Trimming the Fat or Ruination? — 5 Comments

  1. Pingback:Trick Land Design

  2. Last week when i clicked through the link to have a look at the Konbit shelter’s work from your last post, i noticed this ‘technique’ and showed it to my better half, who was basically amazed they would do this. I am very surprised to hear that CalEarth is teaching this.

    Its good to hear that protected poly will last at least 30 years as we had to just leave our walls unplastered due to bad weather and the end of our work/vacation time. We covered the structure with two layers of UV stabilized 6mil black poly tarp and said a few prayers to the gods of compacted earth structures.

  3. It’s far better to tamp the high spots before the soil dries instead of cutting away the bags. That’s what we do. This reduces plaster work and yet retains wall strength.

    I just saw a YouTube video that showed workers flattening earthbag walls with big mallets. You can also use tampers for this purpose.

  4. I totally agree. Poly bags are incredibly strong with high tensile strength. Obviously they contribute a great deal of strength to the structure. It doesn’t make sense to intentionally weaken a structure — even more so when you’re building on the epicenter of a major earthquake that killed hundreds of thousands of people.

  5. Yes, Kelly, glad you brought it to our attention.
    So many are learning and trying earthbag. And there is so little precedent for building it in severe seismic areas.
    We don’t want to see anything done to weaken buildings that may be vibrating within a slight margin of their capacity at some time in the near future.
    Many Haitians are still refusing to return to buildings that have been declared safe but have cement ceilings or roofs.
    If lighter weight roofs can be used in earthquake areas, that may be a good idea.
    But whatever the shape of structure above our heads, lets keep it all intact.

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