A few yurt tips on canvas, paints, platforms, maintenance and more…
CANVAS and WATERPROOFING
Canvas is canvas… its life span is limited and is determined by where it’s situated. Here are a few tricks for water resistance and treatments: – it is recommended to waterproof at least the seams of the Mongolian canvas once a year. Any commercial waterproofing material for canvas can be used, in spray or applied with a brush – for more natural treatments, here are three links that can be useful. we haven’t tried them extensively and welcome any comments Essortment.com, xmission.com, Infobarrel.com, dryguywaterproofing.com – One of the Mongolian yurt’s quality is to breathe. In very rainy and humid climates, it can sometimes be difficult to maintain breathability while being completely waterproof. In such conditions, we recommend adding a layer of “house wrap” between the felt and canvas. So far, WEATHERMATE PLUS from Dow has shown the best results, while still allowing sufficient breathability. – for more natural solutions, there are other alternatives, like creating an air gap with cedar branches (always between felts and canvas) to create an air gap an avoid the direct contact canvas and felts. – there are more natural (and less natural) options, depending on the situation. Do not hesitate to contact us for more ideas! – although our canvas is good and thin enough to dry faster, we’re still looking for the “miracle canvas”. Until we find it, we offer a 10 year “at cost” warranty on our canvas. So in case you have to change it after a few years, the cost is still lower than vinyl canvas… and still much healthier. – older canvas can be washed (for example with a solution of bleach). They can also be simply painted to prolong their life, although breathability will be affected. If you paint your canvas it is recommended to simply use a cheap latex based paint.
Our latest yurts are painted with an eco-friendly water based paint. We strongly recommend protecting exterior parts with a layer of varnish for water based paints (usually latex). We also recommend varnishing doors and toonos for the older oil base painted yurts (not the same type of varnish) and add a layer once every few years. Ask us in case of doubt about the paint.
Groovyyurts sells wonderful Canada made insulated and transportable platforms. We’ll be glad to also provide you with tips for building your own platform. – we ‘ve also done straw bales platforms with a plywood cover that are easy build, insulated, fairly cheap and definitely eco-friendly. – the last addition to the platform alternatives comes from Owen Geiger who suggests an Earth Bag foundation. We haven’t tested it yet, but welcome comments and find the whole concept of earthbag construction very interesting! more tips to be added soon! contact us and share yours!