Some of you know I’m a little bit of a permaculture fanatic, so I like to interject some of these concepts where I can. Today I wanted to share a neat project going on over at permies.com’s forum. It’s called a Wofati house and essentially it is an wooden structure that uses post and beam techniques that is then mostly buried under dirt to provide thermal mass. The big concept here is that the house is optimized for solar gain and uses a large thermal mass to keep things cool in the summer and warm in the winter. The design was inspired by Mike Oehler’s design and is touted to be pretty inexpensive.
Even though I am busy building my own tiny house, I still find myself thinking about building other houses (is that cheating on my tiny house? lol). From time to time I have been coming back to cob houses. I have thought about building a cob house if in the future I decide I need more space (get married or just want more space etc).
Cob is basically clay, sand and usually straw mixed together to be used as a building material, kinda like bricks, but the advantage is that most of the materials can be sourced on site or purchased cheaply. The houses are very strong, good at regulating temperature, are about the lightest impact home I know. They have their own aesthetic to them which I am beginning to warm up to. Here is a great video on them
A recently completed ‘dome house’ at Bishops Wood environmental centre, near Stourport-on-Severn, could provide a groundbreaking solution to how buildings are made.
Jay Emery, who runs manufacturing specialist Dingley Dell Enterprises, has used African inspired designs to come up with a cost-effective construction system that uses glass reinforced concrete that offers a number of eco-friendly benefits.
Backed by specialist support from the Manufacturing Advisory Service – West Midlands (MAS-WM), the South African entrepreneur is hoping the project will provide the platform for him to enter dramatically different markets, ranging from high spec garden and office buildings through to vital low cost housing for the developing world.
He said: “When I started producing bushman burner chimineas 10 years ago I had to come up with a new material to replace terracotta and, at the time, I could see that glass reinforced concrete could be suitable for numerous applications.
Key facts on domes :
Floor space:28.5 m2