Advantages Galore to Earthbag Building — 4 Comments

  1. Great article!
    And your statement not needing “forms” is so true.
    I found that out first hand when we built the roundhouse in Chiang Rai.
    We didn’t have wooden forms for windows, instead, we laid and tamped the tubes complete, then cut the corresponding slits in the places of the window openings on each level. We left them that way until the roof was in place. When we were ready to render we pushed the cut sections out.
    Heck! We didn’t even use barbed wire. We simply laid the tubes, then spiked them with two meter lengths of re-bar at appropriate places.
    The roundhouse was half completed when we experienced a 6.5 earthquake. The building showed no ill effects.

    • Numerous earthbag buildings with minimal reinforcement have withstood quakes. For safety reasons we encourage people in earthquake regions not to skimp on reinforcement and to follow our building guidelines if at all possible. That said, we know there are lots of people in remote villages who can’t afford hardly any reinforcement. That’s why I wrote the previous blog post Low Cost Village Housing for Nepal.

      • I totally agree with you here. Reinforcement is very important.

        I was trying to emphasize the flexibility and versatility of the Earthbag method in my experience.

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