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DIY rotating Nissen Hut or Pulsar 2.7m?

35 posts in this topic

I'm afraid it's all looking a bit like a bomb site:

I have been lifting and moving massive boulders for days.

These were buried in the ground as a retaining wall for the shed's foundations.

Below the 2' [10cu.m. or 20tons] of sand and gravel I had just wheel-barrowed in.

The octagon of cast concrete footings are at last lined up at the correct radius.

Though still with variable level yet to be fixed with more digging.

What doesn't kill you just makes you exhausted. :unsure:




P1270679 rsz 500.JPG

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Using cord to run stretched lines across the octagon of footings helped confirm placement.

I could then back-fill all the gravel dug out for the footings and boulder removal.

Still need more gravel. Including some to back-fill the pier pipe around four concrete anchors.


P1270685 rsz 500.JPG

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After sorting out the spacing and levels of the concrete footings I made a test gauge with the miter saw.

Two off-cut stumps of the 100x100mm main posts attached at 22.5° to a 108cm x 45mm x 145mm board.

I can now start mass producing cross braces to support the eight 12' [4m] high posts of the 2-storey 3m [10'] diameter octagon.

There will be three cross braces per side to act as perimeter joists fixed by two 100mm screws each.

Ground floor, obs.floor @ 2.6m high and dome ring @ 4m.

The image shows the test gauge resting on two [height adjustable] footing brackets.

The real posts will be 12' high to reach the dome ring.

Gravel chippings will be laid over the self compacting sand&gravel for neatness.


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An image of the planned observatory..



octagon arched dome 4 rsz 600 txt.jpg

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Trial erection of my first two 4m [12'] posts to check safety and working methods using lashed stepladders.

Each new post is raised and leaned against the ladders' top cross brace until it can be brought upright and tied to the ladder.

Then I will add the 2" x 6" perimeter joists to tie the octagon together.

Then the ladders are moved onto the next post and the addition of joists repeated.

Timber braces will aid the stability of the structure until it is completed.




P1270811 rsz 600.JPG

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Despite the hot weather [66F] I managed to raise five more posts and brace them with the perimeter joists. 

Now seven: View from upstairs window:


P1270838 rsz 600.JPG

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All eight vertical posts and perimeter joists completed.

It is remarkably stiff considering it is just an outline shell.

No problem supporting a ladder on any upper component.

Now to add some more joists. :thumbsup:



P1270881 rsz 600.JPG

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Just an update: I have temporarily fitted my first, doubled 2"x8" beams onto their timber brackets.

I still need to glue and bolt the brackets into place. Presently researching a suitable "glue".


P1270944 rsz 600.JPG

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Progress continuing: Main structure almost complete.

Now fitting larch floorboards.

The view is amazing! :thumbsup:


P1280130 rsz 600.JPG

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Just another progress update:

My isolated 12' high pier is now a four sided pyramid of timber 100x100mm [4x4s] bolted to carport concrete anchors/footings.

The top part will be sheathed in plywood and timber braces down below for extra stiffness.

My Jumbo 'warehouse/stores' obs. access ladder has arrived.

All aluminium, with stainless steel handrails extending 1m above the top tread at obs. floor level for easy transition.

The top tread is exactly at obs. floor level. Solid as a rock, it will eventually be resting on large paving slabs.

Now I have the ladder I can start fixing the 125mm [5"] planed, larch floorboards to the obs. floor.

The pyramidal pier required re-siting some of the original obs. floor joists.


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