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Pallet yurt for simple shed

 
master steward
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Inspired by a heavy shower I've decided to make myself a shed. The basic concept is similar to a yurt, except I'm planning to anchor the structure down with fenceposts and hopefully avoid spending any money.
This is the initial concept:

4 posts driven in at roughly equal spaces around circumference
Pallets arranged in circle and lintel/step (possible top and bottom of eighth pallet) attached to form doorway.

shed top view


wires loosely strung around top and bottom
bendy wood spars inserted in wire to form roof frame and secured by tensioning top wire
pond liner and polytunnel plastic arranged with overlap to form roof
fishing nets over roof and stapled to pallets to secure.
Inside shed can be dug out to give extra height inside (sunken path downhill so shouldn't end up with inside pond!)

roof edge detail


Bill of materials:
7 pallets
2 wooden beams (door sill/lintel)
2 circumferential straining wires
2 fence tension blocks
4 fence posts
8 screws
8 c 8ft bendy wood spars: hazel or willow?
1 wood spar hoop
pond liner offcuts
polytunnel cover offcut
old fishing nets
staples

I had a word with a friendly delivery driver and now have the main component - the pallets:

pallets for construction shed
big pile of pallets


So the first step is clearing the site and deciding where to put the shed - against the fence or adjacent to the growing beds....

new shed build site clearance
clearing the site

 
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Very cool project.
I love the idea of these yurts, probably  too much!

It seems likely that your hut will be between 8.75 and 10.5 feet across, which seems small for a shed to work in, but fine as a place to hide out from the rain.
If it is big enough across, I would want 4 more posts, one at each corner.
Blocks or bricks to keep the pallets up off of the soil could be very important, the "wood" blocks between the top and bottom of these pallets are very susceptible to water damage.
I would also want a higher, more domed roof, and maybe a center post, just to avoid the extra digging.

I've been pollarding a mulberry tree for years now, it has two years of uncut growth on it now.
Those branches will be harvested this year and should make nice withes for a structure like the one you're building, but they will likely become part of a hoophouse.
If I were in your position I would be hard pressed to not try for a living structure, with willow poles going all the way from the roof to the soil.
The used netting across the exterior would be perfect for climbing vines.
That said, the living portion of such a structure could easily disrupt the more practical inanimate portion of the structure.
 
Nancy Reading
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William Bronson wrote:
It seems likely that your hut will be between 8.75 and 10.5 feet across, which seems small for a shed to work in, but fine as a place to hide out from the rain.
If it is big enough across, I would want 4 more posts, one at each corner.


Yes it is just a little shelter, for me and my gardening tools and rubbish. It could be quite a bit smaller and still be effective for this, but I like the idea of a roundhouse - I did consider stone/thatch like a iron age house, but really that's far too much work for what it needs to be.
I'll see how I feel about more posts once I have it set up - I'll do a dry build with the pallets to get a feel for it first. I'm hoping that the wire will give the whole thing some integrity, but I do have more old fence posts to use if necessary.

Blocks or bricks to keep the pallets up off of the soil could be very important, the "wood" blocks between the top and bottom of these pallets are very susceptible to water damage.


Good idea! also the site is slightly sloped, so I could accommodate that with different sized stones in different positions. I can steal some from our (collapsed) boundary wall.

I would also want a higher, more domed roof, and maybe a center post, just to avoid the extra digging.


I'm actually looking forwards to the spare soil! My soil is pretty thin here - about 20 inches on top of solid Skye, so if I can put a bit more depth on areas I actually want to grow plants that is all to the good. One reason I dug out the adjacent paths was for the extra soil. I don't fancy the post being in the way either - OK in a bigger structure perhaps. As long as I don't hit my head inside (I'm only 5 ft 3 in) I'll be happy.


If I were in your position I would be hard pressed to not try for a living structure, with willow poles going all the way from the roof to the soil.


Lovely! Not next to my growing beds, but could be a cute hideaway in the woods!

The used netting across the exterior would be perfect for climbing vines


The area around the structure is as yet uncultivated. There are a couple of rowan trees that are still only knee high ( I may move one if necessary). So planting is next years project (and probably the subject for a whole new thread). I'm wanting companion planting for my growing beds to support beneficial insects, maybe more perennial vegetables like asparagus and globe artichoke, and stuff for the gardener (me) to munch on while I'm working. I do have lots of discarded fish netting so can drape the whole structure if I want to.
 
Nancy Reading
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I've had a good couple of afternoons and got the walls of my shed up. It didn't go quite as planned of course! The slope of the ground made it difficult to balance the pallets in position. Marking it out was a bit more tricky than I'd thought it would be. I first put a post in each corner as best I could, managing to drop the post knocker on my head (ouch! no damage done). Then I balanced the pallets on stones so as to make them all level. The drop across the structure is a bit larger than I'd imagined, probably about a foot over the width, so I may end up with a partially sloping floor I think.
easy diy shed for free
posts in position

It turned out to be quite easy to make a wooden block for each internal corner and fix the pallets together. A thickish batten cut at a 45 degree angle gives the 135 degree facets to support adjacent pallets. In retrospect the same job could have been done without the angle cuts by fixing the pallets across the top face - there should be clearance there, since the roof is intended to go on the outside face not the tops.
corner block for octagonal shed
internal corner block

It made sense then to fix the pallets to the posts at the corner; but some posts were round and some flat. Some pallet corners are only fixed on the inside therefore, depending on how well the pallets and posts aligned.  I'm still hoping that the circumferential wire will give additional support, but a rope or strap around the pallets and posts towards the bottom might be a good idea.
diy shed build from pallets
pallets fixed to corner posts

The final step was to fix a lintel above the doorway. This time two angled cuts were required - just marked in situ to get the length correct to how it turned out.
easy diy shed build
door lintel cut at angles to fit aperture

I made a little start at clearing the soil from the doorway, and am happy that I will have plenty of headroom this way, even at the door. The shed has turned out a bit bigger than I'd envisaged too - so will be nice and spacious for me. I may even make a door of some kind - I'll see what comes to mind.
pallet walls self built shed
shed walls up and secure - digging out floor by door

The next step (as well as clearing/levelling the floor) is selecting some nice long, straight poles for the roof structure. The additional width means I'll want pretty long poles - maybe 10 feet rather than eight, of reasonable strength. I'm envisaging a sort of cross between a reciprocating roof and a wicker basket, so hope it works out OK!
 
Nancy Reading
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Some dome roof inspiration for courage!


source


source


source

Look how easily the willow twists together in this video of a living dome construction


Mine won't be a living structure of course - I need something with  little bit more weather resistance. Also I'm not sure whether it will be willow, hazel or aspen poles that I use. It may well be a mixture, given the lengths I'm going to need.
 
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Your shaped corner blocks are a good idea. They are being screwed into the pallets at right angle to the grain which is supposedly much better than screwing into "end grain". (or so I've been told)

a rope or strap around the pallets and posts towards the bottom might be a good idea.

Do you have  a surplus of good sized rocks? You could pile rocks up the out side, as that would help keep the water off the wood there, particularly if your roof design doesn't include any overhang?
 
Nancy Reading
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Jay Angler wrote: Do you have  a surplus of good sized rocks? You could pile rocks up the out side, as that would help keep the water off the wood there, particularly if your roof design doesn't include any overhang?


I do have lots of rocks (a former boundary wall) but I'm going to rely on ventilation to give my wood longevity! The stones are a bit far away to conveniently use for building here in my growing area, and to be really useful I would still need to overhang the roof to the rocks I suppose. It would keep off some of the driving rain, so I could build up on the windward side maybe in future.

I'm also trying to work out whether I can design a curved gutter from the roofing plastic too. It would sometimes be handy to have water closer than the house or the river.
 
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Here's a link a set of plans for a Freeman geodesic dome that can be made from alkethene tubing, willow rods or similar, and covered with oilskin it would make a great lightweight shed roof. It's easy to build and can be scaled to any diameter. I use a 1.5 m dome as a chook tractor and occasional berry protector. We originally got these plans from milkwood.net but the site gives 404s now.

dome plans download
 
William Bronson
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I have built a lot of fences and sheds from heat treated pallet wood and they tend to be plenty durable, as long as they get a chance to dry out.
Tarp over wood helps as well, but then you need to protect the tarp from sun damage.

For the gutters, I would eschew the circle and use 8 straight gutters with open ends, and 8 buckets/barrels for catching the water.
The gutters could be as simple as a 2x4 with a 1/2" deck board screwed to each side.
Wax,paint or line the interior of this or leave it be, but either way I think it will work as a gutter.


 
Jay Angler
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Most "yurt" structures don't have a roof overhang. Nancy's diagram at the beginning shows the structure with no overhangs. I'm not sure how complicated it would be to have actual rafters from a central pole that stick out past the pallets. The advantages in a wet climate would be obvious. The disadvantages in a really windy climate would also be obvious.

Traditional "yurts" are in relatively dry climates and I'm pretty sure they're on the windy side of things??? The design evolved for the conditions and works wonderfully there. If we take the concept to a new ecosystem, we have to consider adapting the original for the new climate.

If making rafters with overhangs is an option, then William's suggestion for simple gutters could work well. If one is collecting on the 'bucket level', a bucket can be carried or tipped. If collecting on the 'barrel' level, it really needs to be elevated and have a spigot, and some rocks at the bottom to stop the wind from tipping it over if it's empty.  Both options need a way to deal with mosquito larvae.
 
William Bronson
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When you get around to to finishing the walls, check out this video:
https://youtube.com/watch?v=gKDe6Y4ouIY&si=DnrE7PJuUgAx_rYC
He starts with his posts first, then affixed the pallets to them.

Starting @11:04  he shows insulating the pallets and then  cobbing them.


 
Nancy Reading
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Thanks for the video link William. I do like the cob/bottle window effect. But I'm probably just leaving my pallets pretty open. I may fill in some of the gaps for modesty, but at the moment am not intending the shed to be completely weatherproof. Cob isn't a practical material here - wrong soil and too much driving rain, but I can imagine making a really nice garden room in a different location.
They sort of don't mention on the video that the pallet ends and square posts are at different angles; I found fixing both ends of the pallets is a little difficult. Maybe the difference in the pallet construction makes the difference? UK pallets tend to just have corner blocks rather than complete edges like theirs seem to have, so I couldn't just screw through the ends. Setting the posts in concrete will also enable more accurate positioning of them perhaps. I was lucky I didn't hit any rocks when I drove in my posts; that could have made things awkward! I did snap one of my first posts off when making it vertical and had to reposition the whole structure a little - obviously that post was past it's best. The UK pallets are exactly 1m wide, which makes for easy calculations in metric.
 
William Bronson
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I have very rocky ground and reused materials, so adjusting where a post goes is second nature to me as well.
I don't even use wood , instead I drive steel posts, often bits of bed frame,and attach them to wood above ground.

Leaving sides open also vibes with me.
I have a chop saw setup in my side yard under solid canopy, with no walls at all.
Not only does it subvert laws prohibiting sheds that close to the property line, it also keeps me from choking on my own sawdust.
 
William Bronson
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I have been thinking about the roof.
The split poles you showed us in the other thread will have a nice flatish face to mate against the sides of the pallets.
That will position the round side on the outside of the bend.
I think that is ideal, my intuition tells me it the rod will be stronger that way.
I am excited about using these techniques in a hoop house, obviating the need for plastic or metal hoops.
My own feed stock is mulberry, which has a reputation for being very rot resistant.

A lot of yurts have center hoop with each roof member attached to that.
Some of them have reciprocal roofs.
All of them seem to use long, straight, ridged  pieces of wood/metal or plastic.
You seem to be leaning to be leaning towards an inverted coracle, which is a better match for your available materials.
The split rods don't even need to be long enough to reach halfway across the dome, because you can sister lengths of them together with wire/zip ties/ cordage.
Maybe even with willow withes, grape vines or bindweed!

Because you have a surplus of netting,maybe consider adding a layer of it under the plastic but over and affixed to the split poles.
I think it could save you from needing to create super taunt layer of plastic, because it will support the plastic and prevent pooling of water.
Water pooling is what has ultimately killed most of the tarp roofed structures I've built.
 
Jay Angler
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William Bronson wrote:I think it could save you from needing to create super taunt layer of plastic, because it will support the plastic and prevent pooling of water.
Water pooling is what has ultimately killed most of the tarp roofed structures I've built.

Water is darn heavy stuff. When it gets a chance to pool, it stretches the material, which then makes it more prone to pool and harder to fix. We occasionally get wet snow, and then it rains on the wet snow which makes it supper heavy and things collapse under the weight.

So I double what William is saying. I'd use lots of ribs - even if they're light material - in between the main support ribs to make sure that water runs off. "Vertical" is much better than "horizontal", because anything in the horizontal direction tends to act like a bit of a dam.
 
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 I built a smaller octoshed,..
and used a satellite dish for the roof.

I do have a 10ft dish though. Perched on top of an 8ft tree stump like a mushroom.
So they do make them and were using them that big during the early yard satellite days.
 
Nancy Reading
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craig howard wrote:  I built a smaller octoshed,..
and used a satellite dish for the roof.

I do have a 10ft dish though. Perched on top of an 8ft tree stump like a mushroom.
So they do make them and were using them that big during the early yard satellite days.



Now that would make life easier! I don't have any satelite dishes hanging around though, and have a feeling that they might be a bit heavy for my structure.....I'm hoping to get the framework for the roof up this afternoon. The poles are nearly ready.

Other ideas might be kiddies paddling pools, car roof boxes, car roofs...
 
Nancy Reading
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Jay Angler wrote: We occasionally get wet snow, and then it rains on the wet snow which makes it supper heavy and things collapse under the weight.


Hmm...I hadn't thought about snow. But we rarely get a significant fall. I'm hoping that if I can make the structure withstand our winds (70mph) then a couple of inches of snow will not be a problem.

Jay wrote:So I double what William is saying. I'd use lots of ribs - even if they're light material - in between the main support ribs to make sure that water runs off. "Vertical" is much better than "horizontal", because anything in the horizontal direction tends to act like a bit of a dam.



Good point! that's where the goedesic arrangements fall short in my opinion, at least for the materials I have available. There would be too much space in between the ribs. My scheme has much more radial ribs - they will be more vertical at the edges, due to tension, where they are more widely spaced, so should shed water overall.


Thinks.....If I do get a dam, that would be the place to put a hole for a drain to a water catchment bucket!
 
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Yay! I made some progress on the roof this afternoon.

So I decided to go simple with the roof structure -  much more like a traditional yurt roof with radial poles to a central hoop. Although I did succeed in splitting some of the thicker hazel poles (detailed in this thread) I decided not to use them in the end for the roof structure. They had a tendency to corkscrew along the length, and also because they weren't split perfectly through the middle the elasticity varied along the length too so they have portions that are more or less bendy. Both these issues would have made the roof even more difficult to construct. Don't worry - I have a plan to use them elsewhere!

coppice wood use hazel
roof structure starting materials


I had a couple of stainless steel hoops picked up at the beach a few years ago, so used one of these for the central ring. I did consider a woven geodesic arrangement of poles, but just felt my skill level would not be up to it, so I worked out an approximate length for the roof poles and cut all the poles to the same length. Since this length was much shorter than the length I thought I would need originally, I went and cut a few more lengths of hazel so I had plenty.

yurt roof pole construction
cutting the roof poles to lenght


I had a bit of a practise on the ground to get a feel for how the structure might go together. I had an idea I could pre-assemble the roof and then (with a bit of help) lift it into position.


Playing with the roof components.

In the end I decided this wasn't going to be possible. The bend of the poles at the outer edges was going to be difficult to achieve, as the radius is tighter and the poles thicker there, and I didn't think I would have the strength to insert the poles into the retaining wires. So I dissassembled it and started again. This time the poles were first inserted into the circumferential wire and then bent to the middle of the roof. I had help with the first eight poles (one on each pallet corner), but once these were up I was able to do the rest by myself.  

yurt roof structure outer edge retention
straining wires retaining roof poles at walls


I used some fine stainless steel wire I had, to tie the poles to the central hoop, twisting each one individually into position whilst standing on a stool. I tried to balance the build from each side, but some of the poles were quite wiggly, and although all the poles had been cut to length within an inch of each other (I'm certain!), there was still one pole that I couldn't get to overlap the central hoop, no matter which pole I selected. In the end I spliced in a mini rafter from one of the offcuts, and tied the end of the pole to that instead!

yurt roof structure
view through the window


I'm pretty happy with the result overall so far. It's turned out a bit taller than I'd anticipated, but that isn't a problem - I think I have plenty of dead polytunnel plastic to make it reasonably ept. Although actually getting the plastic on might be a bit of a game yet! I'm thinking of putting one or maybe two further internal hoops on the structure, maybe using willow this time.

simple diy cheap shed
roof taking shape


I could weave the hoops in and out to try and straighten out the hoops a little, or just make an internal hoop so that it doesn't hold back water as discussed in the posts above.



 
Nancy Reading
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So I decided to try and weave the remaining straight hazel and some willow around the roof dome to cross brace it a little. The willow is still technically a bit green, but it is losing it's leaves, so I thought I'd give it a go. There was plenty of nice straight bits on some purple willow near the pond which I coppiced 2 years ago, and also my willow fedge near the house yielded some lovely long straight bits from just one year's growth.
willow coppice weaving
cutting straight willow rods near pond

Because my dome was a bit wonky, weaving the hazel and willow in and out was a bit tricky, and I did snap a few bits. Overall I am pretty pleased with how strong the dome is now and I think it will stand wind loads pretty well. I made three bands of cross weave at about 18 inch spacing, each with three bands alternating in or out at each strut. The top band was the most tricky and I ended up with a pretty random looking weave there! However I think it will do the job pretty well.
woven willow roof garden shed
shed dome roof structure complete

So all that remains is to make it waterproof!
I have plenty of polytunnel plastic, which I think (hope) will be long enough to go over the whole height of the roof, so I'm going to try and use just that initially. The pondliner I don't have as much as I'd thought, although I may have enough to line a gutter trough as William suggested above, so I may keep it for that. Throwing the plastic over and securing with netting, ought to be a relatively quick job, but I won't have a chance to do it for a couple of days yet.
 
Jay Angler
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The roof is looking awesome to me - great job!

Nancy, what is your plan for the very top center?  

What's the approximate diameter of the top ring?

Looking at the shape and angles of your dome, I suspect the only place you're in danger of having water pool and get heavy would be that opening in the center top.
 
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Jay Angler wrote:
Nancy, what is your plan for the very top center?  

What's the approximate diameter of the top ring?

Looking at the shape and angles of your dome, I suspect the only place you're in danger of having water pool and get heavy would be that opening in the center top.



Oh good point Jay! - I had thought the same, but forgot to say. The ring is about 2 foot diameter - probably a little less. I'm thinking that a further mini dome over that, on the outside of the ring will be a good idea. I'd like to make a star pattern like a pentagram, but am not sure what I will end up with. I also need to shorten the main poles where they stick into this hoop, so they are less likely to rub against the plastic.
 
Nancy Reading
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Great progress this afternoon - I'm feeling pretty pleased with myself, because I managed to get the plastic sheets on the roof all by myself. It was a little tricky because the roof is considerably taller than I am!
A few days ago I took Jay's suggestion and after trimming the main roof poles, put a few extra loops in the top hoop. I would have liked to make a star pattern, but it turned out a bit tricky, so I just ended up with a simple nought and crosses board pattern.

cheap and easy diy shed build
yurt roof central window


I had three good strips of polytunnel plastic - the lengths are the full width of the tunnel and the width are about 4 feet. One further strip was quite a bit shorter and a bit tatty at one end, but a similar width. I decided to use all four strips, since they would reach fully over the top to the pallets in one go, matching the eight pallet sides. So there are 4 layers on the very top and a reasonable overlap at the corners at the top of the pallets. The first strip I could reach up inside the dome to pull up, but subsequent ones went over the top of that strip, so I used a bit of string tied through one end to pull them up and over. I had to be careful not to dislodge previous layers and keep the plastic smooth with few creases. I used some of my bags of seaweed as weights on the ends of the sheets The final step (for now) was to pull over the old fish netting to hold the whole lot in place, again weighing the edges down.

reusing old polytunnel plastic
roof plastic in place


So I've been thinking about securing the plastic and the netting....I think I will try and make guttering as William suggested and use the wood for that to hold the plastic in place, and line the gutter with the pond liner. That will work on 7 of the 8 sides. I'll do something more simple in the doorway and not have a gutter there. Hopefully I will have enough scraps of batten wood about, and the weather will hold for me tomorrow so I can get that finished!
 
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Nancy, this is SO impressive, to me!! You ROCK!
 
Jay Angler
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Nancy, this yurt is totally awesome! I'm honored that you took a few of my ideas and worked them into your plans. I think it's going to work well for you, particularly with four layers of plastic over the top - great idea!
 
Nancy Reading
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Seeing it now with the plastic roof in place, and without the floor earth dug out, I'm actually wondering if I've built myself a greenhouse! Or at least a shade tunnel, since it will still be pretty ventilated unless I secure all the plastic down the sides (in which case the pallets are more likely to rot). I may hold off on digging out the soil inside, since there has turned out to be plenty of head room inside and think about it a bit more over the next year.
I'm thinking plants that like it slightly warmer, maybe drier, and don't mind a bit of shade.....I've also got new microclimates on the outside of the shed too: An exposed sunny side, and a sheltered shady side :) ! I think I may try and propagate some of my Hablitzia for the shady side, maybe Mashua for the sunny side?
 
Nancy Reading
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I'm getting slightly ahead of myself, but remembered this thread on garden tool storage. I think I could use Aaron's idea (or something similar) to keep my larger tools organised:
garden tool storage
 
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I've used that idea, it worked great!

Until our friends shopped the tail end of an estate sale and picked up a mass of tools, for free! Now I can't find anything that I look for!
 
Nancy Reading
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Finally a use for some of those odd bits of wood that will 'come in' someday....Using a substantial bit to space off the guttering channel so that it falls more under the edge of the dome. I screwed a thinner bit below it to clamp the rubber pond liner and the roofing sheets. Using a couple of bits of tape to hold the pond liner out of the way until fixed. This worked well while it was dry.
wooden guttering rainwater catchment
guttering bottom clamps both liner and roofsheets at edges

Half way through the job I get a chance to see how waterproof the dome is
new roof reuse polytunnel plastic
rain from inside shed

and admire a lovely rainbow
rainbow over scottish houses
Sunshine and showers


After the rain of course, the tape didn't stick to anything, which was a bit of a nuisance, but i did eventually succeed in fixing gutters to 6 of the 8 sides, and securing the edges of the roof plastic on all 8 sides. I have left the length of roof plastic in the doorway and secured it behind the lintel as a curtain. I may need to fix battens to it to reinforce the edges and make it easier to move out of the way.

As promised, a use for the split hazel tucked into and through the pallet slats to help make them more wind and rain proof:
split hazel poles fill in pallet gaps
Making pallets more weather resistant


It turned out that I didn't pick the right section of wood for the edges of the gutters, so those are yet to finish. Then the netting needs securing down. I haven't decided yet how to do that. I think it will help the roof to last longer, since it should stop the plastic flapping and the edges from catching the wind. Even though it looks a bit tatty, I think it is worthwhile. If I do plant climbers around the shed, it will give them something to climb on too.

So I haven't quite finished as yet, but at least the roof is held down now,. Since we have a bit of poor weather forecast now after a lovely couple of weeks, I'm feeling pretty relieved that I shouldn't lose the roof before it is finished. I did manage to swing my weight from the top of the dome before I covered it, so I'm happy it is reasonably ept.
 
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Fabulous job, Nancy!
 
William Bronson
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Amazing,  so we'll done!
 
Nancy Reading
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As forecast, we had a bit of squally weather on Wednesday; not a big deal, but gusting to about 45mph or so. This resulted in the netting blowing off the roof and the plastic got dislodged slightly, but no harm done.
plastic sheet roof needs securing
after the wind

I must have not secured the netting very well.
I finished the guttering section yesterday using more scrappy bits of wood. Screwing them into the edge of the gutter shelf was a bit tricky, but I managed it nearly perfectly (only having to reposition one or two screws that missed). The rubber doesn't fit tightly into the shelf, but I've decided it doesn't particularly matter.
Today I spent faffing about a bit. First I found some containers to act as water collectors - a few buckets missing handles and a couple of old plastic waterbutts (rain barrels). One of the latter is rather tatty - it has been outside blowing about in my fruit jungle for a few years. It has a broken tap (fawcet?) at the bottom, which I'll need to replace or seal before I can use it. I took my watering can down with me, since we had a crystal clear sky for a change (Off topic: It was cloudless, and I've never been so aware that the sky is not reallly there - there was earth and nothing above, really weird) so I could work out how the water will flow in the guttering and which end to place the containers.
Next time I would take a bit more care over how I place the batten that spaces the guttering off the sides of the pallet. These determine the level of the gutter and hence the way the water flows. The rubber sheets were only long enough to collect from two adjacent sides with a gap in between. If I had used a level I could have ensured that the flow was always to the middle or one end. As it is the buckets have ended up a bit random, but should collect the majority of rainfall. Since we get plenty, it's only really in spring that I may want a bit of water to help out the seedlings.
Having made sure that I could collect the water I then cut some more short battens to fix the netting down to hopefully avoid the roof flapping quite so much. Before I put those on though I mended a few tears in the netting. I dug this bit out of where my chinampa  are and I'm afraid the spade went through in a few places. The battens were fixed just under the guttering to secure the netting, and sometimes the polythene again, to the pallets. I put just a little bit of tension on the netting to try and keep the plastic from chafing.
cheap upcycled shed DIY build
guttering complete and netting secured

So I think that's the shed basically as good as I can get it for now. Total spent = £0.00. I did use some new screws, but everything else I had lying around, or obtained for free (the pallets). If it gets through the winter without being ripped to shreds I'll count it a full success. For now I've already filled it with my cardboard collection (for mulching), but before I did that I was gloating over my little party space! I'll take another photo of how I arranged  the doorway lintel and plastic, and start a new thread about planting ideas.
 
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Great work, you’ve overcome so many little issues that invariably crop up.
It’s probably too for this structure but I would have slathered the pallets with boiled linseed oil to give a bit more resistance to water and rotting.
 
Nancy Reading
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Thanks Dave,
Yes I don't think my structure will last more than about 5 years, but that will be fine for me. It could have been painted or stained to look smarter too. It's actually turned out much better than I thought, so I may rebuild it when the time comes with a dwarf wall so as to give me more height in the doorway - that's the only part where I have to duck my head.
 
Nancy Reading
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Quick update on the shed surviving the winter weather. So far we've only had light storms (is that a thing?) anyway, winds only gusting up to about 60mph or so. What is a bit less usual is that this week we had a spell of quite heavy snow - the most I've seem in the 16 years we've been here anyhow. There was about a foot of sticky snow, but the shed roof stood up to it no trouble....Snow gone and more winds for this week.....
IMG_20240118_123014.jpg
DIY shed build garden tool storage
Shed in snow
 
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