[Strawbale] Fwd: Re: seeking advice/assistance with strawbale shed

Patrick O'neill patrick at frdata....uk
Thu Oct 22 14:37:58 CEST 2009

I think that I agree.  I am a keen SB supporter but probably not in  
this application.

Have you considered cob.
You can stop work at any stage without having to bother about bales  
getting wet or vandalised.
There is not the danger of crushing feet and fingers that there is  
with rammed earth.
Best of all for your application in an elementary school, it can be  
un-believably messy....


<ArchiLogic at yahoo...>:

> Just to stir up the pot a bit, I thought that y'all might have some
> thoughts on the following
>  from the
> http://listserv.repp.org/mailman/listinfo/greenbuilding_listserv.repp.org
> ------- Forwarded message -------
> From: "Keith Winston" <keith at earthsunenergy...>
> To:
> Cc: greenbuilding at listserv....org
> Subject: Re: [Greenbuilding] seeking advice/assistance with strawbale shed
> Date: Wed, 21 Oct 2009 11:35:14 -0400
> There are a number of straw bale sheds built, mostly as demo projects.
> I would generally recommend against it, except for that purpose.
> One of the big advantages of SB is the high insulation value.
> Meaningless in a shed, generally. Same goes for most of the value of
> thermal mass & hydrophilic plasters, and to some degree air quality. A
> highly-breathable shed is a very forgiving thing.
> The interior finish of SB is not so cheap (materially), and (both
> interior and exterior are) VERY labor intensive. Sheds don't typically
> have an interior finish.
> IMO you need large overhangs, and some structure that keeps the SB off
> the ground: typically 12-18" (I would advocate more in the 18"+ for
> anything but the dryest climes).
> If you do the math, and especially if you value your volunteer energy,
> it's not a great fit. UNLESS: you put a high value on the demo aspect
> (are you in a good SB environment?), for example, a larger SB project
> is on the horizon.
> I can't stress enough how important free labor is to make SB even
> faintly competitive with almost anything else. Compressed (possibly
> stabilized) earth blocks made onsite could be another local natural
> materials approach that could go faster/cheaper, if you can find/build
> a press.
> Full disclosure: I work with/around SB quite a bit, and I really love
> certain aspects, but am weary of it being oversold.
> Keith
> On Wed, 21 Oct 2009 11:04:10 -0400, Joshua Dolan <sapsquatch7 at gmail...>
> wrote:
>>  Hello!
>>  I am a teacher at South Hill elementary school. We have a small
>>  organic orchard on site, and I'd love to build a shed for educational
>> and maintenece materials. I was wondering about the cost/viability of
>> building a straw bale structure at the school. The district would take
>> a lot of convincing, I'm betting, but it is worth a try. Is there a
>> local person I could talk to, or, even better, who would like to help
>> on such a project?
>> I'm looking to write a grant to cover the costs and community support is
>> a must.
>> Thanks,
>> Carolyn Belle
> ========= End of forwarded material =========
> --
> === * ===
> Rob Tom
> Kanata, Ontario, Canada
> < A r c h i L o g i c  at  ChaffY a h o o  dot  C a >
> (manually winnow the chaff from my edress in your reply)
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Patrick O'Neill
FR Data Ltd
Alderham Bank
Warwick CV35 8DA
07941 227849
patrick at frdata....uk

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