Reciprocal bamboo frames as an alternative technology for roofing in Paraguay

Elena Vazquez Peña. Architect.

"Reciprocal bamboo beams as a technological alternative for roofing in Paraguay 2014. "

Elena has designed and built an innovative reciprocal frame shelter using bamboo.

I believe this shelter design could have important benefits for relief shelters that use CGI sheeting.
I have therefore included links to all the update steps with this design including the final dissertation.

The initial design and comments when Elena was an architecture student are also copied below and it is suggested this is read first to fully understnd the design.

Initial design work

Elena Vazquez Peña.

Architecture student at National University of Asunción, Paraguay.

Tutor: MSc. Ing. Luis Fernando Meyer.

Currently doing research as a part of a final project (thesis) on reciprocal frame architecture, specifically, on reciprocal roofs made out of bamboo.
This is part of an ongoing investigation for the thesis.

"One of the aims of the project is to build a bamboo reciprocal roof that could provide shade and shelter. I have been working on designs using reciprocal unions with bamboo with the idea of a frame that could support a corrugated iron (CGI) roof. This is what the goverment usually provide for emergency shelters and that some time become permanent.
This design could also support a semi- shade textile material, to provide shade. Please find attached the designs I have been working on"

Foto 9-15-14, 3 23 44 PM

Traditional shelter roof construction in Paraguay





Model bridge after sketch by Leonardo Da Vinci


I particularly like the simplicity and practical thought behind this design.

It sets out with a specific aim; to support the weight of a CGI roof using self-supporting reciprocal frames.

I believe that when it is built it will achieve this aim.

Fig 1 Shows how it uses two 4 bamboo pole reciprocal frames, one at each end of the ridge, to support the weight.

It is best to visualise these two reciprocal frames from above; each frame is similar to the reciproboo 4 pole frame except one pole has been drawn through to enable the frame to be compressed together.

I have made a model of a bridge (after a sketch by Leonardo Da Vinci)
that uses reciprocal frames in a similar way to this roof to show how the stucture is self supporting.

Fig 2. Shows the wooden planks in position to accept the nailed attachment of CGI sheets.

Fig. 3 and Fig 4. Basic completed structure

Having achieved this strong frame using bamboo to support the weight of the roof it will be interesting to see how the project develops to strengthen and stabilise the final structure. I understand that much of this work will be done when the shelter is built in October.

Please contact me if you have any comments and I will forward them to Elena.

Shaun Halbert

You are viewing the text version of this site.

To view the full version please install the Adobe Flash Player and ensure your web browser has JavaScript enabled.

Need help? check the requirements page.

Get Flash Player