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GSBN: Digest for 2/14/05



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---------------------------------------------------------------------


-> GSBN:re: Exterior cladding question
     by Bruce King ecobruce@...
-> Re: GSBN:re: Exterior cladding question
     by "Chris Magwood" cmagwood@...
-> Re: GSBN:re: Exterior cladding question
     by Chris Stafford Stafford@...
-> Re: GSBN:re: Exterior cladding question
     by Catherine Wanek CatherineW@...
-> Re: GSBN:re: Exterior cladding question
     by Rene Dalmeijer rene.dalmeijer@...
-> Re: Reply to become a member
     by Rene Dalmeijer rene.dalmeijer@...
-> Re:  GSBN:re: Exterior cladding question
     by Strawnet@...
-> Re: GSBN:re: Exterior cladding question
     by "chris newton" chris@...
-> RE: GSBN:re: Exterior cladding question
     by "Mike Faine" M.FAINE@...


----------------------------------------------------------------------

Date: 14 Feb 2005 11:09:06 -0600
From: Bruce King ecobruce@...
Subject: GSBN:re: Exterior cladding question


On Feb 10, 2005, at 8:44 PM, Catherine Wanek wrote:

> Hi Chris & all--
>
> One thing that has not been mentioned..... I understand that there is
> usually about 9% cement added to compressed earth blocks, which makes
> them
> more durable to the weather and would also affect their permeability.
>
> But how much, I wonder?

Bruce King here, and so do I.  I'm about to start two different design
and research projects, ie houses with experiments and monitoring on the
side, using compressed earth blocks.

In both cases, the owner also wants to start selling blocks, and both
are in high seismic areas (Portland, Oregon and Nevada City, California
(Sierra foothills).

A recent visit with Tom Morton, a Scottish architect working with earth
blocks, really convinced me that adding cement is not only sometimes
unnecessary, but even detrimental to performance by several measures.
Can anyone refer me to field experience and/or testing information
(strength and durability, mainly) for compressed earth blocks without
cement?

Thanks!

Bruce King, PE
Director, Ecological Building Network
209 Caledonia St.
Sausalito, CA 94965  USA
(415) 331-7630
fax 332-4072
www.ecobuildnetwork.org
bruce@ ecobuildnetwork.org





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----------------------------------------------------------------------

Date: 14 Feb 2005 14:25:53 -0600
From: "Chris Magwood" cmagwood@...
Subject: Re: GSBN:re: Exterior cladding question

Bruce,

Thanks for weighing in!

The block maker I'm thinking of working with is currently testing versions
of his blocks with 0, 1, and 3% cement content. I am hoping to use the 0%
versions, if they meet the structural requirements.

I will send you the results of his testing as soon as they are available.

Perhaps Lars Keller can put you in touch with the block maker who
demonstrated at the Danish conference this year?

Chris


> Bruce King here, and so do I.  I'm about to start two different design
> and research projects, ie houses with experiments and monitoring on the
> side, using compressed earth blocks.
>
> In both cases, the owner also wants to start selling blocks, and both
> are in high seismic areas (Portland, Oregon and Nevada City, California
> (Sierra foothills).
>
> A recent visit with Tom Morton, a Scottish architect working with earth
> blocks, really convinced me that adding cement is not only sometimes
> unnecessary, but even detrimental to performance by several measures.
> Can anyone refer me to field experience and/or testing information
> (strength and durability, mainly) for compressed earth blocks without
> cement?
>
> Thanks!
>
> Bruce King, PE
> Director, Ecological Building Network
> 209 Caledonia St.
> Sausalito, CA 94965  USA
> (415) 331-7630
> fax 332-4072
> www.ecobuildnetwork.org
> bruce@ ecobuildnetwork.org
>
>
>
>
>
> --- This list does not allow attachments or HTML mail.  ---
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> ----
> GSBN is an invitation-only forum of key individuals and representatives of
> regional straw construction organizations. The costs of operating this
> list are underwritten by The Last Straw Journal in exchange for use of the
> GSBN as an advisory board and technical editing arm.
>
> For instructions on joining, leaving, or otherwise using the GSBN list,
> send email to GSBN@...HELP in the SUBJECT line.
> ----
>
>




----------------------------------------------------------------------

Date: 14 Feb 2005 14:42:21 -0600
From: Chris Stafford Stafford@...
Subject: Re: GSBN:re: Exterior cladding question

Bruce and All,

For what its worth --- What I saw in Saudi Arabia may not be called
compressed earth blocks, but in fact thats what they were. I saw 150
year old standing buildings, unoccupied and uncared for during last 30
years, made with hand-made sundried mud, not clay, blocks. The house I
was shown through was three stories tall, approx. 25' high. The hand
made blocks were 2"x4"x8" with a loaf shaped rise on the top. The wall
surfaces were plastered with the same mud. And, yes Saudi can have
winter rains, but not always the torrents I experienced. The new blocks
made for the library project had some straw mixed in the mud, but I can
not say the old blocks had any reinforcing.

Regards, Chris Stafford

On Feb 14, 2005, at 8:47 AM, Bruce King wrote:

>
> On Feb 10, 2005, at 8:44 PM, Catherine Wanek wrote:
>
>> Hi Chris & all--
>>
>> One thing that has not been mentioned..... I understand that there is
>> usually about 9% cement added to compressed earth blocks, which makes
>> them
>> more durable to the weather and would also affect their permeability.
>>
>> But how much, I wonder?
>
> Bruce King here, and so do I.  I'm about to start two different design
> and research projects, ie houses with experiments and monitoring on the
> side, using compressed earth blocks.
>
> In both cases, the owner also wants to start selling blocks, and both
> are in high seismic areas (Portland, Oregon and Nevada City, California
> (Sierra foothills).
>
> A recent visit with Tom Morton, a Scottish architect working with earth
> blocks, really convinced me that adding cement is not only sometimes
> unnecessary, but even detrimental to performance by several measures.
> Can anyone refer me to field experience and/or testing information
> (strength and durability, mainly) for compressed earth blocks without
> cement?
>
> Thanks!
>
> Bruce King, PE
> Director, Ecological Building Network
> 209 Caledonia St.
> Sausalito, CA 94965  USA
> (415) 331-7630
> fax 332-4072
> www.ecobuildnetwork.org
> bruce@ ecobuildnetwork.org
>
>
>
>
>
> --- This list does not allow attachments or HTML mail.  ---
> ---The notes below outline what was removed. ---
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>  text/enriched
> ---
> ----

>



----------------------------------------------------------------------

Date: 14 Feb 2005 15:20:19 -0600
From: Catherine Wanek CatherineW@...
Subject: Re: GSBN:re: Exterior cladding question

At 08:47 AM 2/14/05 -0800, Bruce King wrote:

>A recent visit with Tom Morton, a Scottish architect working with earth
>blocks, really convinced me that adding cement is not only sometimes
>unnecessary, but even detrimental to performance by several measures.
>Can anyone refer me to field experience and/or testing information
>(strength and durability, mainly) for compressed earth blocks without
>cement?

I know that CRATerre, the school of earth architecture in France, has done
a lot of work with CEBs, rammed earth, etc.  Hugo Houben is the person I
met there, who also has co-authored an authoritative work Earth
Construction -- A Comprehensive Guide.  I wonder if the book or their
website might yield some info. on this.  www.craterre.archi.fr

  Also Gernot Minke (Kassel, Germany) has done a lot of research with earth
bricks and written a scholarly book on it (now out of print in English)....
he may have information on this. You might contact Friedemann Mahlke
mahlke@... who is his colleague there.

  Another person who might know would be Joe Tibbits of the SW Solar Adobe
school, in New
Mexico.  www.adobebuilder.com  adobebuilder@... 505-861-1255.

He wrote the classic, out-of-print Earthbuilders Encyclopedia (now
available from him as a CD-ROM) and has helped write the current codes in
the U.S. Southwest on adobes.... of course most of them are now
"stabilized" with asphalt.  (ugh!)  This lets you leave them out in the
rain, but I understand the addition of asphalt then makes it impossible to
plaster with clay unless a lath material is added.

regards,
Catherine


Each year the amount of energy lost through UNINSULATED homes in the United
States is equivalent to the amount of fuel delivered annually through the
Alaskan Pipeline -- U.S. Department of the Interior, 2000


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----------------------------------------------------------------------

Date: 14 Feb 2005 15:34:16 -0600
From: Rene Dalmeijer rene.dalmeijer@...
Subject: Re: GSBN:re: Exterior cladding question

Bruce Chris,

I have recently done a very short workshop with the block maker in
Dordrecht The company is Oskam and also has an operation here in the
Netherlands. They have extensive experience with 0% cement blocks. This
is a link to their English language version site
<a  target="_blank" href="http://www.oskam-vf.com/english/index.htm";>http://www.oskam-vf.com/english/index.htm</a>. They are a very valuable
resource to us in the Dutch SB world and I am sure to anybody else.

All I say say at this moment is that as far as I know they are probably
one of the most experienced companies, at least that I know of, in the
manufacture, application of earth blocks including the machines to make
them.
On Feb 14, 2005, at 20:59, Chris Magwood wrote:

> Bruce,
>
> Thanks for weighing in!
>
> The block maker I'm thinking of working with is currently testing
> versions
> of his blocks with 0, 1, and 3% cement content. I am hoping to use the
> 0%
> versions, if they meet the structural requirements.
>
> I will send you the results of his testing as soon as they are
> available.
>
> Perhaps Lars Keller can put you in touch with the block maker who
> demonstrated at the Danish conference this year?
>
> Chris
>
>
>> Bruce King here, and so do I.  I'm about to start two different design
>> and research projects, ie houses with experiments and monitoring on
>> the
>> side, using compressed earth blocks.
>>
>> In both cases, the owner also wants to start selling blocks, and both
>> are in high seismic areas (Portland, Oregon and Nevada City,
>> California
>> (Sierra foothills).
>>
>> A recent visit with Tom Morton, a Scottish architect working with
>> earth
>> blocks, really convinced me that adding cement is not only sometimes
>> unnecessary, but even detrimental to performance by several measures.
>> Can anyone refer me to field experience and/or testing information
>> (strength and durability, mainly) for compressed earth blocks without
>> cement?
>>
>> Thanks!
>>
>> Bruce King, PE
>> Director, Ecological Building Network
>> 209 Caledonia St.
>> Sausalito, CA 94965  USA
>> (415) 331-7630
>> fax 332-4072
>> www.ecobuildnetwork.org
>> bruce@ ecobuildnetwork.org
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>> --- This list does not allow attachments or HTML mail.  ---
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>> ---
>> ----
>> GSBN is an invitation-only forum of key individuals and
>> representatives of
>> regional straw construction organizations. The costs of operating this
>> list are underwritten by The Last Straw Journal in exchange for use
>> of the
>> GSBN as an advisory board and technical editing arm.
>>
>> For instructions on joining, leaving, or otherwise using the GSBN
>> list,
>> send email to GSBN@...HELP in the SUBJECT
>> line.
>> ----
>>
>>
>
>
> ----
> GSBN is an invitation-only forum of key individuals and
> representatives of regional straw construction organizations. The
> costs of operating this list are underwritten by The Last Straw
> Journal in exchange for use of the GSBN as an advisory board and
> technical editing arm.
>
> For instructions on joining, leaving, or otherwise using the GSBN
> list, send email to GSBN@...HELP in the
> SUBJECT line.
> ----
>
>
Rene



----------------------------------------------------------------------

Date: 14 Feb 2005 16:16:15 -0600
From: Rene Dalmeijer rene.dalmeijer@...
Subject: Re: Reply to become a member

Please change Martin's subscription email address to
moehlmann@...off course anybody else reading the list too.

I am happy to say on Martin's behalf he has just started building his
SB house in Brittany.

On Feb 13, 2005, at 14:25, moehlmann wrote:

> Hi Rene,
> alles goed gegaan met het begravenis van je moeder?
> Zou je voor mij aan GSBN mijn nieuw adres kunnen doorgeven.
>
> Bedankt, Martin
>
> Begin morgen ochtend met de bouw. Kuba en Ger Stok komen straks.
> Hartelijke
> groeten, Martin
>
>
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "GSBN" GSBN@...
> To: "moehlmann" moehlmann@...
> Sent: Sunday, February 13, 2005 2:46 PM
> Subject: Reply to become a member
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>
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>> -------------------- Original Message Follows --------------------
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>> our new e-mail address from this moment is moehlmann@...
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>> fixed number at Moulin du Roz, 29690 Berrien: +33(0)298990378
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Rene



----------------------------------------------------------------------

Date: 14 Feb 2005 17:37:40 -0600
From: Strawnet@...
Subject: Re:  GSBN:re: Exterior cladding question

Bruce,

Did you ever get a copy of the Guide to Compressed Earth Blocks: Testing
Procedures, from Craterre and CDE that we had for the ASTM Earthen
Materials Task Group I was leading a few years ago? Also there's the set
of New Zealand Earth Buildings Standards - three volumes - (NZS 4297-1998
Engineering Design of Earth Buildings; NZS 4298-1998 Materials and
Workmanship for Earth Buildings; and NZS 4299-1998 Earth Building Not
Requiring Specific Design)?

I have one spare set of these if you don't have them. Let me know.

David


>From:  ecobruce@...(Bruce King)
>Sender:    GSBN@...(GSBN)
>
>On Feb 10, 2005, at 8:44 PM, Catherine Wanek wrote:
>
>> Hi Chris &amp; all--
>>
>> One thing that has not been mentioned..... I understand that there is
>> usually about 9% cement added to compressed earth blocks, which makes
>> them
>> more durable to the weather and would also affect their permeability.
>>
>> But how much, I wonder?
>
>Bruce King here, and so do I.  I'm about to start two different design
>and research projects, ie houses with experiments and monitoring on the
>side, using compressed earth blocks.
>
>In both cases, the owner also wants to start selling blocks, and both
>are in high seismic areas (Portland, Oregon and Nevada City, California
>(Sierra foothills).
>
>A recent visit with Tom Morton, a Scottish architect working with earth
>blocks, really convinced me that adding cement is not only sometimes
>unnecessary, but even detrimental to performance by several measures.
>Can anyone refer me to field experience and/or testing information
>(strength and durability, mainly) for compressed earth blocks without
>cement?
>
>Thanks!
>
>Bruce King, PE


David Eisenberg, Director
Development Center for Appropriate Technology
P.O. Box 27513, Tucson, AZ  85726-7513
(520) 624-6628 voice / (520) 798-3701 fax
strawnet@...
<a  target="_blank" href="http://www.dcat.net";>http://www.dcat.net</a>

"Truly appropriate technology is technology that ordinary people
can use for their own benefit and the benefit of their community
that doesn't make them dependent on systems over which they have
no control."             John F.C. Turner



----------------------------------------------------------------------

Date: 14 Feb 2005 19:22:10 -0600
From: "chris newton" chris@...
Subject: Re: GSBN:re: Exterior cladding question

Hi Bruce
I attended the EarthBuild Conference in Sydney last month. Some good
resources for you will be:-
- - Hugh Morris, Engineer, Auckland University, New Zealand
h.morris@...copies for sale of the standard David mentioned.
Helped write these.
- - Horst Schroeder, Architecture, Weimar University, Germany
horst.schroeder@...
I loved Horst, he told me later that all the Australian presenters who were
reinforcing their earth walls in Aust would have been thrown out if they
presented such papers in Germany.
- - Reddy Venkatarama, Engineer, Indian University (forgot which one). Lovely
man, presented a paper on 'stabilised mud brick  problems'.
venkat@...
I have a copy of the Houben and Guillaud's 'Earth Construction- A
comprehensive guide'. This is filed under my well used, essential reference
books (sub category - do not lend out). ISBN 1 85339 193 X. It discussed
soils, identifications, natural binding forces, stabilizations ( natural and
additives), tests, construction methods, production methods, design,
disaster resistant construction etc.

Regards

Chris Newton
Earth-n-Straw Pty Ltd
phone: 041 319 5585
web: www.newtonhouse.info/straw.htm

- ----- Original Message -----
From: "Bruce King" ecobruce@...
To: "GSBN" GSBN@...
Sent: Tuesday, February 15, 2005 2:47 AM
Subject: GSBN:re: Exterior cladding question


>
> On Feb 10, 2005, at 8:44 PM, Catherine Wanek wrote:
>
>> Hi Chris &amp; all--
>>
>> One thing that has not been mentioned..... I understand that there is
>> usually about 9% cement added to compressed earth blocks, which makes
>> them
>> more durable to the weather and would also affect their permeability.
>>
>> But how much, I wonder?
>
> Bruce King here, and so do I.  I'm about to start two different design
> and research projects, ie houses with experiments and monitoring on the
> side, using compressed earth blocks.
>
> In both cases, the owner also wants to start selling blocks, and both
> are in high seismic areas (Portland, Oregon and Nevada City, California
> (Sierra foothills).
>
> A recent visit with Tom Morton, a Scottish architect working with earth
> blocks, really convinced me that adding cement is not only sometimes
> unnecessary, but even detrimental to performance by several measures.
> Can anyone refer me to field experience and/or testing information
> (strength and durability, mainly) for compressed earth blocks without
> cement?
>
> Thanks!
>
> Bruce King, PE
> Director, Ecological Building Network
> 209 Caledonia St.
> Sausalito, CA 94965  USA
> (415) 331-7630
> fax 332-4072
> www.ecobuildnetwork.org
> bruce@ ecobuildnetwork.org
>
>
>
>
>
> --- This list does not allow attachments or HTML mail.  ---
> ---The notes below outline what was removed. ---
> multipart/alternative
>  text/plain (text body -- kept)
>  text/enriched
> ---
> ----
> GSBN is an invitation-only forum of key individuals and representatives of
> regional straw construction organizations. The costs of operating this
> list are underwritten by The Last Straw Journal in exchange for use of the
> GSBN as an advisory board and technical editing arm.
>
> For instructions on joining, leaving, or otherwise using the GSBN list,
> send email to GSBN@...HELP in the SUBJECT
> ine.  ----
>
>




----------------------------------------------------------------------

Date: 14 Feb 2005 20:53:29 -0600
From: "Mike Faine" M.FAINE@...
Subject: RE: GSBN:re: Exterior cladding question

Hi Bruce et al
There is a very good publication In Australia with the title "The
Australian earth building handbook" (HB195) published by Standards
Australia (2001). The author was Dr. Peter Walker (an engineer with a
very good international reputation) - this is the book that explains
everything you ever wanted to know about earth building in all its
myriad forms. I have designed one compressed earth block house that used
a 5% (by volume) cement content. For our soils (in the Sydney basin)
that seems to be about the right combination and accepted wisdom. The
good news is that the house is still standing (now about 15 years old).
Cheers Mike

Mike Faine - Lecturer UWS + sometime architect
School of Construction Property &amp; Planning
Locked Bag 1797
Penrith South DC NSW 1797
Uni Office phone (02) 98524318 Uni fax (02) 9852 4300
Mobile 0427406521 


- -----Original Message-----
From: GSBN [<a  target="_blank" href="mailto:GSBN@...";>mailto:GSBN@...] On Behalf Of Bruce King
Sent: Tuesday, February 15, 2005 3:48 AM
To: GSBN
Subject: GSBN:re: Exterior cladding question


On Feb 10, 2005, at 8:44 PM, Catherine Wanek wrote:

> Hi Chris &amp; all--
>
> One thing that has not been mentioned..... I understand that there is
> usually about 9% cement added to compressed earth blocks, which makes
> them
> more durable to the weather and would also affect their permeability.
>
> But how much, I wonder?

Bruce King here, and so do I.  I'm about to start two different design
and research projects, ie houses with experiments and monitoring on the
side, using compressed earth blocks.

In both cases, the owner also wants to start selling blocks, and both
are in high seismic areas (Portland, Oregon and Nevada City, California
(Sierra foothills).

A recent visit with Tom Morton, a Scottish architect working with earth
blocks, really convinced me that adding cement is not only sometimes
unnecessary, but even detrimental to performance by several measures.
Can anyone refer me to field experience and/or testing information
(strength and durability, mainly) for compressed earth blocks without
cement?

Thanks!

Bruce King, PE
Director, Ecological Building Network
209 Caledonia St.
Sausalito, CA 94965  USA
(415) 331-7630
fax 332-4072
www.ecobuildnetwork.org
bruce@ ecobuildnetwork.org





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GSBN is an invitation-only forum of key individuals and representatives
of regional straw construction organizations. The costs of operating
this list are underwritten by The Last Straw Journal in exchange for use
of the GSBN as an advisory board and technical editing arm.

For instructions on joining, leaving, or otherwise using the GSBN list,
send email to GSBN@...HELP in the SUBJECT line.

- ----



----------------------------------------------------------------------

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