How to build your own mongolian yurt



The best way is to just give it a go and try putting it up. Expect the first few times you do it to take quite a while. You’ll need two or 3 people, but no more. I can do it on my own now, but it’s still easier with two.

You’ll need a “tension” cord/band (or two) to go right round the top, and optionally the middle, of the wall.

It’s important that you put this in place before you put the roof supports on. Some people use a band of canvas that is a few inches wide, I use a 3mm venetian blind cord round the top and middle of the wall (a thicker slat might not need two tensioners).


You can fit the tensioner cord permanently to the timber walls, by tying it onto each bolt-head all the way round the wall, which is a great idea, and makes putting it up so much easier too! Put the tensioning cords/ropes in place before even getting the canvas out of the car.

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If the wind is strong, the wall canvas can act like a sail, and blow your tent away, so leave the canvas until you have the weight of the roof timber/s to hold it down.

Put the centre ring up by putting in 3 opposing main supports first, the ring will then hold itself up. Try not to stand under the centre-ring very much while assembling it, because getting hit in the head with a large heavy object (if it falls down unexpectedly) is unpleasant and dangerous.


Start to pull the roof canvas over the roof, and at the same time have one or two people inside the tent with long poles (borrow a couple of minor roof supports for this if necessary), get them to use the poles to push the canvas up and over the roof. It’s easier than trying to just drag it over with ropes.


Get a tarp, or large black-plastic dropsheet for your floor, you won’t regret it. Cut a circle about 3/4-1′ (~200-300mm) larger all round than your tent, and fold the sides up inside your tent to prevent water getting into the tent.


As a final note, yurts are generally not classified as a ‘habitable room’ nor as a permanent structure. Check first, but that most likely means that you will not need any planning or building approvals if you want to erect one as a studio, office or totally unique guest room! A quick search will find some amazing kits complete with hung windows and even French doors :)

Thanks to davidbuzz for allowing us to share this great project.




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