Building A Roundhouse With Woodhenge And Cobwood

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Building A Roundhouse With Woodhenge And CobwoodBuilding A Roundhouse With Woodhenge And Cobwood
Photo – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KByX6XLTLy8

Here you’ll find a three minute time-lapse video by ToneWrench of the whole process of building a small roundhouse. Tony Wrench, writer of a book called ‘Building a Low Impact Roundhouse’, built this one over ten years ago with a small team in just six weeks!



The windows have been reclaimed and the structure of the roundhouse is built almost entirely from sustainable materials, namely timber and cob (which is a traditional wall plaster/ render made of three parts sand, one clay, one chopped straw or hay). Some cob houses in the UK have been around for centuries – with the climate being quite wet, this means cob is truly tried and tested!

The walls of the house are made using cordwood (also known as Stackwall, Stovewood, Firewood or Cordwood Masonry) – this means horizontal log slices of tree trunks and branches that are used “in the round” – this produces a good surface for the cob to stick to, giving a thick wall for good insulation and an attractive look to the house. There are coloured glass bottles in parts of the wall that make a nice feature too (bottles have good insulation properties because they have trapped air inside, much like double glazing).



The roof is turfed, which helps to insulate the house as well as giving nature a place to grow. For more about “That Roundhouse” (as it is called) please visit Tony’s site, which also has a lot of info that could help you if you want to build your own place: http://thatroundhouse.info/

Here are some facts and figures about construction that show us some of the problems we face: According to the US Department of Energy, buildings consume 40% of the world’s current energy and raw materials and the US Energy Information Administration tells us that buildings cause 40% of the total CO2 emissions and ozone depletion. At the moment, 75% of the trees cut down in North America are used in construction, with a lot of waste being produced in the process.

We need building methods that use renewable, natural resources efficiently and we need them to become mainstream as soon as possible – please help to spread the word!



To find out more, try these links:
(UK) http://www.digplanet.com/wiki/Low-impact_development_%28UK%29
http://www.planningportal.gov.uk/uploads/1app/guidance/guidance_note-full_planning.pdf
(US/Canada) http://www.digplanet.com/wiki/Low-impact_development_%28Canada/US%29
http://www.onecommunityglobal.org/evolving-sustainability/

We also found this page of historical cob buildings that shows just how versatile this natural material is: http://www.inspirationgreen.com/historical-cob-buildings.html

Okay, here is the video:


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