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Barn Project
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K
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26 Jun ’12 - 1:12 pm
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I was thinking that j, but not sure how well and stable that would be the higher I go up, I'll have to check the local rental places and see how small of a one they have

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jfmx345
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26 Jun ’12 - 3:36 pm
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Yeah, definitely worth it, especially for the lower courses. You can get smaller/lighter ones too that would be ok for the higher courses. It would be at least as stable as you way up there swinging a 20lb tamper!

And waaaay faster. You could do that whole footprint in 30min max.

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27 Jun ’12 - 8:02 am
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good point J. I hope I can find a small one

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K
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27 Jun ’12 - 8:05 am
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so it's been raining since sunday, and I made a pool

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Unfortunately, clay soil and heavy rain don't mix so well, I had forgot to tarp the soil when we finished up, so now I got to wait for the pile to dry out some before I will be able to compact it at all

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the stuff I did on sunday was harder than heck though, so that made me happy

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1 Jul ’12 - 9:45 am
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so the rain finally let up on thursday, and we decided to get back to work, I pulled off the tarp and went around and checked to see how the bags had set and I wasn't happy the way this corner came out

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I tried tamping them again, but that just made it worse, lesson learned, if not happy with the layout, fix it then, so I pulled the corner up

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I had tarped the soil after the hard rain on monday and was concerned that it was to wet, it was much damper but I figured I could work with it, so I filled some bags

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I started tamping and the first thing I noticed was how much easier it compacted with the wetter soil, the second thing I noticed was the bag was bleeding water. The bags were still a little spongy and had not set as hard as the other day

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I thought to myself, that's not good. So I went and grabbed my book and did some reading, I had read the book a couple of years ago and had been just skimming through it since I started it. I came across this.

" we can take the same soil sample as above with lower moisture content and pound the pudding out of it , or we can increase the moisture content," jiggle tamp" it, and still get a strong block. What this means to us is less pounding(FQSS!). Tamping is hard work, and although we still have to tamp a moister mix to send good vibes through the earth, it is far less strenuous to jiggle-tamp a bag than to pound it into submission.... Weeper bag or bladder bag are dirtbag terms we use when the soil i what we used to consider to moist, and excess moisture would weep through the woven strands of fabric when tamped. The extra moisture in the soil would resist compaction. Instead of pounding the bag down hard and flat, the tamper kind of bounced rather than smacked. The weeper bag would dry exceedingly hard, although thicker than it's drier rammed earth neighbor, as if it hadn't been compacted as much....If you have a big crew capable of constructing several feet of wall height in a day, a drier mix will be desirable...with a smaller crew completing two or so rows of bg work a day, a moister mix will make their job of tamping easier.." pages 18-19

wish I had read that earlier

so with my new found knowledge we started laying out barbed wire which acts as a velcro tying the two layers of earthbags together, giving it lateral strength as well

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we proceeded to start filling and stacking

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they suggest using some wood stickers to set the bags on and slide them into position, but with the wall still low they were easy to place

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when we got to the pillaster we staggered the joint

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and set in a end bag

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and continued around

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compacting went much easier

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We proceeded to knock out the other side

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the pile is getting smaller

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so here is the plan as it sits, since I have to let the courses set for a couple of ays for the moister soil to firm up, my goal is to do course on sunday, tuesday and thursday weather permitting. As long as it isn't downpouring I should be all set. Today I want to knock out the third course. My wife flew home for a few weeks so I'm going solo on this, we shall see how it goes.

I figured I would keep a tally of costs on here as well.

As of right now

600 cement

120 rebar and 5x5 wire

500 pump truck

220 bags ( this will be cheaper, I think I will end up using 700 bags)

63 for soil ( I think I will need another 12-14 yards so this will go up, but the clay soil is only 7 dollars a yard)

to be continued

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gusto
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1 Jul ’12 - 9:28 pm
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you were probably cursing that rain, but it seems like it worked out for the best

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2 Jul ’12 - 11:37 am
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lol, it did

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6 Jul ’12 - 9:34 am
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So with the holiday week and trying to keep my daughter occupied as well as rain I wasn't able to get back to the barn till late yesterday afternoon, this is going slower than I thought

I laid out the barbed wire on the course, this was a little more of a pain with one person doing it

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I still haven't decided how I want to cover the bags when I am all done, they say a earthen plaster will adhere right to the bags, but if you use any type of cement stucco you need to attach chicken wire, so I went and picked up some galvanized wire

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and proceeded to cut off sections and tied them onto the barbed wire

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all wired up, I'm not sure if I'm a fan of the galvanized wire, it might be to flimsy for my needs, I might have to rethink this

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and I started stuffing and stacking bags, it actually went a little faster than with my wife helping me, I think we get to distracted talking

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and proceeded to go around and tamp it, I am actually surprised how stable the walls are, we shall see how it goes as I get higher

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this is one thing I noticed as I was cleaning up, I remember reading about it in the book, see how the bag ends are more vertical on the top and bottom course and more a diagonal on the middle course. That's called a slider and they say it is less stable that way. I forget what causes that, I will have to read up on that so it doesn't happen again

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