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Cob House Boots  RSS feed

 
Justin Shapp
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When looking for information on natural building construction techniques, it's hard to find solid answers. It's a puzzle of picking out information that suites your needs.

If the key to a cob house is a 'good hat and good boots', I'd appreciate someone telling me the absolute basics and beyond about the 'boots' of constructing a cob house... The do's and the dont's, the causes and effects. Tell me in detail and order of construction about trenches, floors, foundations, everything that makes up the bottom 1/4th of a 'typical' cob home.

I know this is a daunting question, but I'm certain it would benefit more people than just me. Links too good information on this topic would be appreciated as well. But if you answer the question yourself you get bonus points.
 
David Livingston
steward
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Location: Anjou ,France
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Just an aside here in France Brittany to be exact there is a form of dancing used to flattern and solidify an earth floor in a new cob house
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AOnm8gRwjyo&list=PL1AE93AEC0305F11D

David
 
Roger Brown
Posts: 8
Location: NW Arkansas
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Try this, excellent resource and guide and springboard into other research!



Ianto Evans
 
Justin Shapp
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I really need help with this still!! I do intend to buy some books, but I'm just looking for an overview right now.

I don't understand what cob foundations consist of. I'm learning more from pictures than actual information.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but from what I've seen in these pictures....
1. Use/make land as flat as possible.
2. Dig a 1-2 foot deep trench outlining where the walls will be.
3. Install a type of French drain in the trench (is this step 100% necessary?)
4. Fill trench with gravel/rock
5. Start building walls directly on top of the gravel. (Or is it necessary to layer larger stones at the base of the building so standing water doesn't reach the cob?)

I'm struggling... I'm not sure if these steps are even correct. And if they are correct, I assume there's more ways than just this.

 
allen lumley
pollinator
Posts: 4154
Location: Northern New York Zone4-5 the OUTER 'RONDACs percip 36''
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books fungi hugelkultur solar wofati woodworking
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Justin Shapp : Relax, Take a couple of deep breaths, You can start with a shed and grow ! You Just need Two Books, Ianto Evans' The Hand-Schulpted House
and Michael Smith's The Cobber's Companion, get the books from cob cottage.com, your lending library, Amazon and/or Alibris books (USED). Its better to have
the books to hand than to guess how, try, and fail !

Actually I would have to live on your land before I could tell you wether or not you can get away with having the french
drains as part of your foundation trench, for that reason french drains are usually recommended as a separate or parallel digging.

Location, location, location, get the word out here and at Permaculture groups in your area, who you are and when you are building - you might have a Near neighbor
who is a Cob expert with all the tools !

You WANT to create stem walls,also called plinth(s) to carry the start of your walls up from your foundation, 2 ft above the level of the floor for your 1st build.This is
where you are going to use the large stones to protect the lowest sections of the Cob, Eventually you will learn to apply a finish plaster to protect the cob walls from
wind driven rain.* Your 1st job is to learn how to get the walls up, 2nd is to get a roof with ridiculously wide eaves ,your good hat With those two things in place you will
have time to learn how to do interior and exterior Finish Plastering !

Have you picked out your build site,

found a good supply of clay and

learned how to do a sedimentation test on it !?!

Straw, lots off it, find out what animal feed store in your area handles house feed and get your straw where they get theirs !

Where are your stones coming from ?

who is hauling the stones

Sharp builders sand, from where and who is hauling it into you

Order the books I pointed out to you, line up the the materials listed above, and ditch digging tools

The first job when you get your books is to find out how to make test bricks of Cob, clay varies widely and wildly

You need to know how to make strong Cob from your Clay, while you are waiting for your Cob Bricks to dry so that

you can do drop tests on them to test for strength, Gather more tools, the books will tell you what you need

Print this list you should have most things done ,found located and promised for later by the time your books arrive !

* Eventually you will KNOW where the prevailing winds come from at every season of the year !


For the good of the craft ! As always your comments and questions are solicited and are welcome ! Big AL !
 
allen lumley
pollinator
Posts: 4154
Location: Northern New York Zone4-5 the OUTER 'RONDACs percip 36''
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books fungi hugelkultur solar wofati woodworking
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Justin Shapp : You might want to look at the Isolate stone foundation Thread In this forum Read the last two sections to get an over view and then start at the top and wade through the whole thing, I found it well layer out Finally Big Al 1
 
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