Paradox
©
Fisana

Jump to content


Photo
- - - - -

Earthship Homes


  • Please log in to reply
47 replies to this topic

#1 Cornfield

Cornfield

    VIP Member

  • Expired Member
  • 694 posts

Posted 11 November 2008 - 05:18 AM

Tonight i was browsing a motorcycle forum i belong to and one of the guys just built one of these things. His is a lot more practical and hes connected to the grid but its still very very cheap living. It absolutely blows my mind that he pulled it off. He built the thing in his spare time. Weve been watching his progress for the past 2 years with it.

What do you guys think? Personally id like to build one out in BFE and go off grid. Imagine the beautiful cannabis you could grow with those windows

L9jdIm7grCY

Rlrhxqat_6A

2TbxhpG-Y4Q&feature

#2 boatsoup

boatsoup

    Master Of Spoons

  • Expired Member
  • 267 posts

Posted 11 November 2008 - 05:30 AM

looking at the future there. though i think it's gonna take a huge upset to bring it
  • Cornfield likes this

#3 catdaddy

catdaddy

    herding kittens

  • Expired Member
  • 2,321 posts

Posted 11 November 2008 - 10:42 AM

Been there, done that. Earthships are VERY labor intensive.

Strawbale housing on the other hand, is fast, cheap, and well- insulated.

Catdaddy

#4 eatyualive

eatyualive

    ExoCannibalist

  • Honorary Former Staff
  • 6,153 posts

Awards Bar:

Posted 11 November 2008 - 11:09 AM

yeah i saw this. also saw concrete dome construction using big balloons. very cool.

#5 Beast

Beast

    That's Mr. Beast to you..

  • Expired Member
  • 3,930 posts

Posted 11 November 2008 - 11:16 AM

Earthships are cool.

The people that live in them, i'm not so sure about.

Though I'd like to live in one someday...
  • Cornfield likes this

#6 Envee

Envee

    Mycophiliac

  • Expired Member
  • 192 posts

Posted 11 November 2008 - 12:24 PM

Earthships are cool.

The people that live in them, i'm not so sure about.

Though I'd like to live in one someday...


I;'m not sure about this beast but you may become instantly uncool upon living in one. Perhaps by association with the people that live in them or perhaps the earthship will change ya :: BUM BUM BUUUUUM::

#7 Cornfield

Cornfield

    VIP Member

  • Expired Member
  • 694 posts

Posted 11 November 2008 - 01:37 PM

I work with an older gent who has a partial undeground home. Its on several wooded acres and you cannot see it from the road. Really neat place. He has electricity and everything modern. Wood floors, drywall etc. its just built into the ground and his heating and cooling bills are extremely low if anything at all.

Yeah those people are kind of wierd. Maybe it could be a model for the way homes in the future are set up though.

#8 jmtx

jmtx

    horticulturist

  • Expired Member
  • 518 posts

Posted 11 November 2008 - 02:17 PM

anyone know of the prices for one of those

#9 Ras Asad

Ras Asad

    Amor vincit omnia

  • Expired Member
  • 3,741 posts

Posted 11 November 2008 - 02:27 PM

Earthships are pretty cool,

If we could all do it ....and get off the grid.. it would be excellent.

I would definitely like to live in one...

However, I would much much rather build one of these.... This is my Dream Home!!
http://www.simondale...house/index.htm

A Real ""Hobbit House""!!!!! ... you gotta see the inside!!
http://mycotopia.net...=1&d=1226431525

"You are looking at pictures of our family home in Wales. It was built by myself and my father in law with help from passers by and visiting friends. 4 months after starting we were moved in and cosy. I estimate 1000-1500 man hours and £3000 put in to this point. Not really so much in house buying terms (roughly £60/sq m excluding labour).

The house was built with maximum regard for the environment and by reciprocation gives us a unique opportunity to live close to nature. Being your own (have a go) architect is a lot of fun and allows you to create and enjoy something which is part of yourself and the land rather than, at worst, a mass produced box designed for maximum profit and convenience of the construction industry. Building from natural materials does away with producers profits and the cocktail of carcinogenic poisons that fill most modern buildings."

Some key points of the design and construction:

• Dug into hillside for low visual impact and shelter

• Stone and mud from diggings used for retaining walls, foundations etc.

• Frame of oak thinnings (spare wood) from surrounding woodland

• Reciprocal roof rafters are structurally and aesthaetically fantastic and very easy to do

• Straw bales in floor, walls and roof for super-insulation and easy building

• Plastic sheet and mud/turf roof for low impact and ease

• Lime plaster on walls is breathable and low energy to manufacture (compared to cement)

• Reclaimed (scrap) wood for floors and fittings

• Anything you could possibly want is in a rubbish pile somewhere (windows, burner, plumbing, wiring...)

• Woodburner for heating - renewable and locally plentiful

• Flue goes through big stone/plaster lump to retain and slowly release heat

• Fridge is cooled by air coming underground through foundations

• Skylight in roof lets in natural feeling light

• Solar panels for lighting, music and computing

• Water by gravity from nearby spring

• Compost toilet

• Roof water collects in pond for garden etc.

Main tools used: chainsaw, hammer and 1 inch chisel, little else really. Oh and by the way I am not a builder or carpenter, my experience is only having a go at one similar house 2yrs before and a bit of mucking around inbetween. This kind of building is accessible to anyone. My main relevant skills were being able bodied, having self-belief and perseverence and a mate or two to give a lift now and again.

Attached Thumbnails

  • Hobbithouse.jpg


#10 Ras Asad

Ras Asad

    Amor vincit omnia

  • Expired Member
  • 3,741 posts

Posted 11 November 2008 - 02:28 PM

also check this out!!.. this is my next favorite compared to the "Hobbit House"

I would much rather have one of these than an "Earthship"

http://www.calearth.org/

ahhh, glad others are interested in this. lol :D

:love:

#11 Cornfield

Cornfield

    VIP Member

  • Expired Member
  • 694 posts

Posted 11 November 2008 - 02:51 PM

i look at it from a practical point of view. A lot of this art deco trash would never work unless you want to live like your camping year round. I still want to come home and be able to turn on the tv, use the microwave, flush massive logs down my toillete etc.


Imagine all the cool toys i could buy if i would free myself from winter and summer cooling/heating costs. No need to get all treehugger about it. Just a cheap practical way to live is all im after. Could afford a lot more living space too

#12 Ras Asad

Ras Asad

    Amor vincit omnia

  • Expired Member
  • 3,741 posts

Posted 11 November 2008 - 03:07 PM

I still want to come home and be able to turn on the tv, use the microwave,...


thats why this wont become a reality for a good while.


ppl are too concerned about what they "want", rather than what EVERYbody needs.

T.v.'s n microwaves? jeez man...

and its not too hard to create your own electricity for things needed.

and plumbing isnt that hard to accomplish either if ppl worked together.

#13 Cornfield

Cornfield

    VIP Member

  • Expired Member
  • 694 posts

Posted 11 November 2008 - 04:45 PM

i see no reason that i would need to ditch my TV, my computer, my microwave etc to live in one of these homes. I agree with you on producing our own electricity. all i was trying to state is theirs no reason to give up the commodities we have now to live more efficiently and cheap.

very few people would want to live in a hut made out of dirt and straw bales. People arent going to give up the commodities we have now unless we absolutely HAVE to.

most "mainstream" people look at the kind of people pushing this as crazy, tree huggers, dirty hippies etc. Once that mindset changes and the mainstream folk realize the potential then this may become something

#14 mushmind

mushmind

    campus radical

  • Expired Member
  • 1,142 posts

Posted 18 November 2008 - 03:46 PM

i think that someday, maybe soon i will be out there using my skills to build homes like these. getting off the grid is the way of the sustainable future. birth control would help too.

#15 Guest_mystic_*

Guest_mystic_*
  • Guest

Posted 18 November 2008 - 03:57 PM

Great link for you all. http://www.greatdreams.com/commune.htm

#16 Guest_Discobiscuit_*

Guest_Discobiscuit_*
  • Guest

Posted 25 November 2008 - 12:24 AM

If you build one they will just throw you out for not having permits that you can't get in most states and make a mighty attempt to bulldoze your dwelling.. these things cost a fortune to rig and run(solar panels) even if you do it yourself and even if you do somehow manage to get in one you best make sure it can't be seen from the air. they want you to live in shitty little pine houses they want you to take out loan after loan after loan. they want you as a number in the system and if you try to break free you will be broken.

*edit*
also they are using grey water to grow the food. this is a bad bad idea....grey water is great..eating or drinking grey water? not so great....

#17 datsun

datsun

    Vroom

  • OG VIP
  • 461 posts

Posted 10 February 2009 - 06:59 AM

If you build one they will just throw you out for not having permits that you can't get in most states and make a mighty attempt to bulldoze your dwelling.. these things cost a fortune to rig and run(solar panels) even if you do it yourself and even if you do somehow manage to get in one you best make sure it can't be seen from the air. they want you to live in shitty little pine houses they want you to take out loan after loan after loan. they want you as a number in the system and if you try to break free you will be broken.

*edit*
also they are using grey water to grow the food. this is a bad bad idea....grey water is great..eating or drinking grey water? not so great....


Grey water can be safe if done right, from what I understand It is NOT safe if the water actually touches the plants you want to eat, but if it is done in say a mulch bed or to planters where the dirt/soil filters it and the roots pick up the nutrients they need It is perfectly healthy.

They may describe a simple version here better than I can.
http://www.cityfarme...ter-california/

I am a fan of earthships, in the fact that they allow you do be more independant of utility companies ect! I would love to not have a power bill. I am a fan of solar panels and windmills as well for the same reason. I love my lights, my computer, my phone and My microwave and I dont think there is a chance in hell my wife would live without any of those for very long.

While not for everyone, these houses, ore straw bale houses, or any number of other designs are appealing to more and more "normal" people.

Conservation of water, reuse of water, is a no brainer to me. Water my fruit trees out front from with water I washed my hands in? washed my dishes in? Why not. Catch the rainwater off my roof, to flush my toilet? Sure.

Water from the sky.
Electricity from the sky.
Warmth and food from the sun/greenhouse.

I dont see it getting alot better than that.

I work (like most people) I rent (like most people) and its a vicious cycle.
I never seem to have the money I would like to, to buy my lil patch of heaven.

If I can find a way to buy some land and build a strawbale/earth/ship/dome/whatever with wind or solar power, I will sure give it a try.

It just seems to make sense to me.

-Datsun

#18 TVCasualty

TVCasualty

    Embrace Your Damage

  • Moderator
  • 14,651 posts

Awards Bar:

Posted 10 February 2009 - 07:57 AM

I've had my hands on every alternative building tech to come out in the past 15 years, including rammed-earth tires. I helped work on the first strawbale house built in the US in over 100 years in Tucson, AZ back in 1993 which started the modern revival. Houses built of plastered bales in Nebraska that were 150 years old and still being comfortably lived in inspired a few people to bring the idea back to the desert.

Anyhow, I would probably like living in an 'Earthship,' but I would not build one.

Catdaddy made one hell of an understatement about the labor involved in rammed-earth tire construction. Two or three wheelbarrows full of dirt need to be pounded into each tire with a sledgehammer. Each tire. My gf could only fill 4 or 5 a day once she got the hang of it (no kidding). We only built one wall that way, and really it was a footer (4 courses high) for strawbale walls (thank GOD!). It was an experiment of combining two alt. building technologies for a hybrid structure (worked great). Of course, an Earthship may well last hundreds of years, but building one yourself will shave some years off how long you last!

If built right, plastered strawbale, cob, cordwood, tires and a few other more-sustainable buildings are really really comfortable places to live in. My gf and I built a strawbale house off grid but on propane, made an outdoor composting toilet (a deck with a hole in it above a compost pile) and lived in a state of semi-camping for years. We even built a Trombe wall) into the house. She's still there, adding on the the place and I visit often. It's incredibly comfortable, and the lack of electricity makes the silence at night absolute. I never slept better anywhere else, and my mind quieted down for the first time ever.

Solar electric is still about an average of $9 per watt installed, so we just swapped deep cycle batteries between the car and the temporary shelter we lived in while building the house. It was rough building a house while living out of a tent, but I learned a lot about myself, such as the limit of what I can handle before going insane. I also learned that it's a horrible idea to build a load-bearing strawbale house in the Southeast; it rains at the worst times and your walls are screwed if they get soaked, so build post-and-beam style in wetter climates, trust me!

I'd still rather rebuild my straw walls twice than build a tire wall once, though.

If you have an urban or suburban background and you strike out into the country to make your off-grid dream real, you'll hit your limit of sanity, too (whoever you are). If you hang on until the craziness relaxes, you'll be a totally different person than the one who left the city (it was like a 5-year long Vision Quest in my case). I value my experience and the lessons learned, but it was a challenge I was just barely able to meet. I suggest trying it out for a month or two before committing 100% to moving out there permanently (find an alt. build community and hang there for a while; many encourage visitors and love to teach the public about this stuff).

#19 datsun

datsun

    Vroom

  • OG VIP
  • 461 posts

Posted 10 February 2009 - 08:30 AM

TVCasualty:

Thank you for your real life experiences. Tire pounding does look like a huge amount of work, and the trombe wall looks like an interesting idea.

-Datsun

#20 catdaddy

catdaddy

    herding kittens

  • Expired Member
  • 2,321 posts

Posted 10 February 2009 - 08:31 AM

Great post, TV-

I too have been involved in alternative housing for a couple of decades- I live in the FIRST passive solar home built in West TN, all of TN, probably.

Earthships will break you- physically, especially if you are no longer young and strong.

Straw is FAST, wonderful to work with, and infinitely alterable.

I have also worked with rammed earth brick- but in the deserts of Arizona. The polymer sealant/coating made them waterproof, but a shower before the work is complete would be a disaster, far worse than wet bales...

The machine to make the brick was a mechanical masterpiece!

Another thing I like to work with is interior work (furniture, walls, etc) from soda cans and mortar.

I'm actually looking for about 20 acres in the WAAAAAYback sticks for my next home, a two-story strawbale of my own design.

All modern conveniences, but livable off the grid as well.

A trick I like- spraycrete. It can be tinted- permanent paint job...

This is a great topic. Lots to learn, and a great way to live.

Incidentally, my 2500 sq ft solar home costs me 2/3 of what it cost to heat my 1600 sq ft brick home, and it's all electric.

Catdaddy




Like Mycotopia? Become a member today!