home page: http://jeffareid.net
Note fumes from platics are an irritant (lung), so you need a well ventilated area (room with open windows, or open garage, use a fan if there's no breeze).
This sphere was created using thin sipper straws, melting the ends of the straws together. The "welding" tool consists of a sewing needle stuck into the eraser end of a pencil, and a candle to heat up the needle. It only takes about 3 or 4 seconds to heat up the needle enough to melt the straws.
The joints made this way are not very strong, but are strong and flexible enough that the dome can support it's own weight, as long as the dome isn't too big.
480 straws, 6 different lengths, although 3 of the lengths are almost the same. The gap between the thin drinking straws adds about 4mm to effective length of each straw, so the straws were cut 4mm shorter than the calculated lengths for the geodesic sphere. You can get the info for various geodesics from here (in this case the 4v):
A sequence of the sphere being built and it's final home.