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Come learn Natural building techniques with us in southwest washington  RSS feed

 
Jaime Wise
Posts: 24
Location: Toutle WA (an hour north of portland)
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We are starting work on a 150 square foot tiny hobbit home on our 20 acres near castle rock WA. We are looking for anyone interested in coming for any time period to learn and help on the house project. We've never built a natural home before but have plenty of building experience and knowledge on the subject. We are currently collecting downed trees and stripping them while digging the foundation and sifting out rocks to use later. We want to use cob, light clay straw, timber framing, building into a hill and burrying the house under ground. We plan to be building all year so pop in for a day or all spring! Let us know if you have any interest, no matter your skill level and we will work it out with you.

We are also interested in building a small community here, of 10-20 people and would love to find anyone interested in possibly living here. We have 2 creeks on the property, many cedars, Doug fir, a few large maples and many alders, all southern facing hills, some wetlands, open areas, forested areas, many many fruit bushes and hazelnuts, and many microclimates. The property was logged 10 years ago so, exxept for near the creeks, there are plenty of 10 year old trees coming up. makes it very nice to do our fruit and nut tree plantings. A very long growing season and a 60 foot greenhouse to share. We want to live as simply as possible while meeting our needs. Harvesting wild foods and growing perennials is a must for us. Interested? We love visitors!
 
Daniel Ray
pollinator
Posts: 129
Location: Stevensville, Montana; Zone 4b
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Sounds awesome, sorry I won't be able to make it out to help. Please post photos, we would love to see what you are working on or if you have an external website/blog, post a link.
 
Jaime Wise
Posts: 24
Location: Toutle WA (an hour north of portland)
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Great idea, I will try to keep up on that. We have taken a few photos, I will see if I can figure out how to post them...
 
Daron Williams
pollinator
Posts: 221
Location: Olympia, WA - Zone 8a/b
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When you start doing the light straw clay work I would be interested in helping out. I have been wanting to use that technique for a shed next year and would love to get some hands on experience before jumping into it.
 
Jaime Wise
Posts: 24
Location: Toutle WA (an hour north of portland)
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Alright!  Would love to have you down. That will most likely be in the late summer or fall so I'll try and keep you in mind when the time comes. I will try and document progress on this forum, although We're so busy that not sure how often ill get to it. Remind me later if you are wondering what point were at
 
Axel Eaton
Posts: 7
Location: Santa Barbara, CA
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Sounds sweet, I'm exploring the idea of doing a coastal bike/surf/farm trip.  In the case I do, I'd love to come stay with you.  Similar to wwoofing I'm assuming?
 
Jaime Wise
Posts: 24
Location: Toutle WA (an hour north of portland)
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Axel Eaton wrote:Sounds sweet, I'm exploring the idea of doing a coastal bike/surf/farm trip.  In the case I do, I'd love to come stay with you.  Similar to wwoofing I'm assuming?


Hey axel. Thanks for the message. Your bike trip sounds great. I have often thought about doing something similar. We would love to have you come out for a visit on your journey.

Our situation isnt exactly like wwoofing because we do not have a farm business that one would be helping on. We are just homesteading and we thought we would enjoy sharing our natural building experience with anyone around who wants to see how it works and get some hands on experience. I know i would have really enjoyed learning some of these techniques for free when i was searching for natural building workshops. We do not charge like a workshop or retreat, but we don't have any income currently so we can't take on providing 3 meals a day for people. We are willing to offer lunch to anyone who puts in a days work to say thanks. If someone came who was a huge help and really had no way of paying for their own meals, we could probably try and figure something out that would make it worth it for all parties. We hope that the skills learned at our place are a valued payment. Let us know if you end up taking the trip! Good luck.
 
Kelly Dungan
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Hey Jaime!
I'm interested in doing some building! I did the 10 day course at Cob Cottage Company last fall and I'd like to help out on other folks' projects until I buy land. I live in Seattle, so, not too far from you. Let me know!

Kelly
 
Jaime Wise
Posts: 24
Location: Toutle WA (an hour north of portland)
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Hey Kelly that sounds perfect As one of our resources for our hobbit house we have been using the "hand sculpted house" by one of the authors is Linda smiley, a director at the cob cottage company. We really love the book and it was an inspiration to us last week the hard debate of whether to use our small tractor for the foundation or do what we really want which is dig it by hand came up. I opened to an ominous page in the book read it and felt inspired to dig it by hand. We spent 3 dry days last week digging and sifting and are feeling great about it.

We would love to have you out at any point of home building to help out. I'm not sure if you are interested in the whole process or just the actual cob making and using, but you are welcome to come for any or all of it. Digging the foundation will take us another month or two depending on weather and how much help we are given. We have a couple folks coming down this next weekend for a digging party if you are interested you can come join in the fun and meet some people we probably won't get to the cob part until August or september I'm guessing. Once foundation is dug we will put up posts and rafters which we have collected most of. Then roof of possible woven cattail reeds on too of willows twigs. Then some insulation and the classic pond liner, our hope fully only man made ingredient. We're planing On a living roof of moss. All just possibilities until we are at that point. So let me know which part of the building you are inspired to help with and I'll try and keep you updates about our progress. Would be great to meet and greet sometime whenever you are free. We're here most days all day email me for future communications bc it's easier for me to check that.

Jaime.wise@hotmail.com

Hope to hear from you soon!
 
Jaime Wise
Posts: 24
Location: Toutle WA (an hour north of portland)
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To moderators: wondering if there's a way to edit my original posting? I want to add in a few building techniques we will be using and some of our resources and building models. (Cordwood walls, rocket mass heater, attached greenhouse, earthen plasters, "building a low impact roundhouse" by tony wrench, "the hand sculpted house" by Evans, smith and smiley).

Also wondering if I can get this added to the regional forums for the Washington coast region, pacific coast? Or whichever fits best. And lastly added to the natural building forum please let me know if any or all of this is possible. Thank you!
 
Jaime Wise
Posts: 24
Location: Toutle WA (an hour north of portland)
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Does anyone know how to edit a post? So update on the house. We are almost done digging out the foundation. We have a big rock that will basically be our back wall in the tiny house. We're still tinkering with the details of where the posts are going, but we will start digging post holes in a few days. We're digging down 2 feet for most posts, others we will be chipping away rock to make a semi-flat surface. There are 10 posts total, the ones in the front will be further apart than the ones in the back. We found some free windows that are about 7 feet wide, so weve adjusted the posts slightly to accommodate the beautiful windows. We're going to dig the root cellar, greenhouse, and outdoor kitchen spaces out after we get the house framed up.
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Jaime Wise
Posts: 24
Location: Toutle WA (an hour north of portland)
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Daron Williams wrote:When you start doing the light straw clay work I would be interested in helping out. I have been wanting to use that technique for a shed next year and would love to get some hands on experience before jumping into it.


Hey Daron we are doing light clay straw this week and probably next. Let me know if you'd like to come down and learn a bit with us!
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Jaime Wise
Posts: 24
Location: Toutle WA (an hour north of portland)
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More light clay straw wall up!
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