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Dave Keck

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since Jul 05, 2013
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Recent posts by Dave Keck

Hi I may be selling my Idaho property with 7 acres and an off grid Strawbale cabin. It's near the town of Clearwater about 15 miles NE of grangeville. Email me with more details davemrk@outlook.com
Hi I may be selling my Idaho property with 7 acres and an off grid Strawbale cabin. It's near the town of Clearwater about 15 miles NE of grangeville. Email me with more details davemrk@outlook.com
2 years ago
Looks like I will be wrapping the bales with tyvek. I read that Andrew Morrison from Strawbale.com recommends this. I was going to use builders plastic but tyvek should let the water vapor escape. My other concern is with my lime putty freezing. Does anyone have experience with lime putty that has frozen? From what I've read the putty is ruined by letting it freeze.
3 years ago
Maybe catch the water at the base of the greenhouse? You'd need a buried tank or pond for this to work though.
3 years ago
So I've made some progress on the Strawbale house. The bales are in but it looks like the weather is going to be too cold to plaster. My plan was to put a lime plaster on it but I've been informed that freezing weather will ruin the plaster if there is moisture still in it. My question is how should I protect the bale walls through the winter? The good thing is that a have a covered porch all the way around that gives me a 6' overhang over an 8' wall. The rain would have to be blown pretty hard to hit the walls. I'm mostly worried about rodents trying to move in but also weathering of the walls. Any ideas are appreciated. Also I may stay in it and finish the inside through the winter so id be operating a wood stove to keep warm. I'm also concerned about burning the place down because the unplastered bales are very flammable id imagine
3 years ago
Has anyone heard of this product? It is reported to stop soil from absorbing water. Which in most cases isn't what we want, but in the case of road building would be a very good thing. No gravel is needed just the native soil. They say it's 100 percent organic and non toxic. Thoughts?

http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=0fyzOKci68E
5 years ago
Good point R Scott. I picked up some 2" recycled rigid foam insulation for the floor. That will give me r13, but I'd like to get it up to r 30 plus to be comparable to the bale walls. I was thinking rigid foam under the floor boards (2x8's) and then fill up with loose cellulose insulation. Is this only for ceilings or will it be fine in the floor boards?
5 years ago
Thanks Tim I am indeed going to go "Nebraska style" with my building! I found some trusses and free metal roofing so the carport idea is out. I'm excited to get started I will post pick of my progress as I go along.
5 years ago
I'm hoping someone with some experience with building with straw bale can help me out with which foundation to choose. I'm building a small cabin- 13' by 23', and I want to go with load bearing to save on costs. My question is whether I should go with a rubble trench foundation with an earthbag stemwall filled with gravel, or with a wood deck on piers.

My slope is a 1 to 7 drop, so I'd have to cut about 4 ft on the uphill slope to get a pad to build on. If I went with a wood deck on piers I wouldn't have to do any excavating. It looks like it would be less expensive to go with the wood deck, and would possibly be better to keep the bales high and dry. Any other pros and cons to these two types of foundations? Thanks in advance for any input
5 years ago
net and pan earthworks work well for steep slopes. basically each tree gets it's own catch basin and water is overflowed down to the next tree catch basin. you wouldn't want the overflows to go straight down hill to the next tree, but across the slope and down slightly. It forms a sort of diamond pattern with the basins. hope that helps.

yes you will have to reinforce the back wall of the basins if you are going to cut in the hillside 1.5 ft. are there large rocks on the property? you may be able to stack them as a retaining wall. This should also give you some condensation which will drip into the soil, as well as some thermal mass for extra heat which you may or may not want.
5 years ago