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Straw bale post & beam  RSS feed

 
D. Moonstone
Posts: 34
Location: Canada, Zone 3
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About building a post & beam structure... the internet says that one option is to dig the post 4' into the ground. But doesn't wood rot?? How does that work?
I was planning a rubble trench foundation as the water table is high here (3' underground) and the frost line is deep 8' I think). Thank you!!
 
Ardilla Esch
pollinator
Posts: 230
Location: Northern New Mexico, Zone 5b
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Putting the posts directly in the ground is generally a bad idea. You can do it using rot resistant or treated posts in areas with well drained soil and deep water table. Even then, I would avoid doing it if you expect the structure to last.  Besides rot, there is the potential for termites and/or differential settling causing trouble.  It just isn't worth going cheap on the foundation of a house you are going to put that much work and money into.

Anchoring the posts to concrete pillars or steel piles would be a different story. 

With a rubble trench foundation, you would normally put anchor bolts in the bond beam and have the posts terminate on the beam with post bases, etc.
 
Tom Connolly
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Thank you for this post.  I hope you don't mind me piggy-backing on it but I was going to ask the same question.  How do the french drain (or whatever) work with frost lines?  The place I am shopping for land has a frost line 30" (about 80 cm) below the ground.  I am not only concerned about the poles that will support the structure - I would like to do straw bale infill, so need to find a stable foundation for that as well.
 
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