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GSBN: Digest for 10/17/03

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-> RE: GSBN:Mechanical Systems in Commercial SB building
     by stoneandstraw@...
-> Re: GSBN:TLS World Tour of Straw Bale
     by Chris Magwood TLSEditor@...


Date: 17 Oct 2003 01:40:21 -0500
From: stoneandstraw@...
Subject: RE: GSBN:Mechanical Systems in Commercial SB building

My recommendation is Ray Darby of <EnergyGuy.com>.  He is in Nevada City,
Nehemiah Stone
PO Box 324
Loomis, CA 95650

- -----Original Message-----
From: GSBN [mailto:GSBN@...]On Behalf Of
Sent: Wednesday, October 01, 2003 4:24 PM
To: GSBN@...
Subject: Re: GSBN:Mechanical Systems in Commercial SB building

>I have a client who is trying to get his mechanical engineers to understand
>the level of energy efficiency of a bale building, while also attempting to
>help them see the world outside of their small boxes.  He wants to simplify
>his mechanical systems, and they have designed him a cadillac system.  The
>project is a natural food store in Montana and we are looking for examples
>of not-too-complicated systems placed in commercial bale structures.  Can
>anyone help with this one?  Any example projects come to  mind?
>Jeff Ruppert, P.E.


I think the key is to look for a mechanical engineer or consultant who
knows his or her stuff well enough to be able to work with the engineers
your client has already and make the case for the simpler path, not just
to look for good examples of simpler systems (though there are probably
some good ones). I say that because to do this properly you would want to
design the system for the specific building, loads, uses, climate, etc.

Of course they will likely to need to pay for some of such a person's
time, but a few really savvy mechanical engineers come to mind. They
don't need to be totally familiar with sb construction to be able to
properly design a system for such a building. The ones that popped into
mind are Marc Rosenbaum in New Hampshire (Marc.J.Rosenbaum@VALLEY.NET) -
brilliant, amazing, small one-person operation and very busy; Eric
Thompson in Virginia - lots of alternative building and alternative
energy/energy efficiency experience, very clever, fun, and good to work
with; Malcolm Lewis in California - has a somewhat larger firm that does
a lot of commercial and institutional work - very good guy and very solid
technically and otherwise (mlewis@ctg-net.com); and Al Nichols here in
Tucson - a long-standing interest in sb and zero-energy buildings, solar
and much more, lots of experience with a wide range of projects, small
firm, very creative (ALNICHOLS@aol.com).

I know that there are lots of other good people out there but these are
folks I know understand integrated design and appreciate things like sb
for its full range of thermal and other benefits. They also know how to
design elegant systems that are optimized for the project.

Hope that helps.


David Eisenberg, Director
Development Center for Appropriate Technology
P.O. Box 27513, Tucson, AZ  85713
(520) 624-6628 voice / (520) 798-3701 fax

The Development Center for Appropriate Technology is a 501(c)(3)
non-profit organization. Our primary support comes from foundation grants
and charitable contributions from individuals and businesses, and from
our educational and training programs and consulting services. Our
mission is to enhance the health of the planet and our communities by
promoting a shift to sustainable construction and development practices
through leadership, strategic relationships, and education. To learn
about DCAT's work and how you can support it, please visit our website at

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Date: 17 Oct 2003 12:23:24 -0500
From: Chris Magwood TLSEditor@...
Subject: Re: GSBN:TLS World Tour of Straw Bale

>I can write a short report on Mongolia, as I'm going there next 
>week. I'll need a couple of weeks, though.  Is that OK?
>Thanks, Paul


This is a great offer! It certainly pushes the deadline for the issue 
to its boundaries, but I think it will be worth it! The reports don't 
need to be long or detailed, so don't worry about making it more than 
it needs to be. In general, the reports have been a few paragraphs 
long, and have 3-4 photos of the projects they are describing.

The absolute latest I can wait is November 7, so hopefully you'll 
have a chance to put something together by then.

Have a good and safe journey, and look forward to hearing from you!


- -- 


Chris Magwood / Camel's Back Straw Bale Construction

Interested in bale building? Have you subscribed to
The Last Straw Journal?
You should!


End of Digest

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