Arch metal buildings have long been famous for their sturdiness and Romney Huts are part of that history. This style of prefabricated arch building was designed for military use but has over time been replaced by the Quonset Hut for both military and civilian purposes.
What is a Romney Hut?
Romney huts or Romney sheds are prefabricated arch steel buildings created by Lt Col Edgar Frank Brawn of the British Royal Engineers. The half-round building is specifically designed to withstand snow loads and high winds, something that its predecessors (Nissen Huts and Iris huts) struggled with. However, it is scarce to find one being built in the present unless used for historical purposes.
Brief History Of Romney Huts
During World War II, the British Army developed Romney huts to provide an affordable shelter that could withstand heavy snow loads and high winds. The whole structure was light and extraordinarily strong. Romney huts provided unhindered space without the support of pillars. They were easy to assemble in a short time and portable, which made a lot of difference during the war.
However, they phased out slowly, being replaced by Quonset huts. Although both styles’ benefits are the same, there is one thing that made Quonset huts superior over Romney hut, and that is the ease of installation. Presently, you won’t find anyone building a Romney hut unless they use it for historical purposes.
Construction Of Romney Huts
There are two phases involved in the construction of Romney huts. A rigid frame is prepared to support the whole structure in the first phase. This was done by clamping together the specially constructed steel tubes.
The second phase involves erecting the walls and covering them with slightly corrugated steel sheeting. The process was relatively straightforward and saved a lot of time.
Quonset Huts Replacing Romney Huts
As mentioned earlier, Romney huts were very popular for their quick assembly, but they slowly got replaced. Designed by US Navy, the Quonset hut holds a clear advantage over the former as they are much easier to install. That is because Quonset huts have no interior frame, which is present in Romney huts. No framing is required for them because the corrugated arches give the necessary rigidity to the whole structure. The lack of need for a frame made it much easier for Quonset huts to be constructed, so Romney huts went out of use.
You will still find Romney hut-style buildings at present, but none of them would be recently built. Many are still in use as storage for wind tunnel test setups.
Quonset Huts Vs. Romney Huts, Which Is Superior?
Strictly speaking, both of them are arch types of metal buildings. Both of them provide similar benefits. However, Quonset huts trump Romney huts due to their ease of construction and assembly.
Romney huts are constructed by creating a frame of steel tubes clamped together. This frame provides the rigidity and shape of the structure, which is then covered by a steel sheet. The time and effort needed for creating the frame are not required for Quonset hut. These are made of corrugated arches, which can provide the necessary rigidity on their own.
So benefit and facility wise, both are same. But when talking about the construction of the two, the Quonset hut is superior to the other.
Although Romney huts are pretty beneficial, they went out of style. Quonset hut replaced them as it gives the same benefits and facilities; however, its ease of assembly made it preferable. If you want an arch steel building for your home, business, or any other purpose, a Quonset hut should be your choice. Because let’s be honest, not many would build you the Romney hut style.