Sunday, May 30, 2010

The full circle is complete.

After a while the walls really start to take shape. I also decided to dig out the floor so i could get a feel of how tall the walls needed to be.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Bottles are added. The sunwill shine through the different colored bottles and will cast an amazing light. It's also feels up space and is one less cob you have to make.
After some sweat , The walls start to take shape !

I smashed the cobs down and started forming walls. By poking the top of the cobs and leaving indention's I made sure that the next set of cobs would connect firmly. I made the cobs bigger at the base hoping that it would give the walls stability.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

I like to make several batches of cobs before i apply them to the house . It gives the cobs time to bake in the sun a bit , and its nice to be able to make a long run at applying the cobs to the foundation.

Its like making mud pies on an adult level. the cobs turn out the best if you smash them and roll them over and over like dough. It keeps the air pockets out of the bricks.

I mix the dirt "which is clay, and sand", with the straw and water on tarps. I have found that it makes the mixing process alot easier by folding the tarp over the mud before stomping on it. I repeat this several times until i have a thick mud that i like.

Next I collect straw. Lucky for me all around my cob house is pine trees.

A lot of dirt is needed. I dig my dirt with a shovel and use a wheelbarrow to transport it to my cob house. I like to pile up the dirt next to my house so it is easy to access .This is probably the hardest part on the body, A few tons of dirt can add up quickly.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

I added an extra 4ft to the right wall and moved it back a couple of feet to give it a more open feel as you enter into the hut. I also built a small fireplace out of stone and firebricks in case a small fire was needed. I also put 2x4s in the doorway bricks and locked them in with re bar and concrete.
Now the cobbing process is ready to begin!

My original plan was to make my cob house in a circular shape, but i realized that it would make it feel to crammed when you walk trough the door.

First i found a good location. I picked an area that is in the middle of an 30 acre family owned land in Northport Al. Of the thirty acres 20 of it is still wooded. The land is slightly terraced due to being old farm land.
I realize that the foundation is a very important part of building a structure, if the foundation is not built right the structure will not be stable. I used six tires that i rammed with dirt for my back wall that is facing the upward part of the slope. I then drove 5ft re bars in the middle and topped with concrete. For the rest of the foundation i used stones and bricks that i found on the land. I also drove re bar and old lawnmower blades in the ground between the stones and bricks and covered with a layer of concrete.

the first cobs

The perfect size cobs