Thursday, August 21st, 2014 at
Soil types vary by each region and location, but the majority of soil types will work for building cob and earthen structures. It is actually rare to find soil that will not work for cob. This is a good thing for the case of earthen building!
Soils consist mainly of a mixed combination of silt, sand, and clay. In the case of earthen building, silt is not a bad… Continue reading
Wednesday, July 9th, 2014 at
In order to get cob walls plumb and flat, trimming and cutting is a major step in the building process.
To build a cob wall, I will place a new layer of cob onto my wall, knead the individual cobs together a bit with my hands, and then stomp on top and kick the sides a bit. At this point, the excess cob is already hanging over the edge of the wall. Now is the time to start trimming.
What do you trim with? Continue reading
Wednesday, June 25th, 2014 at
If you’re interested in building a cob home in a speedy time-frame then I highly recommend mixing cob with a tractor (or other machine such as a Bobcat or backhoe). Using this method, the cob mixing process will go about one hundred times faster compared to doing it by foot labor. You will spend some fossil fuels in the process, but you will save an extraordinary amount of human labor and time! Continue reading
Thursday, May 8th, 2014 at
Building the cob house at the beautiful Meadow Creek Mountain Rustic Resort in Parrottsville, Tennessee. What an amazing place for a cob workshop! Continue reading
Sunday, September 29th, 2013 at
I just recently got back from a 7-week intensive Natural Building course out in Oregon learning some of the newest, cutting edge techniques in the Natural Building realm.
As some of you may know, I’m taking my business to the next level by offering design and build services to people who are interested in having their own cob and natural buildings constructed.
I… Continue reading
Sunday, August 11th, 2013 at
A building needs a strong foundation to rest upon. This is the first detail to consider when building any structure. It should be a unified and stable base for your building to sit upon, and must also support the load of the building. Learn how to build a stone foundation in this article. Continue reading
Tuesday, June 4th, 2013 at
Last year I was contacted by OPIC (Overseas Private Investment Corporation) to design a cob hotel for their humanitarian efforts overseas. I designed building plans for a large cob hotel that was being proposed before the project board at OPIC. The proposal was to build it in Southern Sudan as a way to better the local Continue reading
Monday, April 1st, 2013 at
It’s time to take a look into the world of natural building by looking at some of the most influential cob builders. You might have heard of some of these people before as they’ve demonstrated their craft and expertise in the field. Many of them you might just be hearing about for the first time. Without further ado, here is my top 10 list of the most influential people in… Continue reading
Wednesday, March 20th, 2013 at
I was recently interviewed by James Ru for his new book Perma Artist which is a compilation of conversations with eco-artists, land artists, and artists concerned about the environment. Here is our interview about cob homes:
1. Why is it called cob? I see you use corn cobs in some of the construction, but not all.
The word “cob” is derived from the UK where… Continue reading
Sunday, September 9th, 2012 at
Cob is a mixture of clay, sand, straw, and water. To build a cob house you will essentially need three main components: foundation, walls, and a roof.
Here are some of the different styles and systems for building a cob or a hybrid cob home. A hybrid cob home is basically any home that is partially constructed out of cob and partially constructed out of another material. Continue reading