Bamboo Geodesic Dome





Introduction: Bamboo Geodesic Dome

This intructable shows how to make a simple and low cost geodesic dome shelter out of recycled materials and bamboo.

Step 1: Bamboo and Structure

What you need is 26 4ft bamboo sticks and about 120ft of nylon rope.

The structure of this geodesic domes is shown in the photo below:

Step 2: Turning Bamboo Sticks Into Tubes.

Bamboo sticks are almost natural tubes, except for the fact that there are thin ridge barriers every 6 inches.
Poke out these barriers with a long metal rod.

Step 3: Stringing the Bamboo Tubes

String the nylon rope into the bamboo tubes with the help of a long metal rod. (Tape the string to the end of the metal rod.)

Step 4: Constructing the Structure.

Constructing the structure is fairly straightforward. Follow the diagram and wrap the rope and bamboo sticks around each other. The structure will stay up by friction and tension. The structure is inherently pretty strong.

Step 5: Creating the Covering

For the covering, we used old vinyl material for the outside and lined it on the inside with old clothing.

We cut 25 4.5ft x4.5ft x4.5ft triangles from old vinyl. Then we cut up and pieced together 25 4ft x4ft x4ft triangles from old clothing. We sewed each cloth triangle to the vinyl one, and then sewed the vinyl triangles together, creating the covering.
We also made a vinyl 4ft-side pentagon and clothe 4ft-side pentagon for the floor.

The floor attaches to the outer covering by zippers. One of the bottom ring triangles is a door, and opens also by zipper.

Over all, it is a lot of sewing.

Step 6: Structure Completed

When the structure is complete and set up, it is quite neat. looking like a space camp on the outside, but a colorful, cozy space inside.

Step 7: Packing Up

We also sewed a 4ft by 4ft bag.
When the structure is taken down, everything can fit into this bag.

So this bamboo geodesic dome is quite portable.



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    17 Discussions

    Haven't started the actual construction, but taking your idea, I'm using giant reeds. Adurno Doxas. They are invasive I believe and are growing across the street. I cut some 30 foot reeds down. They are naturally hollow and look like they'll dry pretty much like bamboo. I'll be making a small one for garden plants.

    ok, I get it. I forgot about the diagram in step one. One of the reasons I'm puzzled is because I'm wondering if your method of using rope to tie all the poles together can be adapted to a larger dome of greater frequency, such as in the so-called 3V, 4V, 5V, etc. domes. great job!

    That is elegant and ingenious! But it seems like you skip a few steps between, "follow the diagram and wrap the rope and bamboo sticks around each other." Is it really as easy and straightforward as you say it is because I can't understand how you got from a 2-dimensional structure to a 3-D dome. Is it possible to understand after reading about it, or Is it something that will only become apparent when I try it myself?

    nice! This looks simple and fun:-)

    Nice job! I plan on making something similar, except out of 1" metal EMT conduit at 6' lengths, bolted together at the joints. After seeing your string idea, I may try something similar to make for faster set-up. Thanks for posting. :)

    2 replies

    wow you did an amazing job!! I've been thinking about making one of these for a while now & seeing your instructable really has inspired me!:) Thank you!

    Wonderful job, this is a great and sturdy little structure.  An Icosahedron makes for an economical and aesthetic shelter.  Also using recycled materials was a good move and now you have a personal little sancutuary.  If you ever consider making a larger one with 8 foot struts you could install a woodstove as well.  Thanks for the great instructable!

    Great and simple. very good job
    Increible lo que se puede hacer con 25 cañas de bambu y unos trapitos.

    Very good job on this!  This is indeed a fun project that almost everyone could enjoy.

    Just curious.  What did your inside dimensions end up being, once you got everything together?  Looks a wee bit crowded for any shot at getting a good night's sleep. :)

    it may not be a geodesic dome but its definately COOL !

    Actually, this is a dome - when all of the vertexes are of the same length (a 1-vertex dome), the resultant structure is a quasi-icosahedron (the bottom five vertexes are removed. More complicated (and rounder) domes have a larger variety of vertex lengths. More info is here at

    I don't know the exact definition of "geodesic dome", but I think it is something spheric or semispheric...

    It looks good and intrinsically sturdy. But in terms of polygons you're stretching it a bit to call it a dome

    Pretty cool- a nice 100% DIY approach to having a portable spacious tent. Any idea of weight? I guess a nylon tent would be lighter and pack a bit smaller, but we can't have everything, can we?