prefab home dome kit | AiDomes

For those of you who are wanting to compare the Ai Dome Kit vs Log Home Kit, please take time to read and analyze info listed below the two pictures.  Please compare kit costs and contents of each kit.  Instead of building a log cabin consider building an Ai prefabricated home dome kit.  To warm up the exterior & interior of the American Ingenuity (Ai) concrete dome; 1) paint the dome exterior light green or light tan.  2) install rock or wood on the framed walls under dormers & entryways and on the riser panels. 3) Install wood decks off the first floor entryways.  4) Install trellis with vines to conceal the fire resistant concrete. On the interior adhere oak to the dome shell drywall and install wood flooring, wood cabinetry.

Interior living room starburst Oliver

Exterior stone front w wood deck2

The Ai dome is ideal for a get-a-way, vacation home,

cabin in the woods, retirement home, primary home or a starter home. 

When deciding which building kit to purchase, please compare apples to apples which means please compare the contents of the log home kit vs the contents of the Ai prefab home dome kit and compare kit costs. The Ai panelized system has proven to save our client’s labor time, as well as a reduction in material waste and material costs vs a log home kit while having numerous advantages over log cabin home —- fire resistant concrete exterior, tree impact resistance, able to handle heavy snow load, greater energy efficiency.

The process of overlapping/locking the steel mesh of American Ingenuity’s prefabricated panels to adjacent panels and filling the seams with special fiber concrete produces 1)  the structural components of the home; 2) the finished concrete exterior surface; 3)all the shell R28 insulation is installed;  and 4) all the dome shell 1/2″ drywall is installed. There is no need for material costs and labor costs to install roofing plywood, tar paper, shingles or interior attic & wall insulation and shell drywall (or wood panels).

The cost to build a custom home varies by location. On one log home companies web site was a cost calculator to build a turnkey log home (finished). When we entered 1200 sq. ft., this calculator gave an estimate of $133 per sq. ft. or $160,000 for Raleigh North Carolina. When we entered 1200 sq.ft.& the zip for Raleigh into www.Building-cost.net, the website program Ai uses to get an approximate cost to build a turnkey Ai dome home, it came up $133 per sq. ft. as well. So in the end, both the log home kit and the American Ingenuity dome kit will run you about the same price per sq.ft. to build but you receive more with the Ai dome kit…greater energy efficiency, greater roof strength, greater exterior  fire resistance and lower exterior maintenance. This pricing does not include the cost of land, land development, driveway or utility hook ups for either product.  At the bottom of our web page Finished Cost is a description how to use the building-cost calculator.

We took time to look at various log cabin home companies to see an approximate cost for a kit. The biggest variable that we found is that some log companies include the windows and doors for the units, which Ai has determined is more cost effective for you the client to purchase locally. The log home pricing does not include the construction of the building or the build out or finishing of the log house (kitchen, bathrooms, plumbing, electric, etc.), the same as Ai. So when you see an advertised price of $78,000 for a 1300 sq. ft. kit, remember this is not a finished price, it is pricing for components that need to be assembled and finished just like the American Ingenuity dome kit needs to be assembled and finished.

Most log companies are selling their kits for around $65,000 to $80,000 for a 1200 to 1300 sq. ft. cabin. American Ingenuity’s 34′ dome kit (which gives same sq. ft. of space), is currently on sale for $32,870. The dome’s $32,870 price includes:

  1. an estimate for dormers and entryways. However the floor plan you select may have less dormers and less entryways, as a result the price could be lower. After Ai sees your floor plan selection we can give you a more accurate total kit pricing. To view Ai’s stock plans click on Plans.
  2. all the structural components to complete the dome exterior shell – walls & roof  (insulated panels, parts list items etc.), including bonding agent, and concrete fibers and other items.
  3. Kit Assembly Manual, 2 sets of Building Plans, Engineer Seal on the plans by an engineer licensed for your state and Energy Report – except for CA & WA.  California and Washington state have their own energy reports that are completed by a company in that state.  (if seal and energy report are not required by your building department subtract $790.00)
  4. Wood 2×4’s for the  temporary wood rib system which are cut to specific lengths, pre-drilled and painted. Optional purchase, if wood is cut and drilled onsite subtract $1,088 from kit price.

Steel hubs are rented from Ai, with a $800 deposit returned to you once the hubs are returned to Ai after kit assembly.  Ai believes you should not pay the shipping costs for a second semi-truck to receive doors, windows or interior items because these items can be competitively sourced and purchased locally.   Please call 321-639-8777 and Ai will email you a document named Approx. Total Kit Pricing which lists the items included in the $32,870 price. To view our web site file that explains, what is included in the kit, please click on Kit Contents.  To view our web site page that covers finished cost in more detail, please click on finished cost.

The finished cost per square foot for the log kit or the American Ingenuity dome kit is the same, but you receive more advantages with the American Ingenuity concrete dome kit. Those advantages are:

  • Greater Energy Efficiency – because the insulation is not interrupted by wood and the dome has 30% less surface area than a box shape there are less exterior walls in the dome for your heating and cooling to pass through. The EPS insulation Ai utilizes does not lose its R value, does not deteriorate over time, does not compact and is non-combustible. As a result the Ai dome will cost less to heat and cool than a log home. This lower utility bill savings will be experienced each month of the year.  To view utility bills for 34′ dome home, click on 1,200 sq.ft. dome home.
  • Greater Exterior Wall & Roof Strength
    • the concrete dome exterior comes with 225 mph wind and F4 tornado warranty. An Ai dome went thru a tornado & Hurricane Andrew at the same time with no structural damage. An Ai dome went through Hurricane Katrina with no structural damage. To read a recap of the Ai Dome & Acts of Nature, click on Recap.
    • One of our customers dome homes had a 30” in diameter hickory tree fall on it during 75 mph winds. The tree slide off the dome and tore up their deck. No damage to their dome. The insurance agent said if the home had been a conventional house the tree would have torn a hole in the roof and fell into the home.
    • During ice storms tree branches get heavy and fall.  Conventional roofs and shingles can be harmed by the tree branch impact.
    • Superior exterior strength to handle heavy snow loads without the dome roof collapsing.
  • Lower Exterior Maintenance – no shingles or roof to blow off in high winds. No wood in or on the shell to rot or for insects to eat. The concrete exterior is primed and painted.
  • Woodpeckers Cannot Harm the Dome’s Exterior Concrete –   Even though the logs are treated, wood peckers can peck holes in the wood and make a lot of irritating noise while they are pecking.
  • Fire Resistant Concrete Exterior – the dome’s concrete exterior contains no wood or shingles to burn. The concrete is not combustible and is fire resistant. Our company is committed to providing you with the best design, energy efficiency, and durability (when completed) with our panelized system for geodesic concrete homes for an affordable price.
    •  Log homes have exterior wood walls and have a traditional roof. Wood can rot, be vulnerable to termites and other insects, and can potentially burn. Traditional Roofs can collapse under heavy snow, or blow off during windstorms. Ai’s dome prefab panels contain no wood in them or on their exterior. The concrete exterior is fire resistant. There is no wood in the dome exterior to rot or to be infested by termites or to burn.
    • What are the American Ingenuity triangular and rectangular shaped panels made from? Center core of non-combustible 7″ Expanded Polystyrene R-28 Insulation (not Styrofoam), exterior is ¾” thick fiber concrete reinforced with galvanized steel mesh with interior of 1/2″ Georgia-Pacific DensArmor Plus High-Performance gypsum drywall board (which is moisture resistant, mold resistant gypsum and is noncombustible). The steel mesh extends out all sides of the prefabricated panels. When two panels are set side by side, the steel mesh (of one panel) overlaps the mesh of the adjacent panel, and then locked with “C” rings. Special fiber concrete, mixed on site is hand troweled in the seam areas in two applications —bonding agent is applied between the two layers. The seam areas are about 3″ deep by 5″ wide with concrete averaging 2″ thick. To view our web site file that explains about panel composition, please click on Concrete Prefab Panel. 
  • Does the Log Home walls and roof contain any items that are a food source for mold growth?  The Ai dome panel’s galvanized steel, concrete, EPS and drywall contain no food source for mold growth.
  • Does the companies kit have a finished exterior, or do you need to finish with a vapor barrier, attic insulation and either shingles, siding or stucco?  Ai’s dome’s exterior is 3/4″ fiber concrete reinforced with galvanized steel mesh. Only the seams (about 3” deep by 5” wide) between the panels & the entryways & dormers are concreted on site. You do not concrete over the entire shell. After kit assembly the concrete is primed and painted. To view Ai’s web site file showing Kit Assembly, click on Assembly. To learn about hiring Kit Assembly Consultant to supervise your dome kit assembly, click on Consultant.
  • Do you have to purchase and install insulation under the attic? All the dome exterior shell panels which when assembled produce the side walls and roof of the dome. The panels contain all the 7″ R28 insulation already installed.  The dome height allows for a useable second floor in the 27′, 34′, 36′, 40′, 45′ & 48′ sizes. There is no attic containing wasted space in the dome.
  • Do you need to purchase and install drywall (or wood panels) on the exterior walls?  Do you need to install drywall on the ceiling below the attic?  The Ai dome prefabricated panels have all the interior 1/2″ drywall installed. No need to purchase drywall, cut it to fit and adhere to the walls and ceiling.
  • What maintenance is needed for the home exterior? The entire exterior of the Ai dome shell is a continuous layer of concrete, so there is nothing to rot, rust, shrink, warp, or be eaten by termites. Without shingles, gutters, or exterior trim to maintain. It only requires an occasional pressuring washing and painting. There is no roof to replace every 11-12 years.
  • Does the kit contain insulation? What type, and what is the overall R-Value for energy efficiency? Of the companies I contacted, none provide the insulation under the roofline, an added expense, and one company claims the wood shell is about an R-19 (per the department of Energy the R-value of a log home is a R-8).  Our kit’s riser and triangle panels come with 7″ thick Expanded Polystyrene (EPS) insulation already installed producing an overall R-Value of 28. An option is available for 9″ insulation R-36 value. In addition, our exterior triangle and riser panels have no wood ribs interrupting the insulation resulting in continuous insulation. There is no need to install insulation in the American Ingenuity dome exterior walls, saving you drywall costs, labor costs to install the insulation, and less product waste.
  • Does the insulation recommended for the attic contain HBCD, TCPP, CFCs and formaldehyde? The EPS insulation (that Ai uses) contains none of the above chemicals. It is not Styrofoam (that is combustible). The EPS that Ai utilizes has a flame retardant added to it therefore the EPS is noncombustible. The 1/2″ DensArmor drywall is also non-combustible and provides the Code required 15-minute thermal barrier.  If the EPS is exposed to flame it does not produce Cyanide gas.
  • How is the interior of the home shell finished? Do you have to buy, cut, nail or glue drywall or wood (that you have purchased) to the interior of the exterior walls & under the attic? This is very labor intensive and expensive. Our kit’s triangle and riser panels come with ½” thick drywall (Georgia Pacific DensArmor) The drywall has fiberglass mat on both sides with gypsum being moisture resistant and mold resistant. During kit assembly, rain will harm conventional sheet rock causing the gypsum to crumble and the paper matting to mold…rain does not harm the DensArmor. The drywall is adhered to the EPS with wallboard adhesive. There is no cutting and adhering of the drywall needed for the interior of the dome shell. When the kit assembly is finished, drywall joints are taped along the seams. It is then finished like traditional drywall. (To blend the seam areas to the drywall, apply joint compound in a skip trowel effect.)
  • Do they offer in house building plan design? Are the plans fully executable (full detail), and permit worthy? Do they use a knowledgeable licensed engineer, for design calculations and engineer seal if needed? If seal is needed what is the cost (received quote of $1.00 Per sq. ft.)  Can they produce an Energy Report if needed? Is a complete Assembly Manual provided?
    Ai’s cad designer works to create a home layout that is unique, whether using existing stock floor plans or one that is designed to your specifications. Our plans are in full detail (13- 17 sheets), fully executable, and permit worthy. We work with engineers who are knowledgeable about geodesic structures to do specialized load bearing designs and seal our plans (if needed). If your building department requires the building plans to be engineer sealed by an engineer licensed for your state, that seal can be purchased through Ai. The engineer seal fee for one dome on a slab is $600 (regardless of dome size). If your building department requires an Energy Report to issue a building permit, the energy report can be completed by Ai after you provide exterior door and window R values. The Ai fee to complete an Energy Report for one dome on a slab is $190. Our assembly manual covers in detail the construction process of the dome (the manual can be shipped after a kit order is placed.) To view stock floor plan layouts for each size dome, click on Stock Plans.
  • Finally, do other companies back up their product against high winds, Tornadoes and Hurricanes? American Ingenuity offers a warranty up to 225 mile winds,  or an F4 tornado, see details on our web site.  There is no roofing to blow off in high winds or be damaged by falling tree branches or falling trees.
  • We here at American Ingenuity hope when finished comparing our concrete dome home kit against other building kits, you will see that our product is superior, and more cost effective than a log home kit. We look forward to speaking with you and answering any and all of your questions.   American Ingenuity,  321-639-8777 Mon-Fri 9-5 eastern time.

Dome Advantages Summary. What are the Advantages of an American Ingenuity’s prefabricated home dome kit?  Super-strong Concrete Exterior, super-energy efficient, low exterior maintenance, fire resistant concrete exterior, tree impact resistant concrete exterior, noncombustible exterior wall materials and environmentally friendly.  Please scroll down the page to view specific info about each advantage.

New…New ….New interior pictures of finished 48′ dome (five bedrooms) linked to 40′ garage dome in Oklahoma’s tornado alley. To view info about Ai dome and tornadoes click on Tornado.  New….New….interior and exterior photos of Aidome in St Croix US Virgin Islands withstood two category five hurricanes within 12 days with no damage to the dome. 

To view an article which covers why build a geodesic dome for your new home that summarizes the major info about the Aidome building system and component panel, please click on Why Build a Geodesic Dome.

Q: Does American Ingenuity have an engineering statement about your prefabricated dome panels that can be viewed?

A:  Yes, to view the statement click on Engineering.

 

 Disaster Resistant 
SUPER-STRONG DOME HOMES – CONCRETE HOME
up to 225 mph Hurricane Winds  & F-4 Tornado Guarantee on Triangle & Riser Panels

 

 

withstood Two Category Five Hurricanes with no damage

 

An Aidome owner in St Croix, US Virgin Islands, has emailed, called and sent pictures of their 34’ Aidome with 1,100 sq.ft. – two bedrooms & two baths.  Liz wrote: “I live in an Aidome on St Croix, USVI and in September was hit by not one, but 2 horrific hurricanes, Irma and Maria.  Let me tell you I was so happy to be in a dome with no roof to lift.  Maria hit St Croix with 185 MPH winds!!   The only damage at all was to our solar whole house fan on top of house.” 
She also called and told us: “Within 12 days we went through two category 5 hurricanes (Irma and Maria) where the area was destroyed.  The hurricanes took out our hospitals, airports and schools.  The Aidome stood strong and suffered no damage with only the solar fan broken.   Also she said they had mini tornadoes which blew their storage sheds apart.   Her husband is a Purple Heart Vietnam War Veteran who said the area looked like a war zone.    To view a photo gallery of photos on this dome, click on St Croix

 

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34′ Aidome in British Virgin Islands Built in 2007 
Withstood  Hurricane Irma’s 200 mph winds with no damage. 

 

 The Aidome’s geodesic shape combined with the steel reinforced concrete exterior allows for such a guarantee.  Ai’s standard design will accommodate up to 225 mph hurricane winds, F4 tornadoes and 90 lb. snow loads. This wind warranty does not apply to a  cupola, link, exterior doors, windows or exterior framed wall areas.    In almost 40 years, Ai domes have survived all major USA hurricanes  (Irma, Andrew & Katrina),  tornadoes, a Hawaiian earthquake, a 30″ in diameter hickory tree impact with no structural damage and several feet of snow.  To read a recap of the Ai dome and acts of nature, view  Nature.

The State of Florida requires Insurance Companies to offer reduced rates to homes that have high wind mitigation features.  The American Ingenuity dome meets and exceeds these requirements.  One of Ai’s client’s hurricane insurance premium went from $850 to $90 after he had his dome & windows/doors/shutters inspected and a Uniform Mitigation Verification Inspection Form was completed by a Qualified Inspector.

Prefabricated home dome kits are constructed using a triangular network to form a spherical shape. This method provides for a free span, self-supporting structure requiring no internal supports such as roof load bearing partition walls. This allows for maximum flexibility of floor plan design and utilization of interior space.

As an architectural form, the dome is one of the strongest structural forms devised and built by man. Domes that were built centuries ago enclose many of the great cathedrals of Europe. Domes are structurally superior to rectilinear enclosures. The partial sphere is an aerodynamic shape that is very stable in high winds and can withstand heavy snow loads. For these reasons, American Ingenuity’s domes greatly exceed the structural requirements of the major building codes in the United States.

One of the most exciting architectural environments ever designed, a dome brings its best attributes to your home. It delivers a rewarding living experience filled with warmth, light and open space to those who accept the opportunity to build one of the most Eco Friendly homes available today. The Ai dome was Green before Green became a word to describe energy efficient homes that do not waste our natural resources.  All the prefab panel materials: fiber concrete, galvanized steel, expanded polystyrene insulation and 1/2″ Georgia Pacific DensArmor drywall are noncombustible and contain no food source for mold growth.

 

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8.18 Exterior pilings2 Mowery platform-edited2
40′ American Ingenuity Dome Built in 1986 – few hundred feet from Atlantic Ocean.
Went through Hurricane Andrew with no damage.
In 1992 Hurricane Andrew had sustained winds of 165 mph
with bursts of 212 mph – Category 5 Hurricane
 

 

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Menendez -exterior

45 ft in diameter dome in Homestead Florida – Built in 1989.

Went through Hurricane Andrew & a Tornado at the same time

with no structural damage.

Minor Damage Due to Horse Trailer Impact

In August 1992 American Ingenuity domes were put to the ultimate test of strength when they faced the wrath of Hurricane Andrew as it slammed into south Florida. Winds at the nearby Tamiami airport were clocked at 212 mph, spawning over 100 tornadoes within the storm and leaving practically everything in its wake leveled. Nearly 200,000 people become homeless overnight. Even a tower at the Turkey Point Nuclear Power Plant, designed to withstand 200-mph winds, was irrevocably damaged by this fierce storm. We were not surprised, however, when we learned that our domes survived – in great contrast to the thousands of conventionally built houses of their neighbors. On Key Largo, just 20 miles south of the eye of the storm, an Ai 40′ dome faced the brunt of the storm. Built on pilings near the Atlantic Ocean, it was exposed to relentless high winds and driving rain. Unlike houses and commercial buildings in the surrounding area, it sustained absolutely no damage.

Above is picture of a 45′ American Ingenuity dome home that was in the direct path of the devastating storm, bearing the worst Andrew could deliver; yet it suffered no structural damage. A two wide metal horse trailer was impelled against the dome leaving a paint skid marking on the dome where the trailer slide around the dome to the other side. The horse trailer caused a crack in the riser wall and a chunk of concrete to break loose. The dome owner, caulked the crack and mixed up fiber concrete and filled the chunk and then painted the area.

Due to the type and direction of the debris scattered around the dome’s neighborhood, an engineer from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (F.E.M.A.) surmised that a tornado had struck the area. The engineer’s own Alabama home had been hit by a tornado a few years ago, so he was impressed by the integrity of the dome on an emotional as well as a professional level. The dome structure had withstood not only the force of a hurricane but a tornado as well. The incredibly intense winds ripped open double entry doors and 12′ sliding glass doors, which had been covered with protective plywood sheathing. Even though the wood and glass doors of the entryways succumbed to the wind and allowed interior water damage from the rain, the dome itself stood strong.

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FIRE RESISTANT CONCRETE EXTERIOR

The American Ingenuity dome is designed to be as safe and fireproof as possible, the dome exterior is entirely noncombustible concrete.

Fire resistant concrete exterior:  to view info about American Ingenuity’s concrete dome versus the Monolithic Concrete Dome and to view a YouTube Video of  fire going over Monolithic concrete dome, please click on Fire Resistant Concrete Exterior.

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SUPER-ENERGY EFFICIENT DOME HOMES

Save 50% to 60% on your heating & cooling costs

Ai domes protect your wallet by saving you 50% to 60% off your heating and cooling costs. The major reasons for low utility bills are reduced surface area of the dome and its thick insulation uninterrupted by wood. The insulation consists of a seven inch block of rigid R-28 expanded polystyrene (E.P.S.) which is comparable to 11 inches of fiberglass batting. This means the walls of a conventional house would need to be built with 2×10’s and still not have as much insulation as is in the Ai wall.

Exterior office 34 with 45'

American Ingenuity Office Domes pictured above

34′ on left linked to 45′ dome – built in 1993

American Ingenuity’s Florida dome offices are a 45′ dome connected to a 34′ dome of 3,700 sq.ft. utilizing all electric power.  In the hot Florida summer months, Ai’s offices can be cooled to 76 degrees for less than $55 a month.To view annual charts and 2013 electric bills for Ai’s offices, click on Office AC Costs. A 34′ Ai dome home of 1,200 sq.ft. located in Melbourne Florida can be cooled to 76 degrees for less than $22 a month in the hot Florida summer months. To view the home’s annual charts and 2013 electric bills, click on 34 ft Dome AC Costs. In colder climates your dome will be even more energy efficient.   

The insulation is not interrupted by wood and there is no wood in the home’s exterior walls to rot or burn or be eaten by termites. During the panel assembly a temporary wooden rib system is used.  Once all the seams between the panels & the entryways & dormers are concreted, the wooden rib system is removed with most wood recycled for interior framing & second floor knee wall perimeter framing.  The dome is self supporting with no need for walls to support its shell. The exterior of the dome is steel reinforced concrete with no shingles to blow off in high winds.  Paint the exterior concrete with concrete primer & paint.

18.17 second floor door & window P2260008

Kolb’s South Carolina 40′ Dome Earned Energy Star

On right is 27′ – two car garage dome.  Domes built in 2000

Klaus Kolb’s South Carolina Ai concrete dome house earned EPA’s Energy Star.  Home Energy Partners certified his home used 61% less energy than in comparably-size housing.  To lean more, view Kolb Info.  He installed a geothermal cooling & heating system.  Klaus’s 2003 total monthly average energy bill was $49. This includes the electricity and propane costs for his entire 1,600 sq.ft. – 40 ft. dome.

 

Below is pic of the Collar’s Utah Ai concrete dome buildings which operate off the grid by using photovoltaic’s, masonry heater fireplace and passive solar water tubes. To learn more, view OFF The Grid.

 

45' dome and 30' dome on right. Domes are off the Grid.

Collar – 45′ dome and 30′ dome on right located in Utah. Domes are off the Grid.

 Collar Domes built in 1997 at 7,500′ elevation.

To view a  fantastic YouTube Video of American Ingenuity 48′ dome with 34′ garage in Albuquerque, New Mexico, click on Gorgeous Dome.

 ENVIRONMENTALLY SAFE 
The Expanded Polystyrene Insulation (EPS)
 Utilized in the Ai Dome Building Kit Does NOT Contain:
 HBCD (hexabromocyclododecane)
or TCPP (1-chloro-2-propyl) phosphate
 or Chlorofluorocarbon (CFC) or Formaldehyde.
Materials in the Dome Component Panels
Are Noncombustible and
Contain no food source for mold growth
Steel Reinforced Concrete, EPS Insulation, 1/2″ Georgia Pacific DensArmor Gypsum Drywall

What Does The Prefab Home Dome Kit and Component Panel Consist Of?

The component panels consist of a center core of 7″ of rigid noncombustible expanded polystyrene (EPS)  insulation NOT styrofoam. On the exterior of the EPS is 3/4″ fiber concrete reinforced with galvanized steel mesh. On the interior of the EPS is noncombustible 1/2″ Georgia Pacific DensArmor mold resistant and water resistant gypsum drywall.   DensArmor Plus Interior Panel is a highly mold-resistant, interior gypsum wallboard. By featuring fiberglass mats on both the front and the back, they offer the best in interior moisture protection currently available.  During kit assembly it could rain.  After the drywall is allowed to dry it goes back to its original consistency.  The wallboard is not conventional sheet rock that will crumble and mold when it gets wet. The exterior seam areas between the panels, once filled with on-site fiber concrete are about 3″ deep by 5″ wide with the concrete averaging two inches in thickness. Engineers tell us the steel reinforced concreted seams act like steel beams.  To learn about the prefabricated panel’s composition, click on Composition.

The building plans standard foundation is monolithic slab. However Ai can design the dome to be built on basements, pilings, stem wall, etc.  To lean more, click on Foundations.

Due to spam filters your email requests may not make it to American Ingenuity and our email replies may not make it back to you.  If you email Ai and do not receive a reply in one to two days, please call us – 321-639-8777.  While you are on the phone, we will send you a test email and have you send your email to us.

The Ai Prefabricated Home Dome Kit (22′-48′) consists of all the component panels for the dome’s exterior shell and one entryway. Your floor plan selection determines how many more entryways or dormers your kit contains.  Entryways and dormers are structural awnings that extend out from the dome.  Under them a 2×4 or 2×6 framed wall is built on site to accept your locally purchased windows and doors. To view Kit Contents, click on  Kit.  To learn more about the entryways and dormers, click on Building Options. The kit does not include any doors or windows or interior items other than the interior wallboard on each triangle and riser panel. Ai believes you should not pay shipping on standard items that you can purchase locally from Lowes or Home Depot or off Craig’s List, or eBay, etc..  To view items not included in the kit, click on Not Included.

LOW EXTERIOR MAINTENANCE

Ai Concrete Houses protect and lower your maintenance budget because their concrete roofs contain no shingles and no wood to rot, or to burn or to be eaten by termites. The exterior is steel reinforced concrete that is primed and painted.  Dome owners prefer Ames Research Laboratories products which can be purchased at Ace, True Value Hardware, Build-rite Do It Center.  Ames Products can be researched and videos viewed at Ames. When on their web site click on Products and Dealer Location for suppliers in your area.

Click on Low Maintenance. View a YouTube 55 second video featuring Ai’s dome Green Living.  Click on  CBS Sunday Morning to view news show featuring Ai’s geodesic dome and Buckminster Fuller.

Klaus leo washing 090  

 

Above picture is of a painted 34′ dome being pressure washed.  Prior to pressure washing kill algae with bleach/water or oxygen bleach/water.  Worker has harness tied to eye bolt. The dome is repainted when the paint begins to chalk.  …usually every 4-5-6 years.  The Ai dome has no roof to replace. No wood in or on the dome exterior to rot or to burn or for termites to eat.  No roof to blow off in high winds.

 

Kolb painting dome side

Dome Owner Painting Top of Dome (harness not pictured)

During Kit Assembly stainless steel eye bolts are installed in top dome seams.

For painting attach rope thru eye bolt and tie rope to worker’s harness.

Current technology allows for paint to be dispensed to roller from paint sprayer that sits on the ground.

kolb pressure washing

 This dome pic is of a 40′ dome that had been previously painted. 
Prior to repainting the dome, kill algae with
combination of bleach water or oxygen bleach & water, then pressure wash.
10% Discount Concrete Geodesic Dome Kits.
Please scroll down page to see dome kit discount chart &
25% discount on geodesic dome plans. For commercial plans call for pricing.
Above is 15 year old Ai Assembled Dome Kit in Colorado
on Custom Built On Site Basement
After the prefabricated panels are assembled
the exterior concrete is primed & painted. 
The Dome appearance does not age.

New Coat of paint and the Dome looks brand new!

 10% Discount: Dome Home Kits – Concrete Home
Savings of $1,608 up to $6,011
25% Discount on Geodesic Dome House Plans. Call for Commercial Plan Pricing.

It is Ai’s philosophy that each customer pays for only what they need. Ai does not burden the price of the prefabricated home dome kit with plan’s pricing, engineer seal cost or energy report cost. Dome Floor plans are purchased 3 months to 1 1/2 years prior to kit shipment.  About 50% of the building departments require engineer sealed dome home plans and an energy report to issue a permit. Sometimes structural calculations are required.  As a result each customer pays for their plans separately from the dome kit and pays for a seal, energy report and structural calculations only if their building department requires them.  This link shows stunning dome pics.  To view Engineering Statements about Ai’s dome click on outside the box.


Save 10% off kit with one entryway pricing*, place kit deposit by January 15, 2018 and accept delivery by June 15, 2018 with Buyer & Ai selecting month of shipment (March, April or May or by June 15, 2018) & Ai selecting the week/day of shipment in the agreed upon shipment month.  Place deposit with order by January 15, 2018 to take advantage of this offer.

**Dome Outside Diameter – includes wall thickness (if two entryways on each side add 5′ 5″. to the above diameter).

To view a chart listing each stock plan & its kit sale pricing, click on Stock Plans & Kit Sale

The prefab home dome kit includes all the prefabricated component panels for the dome shell and one entryway. Once the panels are assembled the finished dome can look similar to above. Above dome was built on a custom on site basement. Basements can be built from concrete block, ICF or poured concrete. Ai does not sell basement kits – only basement building plans.  To view Kit Assembly Process, view Dome Kit Assembly and Construction Overview. Check out left hand menu bar on our home page for fourteen picture files.  One of which is Kaufman.

Due to spam filters your email requests may not make it to American Ingenuity and our email replies may not make it back to you.  If you email Ai and do not receive a reply in one to two days, please call us at 321-639-8777.  While you are on the phone, we will send you a test email and have you send your email to us.

Each floor plan varies as to number of entryways and dormers. Additional entryways and dormers are added on to the kit sale price at current pricing. Entryway and dormer pricing can be viewed at Building Options. The prefab panels consist of  center core of R28 – seven inch rigid expanded polystyrene (EPS) insulation with 3/4″ concrete reinforced with galvanized steel mesh and 1/2″ Georgia Pacific DensArmor gypsum wallboard adhered to the interior of the EPS. The insulation is not styrofoam.  The seam areas between the panels are about 3″ deep by 5″ wide and is filled with fiber concrete on site.  The seam concrete averages two inches thick. To learn about panel contents, click on Composition.  To learn about Kit Contents, click on Kit.

Save 25% on stock, modified or custom Residential Building Plans if plans are ordered prior to January 15, 2018.  To determine which floor plan layout is best for you, click on Geodesic Dome Home Plans to view stock plans. If you do not see a stock plan that fits your needs even modified or custom plans are discounted 25%.  Please scroll down to view Plan’s Sale Chart. 

What are the Advantages of American Ingenuity’s prefabricated home dome kit? 

To review info on why build a geodesic dome versus conventional shaped house, click on Why?

Super-strong Concrete Exterior, super-energy efficient, low exterior maintenance, fire resistant concrete exterior, tree impact resistant concrete exterior, noncombustible exterior wall materials and environmentally friendly.   To view Advantages Summary with photos, click on Summary.

To acquire a building permit, building departments can require the building plans to be engineer sealed by an engineer licensed for that state and an Energy Report.  The building plans, engineer seal and energy report can be purchased through Ai.  Stock or Custom plans take 2-10 weeks for delivery. Time depends on number of plan orders in queue when you place your plans order.  It is Ai’s philosophy that each customer pay for only what they need. Ai does not burden the price of the building kit with plan’s pricing, engineer seal cost or energy report cost. Building plans are purchased 3 months to 1 1/2 years prior to kit shipment. 

If you give Ai your property address, at no cost to you we will call your building department, show them our web site, email generic building plans and ask what is required to obtain a building permit on Ai’s dome kit.  About 50% of the building departments require engineer sealed plans and an energy report to issue a permit. As a result each customer pays for their plans separately from the building kit and pays for a seal and energy report only if their building department requires them.

A great way to save on building your prefabricated home dome kit is to take advantage of Ai’s sale pricing on the dome kit and the dome building plans. By placing a deposit and ordering your dome kit,  American Ingenuity can schedule your kit for manufacturing and ship your kit prior to May 15, 2018.  While Ai is designing your dome plans, you can be completing all the other paperwork that is required to obtain a building permit. With building plans in hand, obtain bids for your foundation installation.  Your foundation does not need to be installed to take delivery of your dome kit.  The dome kit can be stored outside for 2-3 months in nonfreezing weather waiting for your foundation installation (some boxes and items should be stored indoors.)

The dome kit can be stored outside (in nonfreezing months) for the following reasons: 1) the steel reinforced concrete, EPS insulation & drywall are not harmed by rain; 2) American Ingenuity paints the EPS edges that extend out of the steel reinforced concrete.  The paint stops UV light from harming the EPS.  3) The special ½” Georgia Pacific DensArmor drywall on the interior of the dome panel is not conventional gypsum.  When conventional gypsum gets wet, the gypsum crumbles & paper face molds.  This special DensArmor drywall contains fiberglass face with special gypsum which allows it to be moisture resistant and mold resistant as there is no paper for food source for mold growth.  Even if the drywall gets wet and then allowed to dry out, per the manufacturer the DensArmor goes back to its original consistency.

  • Submit Plans Order & full payment by January 15, 2018 to receive 25% discount.
  • The stock floor plans for each size dome can be viewed by clicking on dome home plans. If floor plan layouts are mailed, please call for printing and mailing costs.  321-639-8777 Mon-Fri 9-5 ET.
  • If a stock plan doesn’t fit your needs, Ai has flexible plans which can be modified or customized to fit your life style at a 25% discount as well.  Plans Quote completed after custom sketch & description are reviewed.
  • Building plan pdfs are emailed so sets can be printed locally.
  • Pricing does not include printing costs or mailing/Fedexing cost.
  • Residential Building Plan sets contain all the blueprints typically provided with any type of housing and include floor plans, exterior elevations, dome shell section view, top view showing panel placement, floor joist framing plans, joist/edge beam dimensions, foundation dimensions and angles, structural details and locations of plumbing and electrical fixtures.
  • Engineer seal, Structural Calculations, Rescheck Energy Report & Local Site Specific Product Approval can be purchased through Ai if required by your building department to issue a building permit.  Florida Energy Reports are completed by local companies with Ai providing dome dimension info. 
  • Standard foundation is Concrete Slab. The design of other types of foundations; i.e. basements, stem wall, pilings, etc. require the hiring of an independent engineer.  Call for engineer pricing.
  • Plans may be purchased with Visa, Master Card, Discover, check or money order.
  • Stock plans utilize a concrete slab foundation and are delivered in 2 weeks.  Allow at least 5 weeks for modified plans and 8 -10 to 12 weeks for custom plans. (time frame depends on time of the year and orders in queue when Ai receives your order.)
  • Commercial Plans are custom plans. Call for pricing.  Independent Engineer is hired to assist in Commercial Plan Design.  Engineer seal and energy report costs are quoted after seeing plan’s layout.

AMERICAN INGENUITY, 8777 Holiday Springs Road, Rockledge, FL 32955 – 321-639-8777 – eastern time zone.  

The following info answers some of American Ingenuity’s most commonly asked Dome Plans FAQ – frequently asked questions.

Bay window off dining room over looking deck.

Bay window off dining room over looking deck in 45′ dome dining room.

American Ingenuity (Ai) has a plans design department that can customize any floor plan to fit your lifestyle. The Oliver’s wanted a bay window to overlook their deck.   As a result an entryway was installed with this beautiful window.  To view plans sale pricing and kit sale pricing for each specific stock plan, click on Stock Plans & Kit Sale Pricing.   Please scroll down the page to find the chart.

Q: How do I view your stock floor plans for the prefab home dome kit?

A:  Click on Stock Plans to view stock plans for each of Ai’s ten size dome kits.  Once you are on the page scroll down to see the hyperlinks to click on. To view plans & pictures for Tiny Home, click on Tiny Domes.    If you do not see a stock plan to fit your lifestyle, Ai can modify or customize a plan or Ai can design a custom plan from your sketches and notes.  If you want stock plan layouts mailed, call Ai at  321-639-8777 for printing cost and mailing cost.

Q: How do we determine what size dome is best for my family?

A: First check the 10 Steps to Building Ai Dome and second review stock plans on our website to see how the area within a dome is utilized

  • To view info to assist in custom plan design, click on these four links: Getting Started, Floor Planner Guidelines, Revising Stock Plans and Things to Consider.
  • Then compare these sample floor plans with the rooms and square footages of houses you are familiar with by using the to-scale ruler in the back of the booklet or on the emailed plan.
  • Compare your finances and construction costs to avoid designing a project that is beyond a realistic budget. On our home page, download our Financing Booklet.  FYI, a smaller dome could be built first with a link where a second dome can be added later. 
  • Think about the future will you need to increase or downsize your home size?
  • If you had to move what size home would sell best?

Q: Does American Ingenuity have an engineering statement about your prefabricated dome panels that can be submitted to my building department?

A:  Yes, to view the statement click on Engineering.

Q: What size dome do I build if I do not want a second floor?
A:
The 15′, 18′, 22′, 27′, 30′, 34, 36′ and 40′ domes would be suitable for homes with only a first floor. However any of the domes can be built without a second floor.

Because of the shape of the dome, a second floor is a natural. If you choose to construct a larger dome and include the second floor, you can install an elevator, chair rail on your stairs or a lift to access the second floor. Click on Rail Chairs to learn more.

You could design all your living space and master bedroom and bath on the first floor, and put a guest bedroom and bath on the second floor and use the second floor rooms for guests or for storage.

Q: Can the dome be made handicap accessible?
A: Yes. All of the dome floor plans can be modified to be handicap accessible. The cost to do this depends upon the complexity of the plan. Contact us for a price quote. Click on Accessible to learn more.

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Ai’s philosophy is that each person pay for only what they need.  Ai does not burden the price of the building kit with plan’s pricing, engineer seal cost or energy report cost. Building plans are purchased  three months to 1 1/2 years prior to kit shipment.  About 50% of the building departments require engineer sealed plans and an energy report to issue a permit. As a result each customer pays for their plans separately from the building kit and pays for a seal and energy report only if their building department requires them.

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Q: What items should I consider when planning to build an American Ingenuity geodesic dome?
A:
The building industry is not only behind the times, it moves slowly! We cannot stress enough the importance of starting your preparations early for all aspects of building. What you think may take two months can easily consume four or five months or more. To have any hope of beginning the actual construction on time you must at least double the time you think it will take to acquire blueprints, financing, building permits, contractors or subcontractors. Optimists should triple their expectations.

Once your land has been acquired, blueprints are usually the first step.

  • Some Building Departments require that blueprints be sealed or approved by one of their state architects or engineers prior to giving permits, which takes additional time. Click on Building Permit to learn more.
  • Mortgage lenders move slower than you may anticipate. Click on Financing Overview to lean more.
  • Remember to allow time to have the land cleared, prepped and ready for the foundation. All permits pertaining to electrical, telephone, water, septic tanks, sewer hookups, driveway and building….will take time. Click on Planning Process to learn more.
  • Also increased demand for American Ingenuity Dome Kits has forced us to assign shipping dates as much as 8-12 weeks in advance. If you intend to begin building in the summer start the process one to two years before. Other expectant homeowners will be clogging the system by spring, so if you are the early bird they will be waiting behind you instead of vice versa.

Q: How do I plan for expansion -building an additional dome at a future date?
A:
When designing your first dome, you can prepare for future expansion by placing an entryway or link at the location where you will later connect another dome. If we are providing you with customized plans, we can design them for the future expansion. When you order your first dome, we can provide instructions and materials that will make the connection easier.

Q: Can the domes have basements or be built upon stilts or pilings?
A:
Yes. To complete these designs, a local engineer is hired to calculate the load of the dome and its interior floors to determine joist size and spacing and wall/column/piling design.  Ai then incorporates his designs into your building plans.  Call for engineer pricing.  Any of our domes can be built upon a basement, stilts or pilings. You determine how many openings you want in the basement walls for garage doors or for windows and doors, and you determine if and how many of the basement sides you want bermed with dirt. Full basements are the same size and shape as the dome first floor. Click on Foundations to learn more.

Also what do you use for floor joists? Wood, steel, manufactured trusses, whatever you prefer. How thick of a basement wall is required for the domes? Basement walls are usually 8″ thick when made of poured concrete but will likely increase depending on the height of the basement wall and the height of the backfill.

Ai can provide a design, which places the dome on concrete pilings. Sometimes Ai recommends an above ground basement with breakaway walls instead of pilings.

Bear in mind that building any structure upon pilings will increase the cost significantly and require you to climb a flight of stairs each time you go in the house. If in your location, it is a requirement then you have no other choice.

Q: Do you sell basement wall kits?
A:
No. Ai manufacturers dome housing kits. We do not manufacture or build basement walls. Although we do design the basement building plans using premade wall panels, ICFs or concrete blocks. You would need to contact a local subcontractor for basement construction costs and to find out what type basements are best built in your area.

Q: What is the standard foundation included with the stock plans?

A: Concrete slab. For Ai to design a basement or concrete columns or stem wall or pilings, etc. an engineer fee is added to your Plans Quote. This is to cover the cost for a structural engineer to calculate the load of the dome and the load of the two floors within the dome and give joist/edge beam size/spacing and foundation design to our CAD department to incorporate within the plans. Call for engineer pricing.

Q: Can I have windows above doors in an entryway?
A:
Yes. By using high profile entryways in your building plans, you can include glass or standard windows over a door, set of doors, or bank of conventional windows. The glass above the doors or windows could be half-moon shaped or be stained glass, etc. Any room with a cathedral ceiling, such as a foyer or living room, can benefit from this striking architectural feature. Click on Window Sizes to learn more.

Q: Will l feel closed in, in the dome?
A:
No. In our domes you can install an abundant number of windows and doors. Your budget and your floor plan selection determine the number of doors or windows you will have. There can be up to five entryways on the first floor of the 30’ through 48’ domes and you can have up to five window dormers or door dormers on the second floor of the 27’ or 34’ through 48’ domes.  (No second floor window or door dormers are available in 22’ or 30’ domes.  If there is a first floor standard entryway, there can be a second floor door dormer above it.  Instead of installing a door, install a tall window (2’x5’) to let light in a room or to let light into a high vaulted ceiling area.

 Q: Do your Building Plans come with an Engineer’s seal?
A:
No. Although over 30 different engineers have reviewed our Building Plans, the plans do not come with an engineer’s seal for the following reasons.
 

Less than half of our dome owners need engineer sealed Building Plans to obtain a building permit and rather than adding the engineer cost to all plans or burden the price of the building kit, it is more economical to have the plans sealed as needed.

  •  As the designer and manufacturer, we would not hesitate to guarantee the structural integrity of our dome and we do just that with our guarantee.
  • Each state only accepts a seal from an engineer who is registered in that state which prevents us from applying any seal that would be universally accepted.
  • When an engineer seals a set of plans he is taking responsibility for the structural design for a single dome in the location intended and the seal would not apply to other projects.

Q: What format do I email floor plan drawings to you?
A:
jpeg format or bmp format (windows bit map). Alternatively, if you are using AutoCAD, we can accept the documents in dxf format or dwg format saved in 2013 or older program. Please include your name, telephone number and the best time(s) to contact you.  

Q: What programs can I use to read dxf format?
A:
You can read and edit the dxf files if you have AutoCAD program, any other computer aided drafting program, a photo editor program like adobe or paint shop. You can read the dxf files but not edit them using Microsoft word and power point. The web site http://www.deltacad.com has a computer aided drafting program that can be downloaded and used  free for 30 days.

You can use computer programs to draw your floor plans; although, we can use a hand drawn sketch that is faxed to us just as easily as a CAD drawing. We have to reenter all of your information into our system and we will likely agree upon some changes for your benefit.

Q: What is a cupola?
A:
A Cupola is “sort of like a hat with windows that sits on top of the dome”. When a person wants to have a third floor loft in the 40′ or larger domes, the cupola adds about 2′ of headroom to the top center of the dome. The top five pentagon panels rest upon 18″ tall concrete “legs”, that are built on site. Between the concrete “legs” framing is built to install rectangular windows that you purchase locally. See the floor planners in the Stock Floor Plan Booklet for loft heights and square footages.

The topside exterior of the five panels of the cupola and the underside exterior of the eave are prefinished, while the topside and edges of the eave are stuccoed onsite.

Cupolas are not necessary for ventilation and extra light. Domes do not need more light than conventional houses. If you build your dome without a cupola, we recommend installing a vent in an interior wall near the peak of your dome for ventilation. The electric fan vent has the added advantage of being easily controlled with a switch or timer.

The outline of the third floor loft matches that of the cupola. In wind areas, you do not want the cupola windows to be more than two feet tall. Also taller cupolas just look out of proportion on the dome.

For an observatory on top of the dome, you would not need a cupola. The top or any part of the dome will easily support the weight of people. All that would be needed would be a railing around the top and some way to access the top of the dome, i.e. sculptured concrete steps. Click on Building Options to learn more. 

Q: Why do the square footages on the Specifications Page differ from the square footages listed on the stock floor plans?
A:
On the Specifications Page the first floor and second floor square footage listed is the maximum amount of square footage possible. The first floor square footage is maxed out because only one entryway is considered. The second floor square feet (sq.ft.) listed is what is possible if you built in the second floor leaving only one fifth open to the first floor. The first floor ceiling height would then be 7 1/2′ in the 30’ and 34′ domes and 8′ tall in the larger domes.

The first floor square footages on the stock floor plans vary from the Specification Page because:

  • More than one entryway was designed in each of these plans. Every additional entryway on the first floor of the dome will reduce the first floor square footage.
  • In the stock floor plans, the second floor square footage varies from the Specifications Page because some stock plans have one third of the second floor left open while others can have up to half of the second floor left open. Providing you with a dramatic high-vaulted ceiling over your first floor living and dining rooms.
  • The second floor square footage on stock plans consists of all the illustrated second floor space to the knee wall. On site the second floor knee wall is built along the dome perimeter out 2×4’s and covered with drywall to a height of two to three feet. AC ducting and second floor suspension rods can be hidden behind the knee wall. Electrical outlets can be placed on the knee wall.

Residential Building Plan sets contain all the blueprints typically provided with any type of housing and include floor plans, exterior elevations, dome shell section view, top view showing panel nomenclature, floor joist framing plans, structural details, and locations for plumbing and electrical fixtures.  To view stock plans for each of our ten different size dome kits, click on Stock Plans.  If you do not see a plan to fit your lifestyle, Ai can modify its stock plans or design custom plans for a reasonable fee. 

If you do not have the time or do not want to assemble the dome shell kit, American Ingenuity knows of a Kit Assembly Consultant that will come to your site, and supervise your laborers or your contractor’s laborers and get the dome shell kit assembled with one layer of concrete in the seams and on the entryways and dormers.

Q: Prior to purchasing Residential Building Plans, what do I need to consider?

A: You need to assure you have answers to the following questions:

  1. Does the deed for your land have any restrictions on domes?
  2. Are you within 1-2 years of building?
  3. If there is a Home Owners Association governing your land, you will need to check with them and make sure you can build a dome.
  4. What is required from your building department to obtain a building permit?
  5. Do you have your financing secured?
  6. If the answers to the above questions are positive then you can fax or email us your modified sketch.

Click on Planning Process to learn more.

Q: If I purchase Building Plans for one size dome and later change my mind, can I get a refund?

A: No Ai cannot issue a refund.

Q: When should we purchase our dome building plans?

A: Ai recommends that our clients design their floor plan when they are one to two years from building their dome. If you design your plan before then, you may see model homes or get ideas from other plans that may cause you to want to change your original floor plan ideas.

Q: When can I move into my dome?

A: If you have to obtain a building permit before you can build, then you have to submit a set of Building Plans. If you do not have to obtain a building permit then you can move into the dome once the shell is weather tight. But typically the building department will not allow you to live in the dome until the interior and exterior are finished per the building plans.

Q What are the contents of your Residential Building Plans? A: Stock sets generally have 13-17 pages per each set. Building plans include the basic drawings for the dome that are needed when acquiring a building permit. They are composed on our computer aided drafting system as stock plans, or based on your individual requirements and design. Some of the pages are a 3-D elevation and a 3-D perspective view.

American Ingenuity’s Building Plans contain all of the typical drawings and details – usually 13-17 sheets. The blueprints included in your plans are based on the type of entryways, dormers and foundation that are designed in your plans. Some of the Blueprint names are:
• Cover Sheet
• Legend Sheet
• First Floor Plan
• Second Floor Plan
• Dome Panel Nomenclature
• Exterior Elevations
• 1st Floor Electrical Plan (shows location of electrical outlets, lighting fixtures, smoke detectors)
• 2nd Floor Electrical Plan (shows location of electrical outlets, lighting fixtures, smoke detectors)
• Foundation Plan
• Foundation Details
• 2nd Floor Framing Plan
• Typical Dome Section
• Standard Entryway Details
• High Profile Entryway Details
• 1st Floor Window Dormer & Door Dormer Details
• 2nd Floor Dormer Details
• Stair Details
• Cupola Blueprint if ordered
• Link Blueprint if ordered

These plans include all the structural drawings, show the placement of the electrical outlets, light fixtures, plumbing fixtures; however, they do not have the electrical, plumbing, HVAC layouts. We have found if the layouts are included, then the inspectors require the subcontractors to follow the diagrams when the subs like to design their own layouts.

Q: Do your Building Plans include the electrical, plumbing and HVAC diagrams?

A: No. Ai has found if these layouts are included, then the inspectors require the subcontractors to follow the diagrams when the subs like to design their own layouts based on their installation method. Ask you building department if these layouts are required for you to obtain a building permit. Ai will email finished floor plan layouts in pdf so your subcontractors can design the layouts.

Q: Why do you charge extra to modify your stock Building Plans?

A: If there is no change to load bearing walls, there will be no extra fee.  However quite often our clients send us sketches that require the load bearing walls to change. This change then affects the foundation sheet, the second floor framing sheet and other sheets.  Some of the footer locations in the concrete slab foundation are based upon the location of the first floor load bearing walls, which help support the second floor. Plus the dome riser panels set on a perimeter footer in the slab. Also parts of the second floor are suspended by rods into the dome shell. These rods are inserted and buried in the seam concrete during the shell assembly. So we need to design your floor plan per your sketch and then design the structural sheets that the slab subcontractor, shell assembler, framer, etc. need to follow. So yes you would pay us a fee for us to modify our stock plans per your sketch and produce sets of building plans.

Q: I understand that you can suspend parts of the second floor from the dome shell so we can have an open first floor plan. Is this true?

A: Yes, the second floor can be suspended from the dome shell and allow you to have as open a first floor as you desire. Keep in mind that it is more economical to use some of the first floor walls as supports. Long spans with floor joists will require more expensive materials to provide the strength for suspension rods that pass through the second floor.  The suspension rods and plates are purchased from American Ingenuity.

Q: How is the square footage determined in the Dome Plans?

A: Remember in a conventional house you have an attic that cannot normally be used. Because of the dome shape a second floor can be installed that is useable. So even if some square footage around the second floor perimeter cannot be used there is still more useable square footage in a dome than a conventional house with attic under truss roof.  Building Plans second floor square footage includes the area starting at five feet to the top of the dome. For example in 27′ dome the center of the 2nd floor is 9’1″ tall; the center of the second floor in 36′ dome 10 feet tall; the center of the second floor in 45′ dome is 13 feet 7 inches tall.  The second floor square footage is calculated from the top of the dome down to where the exterior dome walls slope to five feet.  Around the perimeter of the second floor at the five feet of height, bed headboard, or night stands, or desk or dresser can be placed.  The Tax Assessor uses these numbers, so your taxes will be less.

Click on Square Footage to learn more.

Q: I am concerned about having a second floor and using the stairs. What do you recommend?

A:  Ai can design a dome floor plan layout without a second floor.  Because of the spherical shape of the dome a second floor is a natural. To access the second and third floors instead of an elevator, install an electric winch powered lift in a 4’x4’ area or an elevator to get to the second floor, or you could use a stair railing chair. You could design all your living space and master bedroom and bath on the first floor, and design a guest bedroom and bath on the second floor and use the rooms for guests or for storage.  Click on Lifts and Elevators to learn more.

Q: I understand that very few of your clients ever sell their dome. As a result, the dome ends up becoming a retirement home, should I make it handicap accessible?

A: Yes. It is a easy modification to the plans to make the entire downstairs area wheelchair accessible, (32″ or 36″ doorways, handicap accessible shower stall, bathroom, etc.).

Q: How are two domes joined together and should I plan extensions onto my Entryways?

A: If you are planning a complex of domes, the plans are joined at entryways or door dormers to form a link. The link will vary in width according to the size of the domes’ entryways and can vary in length from 2 feet to 10 feet.

While many companies offer the alternatives of large links and room extensions to the dome, American Ingenuity feels they are not in your best interest. Among the reasons:

  • When floor space is increased using an extension or link, the exposed surface area is greater than for the square footage within a dome. This results in less energy efficiency and a higher cost per square foot.
  • Construction is more involved and time consuming
  • The overall scale, relationship between elements and proportion of the home are adversely affected.
  • The visual impact of the design is lessened.
  • Good chance of leaking where the extension long flat roof butts into the dome shell. The expansion and the contraction associated with temperature changes produces the flex or separation at the link. We have considered expansion joints but they are not trouble free either. We have concluded the adding of elastomeric patching compound with exterior paint where the link panels touch the dome panels is the best solution.  
  • Ai recommends simply moving up to the next larger size dome or arranging your space differently to increase the efficiency of your design. It will save time, energy and money.

Q: What do your building plan names mean?

A: The first two numbers are the dome diameter in feet, the next word is a Greek word (Omega, Alpha, Delta) and then we use two numbers (21, 22, etc) to complete the name.