[Market-farming] For those who have built tunnels using Johnny'shoops bender

Tom tomsgardens at yahoo.com
Sat Feb 18 19:38:20 EST 2012

I haven't built one of these structures, but I have some building experience and I would be quite concerned about putting 2 feet of the post into the ground and leaving 4 feet out for the hoops to sit atop. That sounds very shaky to me. I doubt if these posts are designed to withstand the kind of force that would result from the weight of the structure plus wind acting on a four foot lever arm at the top of each post.  That's a lot of leverage for a thin steel post to resist.  In a moderate to strong wind I think one of two things would happen.  Either the posts would fail and bend at the ground level or they would rip out of the ground.  I would even worry about just the spreading force of the hoops being enough to bend the tops of the posts outward a bit -- maybe a lot. 

I built a Hanley-style hoop house and I had 13 two foot rebar lengths pull out of the ground simultaneously during a fairly strong wind, and that house had no flat sides.

In short, I think you will need to build a more substantial four foot wall to rest your hoops on - something that can provide some serious lateral stiffness both along the length of the wall and perpendicular to the wall.

Tom at Tom's Gardens
Cut Flowers & Veggies
Northern Lower Michigan
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