Sukkah 2011 / 5772

Temporary shelter made from salvaged wood lath and salvaged metal can lids.

Status: built and dismantled October 2011

Following last year's debacle, this year called for a spacious and bright interior. A geodesic dome interpreted in salvaged materials made for a spectacular shelter, if not a halachically correct sukkah (the walls should be solid).

Though simple in concept, a Bucky dome is a precise geometry that I never could have figured out without the calculator at desertdomes.com. I spent a full day of preparation cutting 165 wood struts to three specific lengths, drilling their ends, and drilling 61 can lids in 4-, 5-, or 6-hole patterns.

Assembly of the parts was quick, taking just one hour to raise the entire dome. The lids had just enough flex to obviate the normal need to bend the strut ends. As it rose in successive rows, the frame was quite stable and rigid once the last strut was placed.

The weather was mixed, with the cool of autumn evenings that we normally encounter alternating with light rain.

Materials cost $23 for 300 screws, but the wood lath was salvaged from a friend's kitchen remodel and the metal can lids were begged from three local pizza restaurants.

At the end of the week, the wood lath and metal lids were taken to the recycling center to live a third life at places unknown to me.