Page 1 of 4 1234 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 87
  1. #1
    Member

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Last Online
    07-08-2016 @ 11:08 AM
    Posts
    996

    Mud, bamboo and alternative building materials

    I would like to learn more about building with mud. It's use is common throughout South Asia, but not in SEA. Although there are some ppl in Northern Thailand building with it and a group was running a building course in Chiang Rai a few years ago.

    Can anyone think of reasons why mud is not suitable for Thailand? I've read that it's more suited to tropical conditions than concrete, as it doesn't heat up so much.

    Building material prices have been rising rapidly. As costs increase so called 'alternative' and 'green' building products become more feasible, because they are renewable and can often be found locally.

    Mud is a good example of this. If you dig a pond/damn on your property, you will have a lot of mud. This can either be made into bricks or rendered over a bamboo frame. The result can be painted and will look pretty much the same as concrete.

    Any thoughts?

  2. #2
    Thailand Expat
    DrAndy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Last Online
    25-03-2014 @ 05:29 PM
    Location
    yes
    Posts
    32,028
    Quote Originally Posted by Smithson View Post
    I would like to learn more about building with mud. It's use is common throughout South Asia, but not in SEA. Although there are some ppl in Northern Thailand building with it and a group was running a building course in Chiang Rai a few years ago.

    Can anyone think of reasons why mud is not suitable for Thailand? I've read that it's more suited to tropical conditions than concrete, as it doesn't heat up so much.

    Building material prices have been rising rapidly. As costs increase so called 'alternative' and 'green' building products become more feasible, because they are renewable and can often be found locally.

    Mud is a good example of this. If you dig a pond/damn on your property, you will have a lot of mud. This can either be made into bricks or rendered over a bamboo frame. The result can be painted and will look pretty much the same as concrete.

    Any thoughts?

    may be worth looking into

    my mud is very sticky clay and would make a great building material

    come round and help yourself

  3. #3
    Member big_cloud's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Last Online
    01-03-2012 @ 08:45 PM
    Location
    Germany
    Posts
    57
    [at]Smithson
    You should ask there coolthaihouse.com • Index page

    regards
    Lothar

  4. #4
    Thailand Expat

    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Last Online
    17-07-2018 @ 10:23 AM
    Location
    chiangmai - bangkok
    Posts
    1,110
    doctor doctor give me the news......... i got a bad case of needing your mud....!!!!!????? Dr A how much mud are we talking about???????

    If you would like to pm i can share all kinds of information relative to what you need to know, there are currently 3 organisations all working as one large community in Chiangmai. They run courses for farang and Thai with a greater expense on the farang course fee but thai is a donation. They teach permaculture and how to use the land to build a dwelling, and also live off.

    Interestingly there is another post about eco friendly living its just not going anywhere as most here have only built with concrete and rebar, and installed ac as standard. Also check out Dr.Andys and hillbilly's post on house builds for more conventional thai buildings.

    You can grow bamboo, rice, use stone mud natural available breezes and design to cool and a wealth of greenery to help sustain your new found fondness for natural building. Its cheaper more friendly to the surrounding area, and like Dr andy has stipulated in another thread gets you to reconnect with nature.

    i hope this helps and like i said more information can be yours, just ask!
    im hot its so hot today.......milk was a bad choice!

  5. #5
    Thailand Expat
    DrAndy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Last Online
    25-03-2014 @ 05:29 PM
    Location
    yes
    Posts
    32,028
    Quote Originally Posted by benlovesnuk View Post
    doctor doctor give me the news......... i got a bad case of needing your mud....!!!!!????? Dr A how much mud are we talking about???????

    bring your bucket and spade Ben

    if you need a lot, we had it delivered in lorry loads of 5 cu.m. for B400 a load

  6. #6
    Thailand Expat

    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Last Online
    17-07-2018 @ 10:23 AM
    Location
    chiangmai - bangkok
    Posts
    1,110
    I think i might be fine, but its always good to have a back up plan.......

    sorry im stupid you said a load 400B, and a load being 5 cu.m or not?

    you should check the consistency of your subsoil, if you dont know already;

    clear topsoil dirt and when you hit the clay soil take a handfull, put in a jar and fill upto almost full with water, shake and leave after a certain time (it can be upto 6 days) you will have a clear breakdown of percentages of materials in your dirt this can show you what percentage you would need to make good cob, with 20- 30 % being clay then the rest being built up aggregate to smaller sand pieces.

    you can then use to build with and as its on your land materials cost nothing it is of course labour intensive, but you can use diggers to mix big loads, and implement each lift (rise of wall).

    Im sure you know already!

  7. #7
    Member

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Last Online
    07-08-2016 @ 11:08 AM
    Posts
    996
    Thanks for the info, I've seen that group up North, interesting work, just a little too far from me.

    I'm very interested in a technique using bamboo strips on the wall and then applying mud to the bamboo. It's common in Columbia where it's known as Bahareque.

    Have you seen this before?

  8. #8
    Thailand Expat

    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Last Online
    17-07-2018 @ 10:23 AM
    Location
    chiangmai - bangkok
    Posts
    1,110
    you mean to build walls? or to build internal walls?

    Most would use bamboo for structure just as you would use wood, it just cheaper! Remember you to treat the bamboo, and concrete the ends to stop turmites eating it!!!!!! You can then choose to not fill the walls, fills the walls with a bamboo wall sheet (though most are synthetic) or use mud as you with bamboo to create a strong wall structure. I live in bangkok currently if you can get to there i can meet you and discuss with you your options!!!!!

    these are just a few.....

  9. #9
    Thailand Expat
    DrAndy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Last Online
    25-03-2014 @ 05:29 PM
    Location
    yes
    Posts
    32,028
    Quote Originally Posted by benlovesnuk View Post
    I think i might be fine, but its always good to have a back up plan.......

    sorry im stupid you said a load 400B, and a load being 5 cu.m or not?

    yes, a lorry load is 5 cu.m. and costs B400 delivered (by lorry)

  10. #10
    Thailand Expat

    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Last Online
    @
    Location
    In a rather cold and dark place
    Posts
    12,823
    It's called adobe isn't it.

    One of my Irish mates is passionate about adobe buildings. He buys books on it which he finds fascinating.

  11. #11
    FREE ANTROBERTSON !!!! SunTzu's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Last Online
    13-01-2011 @ 10:11 AM
    Location
    Sunny land of Tzu
    Posts
    1,033
    Adobe is not 'armed' with a structre, as you would arm concrete. Earth is packed between 'solid' columns, like stones, trees. You can improve your soil structure by mixing it up with straw (rice, grass...), or anything with long and tough fibers. I wonder wether hemp has ever been tested this way.

    Imo, termites would be a good enough reason not to build with bamboos inside soil in SEA, right ? Unless you build on concrete stilts !

    ++ ^^

  12. #12
    Member

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Last Online
    07-08-2016 @ 11:08 AM
    Posts
    996
    ^ When building with bamboo you must not have it come into contact with the ground or any areas that may get wet. Termites aren't such a problem, other borer insects are worse. Bamboo needs to be carefully selected and then treated with preservatives, such as boron. It's difficult to say just how long treated bamboo would last in tropical Thailand, there is so little info available. Amazing stuff has been done in Columbia, including bridges with 60m spans.

  13. #13
    Member
    WhiteLotusLane's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Last Online
    22-06-2018 @ 05:57 AM
    Location
    at home
    Posts
    633
    > I've read that it's more suited to tropical conditions than concrete,
    > as it doesn't heat up so much.

    That sort of implies that houses in Thailand are made out of concrete; typically only the posts & beams are concrete, but the walls aren't. You can use heat insulating building materials for the walls.

    Is there a link to some pics that show what these houses typically look like? I'm imagining MASSIVE walls, and a shape that looks okay as an exhibit, but not to actually live in?

  14. #14
    Thailand Expat
    Marmite the Dog's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Last Online
    08-09-2014 @ 10:43 AM
    Location
    Simian Islands
    Posts
    34,827

  15. #15
    Member

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Last Online
    07-08-2016 @ 11:08 AM
    Posts
    996
    Quote Originally Posted by WhiteLotusLane View Post
    > I've read that it's more suited to tropical conditions than concrete,
    > as it doesn't heat up so much.

    That sort of implies that houses in Thailand are made out of concrete; typically only the posts & beams are concrete, but the walls aren't. You can use heat insulating building materials for the walls.

    Is there a link to some pics that show what these houses typically look like? I'm imagining MASSIVE walls, and a shape that looks okay as an exhibit, but not to actually live in?
    The walls may be brick, but both breezeblocks and superblocks are made from cement.

    Sure you can use heat insulating materials, but these are probably more expensive and definitely less sustainable than mud and bamboo.

    I've seen pics of some pretty amazing bamboo structures, but thought I'd post a few that seemed to be more like normal houses. The show it being used with mud, as well as a kit home in Hawaii (the houses are actually made in Vietnam).




  16. #16
    Newbie
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Last Online
    08-12-2013 @ 06:17 PM
    Posts
    3
    Hi all, been following construction thread here with interest, I have land in Phetchabun on which I want to build using techniques other than concrete posts and blocks. I recently came accross Hydraform dry stacking of an interlocking mud brick. This is formed from local soil, with a binder and , apart from the foundations, needs no mortar.
    I am in touch with the manufacturers of the machines, a bit pricey, and there is a company in Bangkok , Yamsorn Engineering, who use this technique, but have not answered my emails.
    Does anyone have any knowledge of this technique, availability of the machines to rent in Thailand, or any thoughts on the use of this system here?
    PP

  17. #17
    Dan
    Guest
    Hi - How much was the press? Is it a Cinva Ram? There's a company in Samut Prakan that sells Cinva Rams (INTERLOCKING BLOCK), which may be of interest. I looked into the this but decided against CEBs (compressed earth block) since quality control is much more of an issue than when making regular adobes; with CEBs, I think (but may be wrong), moisture levels in your mix need to carefully monitored but with adobes it's pretty hard to go wrong. I don't think there's any reason why CEBs would be a problem here - they use them a lot at Auroville in southern India (and have built some very impressive vaulted structures). Do a search for them - they have some useful information on their website. I'm going to build an adobe house up near Lampang. At the moment I'm getting my hand in with an oversized adobe garden shed to see how things work out. It's f*cking hard work but it's fun. If you want any advice on regular adobe, I may be able to help (I'm learning as I go but it's not exactly Astro-Physics).

  18. #18
    Newbie
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Last Online
    08-12-2013 @ 06:17 PM
    Posts
    3
    Hi , just checked out the Cinva site..thanks. The Hydraform is very similar, different shape interlocking block, their cheapest press is $16k, then you need grinders, mixers and other sundries, so not cheap. However they do seem to produce a consistant block, testable , and have done large projects (Phillippines, for one).

    I will have to find out the differences in quality, if any between the two, google Hydraform and check them out. If I went that way I would set up a biz here in LOS using my build as a showcase and hope to recoup the investment in the presses by renting out or helping with other builds. Have to do cost comparisons etc yet.

    The adobe sounds great, I can see a variety of structures appearing on my land as I try out different stuff, but the idea of making my own blocks really appeals.

  19. #19
    Dan
    Guest
    If you're going to set up in business then maybe you'll want to invest in the Hydraform machinery but you can also buy plans for a Cinva Ram from Cinva Ram block press Plans and then get it fabricated yourself. As you may know, there are a couple of companies in Thailand making adobe houses to order so I think there's a market, albeit not huge, for naturally built houses.
    Last edited by Dan; 09-02-2009 at 09:52 PM.

  20. #20
    MrG
    MrG is offline
    Thailand Expat MrG's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Last Online
    @
    Posts
    2,954
    Check out:
    (Thai Navy to build adobe training center)Thai Navy to build adobe training center
    dirtydog .

    Thread goes nowhere as I remember, but you might get a lead. Please post something if you find anything. My experience with adobe is it's great.

    Good Luck.

  21. #21
    Member

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Last Online
    07-08-2016 @ 11:08 AM
    Posts
    996
    I saw these machines at a sufficiency economy project in Nakhon Nayok, they also had adobe buildings. The bricks looked really strong and I've noticed them used in some building around NN. The pic is below, apparently the machine for grinding is called a 'hammer mill' and has many uses, especially in agriculture.


  22. #22
    Dan
    Guest
    My experience with adobe is it's great.
    That's interesting - can you expand? Do you have construction experience with adobe? Like a said a few posts up, I'm building - slowly - a 4 x 3 metre test structure to try to see how things work out so I'd be grateful for any advice you could give. I've just been making test blocks to see what mix of clay/sand/rice husks/straw/cement works best but it's hard getting enough time in (and making the adobes is very time consuming).

    Some of my miserable efforts (the latest lot actually aren't too bad - 8 clay: 5 rice husk: 2 sand: 0.5 cement and mixed fairly dry):



    Edit: ^ Hi Smithson - That looks pretty similar to pictures of the Cinva Ram which I've seen. They're using CEBs near you? That's intriguing. I take it they're not the usual hippy hobbit houses. Are they just substituting CEBs for brick in a regular-style building?
    Last edited by Dan; 10-02-2009 at 10:55 AM.

  23. #23
    Member

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Last Online
    07-08-2016 @ 11:08 AM
    Posts
    996
    ^ I've noticed the CEB in a few buildings, but only while driving past. There was one restaurant that was quite nice (although the food was shite). I'll keep my eye out for more and take a closer look.

    The place with the machine had pics of some very nice building, not hippie huts at all. They also have some adobe bungalows, I've been meaning to go back and see if there's any cracks due to the dry weather. They were using rice husks and 'termite dirt'. Getting clear info from the ppl at the place is really difficult.

    Dan, why don't you start a thread about your project?

  24. #24
    Dan
    Guest
    Prestburypark: I had a look again at the Auroville website and remembered that they also sell their own CEB-making equipment (see Auroville Earth Institute, Auram press 3000, Auram blocks, Auram equipment, Auram earth construction equipment.), so that might be another one for you to follow up. Importing from India to Thailand would, I'm sure, be the nightmare to end all nightmares but they've obviously got experience of building for tropical climates. Some of the stuff they've built with CEBs is pretty impressive:



    and



    Smithson: Yea, I should start a thread. There's been a few posts about earth building here so it'd be good to see one in progress. The problem is that it's just me, part-time, so progress is limited.

  25. #25
    Member
    Deck Ape's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Last Online
    22-11-2017 @ 10:42 PM
    Location
    Adrift
    Posts
    610
    I think one hurdle would be how cheap those little red blocks (that are currently used) are. Regardless sustainable or cool your adobe blocks are in order to sell them to the local populace the price would have to be extremely low.

    Other than that I love the idea. I lived in an adobe house for a few years and think it's a great building material.


    Oh yeah, that ampitheater is gorgeous.

Page 1 of 4 1234 LastLast

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •