Cordwood Construction

Published: 15th June 2011
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Cordwood (also referred to as "stackwood" or "stovewood") masonry construction consists of using comparable slices of raw wood and piling them to craft some sort of wall partition held together with masonry. It is honestly that hassle-free, but there are a lot of variations.

The name "cordwood" arises from the raw material: identical bits of fire wood just like the form you would find in a pile of firewood, which, of course, gets measured in "cords" and thus dubbed "cordwood". The practice is also referred to as "stackwall" construction or "stovewood" construction for this reason.

The sections of solid wood are arranged just like you'd probably stack up a stack of stovewood, however with each row you set down 2 rows of mud along the outside edges of the stack. The mortar is roughly 4" across. If you make use of 2' long portions of raw wood you find yourself with a area between the mortar, inside of the wall structure space, of about 16 inches. You must fill this area with some sort of isolation. You could use fibreglass, rockwool, sawdust or nearly anything at all that can control air flow and heat loss. If you're relocating off the grid and seeking to reduce your affect you can get creative.

If you're constructing in a far off area with little muscle donít forget: getting a 10" thick 15' log can be very challenging. Planks, pulleys and ropes along with extra arms might facilitate accomplishing it, but if you have only got one or two people just imagine how much more straightforward it is to build the same 15' long wall with 16 inches pieces.

Before you get started building you must obtain materials. You are going to require a resource of raw wood rounds, some form of mortaring raw materials (cement, lime, sand, sawdust and paper can be used, but other raw materials will work as well). If it is possible, treat yourself right and find a cement mixer. You'll also need to have some wood to make frames for the windows and doors, and you will need some style of configuration for the roofing. Assuming you can have whatever windows and doors you're going to employ before you start, all the better, due to the fact you should be able to frame the rough holes right.

The timber should be seasoned, and be de-barked. Try to remember that preparing the raw wood to best possible condition can potentially be a three year job. Also do not forget that you can erect with green wood if down-to-earth shelter is your aim (you can craft the stovewood chateau as soon as you're set up)

The same as all construction, you must to begin with the foundation. The kind of foundation will depend on where you're building. Something that's going to get inspected and needs to meet code will almost certainly require some concrete work, even if only sono-tube piers. A more distant region will permit you with more freedom. In fact, in a very far off spot it would be feasible to dig a shallow trench along the perimeter of the building and fill it with rocks a few inches higher than grade level, and then start building the wall space on top (the key in this form of environment is to get past vegetative soil and into mineral soil - sand, gravel or hardpan - which won't deteriorate and move after you've built on it. A rock filled trench will not transfer moisture above the water line.

You could also make right on rock, if a substantial enough spot is available, or assemble a formwork of timbers or logs on top of big stones. Focus on drainage, and remember that you can create a level interior floor afterwards, whether of firewood or fill.

As soon as you have got your base you may begin putting together the wall areas. Walls go from corner to corner, a corner to the union with another wall structure, or in between two unions. Intersections and corners present structural opportunities. If perhaps you have fashioned a frame of large pieces of wood your structure should be firm before you get started filling up the area in between. If you aren't using a timber framework you'll need to determine how to bond corners and wall structure intersections together. It is possible to produce interlocking corners, as in a log cabin, with lengths of firewood long enough to be structural but small enough for one person to handle and place.

The wall areas can be made only of stovewood rounds, of split stackwood rounds or a merger] of both of them. The layout of the pieces might be indiscriminate or contrived, so as to achieve a snug fit and pleasant style and design.

Doors and windows are constructed by positioning a casing on the wall area at the lowest level of the opening, and then stacking and mortaring the wood to the side and then over of the formwork. The framework will be temporary, and taken away when the wall structure has set up, or it can be permanent.

The density of the wall areas is based on on local weather. In warmer parts of the world less dense wall panels are satisfactory, but the further you go north the bigger you would be smart to build the walls. In certain parts of Canada a 2 wall structure system (one exterior and one interioroutside and the other inside) are from time to time put to use.

The sort of roofing system relies on personal taste, where you live, the environment and the design. If the snowload is high it is smart to utilize a steeper rooftop; if rainwater collection is your plan then special raw materials will be necessary, and a big roofing system will need to have a solid composition to keep it from falling in. One usual element, however, is significant roof eaves. The less the weather reaches the wall areas, the wiser. Make sure you have a minimum of sixteen inches.

Roofing components can be virtually all sorts of things. You will find galvanized metal roofed stovewood homes, as well as dirt roofed models. Once again, creative imagination, durability, basic safety and a small footprint are the desired goals. There are numerous methods out there.

Stackwood home solutions have been around at least 1,000 years, and likely even longer. They are especially cost-effective to build, and can easily be put together by just one builder if need be. As such, they are a great solution for people heading off grid.

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