Yen Has

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since Mar 11, 2014
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Recent posts by Yen Has

Hello Everyone

Thank you all for your kind input.

So far we have finished the planing (almost). You have to make sure you agree on details with your partner. This is important. So the planing took a little longer than expected. Now we are back on track.

The next stage was collecting equipment, materials and tools etc..

I have a pick axe a shovel and a few buckets. We have been diving to the site almost everyday after work, and working there until sundown. So far we have measured the plot, cleared the site and removed the top soil about 20 CM below ground level.
Here is a pic:

Next stage is to dig the foundation trench, about 30 cm down from top soil. Not sure if we would need anymore than that. A local architect friend thinks that is ok. The soil is pretty hard at 20 CM so I think 30 CM will be fine. We will gather round stones from the beach to fill the bottom of the trench and install a perforated pipe for the french drain, then further fill it with the round stones. On top of the french drain we will build our foundation out of slabs which have been discarded by the road builders. Here is a pic below. Please let me know if you think they will be good to use. They are used under the tarmac by road builders I believe.

Thank you all

6 years ago
I have a question about the foundation drainage.

I have decided to install a french drain under the foundation. I think that this will be enough drainage as we have a dry climate.

I wanted to ask your opinion. Do you guys think the drain can also be used as a way to bring in cool air during the summer? A french drain with dual functions.

This is a sketch of what I had in mind:

6 years ago

Jay C. White Cloud wrote:

So my conclusion is that a wooden frame gives the cob wall more strength.

Excellent conclusion and empirically very true. Take the time to examine, study and understand some of these building styles. each one is often heavily augmented and or comprised of some form of cobb. This will assist you greatly in further understanding these modalities and their history.

Opus Craticium

Taq Construction

Dhajji Dewari Construction

Koti Banal Construction

Peruvian quincha construction

bahareque or taquezal construction

Hımış construction

Colombage Construction

There are many more, but this should provide you a strong foundation of understanding.

If you can find retire fishing and shipping rope this is very good to tie things together further strengthening the wall matrix.

You many also consider that one of the infill layers be of a "light cobb" mix...what many today are calling "clay straw slip forming" or "ramming." This is a clay "soup" mixing with mainly straw or wood chip that will not hold together fresh yet when "rammed" in to the wall against a form and allowed to dry creates a matrix that has higher insulative values than just cobb alone. Working in concert with both systems gives you a thermal mass wall and also an insulative wall made of very similar materials.

I look forward to your further progress.



Thanks J

I have done some research and found that Hımış construction is very effective in our area.

Also found very interesting research about such homes. Worth a watch.

6 years ago
How bout diggin a ditch to sub soil and then filling it with your cob mix and then using one of these

6 years ago
Thanks alot Jay.

Please check your inbox.

Here are some pictures of the test bricks I have made and of the site. One of the bricks is just mud water and straw .The other has a wooden skeleton, just like the pallets I was talking about and has dry straw filling in the middle with cob on the bottom, top and both sides.

When thrown around (like 5 meters into the air) the one out of pure mud and straw broke into pieces after a few throws, the one with a wooden frame however took quite a beating before losing the mud on one side of the frame only. So my conclusion is that a wooden frame gives the cob wall more strength. Also, as a note, the wooden frame wall did not use as much cob. Improvements to the wooden frame wall can be made by adding more clay to the straw filling in the middle and by adding some straw running horizontally through the frame so it has contact with the cob on both sides.
6 years ago

Thank you for your post Jay. Much appreciated. I did some thinking after I read your post. Then I opened youtube after a day of learning I managed to draw something on sketchup. Im still playing around with it. Here are some of the results.

cob home drawing

Also took some soil samples last week, they finally seemed to settle. What do you guys think?
soil samples
6 years ago

So I tried the google sketchup and a few other programs but I couldn't manage to draw on the computer so I drew another sketch by hand.

Here is the sketch of the design we have in mind. There are a few minor details to add to the overall plan, like doors and windows. It will be a two story building. There will be a partition wall in the middle with two arches to access the rooms on the first floor. The room to the North will be the living room and the room to the south will be the Kitchen. The stairs will be in the living room area. Still considering how to do the roof. What do you think?


6 years ago
Yes , you can use donkey milk. Its got a lot of fat.
Heres one of my crude sketches again

Not sure if you will get it but, I start with digging a trench for the foundation , build it out of stone and then add a layer of cob on top of the stone foundation, on top of that the pallet walls and then cover and fill with cob . Plaster with earthen plaster and then lime wash.
6 years ago
Thank J, means alot.

Thats the part Im trying to figure out. I will build the foundation out of stone, since there is a lot of it on site. But Im not sure how to connect the foundation with the wood !

I have something in mind. I will sketch it.
6 years ago