Storm Shelters - Above Ground

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by Die2self, Feb 2, 2012.

  1. Die2self

    Die2self Saving more by using less!

    Hey, with storm season right around the corner here in SW MO, I was wonder who in out communite has an above ground storm shelter?

    We are looking at purchasing one of the steel structures and I wanted to know if anyone knows of a good place to buy from? We are looking for a local manufacture (like twistersafe), but I just wanted to see if any one knew of federal grants that we could get. I can't find anything from the state of MO and the City of Joplin doesn't have anything set yet to help with the cost.

    We were extremely fortunate to have survived the EF5 tornodo that passed only 2 blocks from our house last May and let me tell you riding it out in the hall way is not what I want to do again with my family.

    Any thoughts or assistance that anyone may know of out there for defraying the cost or if you know of a good company to work with.

    Maybe I can hire Larry to come down and weld up a safe room for us :p
  2. basjoos

    basjoos Well-Known Member

    I'm getting ready to build an underground earthbag dome as a tornado shelter. Earthbag is an inexpensive method of building a tornado shelter and can be built above ground as well. It will eventually be the underground portion (along with a root cellar) of a cob house that I plan to build. I want to have a house (unlike the typical crackerbox house made from 2X4's and drywall) that won't be scattered across a dozen counties when a tornado comes visiting. With heavy earth walls over 2 feet thick, the worst damage that a tornado could do to a round cob house is maybe break a window and possibly cause some roof damage. Cob is also soundproof, fireproof, termite proof, and earthquake resistant.
  3. EdwinTheMagnificent

    EdwinTheMagnificent Legend In His Mind

    Basjoos , what is a cob house ? Is it made of, or insulated by corn cobs ? It sounds interesting.
  4. basjoos

    basjoos Well-Known Member

    The term "cob" comes from a Welsh word for "lump", referring to the lumps of cob mix plopped unto the top of the wall when constructing it. The walls of a cob structure are made of a mix of sand, clay, straw. The walls are built up of the wet mix and allowed to dry and, for outer walls, are typically at least 2 feet thick. Unlike adobe, to which it is related, cob dries into a monolithic structure where the straw act as a continuous rebar mesh to make it earth quake resistant and its massive weight means that no tornado will be able to shift it. The roof is built into and imbedded into the top of the cab wall and if screws rather than nails are used in its construction, should withstand tornadic winds with little damage. You can make cob walls into all sorts of free-form shapes (almost like sculpting the house) so you can build a tornado proof house using rounded walls with no corners, which are more wind resistant than the typical "straight walls with corners" house. In Britain, there are cob houses in current use that are several 100 years old. Google "cob house" for more info.
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 7, 2012
  5. EdwinTheMagnificent

    EdwinTheMagnificent Legend In His Mind

  6. Die2self

    Die2self Saving more by using less!

    sorry I ment to get these posted before. We got a shelter built by a friend and installed on 4/12/2012

    It is 4.5 feet wide, 4.5 feet high and 8 feet long

    it is being held down to the concrete with 12 HILTI 3/4 inch concrete bolts (each rated to 30,000 lbs load and 15,000 lbs shear.)

    it is all constucted of 1/4 inch steel plate, including the floor and with all 1/4 angle iron around the frame. The door has three 1 inch pins that lock into the door frame when the latch is closed and held in place by a pin)

    There is an electrical inlet built in but I don't have electricy running to it right now. All Battery lights, fan and a few fold up charis. We feel much more ready now. I have placed the kids in it once since it was installed.

    Door closed.

    Installed with Door open

    Inside with built in bench

    VREY BEEFY :cool:
  7. FSUspectra

    FSUspectra Practicing true conservatism!

    Very good looking little shelter there. Here's to hoping you'll never have to use it!
  8. Right Lane Cruiser

    Right Lane Cruiser Penguin of Notagascar

    What's on the other end of your vent ducting?
  9. does the fan pump air in, and is it filtered?
  10. ItsNotAboutTheMoney

    ItsNotAboutTheMoney Super Moderator Staff Member

    Whatever they did, I bet they didn't do it again. ;)
  11. herm

    herm Well-Known Member

    +10 :)
  12. msirach

    msirach Well-Known Member

    I was thinking the same thing.:D
  13. Die2self

    Die2self Saving more by using less!

    The kids were supposed to be in there for shelter :eyebrow: however, they did get into trouble while they were in there unsupervised while I monitored local weather and internet radar. The storm ended up not developing like they thought and weakend (no skin off me). But the kids were discipled for thier actions.

    They like it in there. :p

    Sean the vents are only the covers on the inside that allow air flow in from the outside vent locations. They are the attachements on the outside that look like U's. There is no filtering only enought to keep debries from making its way around the 90* turns. The fan is only a battery operated tent fan that has a magnet on the back. We will just use it to stir the air up i there if we have to sit in there for a longer time period as it can get quite warm in the garage during the summer months (80-90* F) as the main garage door doesn't seal all that well.

    Those air inlets are built tough enought to lift the whole shelter up with only 4.

    I hope we don't have to use it either, but it helps to know that we now have some where that we can use if we need it. heres to piece of mind :Banane09: and all american made :flag:

    Larry could get into this build business. :D
  14. Die2self

    Die2self Saving more by using less!

    The hard thing is to keep them out of it. They would use it as a play room if we let them.:rolleyes:
  15. ILAveo

    ILAveo Well-Known Member

    It looks like a sturdy structure. My only observation is that you might want to provide a signalling device so people can find you in case debris blocks opening the door.

    In daily use I'd use it to store canned goods or, um, extra beverages.
  16. Die2self

    Die2self Saving more by using less!

    I put some reflective tape above the door and the side facing the garage door. I have also regeistered the location of the shelter with the local fire department so that they know where to look.

    you can't see from the picutes but there is small hole in the top with a slide over it that can be used to remove the pin from the inside of the door if it is ever locked and the people inside can't open it. That hole could be used to signal people. We also have a little walkie talkie in there that we could use to direct people to our location if our cell towers are destroyed again.


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