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GSBN: Digest for 9/7/06



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


-> RE: GSBN:South American strawbale
     by "Rikki  Nitzkin" rikkinitzkin@...
-> RE: GSBN:Ugandan building project
     by "Rikki  Nitzkin" rikkinitzkin@...
-> Re: GSBN:Re: A question about quantification of carbon sequestration in a
bale and bale structures bale and bale structures
     by "Lorenzo Robles" lorobles55@...
-> Zambia Help 
     by Athena & Bill Steen absteen@...
-> Re: GSBN:Zambia Help 
     by "Chug." chug@...
-> Re: GSBN:Ugandan building project
     by Joyce Coppinger jc10508@...
-> Andy Horn nomination
     by Martin Hammer mfhammer@...
-> German FASBA meeting
     by Rene Dalmeijer rene.dalmeijer@...
-> Re: GSBN: German FASBA meeting / TLS 
     by Martin Hammer mfhammer@...
-> Re: GSBN:Andy Horn nomination
     by john@...
-> Re: GSBN:German FASBA meeting
     by Joyce Coppinger jc10508@...
-> Re: GSBN:Andy Horn nomination
     by Joyce Coppinger jc10508@...
-> Re: GSBN:Andy Horn/Robert Wimmer nominations
     by billc billc_lists@...
-> A photo and questions
     by Martin Hammer mfhammer@...
-> RE: GSBN:A photo and questions
     by jswearingen@...
-> Re: GSBN:A photo and questions
     by strawnet@...
-> Re: A photo and questions
     by Derek Roff derek@...


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

Date: 7 Sep 2006 04:31:27 -0700
From: "Rikki  Nitzkin" rikkinitzkin@...
Subject: RE: GSBN:South American strawbale

HI, 
I ask the south American people and got this response:

"Hola!

Para los interesados en construcciones de tierra/paja
en Sudamerica, los invito a la pampa uruguaya para
realizar un par de construcciones pequenas. Recomenzamos/continuamos a
partir de enero - pleno verano! del 2007. Bienvenidos!

Laura"

Which means that there is a build in the Pampa uruguayo in January 2007.
Contact is Laura: laura m.- alvarez [la_ma_ba@yahoo.no]

Rikki Nitzkin
Aulas, Lleida, Espana
rikkinitzkin@...
(0034)657 33 51 62 
www.casasdepaja.com (Red de Construccion con Balas de Paja)
 
> -----Mensaje original-----
> De: GSBN [<a  target="_blank" href="mailto:GSBN@...";>mailto:GSBN@...] En nombre de Andre de Bouter
> Enviado el: jueves, 24 de agosto de 2006 12:48
> Para: GSBN
> Asunto: GSBN:South American strawbale
> 
> I too am interested in SB projects/builders (that could be visited) in
> Uruguay.
> 
> Bye,
> 
> Andre
> 
> 
> 
> Rikki Nitzkin a ecrit :
> > I am very interested in having contact information sobre any past,
> present
> > and future Strawbale projects in Central and South America. . . please
> and
> > thanks!
> >
> > Rikki Nitzkin
> > Aulas, Lleida, Espana
> > rikkinitzkin@...
> > (0034)657 33 51 62
> > www.casasdepaja.com (Red de Construccion con Balas de Paja)
> >
> >
> >> -----Mensaje original-----
> >> De: GSBN [<a  target="_blank" href="mailto:GSBN@...";>mailto:GSBN@...] En nombre de Laura
> Bartels
> >> Enviado el: lunes, 21 de agosto de 2006 20:16
> >> Para: GSBN
> >> Asunto: Re: GSBN:Alfalfa Bales
> >>
> >> I was in Argentina in March and know that there were straw bale
> projects
> >> happening in several places near Mendoza. I, too, would suggest not
> >> using alfalfa for the reasons already stated.
> >> Best,
> >> Laura Bartels
> >> GreenWeaver Inc.
> >> Carbondale, Colorado
> >>
> >> Rikki Nitzkin wrote:
> >>
> >>
> >>> Hi all,
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> I have gotten a request for information about the use of Bales made
> with
> >>> Alfalfa.  It seems that Argentina they are the only bales available.
> >>>
> >> Does
> >>
> >>> anyone know if they work well for building?  Alfalfa is usually ifoodi
> >>>
> >> for
> >>
> >>> animals, but if it is the only thing availableO
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Thanks,
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Rikki Nitzkin
> >>>
> >>> Aulas, Lleida (Spain)
> >>>
> >>> Auto-constructora y Educadora en Construccion con Balas de Paja y
> Revocos
> >>>
> >> de
> >>
> >>> Arcilla
> >>>
> >>> Co-ordinadora Red de Construccion con Balas de Paja
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> (0034) 657 33 51 62
> >>>
> >>> <<a  target="_blank" href="mailto:rikkinitzkin@earthlink.net";>mailto:rikkinitzkin@...> rikkinitzkin@...
> >>>
> >> (Personal)
> >>
> >>> <<a  target="_blank" href="mailto:casasdepaja@yahoo.es";>mailto:casasdepaja@...> casasdepaja@...(Asuntos de la Red)
> >>>
> >>> <a  target="_blank" href="http://www.casasdepaja.com";>http://www.casasdepaja.com</a>  (Red de Construccion con Balas de Paja)
> >>>
> >>> "Tenemos el Derecho y Responsabilidad de Crear el Mundo en que
> Queremos
> >>> Vivir"
> >>>
> >>> "We Have the Right and Responsability to Create the World we Want to
> Live
> >>> in"
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> --- StripMime Report -- processed MIME parts ---
> >>> multipart/alternative
> >>>  text/plain (text body -- kept)
> >>>  text/html
> >>> ---
> >>> ----
> >>> For instructions on joining, leaving, or otherwise using the GSBN
> list,
> >>>
> >> send email to GSBN@...HELP in the SUBJECT
> line.
> >>
> >>> ----
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >> ----
> >> For instructions on joining, leaving, or otherwise using the GSBN list,
> >> send email to GSBN@...HELP in the SUBJECT
> line.
> >> ----
> >>
> >
> > ----
> > For instructions on joining, leaving, or otherwise using the GSBN list,
> send email to GSBN@...HELP in the SUBJECT line.
> > ----
> >
> >
> >
> >
> 




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

Date: 7 Sep 2006 04:31:58 -0700
From: "Rikki  Nitzkin" rikkinitzkin@...
Subject: RE: GSBN:Ugandan building project

If you are looking at techniques to build with clay in formworks you could
check out www.sensaciones.de, they have done some interesting work.  As for
building ecovillages in thirld world, hot conditions, "Aureville" in India
is an excellent example. www.auroville.org They have work with methane gas
and solar energy extensively.

Suerte, 

Rikki Nitzkin
Aulas, Lleida, Espana
rikkinitzkin@...
(0034)657 33 51 62 
www.casasdepaja.com (Red de Construccion con Balas de Paja)
 
> -----Mensaje original-----
> De: GSBN [<a  target="_blank" href="mailto:GSBN@...";>mailto:GSBN@...] En nombre de Ben
> Enviado el: jueves, 31 de agosto de 2006 21:55
> Para: GSBN
> Asunto: GSBN:Ugandan building project
> 
> Hi All
> 
> I have been asked to work on an orphanage in Central Uganda and am
> looking for any contacts on this list that are located (or do work) in
> the region.
> 
> Briefly, a contractor I recently worked with told me his daughter and
> her husband work with Ugandan orphans. They have already procured a 100
> acres tract upon which to put the buildings. There is the possibility of
> an additional 300 acres of land being provided. Their current program is
> to build as self sustaining of a community as possible. As he (the
> contractor) explained, their hope is to purchase a block forming machine
> and produce the walls from local soils (perhaps w/ some sort of
> stabilizer added). They can fabricate roof trusses from local materials
> and will roof w/ corrugated metal. They have 2 existing wells on site
> and are working to have a small herd of cattle donated or purchased.
> They hope to create methane gas to use for energy.
> 
> The people behind this appear (so far) to be dedicated and motivated.
> They have a non profit 501 c-3 in place and the person who has contacted
> me is a retired General Contractor who has previously experience
> building from local materials in less developed countries.
> 
> Any thought, comments or interest will be greatly appreciated.
> 
> Take Care
> 
> Ben Obregon Architect
> Austin, TX USA
> 




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

Date: 7 Sep 2006 06:27:31 -0700
From: "Lorenzo Robles" lorobles55@...
Subject: Re: GSBN:Re: A question about quantification of carbon sequestration
in a bale and bale structures bale and bale structures

Hello Chris, hello everyone;
In quantifying all these  aspects we reach a rather complex level of
possible "roads" and choices for the future need to be thought and over and
over if we do not wish ending in "ecological mistakes" eventhough inducted
by good will and Earth caring approach.
  Burning on the field has traditionally been a farming way, for two main
reasons ie getting rid of pests, and feeding the soil with the minerals
contained in the straw ashes.
  But it is not necessary to burn all the straw. If -lets say 20% of the
straw is left on the field, and burnt, the 80 % remaining may be used for
construction.
  When a SB house is being deconstructed, the old straw could burnt to
produce heat, and then ashes used in farms. a simple and short , closed
cycle.
  I am not an expert in baling machines, but I can easily imagin these could
be adapted-or built- to leave enough staw on the ground, as they bale?
  But the great interest I find in straw (and earth ) construction is the
enormous sustainability connected with these techniques.  So little energy
is involved.
 On the other hand, quite a lot of human energy is required, because the
less we do through industrial process, the more we have to do with our good
old ape hands! Requires some labour. But is that a problem in itself? No. It
is a good solution, both socially and economically, because labour IS a
sustainable ressource.   Arent we about 7 billion on this planet?  An
economy (as ours today) based on less labour for short term profit in NOT
sustainable, in the distance. What our 7 billion people humanity needs is
freedom ,  balance and sustainability, not neverending growth. Decreasing
significantly the pressure (the demande) on stuffs like oil or steel, or
simply water,  globally would lead to a betterr environment of course, but
certainly to less reasons for wars, conflicts and stress at all levels.
 This is on of the reasons I profoundly believe we are definitly part of the
solution, hoping time enough is left.
 Lorenzo
- ----- Original Message -----
From: "Chris Stafford" Stafford@...
To: "GSBN" GSBN@...
Sent: Wednesday, August 30, 2006 6:08 PM
Subject: Re: GSBN:Re: A question about quantification of carbon
sequestration in a bale and bale structures bale and bale structures


> Here is another item for consideration. Burning straw in the fields
> versus baling it for removal. Farmers in Eastern Washington go either
> way believing each is being responsible to the environment. Those that
> bale and remove the straw have to spray the next year's crops to
> control pests. Burning straw eliminates need to spray.
>
> Chris
>
> Christopher Stafford Architects, Inc.
> 1044 Water Street, #326
> Port Townsend, WA 98368
> 360.379.8541
> www.building-green.net
>
>
> On Aug 29, 2006, at 5:13 PM, Derek Roff wrote:
>
>> My thoughts are in harmony with all who have commented so far.  This
>> discussion is helping me think about the question in more depth.  I
>> agree
>> with David that we can't ignore the little things.  Although cases will
>> vary, little things can sometimes add up rapidly.  For example, while I
>> argued that the amount of carbon in the bales is fairly small, David
>> pointed out that we might compare that to burning the same straw.
>> Andre
>> mentioned comparing SB to the carbon used when employing other building
>> materials.
>>
>> When we compare building with steel or brick and burning several tons
>> of
>> straw, to building with straw and (hopefully) not burning that straw,
>> then
>> the carbon sequestration embodied in the building materials choice is
>> multiplied.  Using Andre's figures, choosing to build with straw locks
>> up
>> more than ten times the carbon that is simply contained in the bales.
>> This
>> is before we look at energy savings.  That is an important calculation.
>>
>> All of which makes David's job harder, because he now has to figure
>> out the
>> relative carbon impacts of building with SB versus each alternative.
>>
>> Derek
>>
>> Derek Roff
>> Language Learning Center
>> Ortega Hall 129, MSC03-2100
>> University of New Mexico
>> Albuquerque, NM 87131-0001
>> 505/277-7368, fax 505/277-3885
>> Internet: derek@...
>>
>> ----
>> For instructions on joining, leaving, or otherwise using the GSBN
>> list, send email to GSBN@...HELP in the
>> SUBJECT line.  ----
>>
>>
>

>
>



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

Date: 7 Sep 2006 08:41:38 -0700
From: Athena &amp; Bill Steen absteen@...
Subject: Zambia Help 


Is anyone in a position to help this fellow?

On Sep 6, 2006, at 2:05 PM, alain wrote:

> Athena, Bill,
>
> I am looking for explanations and/or illustrations and references
> to "Self-draining foundations" that I couldn't find on your
> website. I live in Zambia as you can see
> and I will be the first to build a strawbale structure here. It's a
> big challenge because of the abundance of termites, bushfires and
> inexistence of square balers
> so I'm engineering everything purposedly for this project. The
> structure will be 2-storey 2 bedrooms on first floor and sitting,
> dining, fireplace, kitchen on ground floor;
> a plunge pool will be adjacent within the house frame.
>
> Passionated for buildings as a hobby, I became interested in low-
> income structures, starting with pressed earthblocks but now with
> straw bales. The grass that
> is available here is nowhere near anything seen on the web but I
> want to teach this technique to villagers because it is aimed at
> them essentially.
>
> Could you please put me in the right direction to get hold of this
> foundation type ? Another question is that on many sites, people
> have been using a wooden frame/skeleton
> that they have filled in with bales; I would prefer not to use a
> frame because of the costs implications. For a 2-storey structure,
> does your experience tell that a frame structure
> is absolutely necessary or not ?
>
> I would be extremely happy if you could reply to both emails (work
> and home). Let me know if coming to a workshop will make the
> difference in my assessments.
>
> Kind regards
>
> Alain Degroot
> Data Manager / ACTG Lead Data Manager
> Center for Infectious Disease Research in Zambia (CIDRZ)
> PO BOX 34681 RhodesPark
> 1275 Lubuto Road
> Northmead, Lusaka, Zambia
> Office lines: +260-1-291629/291630/291642/291785/293661/293772
> Direct line: -ext.209
> Cell: +260-(0)97-771880
> www.cidrz.org
> www.zambiafirst.org
> emails: (w) alain@cidrz.org; (h) alain@...
> SkypeID: (w) alain.degroot; (h): kalulu297a
>



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

Date: 7 Sep 2006 10:08:53 -0700
From: "Chug." chug@...
Subject: Re: GSBN:Zambia Help 

Hi Bill and Alain

there is some info and sketches in Barbara Jones pdf 
<a  target="_blank" href="http://www.strawbalefutures.org.uk/pdf/strawbaleguide.pdf";>http://www.strawbalefutures.org.uk/pdf/strawbaleguide.pdf</a>
and El Lupo has some info on his website
<a  target="_blank" href="http://www.strawbale.archinet.com.au/Other_methods.htm";>http://www.strawbale.archinet.com.au/Other_methods.htm</a>

bale on
Chug
chug@...
<a  target="_blank" href="http://www.strawbale-building.co.uk/";>http://www.strawbale-building.co.uk/</a>
.
- ----- Original Message -----
From: "Athena &amp; Bill Steen" absteen@...
To: "GSBN" GSBN@...
Sent: Thursday, September 07, 2006 2:19 PM
Subject: GSBN:Zambia Help



Is anyone in a position to help this fellow?

On Sep 6, 2006, at 2:05 PM, alain wrote:

> Athena, Bill,
>
> I am looking for explanations and/or illustrations and references
> to "Self-draining foundations" that I couldn't find on your
> website. I live in Zambia as you can see
> and I will be the first to build a strawbale structure here. It's a
> big challenge because of the abundance of termites, bushfires and
> inexistence of square balers
> so I'm engineering everything purposedly for this project. The
> structure will be 2-storey 2 bedrooms on first floor and sitting,
> dining, fireplace, kitchen on ground floor;
> a plunge pool will be adjacent within the house frame.
>
> Passionated for buildings as a hobby, I became interested in low-
> income structures, starting with pressed earthblocks but now with
> straw bales. The grass that
> is available here is nowhere near anything seen on the web but I
> want to teach this technique to villagers because it is aimed at
> them essentially.
>
> Could you please put me in the right direction to get hold of this
> foundation type ? Another question is that on many sites, people
> have been using a wooden frame/skeleton
> that they have filled in with bales; I would prefer not to use a
> frame because of the costs implications. For a 2-storey structure,
> does your experience tell that a frame structure
> is absolutely necessary or not ?
>
> I would be extremely happy if you could reply to both emails (work
> and home). Let me know if coming to a workshop will make the
> difference in my assessments.
>
> Kind regards
>
> Alain Degroot
> Data Manager / ACTG Lead Data Manager
> Center for Infectious Disease Research in Zambia (CIDRZ)
> PO BOX 34681 RhodesPark
> 1275 Lubuto Road
> Northmead, Lusaka, Zambia
> Office lines: +260-1-291629/291630/291642/291785/293661/293772
> Direct line: -ext.209
> Cell: +260-(0)97-771880
> www.cidrz.org
> www.zambiafirst.org
> emails: (w) alain@cidrz.org; (h) alain@...
> SkypeID: (w) alain.degroot; (h): kalulu297a
>

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





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

Date: 7 Sep 2006 11:47:45 -0700
From: Joyce Coppinger jc10508@...
Subject: Re: GSBN:Ugandan building project

I think Andy Horn would be a good person to add to the GSBN membership. I
know nothing about Colin Marincowitz. Do you have more information to share
about him, Martin - or does anyone else on the GSBN know Colin?

Joyce

on 9.6.2006 10:08 PM, billc at billc_lists@...:

> At 10:29 PM -0700 9/2/06, Martin Hammer wrote:
>>
>> Andy Horn - ecodesign@...
>> Colin Marincowitz - linkpty@...
>>
>>
>> PS - Bill Christensen,  is Andy Horn a member of the GSBN?
>>
>
> Nope, neither of them is.
>
> Should I consider this a nomination?
> --
> Bill Christensen
> <<a  target="_blank" href="http://sustainablesources.com/contact/";>http://sustainablesources.com/contact/</a>>
>
> Green Building Professionals Directory: <<a  target="_blank" href="http://directory.sustainablesources.com";>http://directory.sustainablesources.com</a>>
> Sustainable Building Calendar: <<a  target="_blank" href="http://SustainableSources.com/calendar/";>http://SustainableSources.com/calendar/</a>>
> Green Real Estate: <<a  target="_blank" href="http://SustainableSources.com/realestate/";>http://SustainableSources.com/realestate/</a>>
> Straw Bale Registry: <<a  target="_blank" href="http://sbregistry.sustainablesources.com/";>http://sbregistry.sustainablesources.com/</a>>
> Books/videos/software: <<a  target="_blank" href="http://bookstore.sustainablesources.com/";>http://bookstore.sustainablesources.com/</a>>
> ----
> For instructions on joining, leaving, or otherwise using the GSBN list, send
> email to GSBN@...HELP in the SUBJECT line.
> ----
>



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

Date: 7 Sep 2006 12:37:30 -0700
From: Martin Hammer mfhammer@...
Subject: Andy Horn nomination

Yes Bill.  Consider this a nomination that Andy Horn become a member of the
GSBN.  Not to unnecessarily exclude Colin Marincowitz, but I am more
familiar with Andy, his knowledge of straw bale building in South Africa,
and his straw bale work.  It seems important to have someone from South
Africa (or anywhere in Africa) on the list, and I believe Andy is the most
knowledgeable and experienced person there.  I haven't asked him if he is
interested, but I suspect yes.  His e-maii address is shown below.

Anyone want to offer a second?  Thanks.

Martin Hammer


> At 10:29 PM -0700 9/2/06, Martin Hammer wrote:

>> Andy Horn - ecodesign@...
>> Colin Marincowitz - linkpty@...

>> PS - Bill Christensen, is Andy Horn a member of the GSBN?


> Nope, neither of them is.  Should I consider this a nomination?

> Bill Christensen






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

Date: 7 Sep 2006 12:56:08 -0700
From: Rene Dalmeijer rene.dalmeijer@...
Subject: German FASBA meeting

Joyce, Martin,

I would just like to pass on this token of how well TLS is appreciated
specifically the recent codes issue. At the German FASBA annual meeting
in Walterhausen in Thurangia (amongst others famous for being home to
Bach, Luther and Goethe) the grand stairway well was covered with
enlarged copies of the pages concerning Martin Hammers international
review of SB building codes for all to read. Although not everyone
present is fully comfortable with English the articles were well read.
When ever I passed there was at least someone reading the articles a
step at a time. Well done.

I hope to write a short report for TLS on the FASBA meeting soon.

Rene



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

Date: 7 Sep 2006 15:26:34 -0700
From: Martin Hammer mfhammer@...
Subject: Re: GSBN: German FASBA meeting / TLS 

Rene -

Thanks very much for your kind words.  The quality of the codes issue was
certainly in part due to cooperation and input from people like yourself.
Thank you!  (And others out there in the GSBN.)  It was also due to Joyce
and Satomi Lander spending much more time than they usually do to
accommodate my requests.  I'm happy that you and others are finding it to be
informative and interesting.  See you at the ISBBC?

Martin

PS - I will follow this with another e-mail that relates to that TLS issue.


> Joyce, Martin,
>
> I would just like to pass on this token of how well TLS is appreciated
> specifically the recent codes issue. At the German FASBA annual meeting
> in Walterhausen in Thurangia (amongst others famous for being home to
> Bach, Luther and Goethe) the grand stairway well was covered with
> enlarged copies of the pages concerning Martin Hammers international
> review of SB building codes for all to read. Although not everyone
> present is fully comfortable with English the articles were well read.
> When ever I passed there was at least someone reading the articles a
> step at a time. Well done.
>
> I hope to write a short report for TLS on the FASBA meeting soon.
>
> Rene





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

Date: 7 Sep 2006 16:13:11 -0700
From: john@...
Subject: Re: GSBN:Andy Horn nomination

G ' day

Yes I will second Andy Horn to GSBN.  I have met Andy in Cape Town and
he is passionate about the environment and has some good ideas for
straw bale building.  I have seen photos of the straw bale homes he
has built and designed.

Kind regards
The Straw Wolf
Huff 'n' Puff Constructions
<a  target="_blank" href="http://www.glassford.com.au/";>http://www.glassford.com.au/</a>
61 2 6927 6027


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

Date: 7 Sep 2006 16:55:57 -0700
From: Joyce Coppinger jc10508@...
Subject: Re: GSBN:German FASBA meeting

Thanks for sharing this. Credit certainly goes to Marty for all his hard
work as Guest Editor of TLS#54/June 2006 and for preparing a thorough and
detailed summary article (a version of which will soon appear in Bruce
King's new book) and chart, and to everyone else who contributed to this
issue.

Look forward to receiving your report on the FASBA meeting for TLS - I'll
include it in the December issue if you can send copy to me by October 15 -
and can you include a photograph or two - maybe one of people reading the
articles?

Appreciate your help!

Joyce
- -------
Joyce Coppinger, Managing Editor
The Last Straw journal
GPFS/TLS, PO Box 22706, Lincoln NE 68542-2706 USA
402.483.5135, fax 402.483.5161
thelaststraw@...
www.thelaststraw.org


on 9.7.2006 12:40 PM, Rene Dalmeijer at rene.dalmeijer@...:

> Joyce, Martin,
>
> I would just like to pass on this token of how well TLS is appreciated
> specifically the recent codes issue. At the German FASBA annual meeting
> in Walterhausen in Thurangia (amongst others famous for being home to
> Bach, Luther and Goethe) the grand stairway well was covered with
> enlarged copies of the pages concerning Martin Hammers international
> review of SB building codes for all to read. Although not everyone
> present is fully comfortable with English the articles were well read.
> When ever I passed there was at least someone reading the articles a
> step at a time. Well done.
>
> I hope to write a short report for TLS on the FASBA meeting soon.
>
> Rene
>
> ----
> For instructions on joining, leaving, or otherwise using the GSBN list, send
> email to GSBN@...HELP in the SUBJECT line.
> ----
>



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

Date: 7 Sep 2006 17:03:21 -0700
From: Joyce Coppinger jc10508@...
Subject: Re: GSBN:Andy Horn nomination

I'll second your nomination of Andy Horn as a GSBN member. He's often been
helpful in sharing information.

Joyce

on 9.7.2006 12:16 PM, Martin Hammer at mfhammer@...:

> Yes Bill.  Consider this a nomination that Andy Horn become a member of the
> GSBN.  Not to unnecessarily exclude Colin Marincowitz, but I am more
> familiar with Andy, his knowledge of straw bale building in South Africa,
> and his straw bale work.  It seems important to have someone from South
> Africa (or anywhere in Africa) on the list, and I believe Andy is the most
> knowledgeable and experienced person there.  I haven't asked him if he is
> interested, but I suspect yes.  His e-maii address is shown below.
>
> Anyone want to offer a second?  Thanks.
>
> Martin Hammer
>
>
>> At 10:29 PM -0700 9/2/06, Martin Hammer wrote:
>
>>> Andy Horn - ecodesign@...
>>> Colin Marincowitz - linkpty@...
>
>>> PS - Bill Christensen, is Andy Horn a member of the GSBN?
>
>
>> Nope, neither of them is.  Should I consider this a nomination?
>
>> Bill Christensen
>
>
>
>
> ----
> For instructions on joining, leaving, or otherwise using the GSBN list, send
> email to GSBN@...HELP in the SUBJECT line.
> ----
>



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

Date: 7 Sep 2006 17:32:14 -0700
From: billc billc_lists@...
Subject: Re: GSBN:Andy Horn/Robert Wimmer nominations


Both Andy and Robert have been invited to join GSBN.  No need for
additional "seconds".  I'll let you know when they've joined.

Any other nominations or corrections to the list I sent recently?


- --
Bill Christensen
<<a  target="_blank" href="http://sustainablesources.com/contact/";>http://sustainablesources.com/contact/</a>>

Green Building Professionals Directory: <<a  target="_blank" href="http://directory.sustainablesources.com";>http://directory.sustainablesources.com</a>>
Sustainable Building Calendar: <<a  target="_blank" href="http://SustainableSources.com/calendar/";>http://SustainableSources.com/calendar/</a>>
Green Real Estate: <<a  target="_blank" href="http://SustainableSources.com/realestate/";>http://SustainableSources.com/realestate/</a>>
Straw Bale Registry: <<a  target="_blank" href="http://sbregistry.sustainablesources.com/";>http://sbregistry.sustainablesources.com/</a>>
Books/videos/software: <<a  target="_blank" href="http://bookstore.sustainablesources.com/";>http://bookstore.sustainablesources.com/</a>>


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

Date: 7 Sep 2006 19:03:21 -0700
From: Martin Hammer mfhammer@...
Subject: A photo and questions

Hello everyone -

I turn to the GSBN community with a personal straw bale matter that extends
to larger questions about straw bale building, its place in the world, and
the way it is perceived.

This has to do with the photo I used in the guest editor's notes of the June
issue of The Last Straw Journal.

Most of you subscribe to The Last Straw and many of you have at least
glanced at the June issue, which I was honored to guest edit, and which was
primarily about straw bale codes and permitting.  I worked hard researching,
writing, and coordinating with others for the issue.

For those who haven't seen or noticed it, the (amusing?) photo shows me
doing a headstand on a circular straw bale on the plains of North Dakota.  I
chose it along with an amusing yet topical caption, partly to add some humor
to an inherently dry subject matter.

After going through two public hearings in July for the proposed "Straw Bale
Code" here in California (with their inherent gravity, and with particular
scrutiny from the California Building Officials Association) I questioned
the wisdom of including such a photo in the issue.  Suddenly all I could
imagine was a building official being handed the "Codes issue" of TLS,
seeing that photo, and thinking - "Aha!  This confirms what I suspected.
That straw bale building is wacky and not to be taken seriously."

I no longer saw the photo exhibiting playful exuberance as I intended, but
instead exhibiting wacky recklessness.  It suddenly expressed going out on a
precarious limb, and I imagined readers seeing it as an unflattering
metaphor for straw bale building itself.  Or, "So, this is the guy who is
writing the straw bale code for the State of California.  Hmmm."

The levity in the photo belies the diligence and seriousness with which I
approached the fact finding and writing of the pieces in TLS, as well as my
writing of the proposed California Straw Bale Code.  It belies some serious
points I made in the guest editor's notes themselves.

So I've struggled with this, and I'm too close to it to tell whether this
matters in any way.  I don't want to place undue importance on it, but I
certainly believe words mean something (I took pains to find the right words
throughout the issue) and if the adage is true that a picture is worth a
thousand words . . .

I see The Last Straw as the life blood of the straw bale building movement.
If the use of that photo lessens the credibility of TLS or of straw bale
building in the eyes of even one reader (building official or otherwise),
then I apologize for its use.  I care deeply about straw bale building and
all that it represents.  Also, for me this opens up broader questions about
how the written and spoken word, the publications, the actions, and most
importantly the buildings that all of us in the straw bale building
community put forth affect the perception that people have of this way of
building and all that goes with it.

Not that straw bale building should be devoid of humor (Matts Myhrman
wouldn't allow that), any more than life should be devoid of humor.  Or
devoid of exploration, joy, inspiration, comfort, beauty, or any of the
other qualities that make straw bale buildings worth building.  But it seems
that those lighter qualities are necessarily coupled with sober
responsibility.

Each of us and each of our buildings are ambassadors of straw bale and
natural building, and we each bring something different to the table.  I
hope in this case I haven't brought something to the table that was
misplaced.  I'm interested in anyone's thoughts about this specific and
broader subject.  Thanks.

Martin Hammer



,




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

Date: 7 Sep 2006 20:24:45 -0700
From: jswearingen@...
Subject: RE: GSBN:A photo and questions

Marty,

I wouldn't worry about it.  As anyone can tell, we're all level-headed,
serious, responsible people who are out to subvert the dominant paradigm in
any way possible. If that requires standing on our heads on top of a round
bale, every last one of us would be willing to make the sacrifice to do so.
And we're so proud that when duty called, you stepped up and stood on your
head. One day, that picture will be as famous as the flag-raising at Iwo
Jima.

Seriously, though, I'm reminded of our first straw bale building inspection.
We had built a test wall and hung cattle troughs from the sides to fill with
water simulating loads.  For a commemorative picture, we all hopped into the
troughs naked (from waist up, at least), with shower caps.  At that very
moment the building inspector drove up (early) to inspect the foundation.
The poor guy was too seriously gone to register any reaction, and went right
past the architect, builders, dog, wives and girlfriends hanging naked
(except the dog) with barely a glance.  He looked at the hole in the ground.
We took the picture.  We passed the inspection. The building was in Sunset
Magazine. So was the picture. Straw bale flourished.  Janet Jackson popped
her buttons at the Super Bowl.  We all do what we gotta do...

So I guess my only question to you is=85..why weren't you naked?

John


- -----Original Message-----
From: GSBN [HYPERLINK
"<a  target="_blank" href="mailto:GSBN@..."mailto:GSBN@...";>mailto:GSBN@..."mailto:GSBN@...] On
Behalf Of Martin Hammer
Sent: Thursday, September 07, 2006 4:44 PM
To: GSBN
Subject: GSBN:A photo and questions


Hello everyone -

I turn to the GSBN community with a personal straw bale matter that extends
to larger questions about straw bale building, its place in the world, and
the way it is perceived.

This has to do with the photo I used in the guest editor's notes of the June
issue of The Last Straw Journal.

Most of you subscribe to The Last Straw and many of you have at least
glanced at the June issue, which I was honored to guest edit, and which was
primarily about straw bale codes and permitting.  I worked hard researching,
writing, and coordinating with others for the issue.

For those who haven't seen or noticed it, the (amusing?) photo shows me
doing a headstand on a circular straw bale on the plains of North Dakota.  I
chose it along with an amusing yet topical caption, partly to add some humor
to an inherently dry subject matter.

After going through two public hearings in July for the proposed "Straw Bale
Code" here in California (with their inherent gravity, and with particular
scrutiny from the California Building Officials Association) I questioned
the wisdom of including such a photo in the issue.  Suddenly all I could
imagine was a building official being handed the "Codes issue" of TLS,
seeing that photo, and thinking - "Aha!  This confirms what I suspected.
That straw bale building is wacky and not to be taken seriously."

I no longer saw the photo exhibiting playful exuberance as I intended, but
instead exhibiting wacky recklessness.  It suddenly expressed going out on a
precarious limb, and I imagined readers seeing it as an unflattering
metaphor for straw bale building itself.  Or, "So, this is the guy who is
writing the straw bale code for the State of California.  Hmmm."

The levity in the photo belies the diligence and seriousness with which I
approached the fact finding and writing of the pieces in TLS, as well as my
writing of the proposed California Straw Bale Code.  It belies some serious
points I made in the guest editor's notes themselves.

So I've struggled with this, and I'm too close to it to tell whether this
matters in any way.  I don't want to place undue importance on it, but I
certainly believe words mean something (I took pains to find the right words
throughout the issue) and if the adage is true that a picture is worth a
thousand words . . .

I see The Last Straw as the life blood of the straw bale building movement.
If the use of that photo lessens the credibility of TLS or of straw bale
building in the eyes of even one reader (building official or otherwise),
then I apologize for its use.  I care deeply about straw bale building and
all that it represents.  Also, for me this opens up broader questions about
how the written and spoken word, the publications, the actions, and most
importantly the buildings that all of us in the straw bale building
community put forth affect the perception that people have of this way of
building and all that goes with it.

Not that straw bale building should be devoid of humor (Matts Myhrman
wouldn't allow that), any more than life should be devoid of humor.  Or
devoid of exploration, joy, inspiration, comfort, beauty, or any of the
other qualities that make straw bale buildings worth building.  But it seems
that those lighter qualities are necessarily coupled with sober
responsibility.

Each of us and each of our buildings are ambassadors of straw bale and
natural building, and we each bring something different to the table.  I
hope in this case I haven't brought something to the table that was
misplaced.  I'm interested in anyone's thoughts about this specific and
broader subject.  Thanks.

Martin Hammer



,


- ----
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email to GSBN@...HELP in the SUBJECT line.  
- ----

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

Date: 7 Sep 2006 22:32:43 -0700
From: strawnet@...
Subject: Re: GSBN:A photo and questions

Dear Martin (and all),

As you know from our prior conversation, my feelings about this are
twofold. First, I think it is indicative of your level of commitment
and the seriousness of your efforts that you would arrive at a point of
personal crisis and explore the possible negative impacts of that
photo. I understand both the concern and the level of anguish you've
experienced about the possibility that a whimsical act might undermine
your efforts and those of others and the credibility of straw bale
construction in the eyes of anyone. I honor that level of concern and
your willingness to take responsibility for that possibility, slim or
not.

And, I am also of the opinion that the risk of that is fairly small and
the overall benefit of some levity is much larger. In addition, there
is a part of me that thinks people who do good, conscientious, serious
work and can also enjoy themselves actually have more credibility with
most people than the humorless people who are unable to see the world
except through their narrow lens. And, of course, I could be completely
wrong and people reading this in the GSBN archives years from now may
laugh at my ignorance of how the world really works... But I think
humor is one of the best solvents for weakening attachments to old ways
of thinking. (On the other hand, I don't think I'm alone in being glad
you were wearing clothes in that photo...)

As for the other part of your message, you are right on in the sense
that those of us who spend time in the role of pioneering such things
as straw bale construction do have a real responsibility to do it well
enough that we don't jeopardize the thing we love through carelessness
or ignorance. And I also believe that one of the things that has set
this community apart from many others has been the openness and
generosity of spirit in sharing not only our successes but our failures
and challenges. The GSBN community continues to represent the best
aspects of how we might learn to act in many other spheres of human
activity.

Thank you Martin for sharing your concerns so openly and honestly and
for caring that much, and also for the wonderful job you have done in
serving the larger straw bale community through your diligent and hard
work.

David Eisenberg

- -----Original Message-----
From: mfhammer@...
To: GSBN@...
Sent: Thu, 7 Sep 2006 4:43 PM
Subject: GSBN:A photo and questions

   Hello everyone -

I turn to the GSBN community with a personal straw bale matter that
extends
to larger questions about straw bale building, its place in the world,
and
the way it is perceived.

This has to do with the photo I used in the guest editor's notes of the
June
issue of The Last Straw Journal.

Most of you subscribe to The Last Straw and many of you have at least
glanced at the June issue, which I was honored to guest edit, and which
was
primarily about straw bale codes and permitting.  I worked hard
researching,
writing, and coordinating with others for the issue.

For those who haven't seen or noticed it, the (amusing?) photo shows me
doing a headstand on a circular straw bale on the plains of North
Dakota.  I
chose it along with an amusing yet topical caption, partly to add some
humor
to an inherently dry subject matter.

After going through two public hearings in July for the proposed "Straw
Bale
Code" here in California (with their inherent gravity, and with
particular
scrutiny from the California Building Officials Association) I
questioned
the wisdom of including such a photo in the issue.  Suddenly all I could
imagine was a building official being handed the "Codes issue" of TLS,
seeing that photo, and thinking - "Aha!  This confirms what I suspected.
That straw bale building is wacky and not to be taken seriously."

I no longer saw the photo exhibiting playful exuberance as I intended,
but
instead exhibiting wacky recklessness.  It suddenly expressed going out
on a
precarious limb, and I imagined readers seeing it as an unflattering
metaphor for straw bale building itself.  Or, "So, this is the guy who
is
writing the straw bale code for the State of California.  Hmmm."

The levity in the photo belies the diligence and seriousness with which
I
approached the fact finding and writing of the pieces in TLS, as well
as my
writing of the proposed California Straw Bale Code.  It belies some
serious
points I made in the guest editor's notes themselves.

So I've struggled with this, and I'm too close to it to tell whether
this
matters in any way.  I don't want to place undue importance on it, but I
certainly believe words mean something (I took pains to find the right
words
throughout the issue) and if the adage is true that a picture is worth a
thousand words . . .

I see The Last Straw as the life blood of the straw bale building
movement.
If the use of that photo lessens the credibility of TLS or of straw bale
building in the eyes of even one reader (building official or
otherwise),
then I apologize for its use.  I care deeply about straw bale building
and
all that it represents.  Also, for me this opens up broader questions
about
how the written and spoken word, the publications, the actions, and most
importantly the buildings that all of us in the straw bale building
community put forth affect the perception that people have of this way
of
building and all that goes with it.

Not that straw bale building should be devoid of humor (Matts Myhrman
wouldn't allow that), any more than life should be devoid of humor.  Or
devoid of exploration, joy, inspiration, comfort, beauty, or any of the
other qualities that make straw bale buildings worth building.  But it
seems
that those lighter qualities are necessarily coupled with sober
responsibility.

Each of us and each of our buildings are ambassadors of straw bale and
natural building, and we each bring something different to the table.  I
hope in this case I haven't brought something to the table that was
misplaced.  I'm interested in anyone's thoughts about this specific and
broader subject.  Thanks.

Martin Hammer



,


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



________________________________________________________________________
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----------------------------------------------------------------------

Date: 7 Sep 2006 22:51:35 -0700
From: Derek Roff derek@...
Subject: Re: A photo and questions

I think the photo was completely appropriate for The Last Straw.  It is
fun, funny, and provides a needed balance to the overly-serious approach of
most building journals.  This balance is what makes the natural building
community the special place that it is.

It's true that an issue of The Last Straw may sometimes be used for
purposes and situations beyond the confines of our community, such as
educating building officials.  It's hypothetically possible that some
future building official might take strawbale building less seriously,
because of a humorous photo in TLS, or some other extraneous reason.  But
we can't change the world by worrying about the possible reactions of a few
hypothetical people who are welded to the status quo.  I'd rather think
about the positive effect the photo might have on people who are looking
for alternatives on many levels.  And many of those people are building
officials.

The Last Straw is not the Bible.  Nor is the building code a religious text
(we hope).  This TLS issue expresses the life and vitality of the movement,
which includes joy and laughter.  Martin, you express the concern that if
"even one reader" considers strawbale less credible because of the photo,
it would be a bad thing.  I say let's focus on the balance, not just the
negative side of the ledger.  I am sure that we can find one person who
will object to anything we might do, or not do.  Ignore them.  As Rene
recently pointed out, this TLS issue is making a great contribution to
people across the world.  The levity of that photo is a valuable part of
the whole message.  The Last Straw would be poorer, if it didn't include
the humor and spirit of its readers, writers and editors.

That's how it seems to me.  And I'm proud of my inverted values.

Derelict

Derek Roff
Language Learning Center
Ortega Hall 129, MSC03-2100
University of New Mexico
Albuquerque, NM 87131-0001
505/277-7368, fax 505/277-3885
Internet: derek@...

- --On September 7, 2006 4:43:33 PM -0700 Martin Hammer
mfhammer@... wrote:

> Hello everyone -
>
> I turn to the GSBN community with a personal straw bale matter that
> extends to larger questions about straw bale building, its place in the
> world, and the way it is perceived.
>
> This has to do with the photo I used in the guest editor's notes of the
> June issue of The Last Straw Journal.
>
> Most of you subscribe to The Last Straw and many of you have at least
> glanced at the June issue, which I was honored to guest edit, and which
> was primarily about straw bale codes and permitting.  I worked hard
> researching, writing, and coordinating with others for the issue.
>
> For those who haven't seen or noticed it, the (amusing?) photo shows me
> doing a headstand on a circular straw bale on the plains of North Dakota.
> I chose it along with an amusing yet topical caption, partly to add some
> humor to an inherently dry subject matter.
>
> After going through two public hearings in July for the proposed "Straw
> Bale Code" here in California (with their inherent gravity, and with
> particular scrutiny from the California Building Officials Association) I
> questioned the wisdom of including such a photo in the issue.  Suddenly
> all I could imagine was a building official being handed the "Codes
> issue" of TLS, seeing that photo, and thinking - "Aha!  This confirms
> what I suspected. That straw bale building is wacky and not to be taken
> seriously."
>
> I no longer saw the photo exhibiting playful exuberance as I intended, but
> instead exhibiting wacky recklessness.  It suddenly expressed going out
> on a precarious limb, and I imagined readers seeing it as an unflattering
> metaphor for straw bale building itself.  Or, "So, this is the guy who is
> writing the straw bale code for the State of California.  Hmmm."
>
> The levity in the photo belies the diligence and seriousness with which I
> approached the fact finding and writing of the pieces in TLS, as well as
> my writing of the proposed California Straw Bale Code.  It belies some
> serious points I made in the guest editor's notes themselves.
>
> So I've struggled with this, and I'm too close to it to tell whether this
> matters in any way.  I don't want to place undue importance on it, but I
> certainly believe words mean something (I took pains to find the right
> words throughout the issue) and if the adage is true that a picture is
> worth a thousand words . . .
>
> I see The Last Straw as the life blood of the straw bale building
> movement. If the use of that photo lessens the credibility of TLS or of
> straw bale building in the eyes of even one reader (building official or
> otherwise), then I apologize for its use.  I care deeply about straw bale
> building and all that it represents.  Also, for me this opens up broader
> questions about how the written and spoken word, the publications, the
> actions, and most importantly the buildings that all of us in the straw
> bale building community put forth affect the perception that people have
> of this way of building and all that goes with it.
>
> Not that straw bale building should be devoid of humor (Matts Myhrman
> wouldn't allow that), any more than life should be devoid of humor.  Or
> devoid of exploration, joy, inspiration, comfort, beauty, or any of the
> other qualities that make straw bale buildings worth building.  But it
> seems that those lighter qualities are necessarily coupled with sober
> responsibility.
>
> Each of us and each of our buildings are ambassadors of straw bale and
> natural building, and we each bring something different to the table.  I
> hope in this case I haven't brought something to the table that was
> misplaced.  I'm interested in anyone's thoughts about this specific and
> broader subject.  Thanks.
>
> Martin Hammer

Derek Roff
Language Learning Center
Ortega Hall 129, MSC03-2100
University of New Mexico
Albuquerque, NM 87131-0001
505/277-7368, fax 505/277-3885
Internet: derek@...



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

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