Win a copy of 5 Acres & a Dream this week in the Homestead forum!
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
permaculture forums growies critters building homesteading energy monies kitchen purity ungarbage community wilderness fiber arts art permaculture artisans regional education skip experiences global resources the cider press projects digital market permies.com private forums all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
master stewards:
  • Nicole Alderman
  • Anne Miller
  • Pearl Sutton
  • r ranson
  • Mike Haasl
  • James Freyr
stewards:
  • paul wheaton
  • Joylynn Hardesty
  • Burra Maluca
garden masters:
  • Steve Thorn
  • Greg Martin
gardeners:
  • Kate Downham
  • Jay Angler
  • thomas rubino

Walk Out Foundation

 
Posts: 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Good day;

I'm in the process of building a timber frame home.  We own roughly 30 acres of property with good size eastern white pine standing timbers.  We have several local farmers that offer high quality straw that I plan on using for the walls with clay we can harvest locally.  I would like to build a natural living home for my wife and two kids but I am hitting a road block with the foundation.  I have an unlimited supply of rock and large boulders as I run a small excavation business.  I thought about using rock and cement but I'm a little nervous building something that is of that high in load bearing.  The timber frame home is a 1.5 story home and is 30ft wide by 50 long.  I have several quotes for ICF and form basement but the cost is hard to swallow.  I love the fact that with stone walling it can be built as time goes on.

Suggestion?  Any books on building walk out foundations with stone?
 
gardener
Posts: 3035
Location: Upstate NY, zone 5
137
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I don't know of any books specifically on building stone foundations, but investigating old houses in your region would probably give good information about what has been found to work with the local material. What area are you in? What is the character of the stone you have? Is it naturally flattish and rectilinear, jagged and irregular, or rounded? I wouldn't try to use rounded stones in a basement wall (or any other, if I had an alternative), but other types can be used with more or less ease and mortar required, depending on the stone.
 
Posts: 8
Location: Southern Worcester County
1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Good day to you Bannerd Div.

I have designed Massachusetts-local stone (granite) foundations with hydraulic machines.  This is not a sustainable course of action in the strictest sense, but I have been cautioned by senior participants on this forum to follow a course of least resistance, so I demur. (That's how I read the post anyway.)

A hydraulic (bush) hammer will be the best course for this kind of effort because you need to make relatively flat surfaces on the rock you use.  You can make superior flat bonding surfaces with hydraulic hammers that will counteract wind and (if applicable) seismic forces when bonded with measured bonding agents for your foundation if you mix the bonding agents competently. (sand and cement 50/50 is a good place to start if you can source finely ground materials that will cohere)  If you don't measure and mix you will be rolling Las Vegas dice because the only things we have as a community are the successful measurements we've used before. If this is anathema to you, please do your own thing but record what you do so we can all benefit from your progress.  Thanks in advance!
 
gardener
Posts: 2414
Location: Fraser River Headwaters, Zone3, Lat: 53N, Altitude 2750', Boreal/Temperate Rainforest-transition
345
hugelkultur forest garden fungi trees books food preservation bike solar woodworking
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I would suggest ordering a copy of The Stone builder's Primer by Charles Long through inter library loan.
 
Posts: 861
Location: Bendigo , Australia
33
dog homestead
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
What about building the floor on steel columns and using the rock as infill.
In Australia we don't have to deal with frozen ground, do you have that?
 
"I know this defies the law of gravity... but I never studied law." -B. Bunny Defiant tiny ad:
Heat your home with the twigs that naturally fall of the trees in your yard
http://woodheat.net
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
Boost this thread!