Foundations and Framing
The foundation is one of the most critical parts of any building. The best foundation for an Earth Block building is made of steel reinforced concrete. Earth Blocks, or adobes, should almost NEVER be used as part of a foundation, as earthen blocks are susceptible to severe damage in the face of long-term moisture exposure.
Foundations typically consist of two major components – footings and stem walls. Both the footing and the stem wall should be reinforced with rebar.
Flooring options depend upon the climate, region, material availability and client preference. Although not all flooring systems have structural ramifications, some do provide lateral support at the floor or ground level. Floors may be of wood, earth, concrete, or other material. When pouring a concrete slab for a floor, care should be taken to thicken the slab wherever an interior earthen wall will be located.
With a footing/foundation in place, walls can literally go up in one day with no delays for cement mortar to dry or settlement time issues.
Earth Blocks are structural blocks, not filler blocks, and are used for floors, walls, cisterns and other structural components. Their design flexibility allows for any building style, from traditional to contemporary, multi-angled or rounded walls, freestanding keystone arches… the design of a building is limited only by the imagination.
Door and window “bucks” are simply wooden boxes made from two-by-fours or two-by-sixes. These are set in the wall during block stacking both to delineate the space for the door or window and to provide attachment.