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On Aug 6, 2004

On Aug 6, 2004

Dear Shelter Systems,

Your product is amazing!!! I love your site and can’t wait to own one of your domes. We are moving in the near future and are in need of temporary storage space. My hope is that the dome becomes an alternate studio space — I’m intrigued by the quality of bright ambient light your dome creates.

They make get studio spaces. Your right the light is superb.

My questions have to do with removing sections of the dome structure. I want to make a patio or “pit area” with low walls of straw bales or concrete blocks that could support your 18′ dome.

This can and has been done.

Included is a sketch of my idea (see attached). My plan is to trace the dome, cutting away sod to outline its shape. I want to build the walls with two entrances opposite each other. I’d then attach the dome, placing the dome doorways over the openings in the walls.

I have read your decking construction page, and while I can’t think of a way to create a lowered ledge for the structure to rest upon, I’m considering sloping the top of the wall to avoid moisture from entering the dome. Perhaps the extra 6″ of dome material, draped over the wall, would suffice. I intend to install pegs on the exterior wall to secure the dome in lieu of ground stakes. To extend the length of the door panels I could make a cloth section with a weighted bottom and attach it with velcro. I could then remove them when we used the dome for camping.

Questions: Is it just one tube/pipe that spans the lower part of the doorway and would it be okay to remove them in the two doorways opposite each other and not jeopardize the structural integrity of the dome?

This should be OK assuming you would be attaching the dome to your sod or bale wall.

Another question: If there’s a fire platform in the middle of the pit area, and we rig a lightweight chimney to vent out the top of the dome, do you think might work? I know your Q & A page warns against open fires like those in tipis — but what there was a generous hood a few feet above the fire with a chimney leading out the top?

If this is done right it should work. You would have to use isolated pipe and fittings to attach the pipe to the top of the dome so as to prevent melting the covering. You would also want to take care against water leaking around your pipe but I think this could be done.

Thanks in advance for your consideration regarding this matter. If you have any tips or thoughts on attaching a dome to a low wall, I would appreciate that too.


Yours Light Fabric Grip Clips are the perfect solution for joining two 5×8 Integral Designs poncho tarps and lift up sides.

Joe Young CA