May 2014


This offer is for anyone who makes a new booking, for one week or more, in an écovallée yurt for a stay in June or July 2014. The fizz and veggie box will be given to you on arrival and the one-hour massage can be taken at any time during your stay, by arrangement with the therapist. Please quote: “light dusting of sugar on the freshly picked cherry on the lovingly crafted icing on the delicious home-baked cake offer” when you make your booking.

We hit our target: The 18-foot yurt is back up on the platform, but I don’t have a photo – you’ll just have to trust me on that one.

I do have the photos of the platform, though. I built the joist frame to the same design as the 12-foot platform last year, as shown in this post. When we put the tongue-and-groove floor back down, we found it was much bigger than it was supposed to be. (Don’t ask me how this happened.) It was just over 18 feet side to side, but over 20 feet front to back. Which meant some unexpected trimming had to happen.

Here are the bits I cut off:

yurt platform 2

Here are two 10 cm bits that didn’t even make it to the final shape:

yurt platform 3

And here’s the platform before the edge strips and yurt went back on it (check out the maths on those joist corners – very satisfying – and a huge relief):

yurt platform 1

Other adjustments I’ve made this time are: Using 1 cm ply edge strips, nailed into the floor. The 5 mm edge strips split a bit and the screws weren’t doing what I thought they would. Those keeping up with improvements will know that this is the Mark III 18-foot yurt platform for “Mustardseed”. (Or version 3.0 for younger readers.)

An annoyingly wet week, twinned with gardening work away from écovallée, has meant the 18-foot yurt platform I was working on here looked like this first thing this morning:

yurt platform

With guests staying in this yurt in a couple of weeks, this job shot to the top of the “ta-da” list. After a day of digging in and pounding acacia posts, cutting with a blunter-than-I’d-like handsaw, cordless drilling and hammering, it looks like this right now:

yurt platform 2

I would have finishing the noggings, but we had guests arriving in the 12-foot yurt this evening, and I thought 7.15 pm was late enough to down tools.

You might be able to make out a vise attached to the middle joist. I wish I’d thought of using it a few frames ago. It’s saved a lot of gripping wood very hard with one hand to stop it wobbling, or sitting in strange positions to steady joists you’re cutting. If you’re working on your own yurt platform (and it’s one of the most popular subjects on this blog) on your own, I’d recommend it.

More clear days are coming our way – and they’re not too hot yet – so we’re on target to have this yurt back up and furnished by this time next week. It’s light until nearly 9.00 pm at the moment, which is a bonus.