Buying a small polytunnel

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Donnay

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Buying a small polytunnel
« on: December 12, 2011, 17:04 »
Can anyone recommend where to buy a cheap good polytunnel from, it will be an an exposed area on my allotment so needs to be strong from winds!

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mumofstig

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Re: Buying a small polytunnel
« Reply #1 on: December 12, 2011, 17:15 »
you may like to read this thread, and the links in it  :)
http://chat.allotment-garden.org/index.php?topic=51093.msg605176#msg605176

There are plenty of old threads if you put 'buy polytunnel' in the search ...see tab under the top Christmas lights.

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Donnay

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Re: Buying a small polytunnel
« Reply #2 on: December 12, 2011, 19:45 »
Thanks, I have been on eBay but was unsure how strong they are.

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kosh42|EFG

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Re: Buying a small polytunnel
« Reply #3 on: December 12, 2011, 20:57 »
I have an eBay one (the slightly more expensive with the galvanised frame). It took a right battering when it first went up and is fine. Just to see how it lasts in the snow. This is the one I have:
http://bit.ly/to07QS

This is it today, been up about four months but only just dug the right hand side and build the beds today:

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Donnay

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Re: Buying a small polytunnel
« Reply #4 on: December 13, 2011, 18:57 »
This is the one I have been looking at, how have you secured down the cover on the outside?

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kosh42|EFG

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Re: Buying a small polytunnel
« Reply #5 on: December 15, 2011, 11:56 »
The cover is just buried around the outside. You dig a trench around the outside edge of the frame, place the frame onto the untouched bit in the middle, put the cover on, then fill in the trench with the excess cover buried in it.

I'd say that getting this buried is the key to stability. My mum had a similar poly (though cheaper model so had frame issues too) and just put boards, bricks, etc round the edge. It was constantly flying off.

The one thing I would say is that I only had about six inches of cover down in the trench, where the "proper" tunnels often have a lot more. This is why I have slightly raised the beds to in effect get the edges buried deeper. I have a similar raised bed on the outside.

Hope this helps,

Kosh

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shokkyy

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Re: Buying a small polytunnel
« Reply #6 on: December 20, 2011, 14:04 »
I put one of those galvanised tunnels up this year, the 6 X 2 size, and I'm very pleased with it. I doubt the cover will last too many years but it's not expensive to replace them, and the frame itself seems very sturdy. We've had some extremely strong winds in the last couple of months and it hasn't budged an inch. And I didn't even bury the edges, just put a continuous row of bricks all the way round on 3 sides and it's rock solid. I like the fact that it's not permanent so I can move it easily if I want to, it gives me a lot of extra growing space, shelter for more tender crops, and a lot of the more expensive tunnels don't have the handy ventilation flaps down the sides like these do. My only slight quibble is I'd like to be able to put crop bars up but I'm not sure it's possible with these tunnels.

I'm just in the process of doing my raised beds and haven't been able to get hold of any scaffolding boards, they keep telling me there's a shortage right now. I'm leaning towards gravel boards at the moment, but they're only 6" wide and I really wanted more depth than that. What kind of timber did you use, Kosh?

PS - When I first put the tunnel up I had problems with the fit of the cover, sent an email to the guy selling them to ask his advice and he immediately sent me a replacement cover, so excellent customer service.

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Donnay

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Re: Buying a small polytunnel
« Reply #7 on: December 20, 2011, 15:05 »
Hi

My scaffold boards are 13foot long, I brought them from Baskervilles Ltd in Hanley Stoke-on-Trent, 01782 219455 for 4.00 per board. They do deliver although I know you are some distance away and they had hundreds of them and a range of sizes to.

Where I live I could not get hold of any, so I had to go further a field. When they were delivered they had given me a few more free of charge so I have been able to make some small beds up as well.

Hope that helps.

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shokkyy

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Re: Buying a small polytunnel
« Reply #8 on: December 20, 2011, 17:02 »
I'm jealous, I've rung all the scaffolding companies in the area and they're all telling me they couldn't even sell me new boards, let alone secondhand ones, because there's a shortage. Maybe it's a regional thing. Unfortunately, the sort of delivery charges I've seen from companies further away were 100 or more.

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kosh42|EFG

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Re: Buying a small polytunnel
« Reply #9 on: December 21, 2011, 13:23 »
The left bed is made from old deck boards that were on the plot when I got it, the right bed is made from gravel boards. As you say they are only 6 inches, so I have them doubled up...

But note - The local sawmill and B&Q gravel boards are 25mm thick, Wickes were only 18mm thick - not all gravel boards are the same... The local Sawmill also does lengths to 4m which is handy...

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shokkyy

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Re: Buying a small polytunnel
« Reply #10 on: December 21, 2011, 13:40 »
I've found a little fencing supplier close to me who has gravel board up to 3.6m long, which is 22mm thick. He also has the same timber but in half width, so 3". So if I stick some of that on top of the standard gravel boards that will give me 9" depth, which ought to be enough.

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shokkyy

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Re: Buying a small polytunnel
« Reply #11 on: December 22, 2011, 14:18 »
I've just discovered why I can't get secondhand scaffold boards in this area - they're all sending them to Wiltshire Wood Recycling. And if I buy the boards from there, they're charging 2.75 per metre plus 20% for tanalising, so for a 13' board that works out at 11 or 13.20 tanalised. That's quite a bit more expensive than using new gravel board, though I guess they might be a bit stronger.

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Judd

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Re: Buying a small polytunnel
« Reply #12 on: January 05, 2012, 15:59 »
I got a lot of old scaff planks from a nearby building site after asking if they had any they had condemned.
They do this quite regularly.
It's better to burn out than to fade away !!     ;)



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