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Re: GSBN:Fwd: CASBA_ Pea Gravel



We have seen a bale wall become wet enough to drain through gravel
and the wall dry out over time  (the building had a roof which
allowed water to drain into the top of the wall, NOT A GOOD LOOK).
So long as there is a way for water to escape to the exterior,
gravel may not be the only answer.  In my opinion so long as the
lowest point in the wall will let water out there is a chance the
wall will survive.  If water can move down the side of the insulation
and under the bottom plate the wall may dry out.  I do agree, as a
rule, if the wall becomes wet enough to 'drain' the bales should be
replaced.

As far as an internal flood is concerned....  One way to reassure the
building inspector that the insulation is fine in place of the gravel
is to explain the purpose.  I am sure they understand that if water
builds up it would make sense to allow the water to drain away
instead of being trapped and creating a 'pond'.  Therefore, design a
floor drain to be the lowest place in the house.  Water will not
build up above your bottom plate before it finds it's way down a
drain.  We like to make the shower that drain....   They might
appreciate that keeping water out from under the bale is better than
creating a way for water to get into that spot which is not going to
dry easily.  We go as far as sealing the join between the bottom
plate and the foundation on the interior so that water is directed
away from the bale wall entirely.

Good luck, Sven Johnston


?):

We haven't used pea gravel between our sill plates for some time
now,
using
rigid insulation instead.  My opinion is that if a bale wall has
enough
water in it to need 'drainage' (from any source), those bales are
goners.

The building official in Sonoma is citing it's recommendation in
SB332 as
a
good enough reason to require that it be there.  SB332 says,
"There shall
also be a drainage plane between the straw and the top of the
foundation,
such as a one inch layer of pea gravel."  Does anyone know of the
intent
of
this?

More importantly, does anyone know of any testing as to why this
might
(or
might not) be a good idea?

Your thoughts (and/or Holiday Greetings) always appreciated,

David and Anni

*  *  *  *  *
Arkin Tilt Architects
Ecological Planning & Design

David Arkin, AIA, Architect
LEED Accredited Professional
CA #C22459/NV #5030

1101 8th St. #180, Berkeley, CA  94710
510/528-9830
www.arkintilt.com

"There is no way to peace. Peace is the way."
- A. J. Muste



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CASBA Website can be found at <a  target="_blank" href="http://www.strawbuilding.org";>http://www.strawbuilding.org</a>

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


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Sarah Johnston
50A Connolly Street
Geraldine New Zealand
03 693 7369
sarahjohnston@...





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