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balecob home on earthbag foundation--building progress  RSS feed

 
Daniel Ray
pollinator
Posts: 132
Location: Stevensville, Montana; Zone 4b
19
food preservation forest garden hugelkultur
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Thought I would begin sharing our new build with everyone here on permies. I've listed the highlights of this build below:

-load bearing bale/cob walls
-earthbag stem wall
-rubble trench foundation
-living roof
-earthen floors
-cob/cordwood/bag interior walls
-attached sun room
-rocket mass heater

This year we worked primarily on the rubble trench foundation. Next year we will be doing the stem wall, exterior walls, roof, and if time permits the rocket mass heater and earthen floors. Hopefully the year after we will do all the finishing work and move in. This is our second build. We currently live in a cob house we built two years ago. If you want to check out our blog see my signature below. I'll continue to post on the blog and upload new photos on this page as we proceed. Below are some photos of our progress this year.

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water line
 
Daniel Ray
pollinator
Posts: 132
Location: Stevensville, Montana; Zone 4b
19
food preservation forest garden hugelkultur
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Gravel for Rubble Trench Foundation.
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Daniel Ray
pollinator
Posts: 132
Location: Stevensville, Montana; Zone 4b
19
food preservation forest garden hugelkultur
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Aaaaah, now it is spring and the real building can begin!!!

An update on what is going on with this massive project. We have cut the trees for our three posts and peeled them, but are waiting for a group of five to help us stand them up in place on the building site. Originally I was planning on pouring three large concrete footers measuring 2x4x4 feet, but after seeing a really nice footer made from cut and squared stone I realized that I--and my wallet--would prefer using massive chunks of urbanite that were taken from the sidewalk just outside the public library. These things are huge! I had to use a sledgehammer to break them into 4x4 pieces and they still weigh 100+ lbs.

After these beams are stood up I'll start the earthbag foundation!
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Straw for exterior walls
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18 inch posts
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flat-nose shovel hard at work
 
Daniel Ray
pollinator
Posts: 132
Location: Stevensville, Montana; Zone 4b
19
food preservation forest garden hugelkultur
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Well we have started the bag stem wall which is much more fun than I had anticipated. I got some awesome poly bags from a local brewery for 10 cents a piece. We are going to complete 5 layers of bags before starting the cob/bale walls. We also left a 3-4 inches between the bags for insulation.
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Jordan Harder
Posts: 14
Location: Cocolalla ID
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Very cool tho see what you guys are doing! I like the combination of tecniques. Excited to see more progress of the project.
 
Mario Lazetti
Posts: 8
Location: 6b Atlantic City NJ
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Wonderful work so far. Really enjoyed your blog too. Makes me miss living in Montana more than anything!
 
Daniel Ray
pollinator
Posts: 132
Location: Stevensville, Montana; Zone 4b
19
food preservation forest garden hugelkultur
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Bags seem to never end, but we are putting the front window and doorbucks in finally.

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wife and recycled windows. Free 4x7 windows from the dump.
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front door buck
 
Daniel Ray
pollinator
Posts: 132
Location: Stevensville, Montana; Zone 4b
19
food preservation forest garden hugelkultur
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Bags are done; onto cob!
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Daniel Ray
pollinator
Posts: 132
Location: Stevensville, Montana; Zone 4b
19
food preservation forest garden hugelkultur
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More photos. We are finally to to the balecob stage and ready to put some windows in!
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wall thickness at 32"
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working to bring the stemwall level
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first course of bales getting cobbed in
 
Daniel Ray
pollinator
Posts: 132
Location: Stevensville, Montana; Zone 4b
19
food preservation forest garden hugelkultur
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Haven't posted photos for a while so I decided to throw some new ones up. This is some of the most recent work we have done. The snow coming down the mountains is intimidating, but we are just a few weeks away from starting the roof.
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working above lintels
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working on joists for loft
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front view through 7ft window frames
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pups finding their spots already
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bottle window for cob shower, this will be tadelakt
 
Daniel Ray
pollinator
Posts: 132
Location: Stevensville, Montana; Zone 4b
19
food preservation forest garden hugelkultur
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and more...
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unfinished loft
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finished loft from below in bedroom
 
I'm not dead! I feel happy! I'd like to go for a walk! I'll even read a tiny ad:
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