Update on progress

I had always intended to take a couple of weeks off from the build to spend some time with family and will get back to the site and restart building on Jan 9.  Heat is now an issue as well, I’ve set a tools down limit of 35C onsite to keep myself and volunteers safe from heat stroke and exhaustion.

It’s still going up, at least I can say that. We copped a 46mm downpour late in December that wiped out any chance of working safely on site until after Xmas. Imagine a skating rink made out of clay and you’ll have an accurate idea of what the area around the slab was like to walk on.

The first window is about to be started in the western wall which will bring with it some set out issues with positioning the end plates where they need to be to form the opening. We’re also getting close to starting on the
“skinny” sections which will effectively double the blocks we can set and pour before needing to strip the formwork down and reset it.

That brings with it one more issue that I think I have sorted. Since the wood frame for the wet areas is NOT load bearing as it would be in a conventional house we are building the earth wall then fixing the frames in place. To satisfy the BCA and our engineering I still need to fix the frames to the wall using wall ties, however there is no easy or accurate way to fix these small wire ties where they are needed. I am instead going to fix threaded rod into the wall using a steel matrix made out of strap steel to accurately determine the position. Once the walls are up we’ll then build the frames to these positions and use a galv angle bracket and a couple of M10 nuts to fix the frames to the walls.

I am not sure this is even necessary since the external wall is loadbearing and the ties in a conventional build simply stop your brick wall from falling over. However, since they are specified in the detail drawings and engineering we have to have them in place.

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