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Hempcrete insulation for office trailer  RSS feed

 
Adam Berry
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Hello everyone I'm interested in getting a 27' office trailer from ebay and then insulating with hempcrete. Does anyone know if a 27' structure will be accepted as a "mobile home"?

Although the gentleman in the land planning department said 27' is ok I wonder if he knows that it's an office trailer and not a "single wide". I just don't want to run into problems later after I purchase the structure. Any insight into land use and permits would be appreciated.
 
Brian Knight
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Location: Asheville NC
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Cant help much with the permitting/zoning as that would be highly specific to your area. As for the hempcrete insulation plans.. are you sure about that? I am of the opinion that hempcrete has crummy Rvalue.
 
Adam Berry
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The building codes are generally lax around the area. I realized after I originally posted that some office trailers are 60' long so it makes no real difference about the length. What matters is that the structure has a solid steel frame so it can be tied down to deal with bad weather.

I like Hempcrete because of the thermal mass for temperature regulation, acoustic insulation and excellent control of humidity (preventing mold). It's also easy to work with, light-weight, and lasts centuries. When incorporated into a building, if it is torn down, the product can be recycled into further hemp wall construction.
 
Adam Berry
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Does anyone know if an office trailer is considered a mobile "home"/ manufactured "home" and whether or not a person can obtain permits for an office trailer to become a vacation cabin?

Btw Brian there's an amazing Hempcrete company right in Ashville, NC. Please watch the short video. They explain the benefits better than I do. If builders just make the walls thicker the R-Value is just fine.

 
Brian Knight
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I toured two of their projects and worked on the SIP roof of one of them. Iam not convinced Hempcrete is the wrong way to go but I think the lack of Rvalue and is a concern. There is also the issue of air infiltration/exfiltration though the hempcrete. The project I helped with failed to meet the passivehaus airtightness requirements and I believe the engineer in charge seemed to think the hempcrete was the problem.

I havent seen a third party evaluation of hempcrete R value but my guess would be it has about the same Rvalue per inch as wood (R1 per inch). This makes it more of a thermal mass than insulation in my opinion. Sure you could meet the poorest performance allowed by law with a 13" thick hempcrete wall but I suspect a 13" thick wall filled with fluffy insulation would perform much better for preventing energy use and thermal losses. A 13" thick wall filled with real insulation would be about R46. This R value talk assumes the walls do not have air flowing through them which may not be the case with hempcrete?

Again, not really trying to bash hempcrete, just think you need to be careful when specifying it for insulation or thermal performance.
 
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