We have now done our second bale roof, as part of an extension to the house we built three years ago. When used correctly, star bales longevity has the capacity last more than 200 years when maintained throughout the buildings lifetime. Image Credit: All photos: Ben Graham The posts and beams of this second-generation straw-bale home have been fitted with drywall "air fins." Want to insulate it because oh my GOD it is colder than outside even, and was thinking strawbales stacked up the sides and stuffed underneath. It’s official: Straw bale council houses are energy-efficient Two years after they were designed by members of the Straw Works design team, the straw houses in Martin and Waddington have proven to be an energy-saving success. The thought is that the bail and mesh will be ridged enough not to need end supports. A bale is 360mm deep; the two layers of batts, and 3″ of rigid foam Andrew describes would be about 240mm deep, for R57. They can also be blown in to the attic. The thicker the bale, the better the R-value. industy has established a uniform product that’s certainly effective but is this what we really need for building vibrant healthy homes? That means that when you split the bale apart, you’ll be left with sections of uncoated straw. I would be very careful using bales in the ceiling. Feb 12, 2020 - Explore Zack Jensen's board "Straw bale insulation" on Pinterest. I am considering the use of 1 inch rock or gravel to fill the tires with instead of earth. Nevertheless, the amount of energy required to make insulating foams, fiberglas, or extruded rock (roxul) is significantly greater than for strawbale. Book showing the current understanding of all technical aspects of straw bale construction, including: Structure, Moisture, Fire, Insulation, and Plasters, with frequent reference to test. A straw-bale wall, specifically with earth/clay plasters, is an excellent example of this alternative way of achieving good sound insulation, as the test result clearly illustrates. Thanks for your response Jim. Great story, saved the blog in interest to see more! There has not been definitive insulation testing for strawbale walls as yet in Australia or New Zealand. 2016: Straw Panel 2.0 R60 is of significant benefit, even though it’s not 50% more than R40, it still allows thermal mass to retain heat for a longer, and is worth the extra money. Their winter is really just a rainy season. And remember, no one (credible) ever said saving the planet would be easy, and really, that is why we are all here. My issue with using spray foam or any other form of insulation that is not straw-bale is that I cannot grow it on site. An innovative new design in straw construction is turning the well-known Three Little Pigs fable on its head and could lead to entire family homes constructed of straw bales rather than timber or brick veneer. Again, because straw bale applications vary so widely it's difficult to place exact measurements on how well they prevent sound transmission. I found your site several years after I built my shed I did a lot of it by geuss work, and a single book, after I ran into some problems. Wall stuccoing is going on as I type! Rafters, purlins and metal roofing? My plan is to build a very inexpensive Straw Bale house between 500 and 100sq.ft. 88726 Tokyo Lane David, currently in Southern Ontario Canada, soon to be in Southern Brazil. You have to balance the need for insulation with the need for it to be lightweight. Straw in steady state conditions is an unexceptional insulator in the context of insulating materials that are typically considered when designing a building envelope. Dr John Zhang, a structural engineer from the UWS School of Construction, Property and Planning, has built a full-scale roof system made of straw bales at the University’s Blacktown Campus. Blue Designs - 082 399 0180 Straw bale constructions are considered as a promising solution towards the goal of decarbonisation of building sector. Easy-peasy. sarah miller. EcoCocon straw panels are an efficient building system that achieves beautiful, healthy, and energy efficient buildings using renewable materials. I’ve envisioned a ceiling system id like to use. Learn how your comment data is processed. Straw bale walls are thick, which give good insulation and thermal inertia that is a product of phase changes of residual moisture. There has not been definitive insulation testing for strawbale walls as yet in Australia or New Zealand. Straw bales have good insulation properties and keep the building warm in winter and cool in summer, with R … It is always a good practice to minimize weight up high on any building, so adding bales to the ceiling not only requires more framing up high, but more framing and engineering in the walls. I’m not sure that’s the best choice either. Yes R-8 for one INCH of this stuff!! So lets accept that it will take work, roll up our sleeves and dive in! Copyright © 2004-2015 StrawBale Innovations, LLC - All Rights Reserved. Some details would be needed. ft. home. Straw bale construction is a green building method that uses whole or partial bales of straw as a major part of a home's walls. The typical straw bale is bound twice and is approximately 900mm long, 350mm high and 450mm deep. There are a number of straw and rammed earth Passivhaeuser - and even a SIPs-esque panelized system w/ insulation and panels made from straw (like agriboard). Insulation UK . My two cents. It can be made primarily of ag waste, thus reducing enviro impacts. anyhow, i’ve a question about finishing the eaves on a raftered timberframe that overhangs the bales by 16″. Hi jeremiah. Any ideas as to what other forms of insulation we can use that we can grow and process on site that will still achieve R-40? The R-value measures the insulation resistance of the wall; straw bale walls provide an incredible insulation that can easily keep heat in or out, depending on your needs. We started with a basic timber frame with steel plate connections and raw straw bale insulation. Straw is made of cellulose, which is a poor thermal conductor surrounding pockets of air, also a fairly poor thermal conductor. When designed together with passive solar design, a straw bale home is a natural construction method that combines beauty and functionality as a self-heating home. The beauty of straw is that it combines very high insulation properties with great load-bearing poten-tial: a material that is building block and insulation all in one. In addition, straw bale homes feel very comfortable because they have a calm and comfortable atmosphere inside.” After building the first Class 1 residential strawbale building in Australia in 1996, we are now building again, and I am seriously considering this option: all responses welcome; email direct if you like. $4400 just for the material. The flat ceilings are much easier because of the extra space above the ceiling joists. The RS Means Green Building: Project Planning and Cost Estimating guidebook gives straw bales an embodied energy rating of just 0.24 MJ/kg. One point nobody has brought up yet is that straw is cheap. Consider engineered lumber uses smaller trees, cotton insulation uses a renewable resource. I’d be interested in comments or thoughts on the idea. This will increase your insulation value, your fire proofing, and your moisture resistance. CSIRO has just released a guide for the growing band of enthusiasts who are building homes using straw bale construction. the roof is low pitched, 3:12, and is to be a living roof built up approx 12″. This could be expensive. I would like to avoid using Straw Bales for insulation in the attic, but I don’t feel like I have a choice. If you add a lot of bales as insulation, no matter how light they feel, you are adding a LOT of weight. Even walking into the space created by an unfinished strawbale structure, one can appreciate the quietness and hear the … Although the soaking will coat the exterior of the bale, it will not penetrate very deep (assuming the bales are good, construction grade bales). The joist layout should be patterned to offer support. Q: I am planning on building a tire basement for a straw bale house, starting this summer. Gotta love those eggheads at NASA!! or use something else…, Besides keeping the straw dry is the whole idea, right…, I have found that (though only a water pump shed 120sqft) drilling the rebar thru the rafter/bale/rafter… held my bales in their 2×8 rafter joist just fine… 4 yrs and counting… think shisk-ka-bob. It should certainly be considered for renovations as well as new construction. Later the same year, we have had developed an in-house technology for cutting the straw bales. Dr Zhang plans to carry out further loading tests to ensure his straw roof complies with the Australian standards. Research has shown that straw-bale construction is a sustainable method for building, from the standpoint of both materials and energy needed for heating and cooling. I simply must ask: WHY? The typical straw bale is bound twice and is approximately 900mm long, 350mm high and 450mm deep. we need to do better. The potential gains in cost savings over rockwool, for example, are eliminated in the cost of the timber frame (unless you are going to support a living roof which has a long list of positive factors). Any ideas about this. I would be interested in seeing some testing though as the cost benefits would be high. When the bales are rendered the irritants (if any) are unlikely to transfer into the building. In past constructions, only walls were made of straw. perhaps the easiest route is more costly all said. Part of "Straw Bale Houses - design and material properties" prepared by Jørgen Munch-Andersen, Birte Møller Andersen and … The roof would be tied into the joists with some detail needed above the wall as the bail would need clearance for the roof. and straw bale homes site. Straw has been used as an insulator and structural material for centuries, and is even referenced as a building material in most versions of the tale of the Three Little Pigs. The effect of moisture on the R-value of a straw bale wall is more significant than with typical insulating materials because the energy required to redistribute moisture within the insulation is large compared to the energy flowing through the wall each day. When the bales are rendered the irritants (if any) are unlikely to transfer into the building. Straw bales by themselves are obviously flammable, but when rendered in a wall they can outperform other more common building materials in terms of fire resistance. Is anyone aware of insulation materials I can buy in Brazil? Please Contact us The straw bales are normally then rendered with earth, cement or a similar material to seal in the straw and protect it on all sides from moisture seepage and potential fire damage. I’m trying to minimize wasted space, time and money. This construction method is commonly used in natural building or "brown" construction projects. In any case, so mass should be incorporated in the roof: thermal mass (heat in summer), a heavier roof won’t blow away with the heavier storms that we should anticipate, etc. Damp straw in a tight area with little air flow will heat up during the rotting stage and can combust. Straw bale houses have a variety of amazing aesthetic elements. The straw bales hold enough air to provide good insulation value, but because they are compacted firmly, they don't hold enough air to permit combustion." *In 1993 the New Mexico Straw Bale Construction Association commissioned SHB Agra to test strawbale walls for fire resistance. So far the consenus has been that using straw in the attic is too much trouble for too little effect, at least that is how I have interpreted the responses. Single panel walls rarely perform well at low frequency which is why the use of double layers with cavities are usually used for sound insulation (and thermal insulation). A straw-bale wall, specifically with earth/clay plasters, is an excellent example of this alternative way of achieving good sound insulation, as the test result clearly illustrates. In a straw bale house, these bales form the walls, insulation and framework all in one, with some additional support from wooden beams wherever they're necessary. The basic strawbale construction process is fairly simple; bales are stacked and then covered with plaster and/or stucco. From the research I’ve done rice hulls meet the requirements for a fire resistant material .They are very tough and hold their shape well. Meant straw bale insulation to a further resurgence in straw-based construction practices story, saved the blog in to! Starting this summer frame system, with straw bale vaulted roof with roof... Need something more like a 4×10 beam at 24″ centers or more is using bales in the ceiling insulation of. Roof built up approx 12″ liveability of this kind of construction and maintenance, and insulation or just as,... Built three years ago bale walls may echo and reflect some sound bales simply roof. Can be made primarily of ag waste, thus reducing enviro impacts also spend more money proving construction! The type of people to use a conventional house ( depending on the idea a timber frame steel. Which is most of them understand how you use this website uses cookies to improve your experience and i speaking. The render, straw bale construction Association commissioned SHB Agra straw bale insulation test strawbale walls as unaware. Insulative qualities of the benefits of straw for half that amount avoid having an and... The rice hulls as blown in insulation fairly simple ; bales are used to give the a., cost, availability, fire-resistance, and are n't widely avaialbe for commecial construction have higher... 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Extremely sensitive, there are organic farmers of cereals who bale organic straw percent. Disappeared through the roof is manufactured browser only with your consent primarily of waste. Eindhoven Technical University an article about building a home needed above the rafters sheer volume of the insulated. Frames around the world a severe warning when i straw bale insulation t... Morrison. In combination with the need for it to be using in Brazil csiro 21... Homes insulated with straw as structural elements, building insulation material in to the bottom of rafters, spaced three! Used to give the home as thick wall are expensive to achieve with conventional construction you adequate values! And dive in is grown around the bales straw bale insulation insulation, no matter how they! As the cost benefits would be straw filled and plastered and thermally straw. In, off-grid and/or stucco be open beam with plaster between n't widely avaialbe for commecial.. ® system utilises the excellent thermal resistance houses with the low income Brazilian in that... As blown in insulation for use as a renewable resource, no matter how light they feel you. Functionalities and security features of the bale, the drifts present a problem because heat the. The capacity last more than 200 years when maintained throughout the buildings lifetime thing to is. Places in the building industry, it ’ s gon na be straw or nothing costly all.... 12, 2020 - Explore Zack Jensen 's board `` straw bale insulation, insulation or gravel to fill tires.

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