Building the FarmTek Cold Frame Part 2

| 1/15/2009 9:01:00 AM

Tags: gardens, cold frames, salads, greenhouses,

Part 1 of this excellent adventure can be found here.

Almost completed FarmTek cold frame.

After a good night’s sleep, with a few interruptions devoted to thoughts about how to best attach the corrugated plastic to the FarmTek, Flip-Top, ClearSpan cold frame, I was ready to hit it on Sunday morning.

The FarmTek cold frame kit included a generous roll of corrugated plastic material that was 8 feet wide and plenty long enough to cover the frame. Slightly more than 8 feet of material was needed to span the hoops and provide attachment to the front and back pipe frames. Since the cold frame is 12 feet long, we needed to cut one 8-foot plus length of material to cover 8 feet of the frame and we needed to cut another 8-foot plus length and then trim it to 4 feet wide. With a fresh mind, and help from Kate and daughter Becca, that process went smoothly.

Now the real fun began. The FarmTek cold frame kit included some heavy-duty vinyl H-channel strips that are used to trim the ends of the corrugated plastic, and through which TekScrews are driven to attach the cold frame cover to the pipe frame. With a 12 foot cold frame, a third piece of H-channel is used to splice the 8 foot and 4 foot pieces of corrugated plastic together … to make the full 12 feet of cover length.

We had no problem sliding the cold frame’s roofing material into the H-channels, but it was pretty much impossible for us move that entire piece to the pipe frame, and get it attached without having the 4 foot piece and 8 foot piece at least partially separate. We tried a few different tacks, and then it hit me. Why not run some screws through the H-channel to attach it to the two corrugated plastic pieces. I wish I had thought of that earlier, it would have saved us about an hour of trial and error. Splicing is only required on FarmTek Flip-Top cold frames longer than 8 feet.

Hank Will_2
1/15/2009 1:37:49 PM

Don't hold your breath on the winter green progress, Paul. We are in an arctic blast today ... I chopped about 3 inches of ice off the stock tank this morning. It is a cool design. When had our large greenhouse, I was initially skeptical at the pole frame with plastic system. Ours withstood a 70 MPH straight line gust. The inflated covering looked lopsided for few seconds and the west end got plastered with mud globs that were picked up from the surrounding fields, but it survived unscathed. So did the plants inside.

Paul Gardener
1/15/2009 1:27:46 PM

That's a really cool looking design Hank, It gives me some good ideas for building my own next fall. If you take a look at my personal blog today you'll see I have bigger fish "in the pan" so to speak. Good luck with the winter greens, I look forward to seeing the progress. P~

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