Thursday, May 20, 2010

building with nature, and then surviving her tests.

After torrents and cats and bouts and dogs of rain, I began to get paranoid about water damage. The cob did well, aside from a few places where pools of water had streamed down from the tarps in concentrated lines, washing away the top half inch of material. My concern was directed more towards the strawbales; once a bale gets moisture inside, mold can form and spread to the other bales and lead to the entire wall rotting. This is to be avoided at all costs.

One bale in particular felt too damp for my liking, and so it was removed with a machete.

After a couple days of letting the area dry out, I decided that stuffing a new bale back in would be too complicated (it would be difficult to get it attached into the cob well enough without ripping apart and re-doing our cob). Instead, Eric built a dry-stack rubble wall in the bale's place:

(... and later buried it with a facade of cob).

Earlier in the week, we had another stone session, raising our triple-exposed, aesthetically-purposed, mortared, granite column another foot-and-a-half:



main room, above future desk.

Today I set the lintel over our big, red, opening window:

Our most recent window is also our most whimsical. It is set at a dramatic diagonal within the thickness of the wall, and is also tilted to draw your eye up into the canopy of the trees. The reason for this was twofold: 1. to give the window its own unique identity, separate from that of the cascading triplets, and 2. to show off that with cob, one can do anything.

Here are those cascading triplets, post-lintels.

Taking a step back from the cottage's south side.

And a bit further.

A ball of cob's perspective.

This weekend we will have a 2-day workshop, and hope to get the remainder of the cob done up to the point where we can begin setting rafters and framing the roof!

1 comment:

  1. Congratulations and thank you for sharing. You guys are doing a great job - sorry about that rain but I think the rock replacement was genius. Wish I could come to your workshop, but I'll watch and cheer from afar. Thank you for this blog - so inspiring to watch a cottage project start to finish.