Docking to the “mother ship”
It was important to me to keep the lower tent-canopied workspace as an integral unit, separate from the upper living space of the Sky Yurt. This lower space would act as the mother ship, and the upper living space structure would actually “dock” to the trampoline frame at the center of the mother ship. But docking the Sky yurt structure by resting the lower beams on the trampoline frame created an additional bending stress on those beams.Maybe I could carry the weight of the Sky Yurt structure on the lower hub.
I realized that the circular trampoline frame was incredibly strong in compression. I could use cables from the frame to support a separate central lower hub that would support the Sky Yurt hub and provide a platform for a pillar that could be used to support the center of the floor as well. I used a bicycle wheel rim with drilled eye bolts for this lower support hub in the next prototype. If I could use the trampoline frame to carry the floor and support the weight of the Sky Yurt by the lower hub, then the Sky yurt tent frame could be light and airy. It only had to support its own weight and the force of the wind on the tent fabric.
Adjusting the tension in the Sky Yurt tent
As I worked to solve one set of design challenges, I kept learning that based on the new concepts, new challenges always emerged. If I was going the support the Sky Yurt tent upper structure on its bottom hub and just let it kiss the trampoline frame, then I needed to be able to move the bottom hub up and down, to get the right clearance from the beams to the tramp frame. All this started to come together when I began to build the second prototype in the summer of 2012.