Circles and Squares

It’s just math mixed with a little arts and crafts… Make a big square out of insulated plywood sandwiches, waterproof it, cut into a 20′ circle. Pretty simple stuff when you’re looking at the alternative of buying the pre-made yurt platform for $2500. Our cost: $750 and some wounded egos.

Doing the math for materials was the easy part. Eleven sheets of 5/8″ rough finish for the bottom, eleven sheets of 1/2″ foam insulation board, eleven sheets of 1/2″ smooth finish for the top, case of liquid nails, box of deck screws. That’s how we started to make the sandwiches, planning to use the excess cut on the corners to fill in the missing pieces. The fun part was finding the layout pattern!

Awaiting the missing piece

With a 5-gallon bucket of throwback purple-tinted deck stain for a whopping $30 on the ‘oops’ shelf, the arts and crafts begin! We cinched up all the joints and halfway attached the panels with galvanized joining plates to ensure a snug fit before cutting. Measuring out 19.5″ from the center with a pencil on a string, we have our lines, and we’re ready to fire up the jigsaw!

Then, as the saying goes, we have “too many chiefs and not enough Indians.” After previous debates of using letters versus numbers to label the panels in the appropriate order, which saw blade to use and when, and how important it was to mind the gaps, the operation disintegrated into a battle of wills that left Ben opting to observe while our best friend, Mark, and I ceremoniously completed the cutting and refitting.


So, there may be some touch up (and making up) left to do, but we are well on our way to the final install on concrete block risers at the home site. Up for dancing anyone??

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7 thoughts on “Circles and Squares

  1. This is so cool. My cousin lives in a teepee in West Yellowstone, Montana. He has a yurt on his property, too, where we have stayed.

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    1. Awesome to hear this!! It’s inspiring to know of others who are passionate about living gently on the land. We did look into teepees before we settled on the yurt. I’m sure his fits right in with the buffalo out there! 😉

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