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Re: GSBN:Fwd: Information Request

Dear Ian,

I'm afraid I have no hard data. And if there is any I'm very interested to
find out about it.

One of the SB bibles (Build it with Bales) states that the Burrit Mansion,
built in 1930 in Huntsville Alabama, with a humid climate and an average
rainfall of 50 inch/1.26M seems to be doing very well.

My wife and I gave a SB workshop in Auroville, Tamil Nadu, (south)India. We
used rice straw (which we baled by hand). Two structures had been built some
200 km south from there a few years ago and they even withstood a flooding.
Unfortunately we did not have a chance to look IN the cement (over mud)
plastered walls.
We also visited a timber frame with straw-mud infill home. The walls get a
bit soft in the wet season (No large overhangs, ground floor +1) but they
dry out perfectly in the dry season. No mold or any sign of rotting.

We figured that if the stacks of rice-straw in the feeld can withstand the
tropical rain (by shedding it off) and high humidity than so would a SB
Large overhangs (for shedding the rain off) and a mud plaster (for
breathability) is what we used to protect our little SB house.
We had a temporary permit for the SB house, so it might be taken down in a
few years, a good chance to take a good look inside.

It can also be interesting to look at the local roofs. Often some sort of
thatch is used, even in the tropics. Check if you can make a bale out of

If you want to read some more, check our website that has articles on the SB
workshop (including hand baler), the other two structures in India and


----- Original Message -----
From: Chris Magwood cmagwood@...
To: GSBN@...
Sent: Thursday, July 05, 2001 1:48 PM
Subject: GSBN:Fwd: Information Request

> Can anybody help direct Ian to useful info?
> >Delivered-To: cmagwood@...
> >From: Ian Kent ikent@...
> >To: "'cmagwood@kos.net'" cmagwood@...
> >Subject: Information Request
> >Date: Tue, 3 Jul 2001 12:17:02 -0700
> >MIME-Version: 1.0
> >
> >Dear Sir/Madame,
> >
> >I am a builder investigating the possibility of using straw bale
> >construction in the tropics.  Do you have any data to show how the walls
> >perform in very humid conditions?
> >
> >Can other grasses or fibre be used?
> >
> >Ian Kent
> >
> ******
> Chris Magwood / Camel's Back Straw Bale Construction
> 613-473-1718
> www.strawhomes.ca