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How to Visualize Interior Space Size

Hi there Bob-

Just wanted to let you know how utterly FANTASTIC our yurt worked out for the burn this year!! As you may recall we were a little nervous about collecting it right after we flew in from the UK and then having to erect it on the playa without a training run….well we got to the playa as the sun was going down on Sunday nite, the wind (which picked up to a dull roar the next day was just starting to blow) and my intrepid hubby insists we go ahead and put it up- in the dark!!! Well it took us 45 min to get it up, a bit longer to do the rebar but there it stayed for the remainder of the week. The shadecloth worked great and it never got unbearably hot during the day – it was a beautiful year weather-wise tho!
So just wanted to give you feedback- we loved it and plan on using it every time we manage to get back for the burn- we’ve stored it in SF.

I have a couple of questions in regards to the Yurt Dome Portable Tent Shelters. We are looking to use these as portable Sunday School classrooms.

1. For 25 teenagers, what size would be recommended? What size for 50 teenagers?

People often ask how many people can sit, sleep or stand in a certain size Shelter Systems’ yurt or dome. Study the drawings below ( ) to make size and volume comparisons of our different domes.

You can also mark a full-size circle on the pavement. Have a friend hold to the ground a string equal in length to one half the diameter of the dome you are wondering about. Walk around your friend, keeping the string tight. Use chalk or small rocks to mark a circle “drawn” by the end of the string. After you get your circle marked ,put a sleeping bag, cot, chair, table, etc. inside the circle. You can also draw objects in the circle. Invite some friends over to size up your “dome.” Draw some other sizes on the ground and compare.

How to Visualize Interior Space Size

The best way to get an idea of the space inside the dome is to print out a picture of the dome. Then mark a circle on the ground or pavement with chalk or small stones that is the diameter of your Yurt Dome by having a friend hold a cord that is 1/2 the diameter of your Yurt Dome to the ground while you walk around him keeping the cord taught and marking the ground. Next have your friend stand in the circle while you back away from him holding the picture of your Yurt Dome at arms length till the Yurt Dome’s diameter in the picture matches the diameter of the the circle you have marked on the ground. Now you can move the picture, keeping it at arms length, over top of your friend and it’s base will match the circle. Your photo will be to scale with your friend. You can have him move about inside this “dome” and get a clear idea how much interior space is inside.

My guess is 20′ and 30′

2. If this was to be set up on black top, what would be required to keep it from moving since it couldn’t be staked into the ground?

Ask if you can drive large nails in the black top. If not, you will have to hold it down and in place with sand bags or large water containers. You may also be able to tie it to cars. Always tie to the clip cords not the poles. A wind will just pull the poles out of their connectors.

3. Would you recommend a carpet flooring or do you primarily recommend your flooring?

Carpet would be more comfortable but it it rains you should have a tarp under the carpet and up on the inside of your dome about 4″ to keep the water that could run under the domes edge off your carpet.

4. I am located in Corona, California, would there be anything local to actually see one of these set up? Either a customer of yours or something else that you might have located in Southern California?

We have no show rooms and do not give out any customer information. You can return the dome if it is not what you expected within 30 days. We only ask that it be in new condition so we can sell it as a new dome.

To receive a full refund, return your dome in its original, clean, dry condition within thirty days of receipt. To keep the dome clean, plan to put it up on a clean, dry tarp larger than the diameter of your dome. If you decide to return, it take it down and pack it up before insects or dew collect in or on it. Ship to 24 Granger Lane, Santa Cruz CA 95060. Special Orders are not returnable (since they are not part of our standard line; we would have trouble reselling them).

Tami Norris
Eastvale Church

I would like to set up a free standing solarium in my back yard so that I would have a warm and sunny place during the winter. I’ve notice that all of your greenhouse would work to some degree but that the fabric used is translucent. Why not make a clear fabric alternative which would be more conducive for use as a solarium so that one could see out when in it? I’d buy one of your domes if this type of covering were an option. Perhaps the same kind of plastic used for rear windows in convertible tops for cars would work.

Brett Amole

We can put 4 clear vinyl windows in it for you but the vinyl does not work to make the whole dome. It is not strong enough. We have sold these as sun rooms with positive feedback.


Robert Gillis


Thank you for your response. Yes, having a few transparent panels would help a great deal. I would be interested in the 14-foot solarium.

Note that the only place we will install vinyl is the 4 smaller triangles that are above the doors.

Would there be an extra charge to make the adjustment to four transparent panels and if so, how much?

They are $25 each.

My biggest concern aside from not having an outside view with translucent panels would be that the solar heating effect wouldn’t be as great as it would with transparent panels. Is that correct?

I am not sure, but do know that the translucent greenhouse covering we use lets in more light than glass and I would think you would be quite warm inside when the sun is shining.

The winters in Colorado are relatively mild, but it does get very cold here. It’s on those really cold days that I would most want to use the solarium. I’ve seen many of your shelters of various sizes in use at Burning Man. How do the solariums differ from the shelters–same structure but different fabric?

That is right there is no difference in structure only the covering.

Thanks again,
Brett Amole