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earth bags as non-load bearing insulation within a timber frame?

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Hi Kelly,

I have a question that may be too region specific, but I'd like to ask anyhow. I'm currently living in Japan and considering to put up a temporary structure before winter for my wife and I on our newly purchased land, but haven't decided on which building method to employ.

I'd like to use earth bags as non-load bearing insulation within a timber frame, using a mixture of rice husk and clayey soil, both of which can be cheaply obtained from on-site or from local sources. I don't know the R-value of the husk, but assume that it would be higher than a purely compacted soil/lime mixture. Any suggestion on what the best ratio might be?

Traditionally in Japan, builders used thatched rice rusk to insulate the roof, although it takes a great deal of experience and labor. Instead, can I use earth bags with a higher rice rusk -> earth ration to insulate the roof? Will the weight constraints on the frame be a serious issue to consider? What type of insulation do you typically use for roofs?

Thanks, I'd really appreciate any input from you if you have the time to consider my situation.

Kind regards,
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