Calendar


Sustainable Works 2015
Straw Bale Construction Workshop
August 5-9
Stettler County, Alberta

BalesOut

Site of 2011 Workshop, West Kootenays, BC

The project is located on an acreage near Big Valley, southeast of Red Deer. The building is a 2,000 sqft. single story home with a modified post and beam frame.

The workshop will cover the basics of commercial post & beam and load bearing bale wall construction. All methods taught are based on tested building codes prescribed standards applied to BC and Alberta building conditions. This workshop is an extended format of the original weekend classes to allow participants more learning opportunities and experience. The material covered will include three types of frame systems for non-load bearing walls and two methods of compressing load bearing walls.

The cost is $500/person. A $100 deposit is required on registration. Camping is available on site. Lunches provided daily.
Tuesday, August 4, 7 pm Seminar-Presentation on the fundamentals and potentials of plastered straw bale construction. The slides describe buildings with permits drawn from the 100 + Sustainable Works projects. Displays of books, research, codes, tools and house plans. Cost for the seminar alone is $25.

Wednesday, August 5 to Sunday, August 9-Hands on workshop: Designing for bales, foundations, load bearing and non load bearing wall systems, tensioned stucco mesh, wall raising-stacking & pinning bales. Window & door frames, electrical wiring, plumbing, stucco wire installation, stucco/adobe/soil cement plasters, shelf mounts, interior walls, building codes summary, moisture testing. Handouts: Preliminary Construction Details, “Double Back” Stucco, Modified P & B frame.

To register and for more information contact:
Sustainable Works, Habib John L. Gonzalez, 11907 University Ave. NW, Edmonton, AB T6G1Z6, 780.438.0821, in B.C. call 1.250.354.9711, Email- habibg@netidea.com, Website- www.sustainableworks.ca

Recommended Reading:
1. Visit the Sustainable Works website for examples of commercial straw bale construction done in this eco-region and review the 3 short videos.
2. Review “The Design of Straw Bale Buildings” by Bruce King. It is the most up to date book on building with bales.
3. Read pages 103 to 105 and pages 260 to 268 in “The Straw Bale House” by Steen, Steen & Bainbridge. This is a summary of the origins of the modified post & beam frame used in our workshop building.

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2014 work party opportunities were announced periodically over last building season. For 2015 workparties contact Habib directly to be put on our mailing list.

Gull Lake Workparty began Friday, June 7, 2013. The project is a modified post and beam home. For driving directions and tools list, email or call me at the link above.

Gull Lake, AB project

Gull Lake, AB project

UPDATE:

The Gull Lake plastered bale work was completed Thursday, June 27th. The family did a fine job on their walls. The project took 18 days. Here are images of the steps in building the south wall. To enlarge, click on image:

 

Tensioned Mesh Ready for Bales

Tensioned Mesh Ready for Bales

Bales in, mesh sewn, stucco ready

Bales in, mesh sewn, stucco ready

Work party "Double Backs" stucco

Work party “Double Backs” stucco

Exterior Colour with sponge rubbed "Sand" Finish

Exterior Colour with sponge rubbed “Sand” Finish

There is Edmonton duplex project hosting volunteers this summer. Both are designs by BLDG.

A passive solar duplex

A passive solar duplex

UPDATE:

On the June 22-23 weekend, the owner hosted a training for his family to learn to install their bale walls and ready them for stucco. The group stacked 2/3 of all the walls in two days, did all the challenging custom bale work and learned to sew the mesh to the bales. Here is a look at their work. To enlarge, click on image:

One way to make custom bales

One way to make custom bales

Second Floor stacked first

Second Floor stacked first

First floor party wall with cabinet and counter mounting boards

First floor party wall with cabinet and counter mounting boards

Revelstoke, B.C.:

The November workparty was run under tarps due to the seasonal wet snows.

Tarps allow us to work in November.

Troy celebrates seeing the walls without tarps.

Troy celebrates seeing the walls without tarps.

By Christmas the interior was beautiful & cozy.

By Christmas the interior is beautiful and cozy…

And the outside glows.

and the outside glows.

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