Loft or Attic Trusses — 8 Comments

  1. This may be a silly question but if you build your roof structure then build your earthbag walls, how do you effectively tamp the bags with the structure above you? It would seem you couldn’t stand on the wall to tamp the bags correctly. I’ve thought of building the roof first to protect the bags and site but stopped there thinking there was no way to build the walls correctly. Thanks guys!

  2. We want to build a roof first and then the earthbag home. Do you think it’s easier to build a post and beam structure and use earthbag in-fill? We are thinking about building a roundhouse within the posts that will hold up the roof, keeping the walls separate from the posts. We are now considering earthbag in-fill between the posts for a rectangular shape home if it would be wiser. I assume we could just dig the rubble trench foundation between the posts after they are set.

    We bought some of your roundhouse plans, really like the idea of a roundhouse but want to take the most efficient route after building a roof first.

    • Working under the protection of a roof is especially practical in rainy, and very hot and cold climates. This method is highly recommended if you live in a climate like this. In relation to post and beam, it makes no difference whether the earthbag walls are straight or round. For instance, you could set 8 posts with beams in a square with trusses on top. The earthbag walls could go between, outside, inside the posts or in a circle. All are possible. The bags in this case would not be supporting the roof, so it doesn’t matter what configuration they’re in. So choose your favorite shape.

      And make sure the post footings are deeper than the rubble trench so they are strong. I would dig both at the same time.

      • Thanks for the response. I think a roundhouse inside the posts would provide a great opportunity for a wrap-around porch. A few earthbag benches placed next to the wall..

        Now I have loft trusses to think about as well. :)

        • That would create a nice overhang as large as you want. The best size depends on your climate. In cold climates you want some solar gain through the windows in winter. But hot climates you don’t necessarily need direct solar gain.

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