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Thread: Building your own poly tunnel from scratch advice

  1. #1
    Dave1975 is offline Germinator
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    Default Building your own poly tunnel from scratch advice

    Well I was looking at getting a pretty basic poly tunnel kit off Amazon for about the 120 mark which could get a surprising decent size of 3 meters x 6 meters, pretty much an initial size wanted. But despite the decent reviews for the best part something about the long-term quality of the poles (all aluminium) at just 25mm and more importantly durability of the poly cover for the price. Though the cover quality being the biggest concern of such things.

    So I've gone to researching the viability of building my own from scratch and surprised to find extra time aside a far better quality result can be achieved by doing just that, making it yourself for a comparable price as cheap amazon\ebay kits.

    Where I am at the moment is to decide more on making it a probable ongoing project for the year to ready it for next year than this, but a bonus if I can get from here to completion by early summer to use it this year. Likely size will be 3 meters wide by 6 meters long, at about 2 meters height but placed in such a part of the allotment that it can be made longer in the future if required.

    My original idea as I wanted it more for my chilli plants grown in pots as anything was to use a completely solid base of broken paving slabs (loads on site) as access to ground soil was not really needed. But seeing as it would likely have ment aluminium\scaffold poles sunk into the ground with the blue mdpe piping looped from side to side, then a fully solid base might not be the best option, but what I want if possible. Then I thought solid base as per original thought and build a required size ground frame with scaffold planks or similar and simply loop and bolt the mdpe tubing at ground level to the scaffolding planks frame work. At least that would possibly give me some easy ground level way to secure the poly covering to the framework?. But still in the ideas\thinking stage as far as that thought goes yet.

    Other than that, trying to work out the best size mdpe pipe size and spacing between each section. As I'm guessing section spacing is fairly relative to pipe size and overall tunnel length?. Most "professional" reviews and guides suggest using 50mm, but this seems a little big and that more like 32 mm with less spacing between sections for the loops could be just as good?.

    So, anyone on here actually built a poly tunnel from scratch to offer any advice?.

  2. #2
    veggiechicken's Avatar
    veggiechicken is online now One of the Nutters!
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    A couple of links in Has Anyone Made Their Own Polytunnel? may help?
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  3. #3
    Dave1975 is offline Germinator
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    I should even have some aluminium tubing here somewhere. As we got our daughter a trampoline near 2 years ago this summer. And because Tesco screwed up the order and then the delivery firm screwed up collection of the duplicate box when replacing the missing box, we have a spare entire trampoline base section box that should include quite a bit of otherwise useless aluminium tubing. Based on the battering the trampoline has has the last near 2 years the tubing, whilst not scaffolding pole grade, should be up to the job if need cutting. After all, would be irresponsible to try and sell a trampoline base to anyone with no top safety net section so might as well see if I can use the tubing for the poly tunnel.

  4. #4
    veggiechicken's Avatar
    veggiechicken is online now One of the Nutters!
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    A trampoline!! Here's one I prepared earlier. Sorry all of the photos are missing - but some of the links to trampoline polytunnels still work
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    Dave1975 is offline Germinator
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    Whilst I was thinking of using the spare framework last year for a mini poly greenhouse of sorts I decided against it for last year at least even if making a more creative use of what I have. But now looking for something much bigger in order to firstly try and make my big 1.5 size allotment plot more easy maintenance and secondary a dedicated grow house for chilli plants.

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    Pooleman is offline Germinator
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    Dave,

    If I read your description correct and that you are thinking of bolting the hoops to scaffolding boards, you must anchor that frame to the ground. Otherwise you will end up with the largest kite in the neighbourhood!
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  7. #7
    Dave1975 is offline Germinator
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pooleman View Post
    Dave,

    If I read your description correct and that you are thinking of bolting the hoops to scaffolding boards, you must anchor that frame to the ground. Otherwise you will end up with the largest kite in the neighbourhood!
    Lol, yes I probably didn't explain myself fully as I'd still have to anchor the bottom framework to the ground I guess, just an idea in mind right now. But certainly getting excited by the idea of making it myself from scratch.

  8. #8
    Dave1975 is offline Germinator
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    Seems to me from research, the main problem with scaffolding\aluminium poles in the ground and looping the plastic water tubing over is finding a propper or exact match of sizes. The plastic tubing sizes are (because we should exclude 25mm as to small) either 32mm or 50mm. Yet standard scaffolding poles seem to be 48-50 mm. Which means, you'd have to be very, very lucky to get something both scaffolding poles and 50mm water piping of an exact size to allow the water piping to just fit over the scaffolding pole perfectly. Certainly not a risk or costly expense I'm wanting to try.

    So I'll likely opt for the 32mm water tubing for my loops as I could be far more assured that if I go down pipe on pole in the ground route I could with far less risk put the water piping inside the metal poles instead and stick bolts through or something. Well either that or my original idea of taking the water piping down to ground level secured to a scaffolding base frame which would be anchored to the ground with the aluminium poles I have here.

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