Geodesic domes; struts transport/storage

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Geodesic domes; struts transport/storage

Postby melodiousdirge » Mon May 19, 2014 11:14 am

I've now burned 3 times running with the same 24' dome. It's a pretty decent setup with 3/4" EMT struts, but setting up and tearing down is always a bit of a pain in the arse, so I'm forever looking for ways to make it a bit more pleasant to transport and set up/tear down. One aspect of dragging it out to the playa and back that's a PITA is the struts. Currently I just bunch them up and tie them into 3 bundles (one for each length of strut) with ratchet straps and bungee cords. This works, but it's not exactly a slick solution. Tying them up is always a clumsy operation, and I'm left with 3 heavy-ass bundles of struts that have sharp ends. The indivudual struts can slide out partway from the middle of the bundle and catch on things or get bent, and sliding the bundles across the floor of my trailer is way more difficult than it seems like it ought to be due to the abovementioned issues.

There are tons of people on here with domes, many bigger than mine - how do you deal with your struts? Just suck it up and deal with it? I've considered crates, but that will just take up even more space and be even heavier. I could put cradles on the side of my trailer for them, but then they'd be kind of exposed. My trailer isn't that big so I'd kind of worry about the balance implications of putting 300# of steel on one side. The only sort of cool solution I can think of would be custom made duffel type bags (I could make them out of a few layers of billboard tarp) but I didn't really want to invest that many hours of labor to save myself a few minutes of setup time and a few expletive laden sentences per year.

Anyone got a great idea?
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Re: Geodesic domes; struts transport/storage

Postby gaminwench » Mon May 19, 2014 11:34 am

We store our struts, separated by size, in barrels. Works like a charm.
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Re: Geodesic domes; struts transport/storage

Postby GreyCoyote » Mon May 19, 2014 12:20 pm

I had never considered a barrel arrangement until GaminWench suggested that. Interesting.

You can bag 'em, too. It only takes a few minutes to make canvas bags with a drawstring top and this makes storage and handling easier. On the outside, wrap them with a couple of bungies, or better yet, with adjustable lashing straps so you can pick up a bundle and haul them off as a unit. Write the length (or color) on each bag along with a piece count so you can see at a glance if you are missing any. And if you have multiple domes, make sure you label the bags as to WHICH dome they go with so you dont find yourself arriving in BRC with incompatible parts and no shade. :mrgreen:

BTW: for extra funzies, try a freq 4 dome sometime. 250 struts and 100 vertexes. The mounting hardware alone is pushing 15 lbs. :shock:
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Re: Geodesic domes; struts transport/storage

Postby melodiousdirge » Mon May 19, 2014 2:14 pm

Hahaha, well mine is 3v,and setting it up alone is certainly doable but not that enjoyable. If I decide to build something new from the ground up I think I'd be tempted to go yurt, but for now this is pretty workable.

I love the barrel idea. I don't think I have enough struts to fill one up but if I had a larger dome that sounds perfect.

Do you think canvas bags would be strong enough? I guess I could split them into smaller bundles if need be, and sew nylon straps on in such a way way that they cinch up when you lift the bag... Hmm.

I was trying to think of a way I could use a long strip of fabric with pockets or something so I could just lay the struts in and roll it up, but that sounds like a fair bit of labor to make.
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Re: Geodesic domes; struts transport/storage

Postby VultureChow » Mon May 19, 2014 2:51 pm

How long are the struts and how many of each. I use a speaker stand bag to fly with my heavy kodiak canvas tent poles. $20 on Amazon.
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Re: Geodesic domes; struts transport/storage

Postby some seeing eye » Mon May 19, 2014 3:04 pm

Depending on your location, ski bags can be very cheap at thrift stores and garage sales. Break the load into 6-9 bags.
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Re: Geodesic domes; struts transport/storage

Postby melodiousdirge » Mon May 19, 2014 4:06 pm

VultureChow wrote:How long are the struts and how many of each. I use a speaker stand bag to fly with my heavy kodiak canvas tent poles. $20 on Amazon.


The struts are between 4 and 5 feet long, and there are 120 of them, totaling about 260lbs.

some seeing eye wrote:Depending on your location, ski bags can be very cheap at thrift stores and garage sales. Break the load into 6-9 bags.


That's a pretty good idea, thanks! I live in central coast california, so I dunno how much luck I will have but I'll have a look.
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Re: Geodesic domes; struts transport/storage

Postby theCryptofishist » Mon May 19, 2014 7:25 pm

I wonder how many cheap golf bags you can find at local thrift stores...
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Re: Geodesic domes; struts transport/storage

Postby Ulisse » Tue May 20, 2014 2:25 am

theCryptofishist wrote:I wonder how many cheap golf bags you can find at local thrift stores...


http://www.shopgoodwill.com/search/Sear ... wthumbs=on
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Re: Geodesic domes; struts transport/storage

Postby AntiM » Tue May 20, 2014 8:52 am

We keep a lot of random camp poles in a golf club bag. Easy, because it is on wheels.
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Re: Geodesic domes; struts transport/storage

Postby Captain Goddammit » Tue May 20, 2014 11:54 am

Shove 'em up the tailpipe?
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