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GSBN:Low Tech SB wall

hello all,

We are winding down the testing portion of the EBNet's straw bale
construction testing program and we will be building the cyclical in-plane
test walls in Illinois over the next three weeks. Without going in to the
details, we are testing 3 earth plastered walls and 3 cement/lime stuccoed
walls (quickrete exterior stucco).  Each of these sets range from
simplest/most common to reasonably engineered to over engineered. ;-)

The question that I would like input on is the top plate and base connection
for the simplest earth plastered wall. In California we don't have much
occasion to build with this commonly built wall. We really want to avoid the
folly of a silly solution that everyone will have to replicate. We will
strap the wall with poly every two feet. This however does not seem to be

So here is what we're considering:

Mesh wraped under the sill and over the box beam that just covers the first
and top course of bales. ( most logical for us mesh happy balers though if
you're gonna mesh top and bottom you might as well go all the way.
unfortunately that is our mis range wall.

16d galvinized nails 4" on center imbedded only one inch into the plates and
box beam.

Developing a decent way to hold onto the top and bottom plates with exterior
bamboo pins

Imbalers, wood 2x2 top and rebar bottom (I really like to avoid this but it
has been done quite a bit)

16-18" Sip screws with wide washers installed after the first course and on
an angle up into the box beam (something I've tried with window bucks)


Also, if someone will be near the Urbana, Illinois testing site and could
help plaster let me know.