I have a 25'' diameter 5v geodesic that I built about 6 years ago. The fabric cover that I built at that point was made with the help of a spreadsheet not that dissimilar from this parachute gore calculator. While the material wasn''t waterproof, it wasn''t intended to be as it was built to go to Burning Man as a cat dome. With different fabric material, that method of construction has minimal material wastage, seams and sewing to construct.
After many setups and teardowns over the years however it is now toast and I am looking to build a new waterproof permanent cover.
I have freecycled 3600 sq. ft of pvc fabric in 6'' wide panels from a downed inflatable soccer stadium. After much research I bought a Leister Triac S hand welder to create the sealed joints with this approx 5mm thick material.
However, I am now wondering / concerned that the gore-method of construction would be optimal given the material involved. Hoping that anybody out there with cover experience with PVC can share some of their knowledge or point me to a few resources that my google-fu have been unable to discover surrounding questions like:
Would doing the same style seam with the pvc welder as sewing with a serger not create a high potential for water leakage over time. Plus the process of sealing the pvc together as it curves seems daunting.
Using triangles to follow the shapes of the dome would be a little easier, but create for a LOT more seams. Plus concerns about how to overlap the edges so that water would always have run-off from top to lower when dealing with near vertical strut / seams.
Thanks for any help you can provide.
[ Comments 1 ]
hi jamie, i am currently trying to figure out what you are working on. i have been researching solid triangles to try and get the proper dimensions for the least amount of gores that would still give a tight fit. i am wondering how pacific domes creates there covers. by example shows cutting out pentagons and then removing a wedge and connecting the seems where the wedge was removed to get the spherical shape. a good quality weld should not leak and can be easily repaired when it does. please keep us updated. simon