Another exciting project working alongside Tree Tents International Ltd. and this time world renowned explorer and survivalist Bear Grylls. Tree Tents doesn't fall short when it comes to amazing outdoor structures but when we got the phone call asking for help with a project to make Bear a custom tree-house den for his kids we were happy to oblige - though we knew, as usual, some tricky work was to follow.
Tree Tents had already got the concept design in mind - a large wing shaped structure that would suspend itself between the trees with rope ladder access, outside net platform and an aesthetic of lightweight aircraft engineering. The main body of the structure was to be made from laser cut aluminium sections welded together to give a lightweight but strong frame then wrapped with a thin aluminium skin. We received the drawing from Tree Tents then went to work analysing the make-up and strength of the structure with our FEA software and reviewing the design for manufacture.
The design was good though we discussed a few design changes that would make the structure even lighter and more importantly easier to fabricate as we could see the potential for difficulty in fabricating the thicker aluminium sections in the original design. After a few days of discussions and design recommendations we finally came up with a design we were both happy to take to manufacture.
Following the fabrication of the frame and approximately 3000 rivets applied to the skin panels! we delivered the structure to Tree Tents workshop for final fitting out of interior parts, doors and some lovely detailing using old surplus aircraft parts. All in all a great result and made even better my meeting Bear during the install and drinking our own body weight in Tea.