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GSBN: Digest for 10/5/07



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


-> RE: GSBN:Re: Strawbale walling query
     by Jim Carfrae jim.carfrae@...
-> Moisture Thesis for download
     by "Jakub Wihan" kuba@...
-> Re: GSBN:Any SB contacts in Chile?
     by "Chug" chug@...
-> RE: GSBN:Moisture Thesis for download
     by Jim Carfrae jim.carfrae@...
-> Re: GSBN:Re: Strawbale walling query
     by jswearingen@...
-> Re: GSBN:Any SB contacts in Chile?
     by Martin Hammer mfhammer@...
-> Re: GSBN:Moisture Thesis for download
     by The Last Straw thelaststraw@...


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

Date: 5 Oct 2007 03:22:38 -0500
From: Jim Carfrae jim.carfrae@...
Subject: RE: GSBN:Re: Strawbale walling query

Hello Tom (and all)

This is my first response, so please excuse any errors in protocol!

We built our SB house almost exactly as described, and the details we employed
were as follows;

We fixed a strip of Fermcell (plaster board) to the back of the internal post
that extended an inch or so either side, to allow a continuous plaster/vapour
check with the internal render - you will get shrinkage of large section
posts, and if we hadn't done this there would be an eighth inch air gap each
side of the post.

We then fixed a fencing staple to the back of the post and used it to hold the
bales in place with poly packaging strapping (the sort that comes with a
tensioning device - very handy in a lot of SB building scenarios)
This was done not so much for structural reasons, as to help keep the walls
straight and true but retain flexibility.

Without seeing the details, I am confused as to why there is a wall plate to
tie to the rafters - in our post and beam, the wall plate is the top of the
frame, the rafters sit on that, and the SB wall extends up between the
rafters.

We have been monitoring our house with about 30 moisture sensors for about two
years, and I would advocate a rainscreen. We are in a similar gulf stream
climate, and the walls that are just lime rendered hold on average 3% more
moisture than the screened ones (av. 13% against 16%)

I would also agree that the SB wall should wrap around the outside of the
posts, not between - far simpler to build, and better continuous insulation.

Jim Carfrae
PhD Research Student

Room 119, Reynolds Building
University of Plymouth
Drake Circus
Plymouth
PL4 8AA

jim.carfrae@...
07880 551922
01803 862369
________________________________________
From: GSBN [GSBN@...] On Behalf Of Tom Woolley
[woolley.tom@virgin.net]
Sent: 04 October 2007 18:06
To: GSBN
Subject: GSBN:Re: Strawbale walling query

I had a meeting today with a young Belfast architect, Siobhan Brown,
who is designing a strawbale house for a self builder in County
Fermanagh ~Northern Ireland

I don't think Siobhan has much experience of SB but she has had a
good go at the design mainly based on details in a book by Chris Magwood

The client wants to built a post and beam structure for the house and
then wrap the strawbale walls around the outside of the posts.
She was not proposing to tie the walls into the posts as she says
that Magwood's details do not show this.
She was planing to tie the wall plate to the rafters of the roof. The
house is single storey but with rooms in the loft. so the floor
joists for the upper floor will be part of the roof structure.

I have misgivings about this . I wonder if anyone has built a
strawbale house where the bale walls are not load bearing and are
wrapped around the outside of the structural posts without being tied
into them? The posts will be about 4 metres apart.

Fermanagh has to have 100% humidity all year round with a lot of
heavy winds and driving rain. If you stand still for 5 minutes moss
will grow on your head.  I also think the walls will need a rain screen

I would have thought a more solid structure would involve placing
sections of bale walls between the posts and being tied into them

Any useful comments and I will pass them onto Siobhan

thanks


Tom Woolley
woolley.tom@...
Rachel Bevan Architects
17A Main Street
Saintfield
Ballynahinch
County Down
BT24 7AA
028 97 512851

also:
Graduate School of the Environment
Centre for Alternative Technology
Unit 7, Dyfi Eco Parc
Machynlleth
Powys, SY208AX

01654 703562






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

Date: 5 Oct 2007 05:45:47 -0500
From: "Jakub Wihan" kuba@...
Subject: Moisture Thesis for download

Dear Joyce and others,

Reading about Jims moisture research, I'd like to offer everybody an
opportunity to download the thesis "Humidity in straw bale walls and its
effect on the decomposition of straw", that was finished in July.

<a  target="_blank" href="http://www.jakubwihan.com/pdf/thesis.pdf";>http://www.jakubwihan.com/pdf/thesis.pdf</a>


 Yet another study material for your phd, Jim. Good luck and I'll be looking
forward hearing about your work some more.

 I would like to thank everybody on GSBN for their insights and especially
to many of you who directly supported this study.

 Love

 Kuba



- ----- Original Message -----
From: "Jim Carfrae" jim.carfrae@...
To: "GSBN" GSBN@...
Sent: Friday, October 05, 2007 9:15 AM
Subject: RE: GSBN:Re: Strawbale walling query


Hello Tom (and all)

This is my first response, so please excuse any errors in protocol!

We built our SB house almost exactly as described, and the details we
employed were as follows;

We fixed a strip of Fermcell (plaster board) to the back of the internal
post that extended an inch or so either side, to allow a continuous
plaster/vapour check with the internal render - you will get shrinkage of
large section posts, and if we hadn't done this there would be an eighth
inch air gap each side of the post.

We then fixed a fencing staple to the back of the post and used it to hold
the bales in place with poly packaging strapping (the sort that comes with a
tensioning device - very handy in a lot of SB building scenarios)
This was done not so much for structural reasons, as to help keep the walls
straight and true but retain flexibility.

Without seeing the details, I am confused as to why there is a wall plate to
tie to the rafters - in our post and beam, the wall plate is the top of the
frame, the rafters sit on that, and the SB wall extends up between the
rafters.

We have been monitoring our house with about 30 moisture sensors for about
two years, and I would advocate a rainscreen. We are in a similar gulf
stream climate, and the walls that are just lime rendered hold on average 3%
more moisture than the screened ones (av. 13% against 16%)

I would also agree that the SB wall should wrap around the outside of the
posts, not between - far simpler to build, and better continuous insulation.

Jim Carfrae
PhD Research Student

Room 119, Reynolds Building
University of Plymouth
Drake Circus
Plymouth
PL4 8AA

jim.carfrae@...
07880 551922
01803 862369
________________________________________
From: GSBN [GSBN@...] On Behalf Of Tom Woolley
[woolley.tom@virgin.net]
Sent: 04 October 2007 18:06
To: GSBN
Subject: GSBN:Re: Strawbale walling query

I had a meeting today with a young Belfast architect, Siobhan Brown,
who is designing a strawbale house for a self builder in County
Fermanagh ~Northern Ireland

I don't think Siobhan has much experience of SB but she has had a
good go at the design mainly based on details in a book by Chris Magwood

The client wants to built a post and beam structure for the house and
then wrap the strawbale walls around the outside of the posts.
She was not proposing to tie the walls into the posts as she says
that Magwood's details do not show this.
She was planing to tie the wall plate to the rafters of the roof. The
house is single storey but with rooms in the loft. so the floor
joists for the upper floor will be part of the roof structure.

I have misgivings about this . I wonder if anyone has built a
strawbale house where the bale walls are not load bearing and are
wrapped around the outside of the structural posts without being tied
into them? The posts will be about 4 metres apart.

Fermanagh has to have 100% humidity all year round with a lot of
heavy winds and driving rain. If you stand still for 5 minutes moss
will grow on your head.  I also think the walls will need a rain screen

I would have thought a more solid structure would involve placing
sections of bale walls between the posts and being tied into them

Any useful comments and I will pass them onto Siobhan

thanks


Tom Woolley
woolley.tom@...
Rachel Bevan Architects
17A Main Street
Saintfield
Ballynahinch
County Down
BT24 7AA
028 97 512851

also:
Graduate School of the Environment
Centre for Alternative Technology
Unit 7, Dyfi Eco Parc
Machynlleth
Powys, SY208AX

01654 703562






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

Date: 5 Oct 2007 07:51:51 -0500
From: "Chug" chug@...
Subject: Re: GSBN:Any SB contacts in Chile?

Catherine and Bill,
Thank you very much for these contacts I will pass them on and also add them
to my international contacts list.

bale on
Chug
chug@...
<a  target="_blank" href="http://www.strawbale-building.co.uk/";>http://www.strawbale-building.co.uk/</a>
.




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

Date: 5 Oct 2007 10:03:58 -0500
From: Jim Carfrae jim.carfrae@...
Subject: RE: GSBN:Moisture Thesis for download

Kuba

Many thanks for the link to your thesis,
This is certainly going to inform the work that I'm doing for mine.
Congratulations!

Jim

Jim Carfrae
PhD Research Student
Non-Food Crop Construction Materials
Romm 119, Reynolds Building
University of Plymouth
Drake Circus
Plymouth PL4 8AA
07880 551922
jim.carfrae@...



- -----Original Message-----
From: GSBN [<a  target="_blank" href="mailto:GSBN@...";>mailto:GSBN@...] On Behalf Of Jakub Wihan
Sent: 05 October 2007 11:38
To: GSBN
Subject: GSBN:Moisture Thesis for download

Dear Joyce and others,

Reading about Jims moisture research, I'd like to offer everybody an
opportunity to download the thesis "Humidity in straw bale walls and its
effect on the decomposition of straw", that was finished in July.

<a  target="_blank" href="http://www.jakubwihan.com/pdf/thesis.pdf";>http://www.jakubwihan.com/pdf/thesis.pdf</a>


 Yet another study material for your phd, Jim. Good luck and I'll be looking
forward hearing about your work some more.

 I would like to thank everybody on GSBN for their insights and especially
to many of you who directly supported this study.

 Love

 Kuba



- ----- Original Message -----
From: "Jim Carfrae" jim.carfrae@...
To: "GSBN" GSBN@...
Sent: Friday, October 05, 2007 9:15 AM
Subject: RE: GSBN:Re: Strawbale walling query


Hello Tom (and all)

This is my first response, so please excuse any errors in protocol!

We built our SB house almost exactly as described, and the details we
employed were as follows;

We fixed a strip of Fermcell (plaster board) to the back of the internal
post that extended an inch or so either side, to allow a continuous
plaster/vapour check with the internal render - you will get shrinkage of
large section posts, and if we hadn't done this there would be an eighth
inch air gap each side of the post.

We then fixed a fencing staple to the back of the post and used it to hold
the bales in place with poly packaging strapping (the sort that comes with a
tensioning device - very handy in a lot of SB building scenarios)
This was done not so much for structural reasons, as to help keep the walls
straight and true but retain flexibility.

Without seeing the details, I am confused as to why there is a wall plate to
tie to the rafters - in our post and beam, the wall plate is the top of the
frame, the rafters sit on that, and the SB wall extends up between the
rafters.

We have been monitoring our house with about 30 moisture sensors for about
two years, and I would advocate a rainscreen. We are in a similar gulf
stream climate, and the walls that are just lime rendered hold on average 3%
more moisture than the screened ones (av. 13% against 16%)

I would also agree that the SB wall should wrap around the outside of the
posts, not between - far simpler to build, and better continuous insulation.

Jim Carfrae
PhD Research Student

Room 119, Reynolds Building
University of Plymouth
Drake Circus
Plymouth
PL4 8AA

jim.carfrae@...
07880 551922
01803 862369
________________________________________
From: GSBN [GSBN@...] On Behalf Of Tom Woolley
[woolley.tom@virgin.net]
Sent: 04 October 2007 18:06
To: GSBN
Subject: GSBN:Re: Strawbale walling query

I had a meeting today with a young Belfast architect, Siobhan Brown,
who is designing a strawbale house for a self builder in County
Fermanagh ~Northern Ireland

I don't think Siobhan has much experience of SB but she has had a
good go at the design mainly based on details in a book by Chris Magwood

The client wants to built a post and beam structure for the house and
then wrap the strawbale walls around the outside of the posts.
She was not proposing to tie the walls into the posts as she says
that Magwood's details do not show this.
She was planing to tie the wall plate to the rafters of the roof. The
house is single storey but with rooms in the loft. so the floor
joists for the upper floor will be part of the roof structure.

I have misgivings about this . I wonder if anyone has built a
strawbale house where the bale walls are not load bearing and are
wrapped around the outside of the structural posts without being tied
into them? The posts will be about 4 metres apart.

Fermanagh has to have 100% humidity all year round with a lot of
heavy winds and driving rain. If you stand still for 5 minutes moss
will grow on your head.  I also think the walls will need a rain screen

I would have thought a more solid structure would involve placing
sections of bale walls between the posts and being tied into them

Any useful comments and I will pass them onto Siobhan

thanks


Tom Woolley
woolley.tom@...
Rachel Bevan Architects
17A Main Street
Saintfield
Ballynahinch
County Down
BT24 7AA
028 97 512851

also:
Graduate School of the Environment
Centre for Alternative Technology
Unit 7, Dyfi Eco Parc
Machynlleth
Powys, SY208AX

01654 703562






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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: 5 Oct 2007 10:58:33 -0500
From: jswearingen@...
Subject: Re: GSBN:Re: Strawbale walling query

I know that many might disagree with me (especially those shaky
Californians).....

In California we have been known to get the shakes, but for different
reasons than those that Ireland is famous for.  We like to use the bales
structurally, particularly because there is some difficulty and debate in
determining the strength of timber-jointed connections.  Our detail calls
for a 1/2" plywood strip on the outside of the post (about 2" narrower than
the post), and then we staple the mesh (we always use mesh) to the plywood
and key the plaster behind the post.  Then when things get shaky and the
world is spinning around, the bales and the posts hold each other up, a
thoroughly Irish solution.

John "Which Way is Up?" Swearingen


On 10/4/07, cmagwood@...cmagwood@... wrote:
>
> Hello,
>
> Since I'm the Magwood responsible for the book Siobhan is working from, I
> guess I should respond...
>
> I know that many might disagree with me (especially those shaky
> Californians), but after years of spending all kinds of time anchoring
> bales to posts, I stopped doing so. Seemed like the test figures I was
> seeing would indicate that the walls weren't going to warp, wiggle or tip
> over, especially when wrapped around the outside and tied in via a solid
> bale/plaster corner.
>
> If she follows the details for using vapour barrier and mesh strips behind
> the posts and tied into the plaster, that's all the anchoring (and
> barrier-ing) that I would use.
>
> Of course, others might disagree...!
>
> Chris
>
> >
> > I had a meeting today with a young Belfast architect, Siobhan Brown,
> > who is designing a strawbale house for a self builder in County
> > Fermanagh ~Northern Ireland
> >
> > I don't think Siobhan has much experience of SB but she has had a
> > good go at the design mainly based on details in a book by Chris Magwood
> >
> > The client wants to built a post and beam structure for the house and
> > then wrap the strawbale walls around the outside of the posts.
> > She was not proposing to tie the walls into the posts as she says
> > that Magwood's details do not show this.
> > She was planing to tie the wall plate to the rafters of the roof. The
> > house is single storey but with rooms in the loft. so the floor
> > joists for the upper floor will be part of the roof structure.
> >
> > I have misgivings about this . I wonder if anyone has built a
> > strawbale house where the bale walls are not load bearing and are
> > wrapped around the outside of the structural posts without being tied
> > into them? The posts will be about 4 metres apart.
> >
> > Fermanagh has to have 100% humidity all year round with a lot of
> > heavy winds and driving rain. If you stand still for 5 minutes moss
> > will grow on your head.  I also think the walls will need a rain screen
> >
> > I would have thought a more solid structure would involve placing
> > sections of bale walls between the posts and being tied into them
> >
> > Any useful comments and I will pass them onto Siobhan
> >
> > thanks
> >
> >
> > Tom Woolley
> > woolley.tom@...
> > Rachel Bevan Architects
> > 17A Main Street
> > Saintfield
> > Ballynahinch
> > County Down
> > BT24 7AA
> > 028 97 512851
> >
> > also:
> > Graduate School of the Environment
> > Centre for Alternative Technology
> > Unit 7, Dyfi Eco Parc
> > Machynlleth
> > Powys, SY208AX
> >
> > 01654 703562
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > --- 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.
> > ----
> >
> >
>

>



- --
John Swearingen
Skillful Means, Inc.
Design and Construction
www.skillful-means.com


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

Date: 5 Oct 2007 11:30:24 -0500
From: Martin Hammer mfhammer@...
Subject: Re: GSBN:Any SB contacts in Chile?

Hello Chug,

Here's one more contact that might help.  A woman intern architect who
attended a couple of my workshops who is Chilean but has recently been
living in California.  She is about to build a straw bale house in Chile.

Daniela von Riegan -  dvonriegan@...


Martin Hammer


> Catherine and Bill,
> Thank you very much for these contacts I will pass them on and also add them
> to my international contacts list.
>
> bale on
> Chug
> chug@...
> <a  target="_blank" href="http://www.strawbale-building.co.uk/";>http://www.strawbale-building.co.uk/</a>
> .

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




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

Date: 5 Oct 2007 11:42:37 -0500
From: The Last Straw thelaststraw@...
Subject: Re: GSBN:Moisture Thesis for download

Thanks for sharing this research/thesis with us Kuba. I'll correspond with
you off the GSBN about it soon.

Joyce

on 10.5.2007 5:38 AM, Jakub Wihan at kuba@...:

> Dear Joyce and others,
>
> Reading about Jims moisture research, I'd like to offer everybody an
> opportunity to download the thesis "Humidity in straw bale walls and its
> effect on the decomposition of straw", that was finished in July.
>
> <a  target="_blank" href="http://www.jakubwihan.com/pdf/thesis.pdf";>http://www.jakubwihan.com/pdf/thesis.pdf</a>
>
>
> Yet another study material for your phd, Jim. Good luck and I'll be looking
> forward hearing about your work some more.
>
> I would like to thank everybody on GSBN for their insights and especially
> to many of you who directly supported this study.
>
> Love
>
> Kuba
>
>
>
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Jim Carfrae" jim.carfrae@...
> To: "GSBN" GSBN@...
> Sent: Friday, October 05, 2007 9:15 AM
> Subject: RE: GSBN:Re: Strawbale walling query
>
>
> Hello Tom (and all)
>
> This is my first response, so please excuse any errors in protocol!
>
> We built our SB house almost exactly as described, and the details we
> employed were as follows;
>
> We fixed a strip of Fermcell (plaster board) to the back of the internal
> post that extended an inch or so either side, to allow a continuous
> plaster/vapour check with the internal render - you will get shrinkage of
> large section posts, and if we hadn't done this there would be an eighth
> inch air gap each side of the post.
>
> We then fixed a fencing staple to the back of the post and used it to hold
> the bales in place with poly packaging strapping (the sort that comes with a
> tensioning device - very handy in a lot of SB building scenarios)
> This was done not so much for structural reasons, as to help keep the walls
> straight and true but retain flexibility.
>
> Without seeing the details, I am confused as to why there is a wall plate to
> tie to the rafters - in our post and beam, the wall plate is the top of the
> frame, the rafters sit on that, and the SB wall extends up between the
> rafters.
>
> We have been monitoring our house with about 30 moisture sensors for about
> two years, and I would advocate a rainscreen. We are in a similar gulf
> stream climate, and the walls that are just lime rendered hold on average 3%
> more moisture than the screened ones (av. 13% against 16%)
>
> I would also agree that the SB wall should wrap around the outside of the
> posts, not between - far simpler to build, and better continuous insulation.
>
> Jim Carfrae
> PhD Research Student
>
> Room 119, Reynolds Building
> University of Plymouth
> Drake Circus
> Plymouth
> PL4 8AA
>
> jim.carfrae@...
> 07880 551922
> 01803 862369
> ________________________________________
> From: GSBN [GSBN@...] On Behalf Of Tom Woolley
> [woolley.tom@virgin.net]
> Sent: 04 October 2007 18:06
> To: GSBN
> Subject: GSBN:Re: Strawbale walling query
>
> I had a meeting today with a young Belfast architect, Siobhan Brown,
> who is designing a strawbale house for a self builder in County
> Fermanagh ~Northern Ireland
>
> I don't think Siobhan has much experience of SB but she has had a
> good go at the design mainly based on details in a book by Chris Magwood
>
> The client wants to built a post and beam structure for the house and
> then wrap the strawbale walls around the outside of the posts.
> She was not proposing to tie the walls into the posts as she says
> that Magwood's details do not show this.
> She was planing to tie the wall plate to the rafters of the roof. The
> house is single storey but with rooms in the loft. so the floor
> joists for the upper floor will be part of the roof structure.
>
> I have misgivings about this . I wonder if anyone has built a
> strawbale house where the bale walls are not load bearing and are
> wrapped around the outside of the structural posts without being tied
> into them? The posts will be about 4 metres apart.
>
> Fermanagh has to have 100% humidity all year round with a lot of
> heavy winds and driving rain. If you stand still for 5 minutes moss
> will grow on your head.  I also think the walls will need a rain screen
>
> I would have thought a more solid structure would involve placing
> sections of bale walls between the posts and being tied into them
>
> Any useful comments and I will pass them onto Siobhan
>
> thanks
>
>
> Tom Woolley
> woolley.tom@...
> Rachel Bevan Architects
> 17A Main Street
> Saintfield
> Ballynahinch
> County Down
> BT24 7AA
> 028 97 512851
>
> also:
> Graduate School of the Environment
> Centre for Alternative Technology
> Unit 7, Dyfi Eco Parc
> Machynlleth
> Powys, SY208AX
>
> 01654 703562
>
>
>
>
>
>
> --- 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.
> ----
>



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

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