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  1. #1
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    Hammocks in house design.

    I've got a buddy I talk to on ocassion who lives down in new mexico. He's 18 years old and wants to move out. He decided he was going to build a house on his grandparents ranch since he's in the process of taking on more responsibility there. He did some research and decided to go with a rather unconventional construction technique called "Earthbag". Essentially it's a bunch sand bags filled with earth and tamped into bricks. Very similar to Adobe construction.

    The 'house' is a sort of spiral-ish in shape about 30 feet wide and 12 feet front to back in the sleeping area. His design is like this design but more oblong. So far he's got the walls up to about 2 feet. We were talking today about how he might set up his bedroom area. His biggest concern was a bed using up a lot of space so he was trying to figure out a lift up bed. Then it dawned on me. HAMMOCK! I figure if SilverLion can hang inside his van...

    I tentatively threw the idea out there and he said "Well I think a hammock stand would be more of a pain to put away..."
    "true, but what if there was no stand? What if you had just eye bolts in the walls?"
    "ooooh"

    So the way he figures he'll accomplish that is a forged eyebolt welded to the middle of a foot or so of rebar. Then when the rows get to the right height drive the rebar through the courses below and above.

    He loved the idea so much he's planning on putting more than one set throughout so he can hang it wherever he needs or if guests plan to stay.

    "dude, this is awesome. I wouldn't even need to buy a couch! watching tv in a hammock, AWESOME!"

  2. #2
    PuckerFactor's Avatar
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    Awesome idea! I hadn't heard about Earthbags. Earthships, with the tires and stuff, yes. But not earthbags. They'd double as bomb shelters!!
    A couple of concerns would be:
    The dynamic motion of the hammock in the soil/wall might eventually get loose.
    I don't know if/how the individual bags are attached structurally to each other, but you might just pull a column of bags down the first time you hang. That'd be something to be sure of before it gets too far to fix.

    If the walls are nice and thick, it might be better to just put a plate on the outside, and run a chain through the wall to the inside.
    Best of luck to him on the endeavor!

    PF
    It's better to have it and not need it than need it and not have it.

    Formerly known as Acercanto, my trail name is MacGuyver to some, and Pucker Factor to others.

    It's not procrastinating, its proactively delaying the implementation of the energy-intensive phase of the project until the enthusiasm factor is at its maximum effectiveness. - Randy Glasbergen

  3. #3
    New Member Bandanabraids's Avatar
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    I just googled "earthbag homes" and have to say, those just look really cool! Good luck to him.

    Christina
    Don't mess with the Chief's wife!

  4. #4
    in it for the naps oldgringo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bandanabraids View Post
    I just googled "earthbag homes" and have to say, those just look really cool! Good luck to him.

    Christina
    I did, too, and have to agree.

    Pucker, the courses are staggered, like masonry, and bonded with...get ready for this...barbed wire. Still, I share your concerns, and am not sure how, or even if, I would hang a hammock from them. If the outside finish is stucco/adobe/cement, tying into the remesh substrate *might* be an option, but I still have doubts.

    Very cool house plan, Orion!
    Dave

    http://www.uark.edu/misc/xtimber/rna/pattonsbluff.html

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  5. #5
    ...in the trees too long Rilmoigan's Avatar
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    I'm hoping to be able to build a cottage next year. Post and Beam. I am definitely talking to my "construction guy" about posts and hammock set up points both in the house and on the porch.

    Ironic, since being in Maine, I'll be surrounded by trees...
    "The green earth, say you? That is itself a mighty matter of legend, though you tread it under the light of day." -Aragorn, 'The Two Towers' by J.R.R. Tolkien

  6. #6
    gargoyle's Avatar
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    http://www.earthbagbuilding.com/

    Everything you'd want to know about about earthbag.

    In the videos on this site they show using a pipe on the exterior as one way to reinforce a wall (similar to what Pucker mentioned).
    They also show roof trusses being used in some styles of homes. Is your friend doing trusses? That may be a attachment point?

    The site I referenced has a lot of videos, (scroll down on the video's link, once you've picked a catagory)
    Ambulo tua ambulo.

  7. #7
    MrClean417's Avatar
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    The pipe rammed in there, maybe even set in concrete, sounds like a better anchor point for the hammock attach. I've seen a couple vids on rammed earth homes, sounds like instead of buying a minimal amount of concrete to mix with the soil they've found a different bonding agent (bags).

    What I liked on the rammed earth was if you wanted to run an electrical circuit you gouged out a channel in the wall and ran your conduit and then filled it back in with a dirt/concrete mix. I wonder what would happen in my area with all the dang Moles? That'd be a pain to get up in the morning and find a trail across the dining room linoleum.
    From Somewhere near Parkville, Mo
    William Crane
    aka MrClean
    Everything you need to know about Hammocks in vids and reading:
    Hammock in 3 minutes D. Hansen - It really is this easy to make a hammock
    Shug's Hammock Newbies videos - Takes you buy the hand and shows you in video
    The Ultimate Hang D. Hansen - now read about everything
    JustJeff's Hammock tutorial - more reference
    TableclothFactoryBlanks - shorter lengths available on sidebar
    The TurtleDog Stand thread - Hang anywhere.

  8. #8
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    I'll see if I can field some of the points here before I head off to bed.

    He's using polypro tubes. They're essentially identical to the sandbags, just not cut into pieces with a sewn end. If I recall my conversation with him they came in 600 foot rolls. So you pull off a long length, bunch it up over a filling sleeve and start to fill. as you fill it up you let some slack out so it ends up being a long brick.

    He's also using a concrete stabilized mixture, 10 parts soil and 1 part concrete. Once the row is in position you go along with a tamper and pack the earth good and tight. After the moisture evaporates it's a pretty solid mass of 'not going anywhere'.

    Even without the stabilizer once the earth is tamped and dry you'd have to work a LOT harder than putting a a couple hundred pounds of pull on the wall. Think about it. Trappers use plain carpentry washers and a steel cable driven 10 or so inches into the ground and it takes a horse to pull it out of compartively loose dirt.

    He's concerned about the same thing, pulling out. But with my background in architectural study as a hobby I'd be infinitely more comfortable strung up to an earthbag wall than a 2x4 pine board which is stuck in place to the header and footer with two nails top and bottom which are just toe'd in at an angle. I've helped friends and family remodel... a swift sturdy heel kick ten inches up with work boots and off it goes.

  9. #9
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    My wife and I have done conciderable research on earthbag homes. From what we've found, there aren't many structures that are as robust as earthbags.
    I think PF had the best idea with the plate outside and a chain running between two courses. The outside is typically stucco or adobe, so the plate would be covered.
    "The first time I saw a hammock, I remember thinking, 'Now I know what trees are for.'" --Jim Gaffigan, comedian

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