Straw-Clay Insulation

Stray-clay, sometimes know as Light Clay is a natural insulation far superior to conventional types because it is non toxic, reasonably self supportive, and resistent to rot, vermin, or fires. It also has a low impact on the environment because it made from an agricultural waste product and clay. This combination of thermal mass (the…

Adobe Brick Making

Adobe is an ancient building technique dating back to 8300 BC. The bricks are fireproof, durable, biodegradable, and provide excellent thermal mass to a building. In the fall of 2012, I gained experience building with bricks, including making the mortar and constructing walls; however, the adobe bricks were already made at the time. Luckily, I was…

Introduction to Cob: Garden Wall

For the next 8 months I will be participating in a natural building practicum at Aprovecho in Cottage Grove, Oregon. One of our first projects was the second phase of the garden wall to learn cob basics, work as a group, and continue the design around the entrance. It was started a few months ago…

Building the AAC Walls

To build the walls of the house we used AAC blocks, or Autoclaved Aerated Concrete.  They are made out of a mixture of sand, lime, cement and water.  Aluminum powder is added for a chemical reaction that gives the block its properties.  AAC is highly thermally lightweight, and easy to install, provied structure, insulation, and fire- and…

Adobe Brick Building

As previously mentioned in order to begin building an earthen home you must look around and use what materials are local.  Most buildings use some form of a mud mixture whether for plaster, mortar, or a mud mixture.  So, the first step is to test the type of soil on the site.  Soil contains clay,…