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Tavascarow

BBC environment 'Would you live in a straw house?'

'Would you live in a straw house?'
Tavascarow

More.
dpack

ignoring the three little pigs themes in the msm if straw build is done well there seems no reason that it will not become a useful construction method

i recon alterations and retro fit might be a bit more complex than brick or timber and poor maintenance might be very bad quite quickly but apart from that they seem very sensible in the right setting.on a flood plain might be bad for example.
Falstaff

Live in one? With the 90% fuel cost savings, No problem at all. Only too happy to ! Very Happy Very Happy




Take out a mortgage on one or buy one at all ? Shocked ON YER BIKE ! Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing
tahir

Take out a mortgage on one or buy one at all ? Shocked ON YER BIKE ! Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing


Why?

One of the best houses I've ever been is a straw bale house, no idea why you'd be prejudiced against it.
Falstaff

I'm not prejudiced against them - I'd live in one happily as I said.

I simply do not take the material seriously as an investment proposition in the long term.

But please - be my guest ! Smile
tahir

I simply do not take the material seriously as an investment proposition in the long term.


The brick built farmhouse we replaced (1921) was rotten, the real extent of the rot only apparent at demolition, our friend Richard did it, he just pushed it over with his forklift.

My friend Nick (owner/designer/builder of straw bale house) is a pretty techy guy, I would imagine that he made sure the thing would last as least as long asa normal house.

One of the options we looked at was rammed earth, if it had made sense (for the house we wanted and the soil we have) we'd have gone for it.

In short it's not about the materials, it's about design and construction, quality of both is what determines longevity...
Falstaff

I simply do not take the material seriously as an investment proposition in the long term.


............ a pretty techy guy, I would imagine that he made sure .......


..........In short it's not about the materials, it's about design and construction,..............

You're entitled to your opinion of course and I presume you will be investing in one yourself ?

Very Happy Very Happy
earthyvirgo

I simply do not take the material seriously as an investment proposition in the long term.

The brick built farmhouse we replaced (1921) was rotten, the real extent of the rot only apparent at demolition, our friend Richard did it, he just pushed it over with his forklift.

My friend Nick (owner/designer/builder of straw bale house) is a pretty techy guy, I would imagine that he made sure the thing would last as least as long asa normal house.

One of the options we looked at was rammed earth, if it had made sense (for the house we wanted and the soil we have) we'd have gone for it.

In short it's not about the materials, it's about design and construction, quality of both is what determines longevity...

Strawbale has a much longer lifespan - at least 100 yrs.
A Baratt box has a lifetime of approx. 25.

EV
vegplot

I'm not prejudiced against them - I'd live in one happily as I said.

I simply do not take the material seriously as an investment proposition in the long term.

But please - be my guest ! Smile

It'll last much longer than you or I. The oldest straw bale houses in Europe was built in 1921 and we now have a much greater understanding of materials behaviour.

It's land that's the investment not the house that's built on it.
tahir

You're entitled to your opinion of course and I presume you will be investing in one yourself ?

Very Happy Very Happy

No, I won't. I've not long ago built a timber frame one (basically I beams, warmcel and OSB with oak shakes as the cladding), a lot of people thought we should go more traditional (in constrution and looks) but we didn't, and we're not worried about it.

Like I say we looked at all sorts of methods/materials, I might have bee swayed by stabilised rammed earth but the rammed earth guy we were speaking to was very dogmatic in his approach so we fell out.

I can't see me ever moving now, but if we were in the market and a decent strawbale house came up we'd look at it, maybe even buy it
vegplot

I simply do not take the material seriously as an investment proposition in the long term.


............ a pretty techy guy, I would imagine that he made sure .......


..........In short it's not about the materials, it's about design and construction,..............

You're entitled to your opinion of course and I presume you will be investing in one yourself ?

Very Happy Very Happy


We are.
tahir

Looking back at that what did you use as your slab in the end? Falstaff




We are.

Yes I saw that Cool

Quite interesting Smile
Ty Gwyn

What`s the current situation regarding mortgages on straw build house`s already been constructed?

My thought`s being are they similar to that of timber framed of several years ago,that one could not get a mortgage on one that had been constructed previously if it was nearing its 25yr anniversary,

Or have the regulations changed.
vegplot

Looking back at that what did you use as your slab in the end?

We're not using a slab as such. The walls are supported by a composite plinth wall (outerleaf stone and inner leaf Foamglas block) infilled with pea gravel to ground level and then Technopor above that to floor plate. This sits on 200mm deep compacted single grade stone.

The floor is 250mm Technopor on compacted sub-soile followed by 65mm limecrete.



Glossary: Foamglas is aerated closed cell recycled glass available in sheets or blocks. It is an excellent insulator, waterproof, light weight, and has good strength characteristics.

Technopor: Same material as Foamglas but granulated.

Limecrete: Lime mixed with light weight aggregate generally used for flooring.
vegplot

What`s the current situation regarding mortgages on straw build house`s already been constructed?

My thought`s being are they similar to that of timber framed of several years ago,that one could not get a mortgage on one that had been constructed previously if it was nearing its 25yr anniversary,

Or have the regulations changed.

That will be down to the mortgage lender and how they assess the risk.

Straw bale build is well understood and easily exceeds (often out preforming traditional brick & block) all building requirements.
vegplot




We are.

Yes I saw that Cool

Quite interesting Smile

Or as The HGTHG says about Earth: Mostly harmless.
tahir

Looking back at that what did you use as your slab in the end?

We're not using a slab as such. The walls are supported by a composite plinth wall (outerleaf stone and inner leaf Foamglas block) infilled with pea gravel to ground level and then Technopor above that to floor plate. This sits on 200mm deep compacted single grade stone.

The floor is 250mm Technopor on compacted sub-soile followed by 65mm limecrete.



Glossary: Foamglas is aerated closed cell recycled glass available in sheets or blocks. It is an excellent insulator, waterproof, light weight, and has good strength characteristics.

Technopor: Same material as Foamglas but granulated.

Limecrete: Lime mixed with light weight aggregate generally used for flooring.

Sounds good. How far are you now?
vegplot

Looking back at that what did you use as your slab in the end?

We're not using a slab as such. The walls are supported by a composite plinth wall (outerleaf stone and inner leaf Foamglas block) infilled with pea gravel to ground level and then Technopor above that to floor plate. This sits on 200mm deep compacted single grade stone.

The floor is 250mm Technopor on compacted sub-soile followed by 65mm limecrete.



Glossary: Foamglas is aerated closed cell recycled glass available in sheets or blocks. It is an excellent insulator, waterproof, light weight, and has good strength characteristics.

Technopor: Same material as Foamglas but granulated.

Limecrete: Lime mixed with light weight aggregate generally used for flooring.

Sounds good. How far are you now?

Waiting for building regs to be approved so we can start digging. CSH is well underway though.
tahir

What's your soil like? We'd never be able to ground works atm, far too wet vegplot

What's your soil like? We'd never be able to ground works atm, far too wet

Top soil varies from nothing to a foot or more. Sub soil is clay and fragmented rock. The clay portion is not overly high and the fragmented rock allows for free draining but with good compaction.
tahir

No rock here, just different types of clay vegplot

We're after some clay for internal rendering. Essex is a bit far though. tahir

We're after some clay for internal rendering. Essex is a bit far though.

Next time you're at the data centre...
vegplot

We're after some clay for internal rendering. Essex is a bit far though.

Next time you're at the data centre...

We've disposed of most of our physical servers and host everything bar Anglesey County Council and JNCC on Microsoft Azure.
Tavascarow

& more. vegplot

& more.

One dept. or person getting the credit for all the scientific work that's preceded his report. I guess that's the way of the world.
Tavascarow

& more.

One dept. or person getting the credit for all the scientific work that's preceded his report. I guess that's the way of the world. You know very well that until a man in a white coat with impresive equipment says it works it doesn't.
Tis the way of the world.
Wink
Ty Gwyn

Vegplot,
You are the most clued up on here with the straw build construction due to your own project,

But are not these houses that are protrayed in this Bristol scenario,merely straw insulated,not straw built as in the sense of the word,as the steel construction seems to be the load bearer of the roof ,unlike your more traditional method?
vegplot

Vegplot,
You are the most clued up on here with the straw build construction due to your own project,

But are not these houses that are protrayed in this Bristol scenario,merely straw insulated,not straw built as in the sense of the word,as the steel construction seems to be the load bearer of the roof ,unlike your more traditional method?

It would seem that way although that's nothing new. There are two principle types of straw bale building. Loading bearing and infill. Loadbearing means what its says, the straw bales bear the full load of the roof whereas infill is straw or straw bales are added insulation. I much prefer load bearing.

IMHO they aren't strictly straw bales houses. They use straw only as insulator.
vegplot

Looking back at that what did you use as your slab in the end?

This may illustrate the foundations better than a verbal description...


Mutton

Foamglas - just looked it up briefly on their website as on our to-do list is

1. Externally cladding our house (which is in a damp windy rural area - so all the damp-proof, rodent proof aspects seem desirable).

2. Building a conservatory (which will effectively be the cladding for one wall)

I've seen with Foamglas that you can drive a lorry over it and other such things about its durability. Speaking to someone who has handled it is it:

1. Opaque? The carbon bit in their photos made it look opaque. Was just wondering about it as an alternative conservatory roof to the multi-layer cellular polycarbonate roof sheeting.

2. Brittle? If you hit it with a hammer, drop something onto it, would it smash? (Looked like not, but the illustrations didn't specifically say that.)

3. Coatable - so if we were to glue slabs of it to the outside of our house walls, would we then be able to render straight onto it? (Suspect not). How good does it look "in the raw" if you didn't coat it?

Also, would you mind saying how much it is? Roughly? Manufacturer's website doesn't exactly go into that.
vegplot

I've seen with Foamglas that you can drive a lorry over it and other such things about its durability. Speaking to someone who has handled it is it:

1. Opaque? The carbon bit in their photos made it look opaque. Was just wondering about it as an alternative conservatory roof to the multi-layer cellular polycarbonate roof sheeting.

2. Brittle? If you hit it with a hammer, drop something onto it, would it smash? (Looked like not, but the illustrations didn't specifically say that.)

3. Coatable - so if we were to glue slabs of it to the outside of our house walls, would we then be able to render straight onto it? (Suspect not). How good does it look "in the raw" if you didn't coat it?

Also, would you mind saying how much it is? Roughly? Manufacturer's website doesn't exactly go into that.

1. No, it's not opaque.
2. If you kick it with steel toe caps you'll put your foot into it but it's can take a lot of static compression i.e. loadbearing.
3. Most rendering material should be okay. It has a rough surface texture and provides a good key. Check with manufacturer first though.
4. Cost? You'll need to get quotes from suppliers. It's not cheap.
Behemoth

Is this the stuff?
http://www.foamglas.co.uk/building/building_pricelist/
vegplot

Is this the stuff?
http://www.foamglas.co.uk/building/building_pricelist/

That's the stuff.
Mistress Rose

Someone mentioned cob housing too. It is possible to buy cob blocks, and I have seen a building constructed with it, not a house, but looked good and with a good overhang and dry foundations, cob houses have lasted for centuries in places like Devon.

As Ty Gwyn says, getting a mortgage might be a problem but it depends on how the lender views the risk.

How come we need 230,000 'homes' in the UK, and how are people going to pay for them? I really would like to see a proper assessment, carried out through the census, asking people if they are in permanent accommodation, not, 'do you rent', 'do you need a bigger house', which are taken as a requirement for a new home. There is also the problem that those that are in most need of somewhere to live are those least able to pay for it. Round here they are building hundreds if not thousands of 3-4 bedroom standard houses. Less than 40% are 'affordable'. Fine for those making their way up the ladder, but we have a surfeit of 3-4 bedroom houses and very few starter homes, real affordable homes and social housing and virtually no hostel or bed sit accommodation. Sorry about the rant. One advantage with straw houses for these so called necessary homes is that if they are found to be surplus to requirements they can be easily taken down and the material used for something else, even if it is only compost.
vegplot

cob houses have lasted for centuries in places like Devon.

Until someone decides it's a good idea to render them in cement...


Ty Gwyn

Cob buildings are also fairly numerous in this part of Cardiganshire,alongside the house here i have a Cob Crog loft cottage ,traced back to at least 1734 with all the names of occupants,and opposite the yard a 60ft range of the old cart house ,stable and barn,even the upper part of the back wall and rear parts of pine ends are cob of this house 1840`s with the rest being stone work with earth and lime mortar. Mutton

Thanks veg plot.

So having asked a slightly ambiguous question about opaque - does it transmit light? As in would I get as much light through it as a multilayer polycarbonate sheet?
vegplot

Thanks veg plot.

So having asked a slightly ambiguous question about opaque - does it transmit light? As in would I get as much light through it as a multilayer polycarbonate sheet?

Thin sheets may be slightly opaque but for all intents and purposes treat it as though it's a solid.
vegplot


Also, would you mind saying how much it is? Roughly? Manufacturer's website doesn't exactly go into that.

Glapor, a recycled glass aggregate, has come in at a cost of 102 per cubic metre. A 75 square metre floor to a depth of 280mm would cost 2,865.

Plus VAT.
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