Inspired by Leonardo Da Vinci’s self-supporting bridge we decided to build a roof shelter for our work area to protect us from the elements. The idea is that a structure can easily be built by weaving wooden joists into an arch to create a self-supporting structure.
This is done by running central parallel beams with joist supporting these beams by being placed in an alternating pattern in a way that the beams and joists support each other.
The first joists brace two parallel beams and a third beam is placed centrally on top of these joists. A second row of joists attach to a this beam and run underneath one of the first beams. The joists then attach to a forth beam that once again will sit on other bracing joists. This process is continued until you reach the desired length.
We used 8′ 2×4 for joists and 16′ 2×4 fastened together for beams to span an area between two shipping containers.