Foam and rebar

OK, time to do something inside the dome. The first order of business was the construction of the scaffolding. Walter built a cart with angled wheels, a reversing electric motor, and mounted scaffolding on the cart. It takes a little bit of manual effort to keep it running smoothly around the torus but all in all it does the job. We have two smaller scaffolds; one at each end as the big cart cannot squeeze down to fit into the domed ends of the torus. Cart

Now that the tool making is finished, we can get down to working on the house! The windows all need to be boxed in and hung on the walls and the doors need to be outlined. It sounded and smelled like real wood carpentry for quite a while. Then just after the first of the year we had visitors. A couple and their architect came out from upstate New York to see what a torus looks like. They are planning on building one a little outside of Albany this summer. Their plans call for a half circle torus with flat ends which will be massive window walls. They should have a spectacular view. Visitors

I would be remiss if I didn`t mention our loyal assistants. Our construction dogs

Following the completion of all of the doors, windows, and skylights it is time to start the next major step: the foaming of the interior. By this time we have a temporary electric furnace so it is a little warmer (the snow is finally gone from the inside) but the insulation value of an airform is approximately 0. The cold was a major hang-up. The raw materials for the foam would hit the cold airform and would turn into more of a paint than a foam. It was just too cold for the foaming reaction to work properly. Once we got the first layer on it worked much better, it also stayed a lot warmer. Foaming

Enough of this inside stuff. It makes me feel like I will be living in a cave. You just have to get outside once in a while to see what the real world looks like.

Following the completion of the first layer of foam it is time to put on the rebar stickers. Placing them 32 inches apart horizontally and 14 inches apart vertically, results in a lot of stickers..

After the final coat of foam to keep the stickers on the walls comes a lot of heavy work, bending and attaching rebar. By and large Walter and Chuck hooked rebar to the walls and Jack and I cut and bent rebar. Who said that building a house is fun. This is just plain hard work.

The rebar is about half done, the dome looks like a study in contour lines.

We have finished all of the rebar.

This picture is a closeup of the support for the loft. The top line is two sheets of 1/2 inch plywood - to support the joists - with the rebar for the supporting cement.