Patti Stouter’s New Earthbag Building Slide Series
“A how-to slide show series. A picture is worth a thousand words. And many natural builders have limited access to the internet. These slide shows will speed information transfer into many languages because they are mostly visual and come in small and large formats. Slide sets are also available in French.”
Simple Earth Structures home page
Simple Earth Structures provides free information and advice to NGOs and self-help groups in the developing world.
Mindfulness Project Has Started at Wat Pho, Thailand
“The Mindfulness Project starts its construction phase by making a sample of an earthbag dome. This will be an earthbag dome for dark room meditation on the campus of Wat Pho. The dome will have only one round door and no windows. The door can be closed from two sides, to get water and food into the dome without light entering it. We will have 1-2 fans on an 10 inch pipe opening on the bottom and one big opening on top to have an air circulation, so the warm air can leave on top and the relatively cold will enter at the bottom. We will have a toilet and water inside and an inbuilt altar for meditation. The starting phase was a lot of joy and we have been fortunate to have Peter and Sarah from Canada helping us getting started. We had 10 students from the technical college and 10 Novices who worked like lions to get the earth in from the entrance of the Monastary to the building site. With that amount of people it was charming chaotic but very fast. In only 3 days we builded 1,50 Meter high including all the plumbing etc. Keep updated!”
Update on Earthbag Schools in Basa, Nepal
“Everything has been moving along well at the project site. Building 1 is 95% plastered on the exterior, the cement floors are complete and we are ready to begin the roof as soon as the wood is ported in from the jungle. Building 2 has the foundation complete and the first gravel bags are being set.”
Protecting Earthbags with Old Bags
Here’s a good suggestion from Zafra, one of our readers. They have access to used bags. Most are in good condition, but some have holes in them. They suggest doubling the bags – one inside the other – to protect the earthbags from UV damage. This way the walls don’t have to be tarped or painted. I really like their idea of using a good bag inside an old bag. It’s super simple but effective! I’m surprised no one has thought of it yet. Finding free, lower quality bags for the outer layer shouldn’t be too difficult. Note – this idea is for medium to large projects. Small projects that are finished within a few weeks don’t need added protection.
Earthbag Earthship Intensive
July 14 – 31, 2012 – San Luis, Colorado – $1500 Eighteen days of intensive learning at a remote site in Southern Colorado. We will build an Earthbag Earthship home for Tetsuko, a friend and Buddhist practitioner who is quadriplegic. Experience an amazing natural setting! A stream with resident beavers runs by the site. Learn all the details of construction with lectures, slides, and hands on classes. You will come away from this experience ready to build your own home with little further guidance required.
Good News for South Carolinians
From Luke: I’ve got some good news for South Carolinians. I’ve recently come into contact with April Magill, who is a licensed architect in South Carolina. She is in love with Natural Building, and wants to help others achieve their dreams of building naturally. This is what she sent me in an e-mail,
“I am a licensed architect. So I can ‘stamp off’ on any designs, alternative or not. Most cities or counties will require a stamp from either an architect or a structural engineer. Every county/city is different, so it all comes down to that individual person and their requirements.” To state the obvious she will be an awesome resource for the South. She is currently only licensed for South Carolina. But besides the beaches in SC (she’s in Charleston), this makes South Carolina all the more attractive for people who want to build a natural home.
She has two websites; http://dirtqueenarchitect.blogspot.com (blog) and http://www.lowcountrynaturalbuilding.com (portfolio and background). You can see all of her previous work including work with Earthen Endeavors in Nicaragua. She has her contact information on the low country natural building site. Just thought I would share!
Owen: Thank you April! I believe you’re the first architect to offer this service (stamp multiple types of natural buildings, not just one type). Imagine the changes that would happen if someone did this for each state. I’m guessing other concerned architects and engineers will offer to help.