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Re: GSBN:fire test -- your opinions?

hello you all,

Thats  a very reallistic approach of factual situations.
In a house fire , even when flames start at a low positition (kitchen for
ex.) heat reaches always the upper surfaces, ceiling or roof. And
accumulates there, where a lot of wood in variable thickness is available.
This is how the whole roof begins to burn. In a strawbale wall, the weak
point would then be beam/roof plate as you sayed.
To make a good testing , leading to improve resistence to fire, I suggest
that top bales would be carefully covered with a good layer of earth,
possibly mixed with enough sand and chopped straw, in order to get a reall
"shield" under the beam/roof plate. The earth coat should ideally be 2 or 3
inches thick.
Tests coul d be done on a specially built "portion" of wall with its
connection to a piece of roofing structure. And this is good against water
too: when firemen will turn out the fire, water wont be running straight
into the walls.

Lorenzo Robl?s
Mazeuil, France  lorobles55@...

----- Original Message -----
From: "Rikki Nitzkin" rikkinitzkin@...
To: "'GSBN'" GSBN@...
Sent: Tuesday, May 02, 2006 10:35 AM
Subject: RE: GSBN:fire test -- your opinions?

HI all,

Has anyone thought about testing Clay-lime Plaster?  I have found that
adding a small amount of lime into a clay plaster makes it much more
resistant to water, and fire as well I imagine.

If I were to test lime I would do it without cement, supposing that if
anything the cement would make it more fire-proof and lime (and clay) is
plenty good enough with no cement.  Why is it that Americans are so in love
with cement (being an expat myself and Polish I feel free to make jokes
about both!)?

As for sticking to the walls, I should think that spraying limewash onto the
bales with pressure (so it penetrates) before plastering should allow the
plaster to stick just fine.  As for fire resistance, there is a Spanish
engineer who actually dips the bales in recently slaked lime before
building, and he has taken a blow torch to the bales and says they refuse to
burn...What would dipping just the inside/outside faces of the bales in a
lime-wash do?  Would that make the plaster stick more? Be more resistant to
fire?  Sort of like Tom Rijven«s "French dip" but with lime instead of clay.

And sorry to drone on, but another builder I know mentioned that the fires
tend to start in the roof and work their way into the bales through the roof
beams/roof plate...so shouldn«t we test how long it takes the fire to work
into the bales from above, not the sides?  I don«t know how this could be
tested as I am no engineer.  Just thoughts...

Rikki Nitzkin
Aul?s, Lleida, Espa?a
(0034)657 33 51 62
www.casasdepaja.com (Red de Construcci?n con Balas de Paja)


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