2014 Monolithic Holiday Gift Guide

Whether you are celebrating Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Solstice or just want to find the perfect gift during December, we have something for everyone.

A letter from Cascade Domes

Two 15’ ecoshells built by Cascade Domes as part of a stage for a local music festival.

We love to hear from dome builders around the world! It can be hard to build a new business, but the dome building business is definitely worth the time and effort. Recently, we heard from a relatively new dome building company in western Canada—Cascade Domes. Read advice from owner, Steve White.

Monolithic Man Cave featured on Amazing Spaces

Robot Ranch. — Al Schwartz’s 4,144 square-foot earth-sheltered Monolithic Dome dream home, built into the side of a hill, featured on “Amazing Spaces.”

When George Clarke of “George Clarke’s Amazing Spaces” and master craftsman, Will Hardie, took the UK-based reality show on a road trip across Texas in search of some interesting, unique, unusual spaces, they found a truly “Amazing Space”—Al Schwartz’s Robot Ranch.

Celebrity Dome

As the Monolithic Dome becomes more popular, how does it keep its celebrity status from going to its head? Find out in Barry Byers’ latest comic.

Monolithic Newsletter: October 2014

In our October 2014 Roundup, David B. South shares his very personal story of the birth of the Monolithic Dome. Read about and watch the segment “Good Morning Texas” aired featuring David and the Monolithic Dome rental units. Then, watch an amazing shake-table test of a wood-framed dome. Check out our “Interesting Links,” Barry Byers’ latest comic, and don’t miss the chance to see Monolithic’s headquarters in person during our Monolithic Dome Open House on October 18th—details are in the Roundup.

Shake Table Test Shows the Dome Shape is Virtually Earthquake-Proof

During the 1990s, Charles Lin’s Monolithic Dome survived an earthquake unscathed.

Researchers at the University of British Columbia loaded 5.5 tons of sand bags on the top of a 24-foot diameter dome and subjected it to simulated earthquake conditions on their shake tables. Watch the video of the shake-table test and find out if the wood-framed dome survived.

Monolithic dome rentals featured on Good Morning Texas

Monolithic Dome Rental Units in Italy, Texas.

Recently, WFAA Channel 8 featured Monolithic’s president, David South, and his monolithic dome rental units on Good Morning Texas. Reporter, Paige McCoy Smith, traveled to Monolithic’s headquarters in Italy, Texas to interview Mr. South and see first-hand, “How these domestic domes can become dream dwellings for people around the world.”

The Birth of the Monolithic Dome—A Closer Look

David B. South standing in his newly-constructed dome potato cellar, the first dome ever constructed using Monolithic’s patented construction process. April 1976.

From the very first thoughts of geodesic domes to the invention of the Monolithic Dome and finally the Crenosphere, read the personal story of the history of the Monolithic Dome as told by David B. South in his latest President’s Sphere.

For Sale or Lease: Starship Pegasus

Build a special business utilizing the worlds love for the Starships. Available now. Call 510-832-2628 ext 222. Super busy I-35 freeway intersection just south of Dallas. Room to add a huge motel or hotel and much more. Sell Starship memorabilia and Starship food. And have fun.

Completed in 2005, this eye-catching Monolithic Dome stands on the corner of I-35 and Highway 34 in Italy, Texas – just waiting for its next mission. That next mission could be a space-themed restaurant, convenience store, office, beauty salon, barbershop, clothes store – or just about anything an earthling may want to turn it into. It’s now for sale or lease!

Monolithic Newsletter — September 2014

Our September 2014 Roundup features a story and stunning photographs of the Domes of Albion in the tropical paradise of Mauritius. Read about the Sooner State’s “Dome Fever,” where domes are making big news. Save the Date! Monolithic announces their Monolithic Dome Open House will be October 18, 2014. Register for our October workshop and find interesting links for all kinds of domes around the world. Rounding out this edition is Barry Byers’ latest comic, “Those Pesky Tourists.”

Those Pesky Tourists

“Those Pesky Tourists!” A conventional cabin visits the Monolithic Dome Resort.

What happens when a conventional cabin visits the Monolithic Dome Resort? They become a pesky tourist, full of questions.

Dome fever spreads to the Sooner State

“Dome fever has spread to the Sooner State!” says Bill Kramer in the Oklahoman. Monolithic domes have gained popularity in recent years. In fact, domes are in use by eight rural school districts around the state. NewsChannel 4 featured monolithic domes and their growing popularity in a news report hosted on their website, KFOR.com. Their broadcast highlighted backyard monolithic dome tornado shelters built by dome-builder and educator, Verlin Fairchild. Monolithic domes are definitely big news in Oklahoma.

Luxury Tropical Living in the Domes of Albion

The Domes of Albion consist of 20 villas nestled on five acres of land on the tropical island paradise of Mauritius. Each Monolithic Dome villa sits on an 800 square-meter plot of landscaped land, complete with gardens of tropical greenery, colorful shrubs and flowers.

The island of Mauritius is a tropical paradise known for its deep blue waters and sandy white beaches. Along the west coast of Mauritius, a lighthouse lights the way to Albion, a perfect blend of 21st Century living and semi-remote tranquility. Its lush landscapes are interwoven into contemporary structures like the Albion Club Med La Plantation and a Monolithic Dome paradise—the Domes of Albion.

Monolithic Newsletter — August 2014

Check out the latest Monolithic News in our August 2014 Roundup featuring a stunning new Concert Hall in Ankara, Turkey. Can a Monolithic Dome stop a .30-06 bullet? Find out in David B. South’s President’s Sphere, “Hail and Bullets.” California’s first Monolithic school gym and a round house that survived Hurricane Charley are also highlighted. Click on interesting links from our bulletin board and sign up for our September workshop now for the lowest prices. Finally, enjoy a Frank and Ernest comic where round is the new square.

The new Ankara CSO Concert Hall—a modern marvel surrounded by Turkish History

As of October 2014, you can see great progress has been made on the steel and glass intermediate section of this iconic building.

A colossal ellipsoid dome and its impressive spherical counterpart are juxtaposed with an imposing vaulted triangular foyer in downtown Ankara, Turkey. This impressive and already beautiful building under construction is the new Presidential Symphony Orchestra (CSO) building, which according to the Ankara Hürriyet, will become one of the symbols of Ankara.

Hail and Bullets

David B. South takes aim at a dome with his .30-06 rifle during a bulletproof demonstration for a Dallas TV station in the late ’90s.

Can a Monolithic Dome stop a .30-06 bullet? Find out in David South’s latest President’s Sphere, where he discusses this, and the durability of the Monolithic Dome’s exterior, recounting several stories of domes hit by extreme hail storms with virtually no lasting damage.

California’s First Monolithic School Gym Gets Approval

Recently, the Division of State Architects in California approved the construction of a Monolithic dome gymnasium, the first of its kind to be used for educational and school purposes in California, for Wasuma Elementary in the Bass Lake School District, reports Alan Wileman in the Sierra Star.

Monolithic Newsletter — July 2014

Our July Roundup features a gorgeous Monolithic Dome Home in College Station, Texas and David South warns of the danger of building domes with extremely low profiles in his latest President’s Sphere. Additionally, you can listen to Mr. South’s “Computer America” Radio interview. Don’t miss the latest Monolithic Dome news, interesting links and Barry Byers’ latest comic, “Strength Test!”

The Strength Test

What happens when a Monolithic Dome and a conventional home go head-to-head in a weightlifting contest? Find out in Barry Byers’ latest cartoon, “Strength Test.”

The Whiteacre Residence—An Elegant Paradise

The beauty of Whiteacre’s Monolithic Dome Home and the surrounding curvature of the landscape invite guests in for a unique and memorable visit. Most importantly, however, is the well thought out design that always welcomes the Whiteacre family home to their dome.

Matthew and Jari Whiteacre dreamed about building a Monolithic Dome Home for a long time before their dreams became plans. In September 2013, after transforming 1.93 acres of scrub brush, grass and trees into an elegant paradise, the Whiteacres realized their dream and moved into their gorgeous new Monolithic Dome home in College Station, Texas. Graceful curves echoing the curves of the Monolithic Dome are the hallmark of this estate. Read more about this stunning Monolithic Dome Home and view gorgeous photos of the Whiteacre’s home in this article.

David B. South Interviewed on Craig Crossman’s “Computer America” Radio Show

Recently, Monolithic’s President, David B. South, was interviewed by Craig Crossman, a national columnist and Monolithic Dome Home owner, and Co-Host, Ben Crossman, on Craig’s popular Internet radio show, Craig Crossman’s Computer America. The show is now in its twenty-first season in nationally syndicated radio and this interview is educational, entertaining and important. If you are thinking about building a new home, this is a “Must Listen.”

The Dangers of Low-Profile Monolithic Domes

DOME PROFILE 1:8 on Stemwall – At 1:8, construction becomes extremely dangerous. The 1:8 ratio is pure foolishness. It works where non air-forming is done because the application of the concrete is not going to be a big deal in the shape, but with the air-forming it is a big deal and it is extremely important not to play with it.
(Remember, as the side thrust goes up, the pressures go up and the chance of distortion goes way up.)

In David B. South’s latest President’s Sphere, he addresses the risks of constructing low-profile Monolithic Domes. Using his forty years of experience building Monolithic Domes and thin-shell pioneer, Dr. Arnold Wilson’s engineering expertise, he cautions dome-builders that dropping the profiles of Airformed domes can have catastrophic consequences with no appreciable benefits.

The Legend of Domestone

Have we mentioned that Monolithic Domes are super strong? Cuzzins Jeb and Joe found that out the hard way in Barry Byers’ latest Monolithic Dome Comic, The Legend of Domestone.

Monolithic Newsletter — June 2014

Read about Monolithic Dome Schools, China’s first Monolithic Dome Granary, Aggieland Fitness Dome and read President, David B. South’s latest President’s Sphere “Monolithic Dome Petroleum Coke Storages” in our June edition of The Roundup. Also featured is a Monolithic Dome heated only by light bulbs, a model of a Monolithic Dome village made of coconuts and enjoy Barry Byers’ latest Monolithic Dome Comic, The Legend of Domestone.


Monolithic Dome Petroleum Coke Storages

Petroleum Coke Storage — In St. Croix, US Virgin Islands, Hovensa Coker Storage, Bechtel Corp. has two 254′ × 127′ Monolithic Domes. With a capacity of 40,000 metric tons, they’re the world’s largest petroleum coke storages. After this photo was taken, an equipment tower and conveyor system was set on top of the domes. The weight allowance was one million pounds.

Petroleum coke, often called “petcoke,” is a byproduct of oil refineries. Monolithic Dome Petroleum Coke Storages are the best solution to the problem of storing petcoke out in the open in massive dust-pollution generating piles that is swiftly becoming an unacceptable solution to the American public. Read more in David B. South’s latest President’s Sphere.

Aggieland Fitness Dome

The exterior brick facade provides a beautiful finish. The “rust color” trim matches the brick and gives the facility continuity. A conventional entryway greets members.

Aggieland Fitness Dome was complete in January 2004 and was the world’s first Monolithic Dome fitness center. The 124′ × 40′ dome encompasses 12,000 square. feet on ground level and 2400 square feet on the mezzanine level. “The dome has done all the things I was hoping it would do. It differentiates us from other buildings and brings potential customers through the door,” said Steve Lumpee, owner of Aggieland Fitness in College Station, Texas.

I’m Cuckoo For Coconuts

Coconut model of future project of Indonesian dome builder, Antonius “Yoss” Yusanto.

When in Rome, do as the Romans do, but when in Indonesia, use coconuts to build scale models of dome projects! Albert Einstein purportedly said, “Creativity is intelligence having fun.” We agree and think this coconut model of a future project of Indonesian dome builder, Antonius “Yoss” Yusanto, is both creative and smart.

Monolithic Dome Owner Heats Home All Winter Using Light Bulbs

The Ceiling light with five 100 watt lightbulbs Monolithic Dome owner, Jerry Cleveland, has been using to heat his Monolithic Dome through the winter.

Sometimes people find the Monolithic Dome to be so efficient, they can heat them in creative, non-traditional ways. Monolithic Dome owner, Jerry Cleveland, recently sent us an E-mail about the super energy-efficiency of his Monolithic Dome. He had been heating his Monolithic Dome with Christmas lights which had stopped working, so he substituted a ceiling light with five sockets.

Homes Links

Are you interested in learning more about Monolithic Domes, but don’t know where to start? We have simplified the process for you by providing links to Monolithic Dome articles, books, newsletters, house plans and more. Check it out!

Monolithic Newsletter — May 2014

Don’t miss our May 2014 Roundup Newsletter! Follow the link in our lead story to read about tornado-proof Monolithic Domes on The New York Times Dot Earth Blog by Andrew Revkin. Read about a Monolithic Natural Ovens bakery and view pictures of an upscale Monolithic Dome Home in Montana. If you wish to attend our Monolithic Workshop next week at our lowest prices, follow the link to register. Read David B. South’s latest “President’s Sphere” about Monolithic Dome Airplane Hangars and enjoy a fun, new dome comic.

Monolithic Dome Airplane Hangars and the Invention of the Hangar Door

Rendering of a small Monolithic Dome hangar with lateral door used for a private jet. Millions of dollars are spent on private jets and corporate air travel yet these planes are often stored in hangars incapable of protecting the planes during violent weather. A Monolithic Dome hangar is a tiny price to pay to protect a multi-million dollar investment.

Read the story of the invention of the revolutionary Monolithic Dome Airplane Hangar Door in David B. South’s latest President’s Sphere. Monolithic Dome Airplane Hangars are super energy efficient, tornado safe, firesafe and earthquake safe. They are also about as bulletproof as you can make a building. Included in his story, is a sketch of a Monolithic Dome Hangar for the F-35 Airplane.

“I Want to Live in a Dome,” a new single by the Rich Lynch Band

Musician, Rich Lynch recently told us, “The only thing I thought I could do to get the dream of living in a dome moving along was to write a song about it.”

Well, he did and we think it’s great! According to his website, “Rockin’ Rich Lynch has been writing and recording music for over 30 years.” This indie rocker out of New Jersey hoping to build his Monolithic Dome Home soon says he’s “ready to build this house – and career – one song at a time.”

Tornado-Proof Monolithic Domes featured in New York Times

The Monolithic Dome was recently featured in The New York Times Dot Earth Blog by Andrew Revkin. After Sunday’s spate of deadly tornadoes, Revkin says it is time to "think outside the box—and inside the dome. Revkin points out that Monolithic Dome Schools meet FEMA standards for community tornado shelters and can provide safe haven for residents as well as students and teachers. “A growing number of school districts in tornado or hurricane hot spots, many with grants from FEMA have chosen this option,” he says. Enlightening, interesting and on the mark. The Monolithic Dome is hard to overlook with all of it’s outstanding benefits, safety being a major one. It’s time to think round.

Upscale Monolithic Dome Home in Montana

The beautiful exterior of the 5,000 sq. ft. Monolithic Dome Home near Flathead Lake  houses stunning interior spaces like this living room.

This gorgeous Monolithic Dome sits next to Flathead Lake and has a spectacular view of the Mission Mountains. The property includes 4.5 acres of prime Montana real estate and a pond with a waterfall in front of the house. The view and the home are truly amazing.

Natural Ovens Bakery— A “Whole” Lot of Firsts

Shell construction was completed in December 2001.

In 1834 a small settlement in northwest Indiana got its first log cabin. That settlement was Valparaiso, whose name was chosen because of its meaning: vale of paradise. One hundred sixty-nine years later, Valparaiso, now with a population of more than 27,000, got its first Monolithic Dome — a manufacturing facility built by Paul and Barbara Stitt, owners of Natural Ovens Bakery, headquartered in Manitowoc, Wisconsin.

Monolithic Newsletter — April 2014

In our April 2014 issue of “The Roundup,” read about modern EcoShell I construction, berming a Monolithic Dome and see photos of Shallowater ISD’s Airform for their new practice gym. Also, enjoy a comic from the creators of B.C. showing the evolution of the domicile, find links to sign up for our April and May workshops and read a new President’s Sphere from our president and founder, David B. South.

Berming a Monolithic Dome

This bermed Monolithic Dome home belonging to Al Schwartz is covered with a spectacular combination of natural stone from the area and local vegetation.

Have you ever thought about berming your Monolithic Dome? If you have, you’re in luck! It’s very simple to do because of the Monolithic Dome’s inherent strength. Learn how to avoid water problems by addressing the footing. Read about the preferred method for backfilling and more.