To build a geodesic dome in the style chosen by GeoStudios, one needs to build a floor and walls that match the shape of the dome that will rest on them. That means a ten-sided floor in the shape of a decagon and wall panels that will match the perimeter of that floor.
As I move towards building the campsite model dome, I graduated to the next step, building the walls. It involved a lot of cutting at not-so-typical angles.
The first angle I dealt with were the top and bottom plates that need to be exactly 18 degrees. That requirement wasn’t too hard but the ongoing double-checking to ensure everything was on track took longer than just a usual “saw and nail" routine. In fact, “measure twice cut once” takes on new meaning when building a geodesic dome. For the mathematicians among you, that 144 degrees in the picture at left represents the inside angle, not the cutting angle of the plates.
The other 'atypical' cut had to be the vertical sides of the studs. They had to be ripped (cut lengthwise, in this case on my table saw) just a smidge. That angle cut now matches the 'curvature' of the 10-sided wall system and ensures the studs don't 'stick out'. Otherwise it would be a pain in the keister to put plywood on the outside without a lot of wood to screw it into.
The last cut was with a a chop saw to crosscut all the stud pieces to the same lengths, 1000mm or 39ish inches. And after that a coat of wood primer. The result is a pretty pile of wood :) waiting to become the walls of a decagon.
Finally, assembling that pretty wood to make the 2x6 "walls". There will be 9 pieces. Did I say 10? Oh yeah, the 10th wall panel will actually be a doorway so it's not actually being built. Ultimately, those 9 walls will be connected together, sheathed on the outside and to live up to it's roasty toasty reputation, insulated with R14 value insulation. More on all that later!
Gilles Leclair is the founder of GeoStudios. Somewhat eccentric, fairly environmentalist, politically aware, he believes the world should have more off-grid communities... many more.