steward
Posts: 7143
Location: Northern WI (zone 4)
2034
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That's beautiful Vultural!  How will you keep it warm enough for tropical plants?  Is the perimeter insulated against the frozen ground outside?
 
Mihai Ilie
Posts: 136
Location: Romania
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All the wood struts are cut by hand with verry complicated compond angles and this structure does not use hubs over the joints( its easyer to build with hubs).
Here is a tool i had to invent to measure the compound angles and another tool to measure the triangles of polycarbonate on the exterior.
In the last picture i made a test with a blow torch to see if the polycarbonate is safe against fires and it actually impressed me because it didnt wanted to burn and sustain fire.
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Mihai Ilie
Posts: 136
Location: Romania
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Mike Haasl wrote:That's beautiful Vultural!  How will you keep it warm enough for tropical plants?  Is the perimeter insulated against the frozen ground outside?


First it will have double walls sealed verry well of @ 6 cm thickness and the air in between the polycarbonate insulates againt heat losses ( and also prevents the condensation).
Second ,i build a small rocket stove  that ultimately will be mounted outdoor and it will transfer the heat inside the greenhouse through air pipes in the soil floor.
The stove will create its own electric power by the use of somme Seebeck generators/ peltiers ,to run a powerfull ,brushless ebm Papst fan that amazingly has only 50 watts and works on 12-24 V.
The stove its soo small because it is build to run non stop and it will have a special ,wood branches and kindling ,feeder that will keep the fire on for 3-5 days continuously(no use of pellets here).
The feeder will be mein invention but il share it with everybody and i dont get a patent on it( in case it works 😂).
Basically the heating will be an automated feeding and autonomous rocket heater with air transfer i stead of water transfer and the heat from the air transfer will be stored into the floor as radiant heat.
Im using high quality materials like stainless steel and refractory materials i  the burner,Ytong and perlite riser.
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Mike Haasl
master steward
Posts: 7143
Location: Northern WI (zone 4)
2034
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Neat!  I'm really interested in the automatic feeder.  I hope it works out.  You have a really nice greenhouse!
 
gardener
Posts: 2342
Location: Pacific Wet Coast
853
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Welcome to Permies! I like that "triangle" measuring gauge you made. Well done!

Do you have specific reasons you chose to build a dome, rather than other alternatives?
How do you plan on organizing the beds inside? I could see doing it as circles of polycultures in some sort of mandala pattern.

We'd love for you to update us when you've got it planted.
 
Mihai Ilie
Posts: 136
Location: Romania
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Jay Angler wrote:Welcome to Permies! I like that "triangle" measuring gauge you made. Well done!

Do you have specific reasons you chose to build a dome, rather than other alternatives?
How do you plan on organizing the beds inside? I could see doing it as circles of polycultures in some sort of mandala pattern.

We'd love for you to update us when you've got it planted.


I choose the geodesic dome because i had build an art piece of a wall for somewhone that was separating somme circular stairs i  a shop and was concave then convex ,made from triangles and looked like a geodesic wave.
It was demolished after just a few years and i wanted to have my own such structure at home that wont be demolished so ive build the dome.I chose a 4V dome because i could make it bigger with smaller triangles so that it fits the polycarbonate sheets to avoid too much losses.Also because its a 4V and more complicated rhan a 2V or a 3V it has more strength and i could use less wood and thinner struts.
I like that its 4 meters tall because i plan to grow trees inside like Inga ,ice cream beans in the center,cherimoya and manny otthers,guavas,citrus,sugar apples..
The Inga specie i have wich i do t know exactly what specie it is( could be verry endangered) ,likes to grow verry tall and the height its a plus.
It will be like a jungle inside the dome with rare tropical fruits that cant be found in supermarkets.
I also grow endangered timber trees as a hobby ( im a qualifyed enviromentalist) and i needed a greenhouse for them.
 
pollinator
Posts: 946
Location: Denmark 57N
238
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That looks beautiful, I hope you can get the heating working as you envisage and that it gives you many years of lovely tropical growing. I've always really fancied one since I saw a friends his is 3-4 times larger than yours and made out of scaffolding poles and covered normal greenhouse polly. it isn't insulated or heated but it still lets him grow apricots and peaches which won't fruit here normally. Unfortunately I think it is probably beyond my woodworking skills/tools and I have to watch out how much space I have under glass for planning restriction  reasons :(
 
pollinator
Posts: 274
Location: Near Philadelphia, PA
54
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Beautiful!

How are you venting the greenhouse during the summer (hinged panels near the top?)
Do you have plans for a shelter over your outside heater?

Looking forward to seeing updates on your project!

 
Mihai Ilie
Posts: 136
Location: Romania
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Phil Gardener wrote:Beautiful!

How are you venting the greenhouse during the summer (hinged panels near the top?)
Do you have plans for a shelter over your outside heater?

Looking forward to seeing updates on your project!


It has 5 windows at the top that will open and close by actioning a rope and pulley sistem fom the lower part of the wall.Aeration its perfect through the door and those top windows but i also have another 6 windows 2 each for left,right and opossed to the door.
The door itself will be built to have a water courtain with a solar pump that will pump water from a small concrete tank in the floor on a honeycomb like structure on the door.
The air that passes through the wet door to the top windows will make evaporative cooling.
 
Mihai Ilie
Posts: 136
Location: Romania
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Here is how i install the polycarbonate.
I use aluminum tape ( got it cheap -5 dollars 50 meters long x5 cm).
I cut the tape in 2 to make it just 2,5 cm wide and then i seal each triangle on its edges to keep the water from entering inbetween the plastic layers.
Then i used regular drywall screws  and after i add 2 layers over the joints between the triangles,one layer of 2,5 cm tape and lastly a 5 cm wide one wich covers the screws also so that the water cant infiltrate from around the screws.
Its really good waterproofing but the tape once glued its verry hard to be romoved so has to be glued perfectly from first.

On the interior i add another layer of polycarbonate to keep the dome warmer by thermal insulating it and it also stops the condensation wich is a big issue in winter.
I post a picture with 2 layers of plastic wich have no condensation and one layer of plastic wich has a lot of condensation.
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Beautiful and really nice greenhouse! Quite big, you did a great job. How's the progress? Looking forward for more photos.
 
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