[GSBN] prefab strawbale - pinning

martin hammer mfhammer at pacbell.net
Tue Aug 11 02:40:21 CDT 2009

Nice to hear from you Andy.  This is a delayed reply.

I and many others have found that in addition to being time consuming and
costly, pinning doesn't provide much benefit after the plaster is complete,
so many of us (in the US and Canada) (and elsewhere?) no longer use pins,
especially internal pins.

But there are many variables and reasons to pin or not to pin, and I don't
believe the issue is entirely settled.  Some thoughts:

One theory is that pinning provides stability to the stacked bales before
plaster, but that after the plaster has sufficiently cured and/or dried, the
plaster takes over and does some or all of the work that pins do in an
unplastered wall.  So, if you can keep the stacked bales where you want them
without pins (usually the case with bales laid flat, not tall walls), then
don't pin, just plaster.

On 8/1/09 11:57 AM, "Andy Horn" <andy at ecodesignarchitects.co.za> wrote:

> It was mentioned that the Balers in the US no longer bother pinning their
> bales unless a building code necessitates it. Are you no longer finding it
> necessary to pin because you are doing structural mesh reinforced plasters
> and find it unnecessary...or because you are doing a lot of load bearing
> with heavy strapping so find it not necessary?
> We still pin our bales, though not from the bottom any more as this is in my
> opinion/experience unnecessary and I would say indeed unwise as it can only
> encourage condensation.

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