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What makes the 18′ and 30′ domes stronger than the 20′

On Sep 3, 2008

What makes the 18′ and 30′ domes stronger than the 20′ (which seems to be implied on this page: )

I saw one of your 18′ domes on the playa this year and was very impressed. Is there a reason to prefer the 18′ over the 20′ in terms of “strength”?




The 20′ uses the same diameter poles as the 18′ but each pole is longer so the poles end up less stiff thus the dome is not as strong. At the same time the 20′ dome presents more surface area to the wind then the 18′ so it is hit harder by the same wind.

The 30′ dome uses a larger (stiffer) pole than the 18′ and 20′. The pole is shorter than the 20′ dome, which also make the dome strong. The 30′ dome is a less than a full hemisphere, only 1′ taller than the 20′ dome, so it does not present much more height to the wind.

All this being said the 20′ dome, for its weight and size, is a strong dome, just not as strong as the 18′ or 30′.


Bob Gillis