[GSBN] Catalan vaults

huffnpuff at q.com huffnpuff at q.com
Mon Dec 12 13:02:22 CST 2011

Chris and All,

I do remember perusing the info posted for the Catalan vaults and found it most interesting. About a year ago I had an opportunity to attend a charrette on Compressed Earth Blocks, hosted by Bernard Amadei at the U. of Colorado. These CEB builders were meeting to discuss similar issues that we SB builder types are/have experienced with acceptance, testing, codes etc. Two fellows of particular vision and spirit were Satprem Maini from the Auroville Institute, India http://www.earth-auroville.com/vaulted_structures_introduction_en.php and Jim Hallock, of icatis, USA http://www.icatis.org/, both NGO's building with CEB's and Vaults/domes. Both web sites are full of the work these two organizations have done and are eye candy for anyone interested in vaults. If you visit the icatis site you'll see they have teamed with George Nez and built at least one of his 'thin shelled latex concrete' roof systems.

Currently our local engineer and COSBA member Ian Smith and his wife (both engineers) are on their honeymoon in India at the Auroville Institute at a workshop on vaults. That's devotion...

Mark Schueneman

----- Original Message -----
From: "Chris Magwood" <chris at chrismagwood.ca>
To: "with public archives) Global Straw Building Network (private" <GSBN at greenbuilder.com>
Sent: Sunday, December 11, 2011 9:55:05 AM
Subject: [GSBN] Catalan vaults

Hi all,

The mention on this list some months back about Catalan vaults (or 
Guastavino vaults) sparked my interest, and we've now decided to forge 
ahead and build one as the roof for a buried, earthbag root cellar at 
Trent University.

Does anybody have experience building these, or know of anybody who 
does. I'd like to try and hire in somebody to lead us in this build. 
It's a small structure (18 x 22 ft) so it won't be a long build, but I 
always like to have someone knowledgeable in charge when doing things I 
haven't done before.

The budget for the project is not high, but I would be willing to try 
and cover travel costs, food, lodging and a bit of cash for the right 

Let me know!



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