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Skulduggery
GOLD Member since Aug 2004

Skulduggery

Pirate Pixie Crew Captain
Location: Wales

Total posts: 8428
Posted:Whilst looking for ideas for artworks made from recycled materials I found THIS.



What a great idea!



Whatelse could we recycle to build houses with?



This is the home page of earthship


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MiG
GOLD Member since Apr 2004

MiG

Self-Flagellation Expert
Location: Bogged at CG

Total posts: 3415
Posted:I've recently seen pontoon pylons built exclusively of old soft drink bottles (PET plastic).

Only problem i can see regarding self sustainability is the climate of the area. How well do solar panels work if 80% of your days are sunless? How much rain can you store if 90% of your days involve no rain?


"beg beg grovel beg grovel"
"master"
--FSA

"There was an arse there, i couldn't help myself"
--Rougie

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NOn


activist for HoPper liberation.
Location: ffidrac

Total posts: 1643
Posted:beer cans maybe? biggrin

Aurinko freedom agreement reached 10th Sept 2006

if it makes no sense that's because it's NOn-sense.

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NOn


activist for HoPper liberation.
Location: ffidrac

Total posts: 1643
Posted:Written by: MiG

Only problem i can see regarding self sustainability is the climate of the area. How well do solar panels work if 80% of your days are sunless? How much rain can you store if 90% of your days involve no rain?



which is exactly the reason why one of the key aspects to consider with sustainable architecture is geographical location and context. Possibly more so than in any other field of design, because a building is solid and (in the most cases) permament in it's environment. Firstly there are the aspects that you have already stated, and so applying the same combinations of energy generating devices in every place is simply not going to work. Particular systems can be designed into the building itself though that cut down on the usage of energy in the building and enable solar panels, or a wind turbine to actually achieve it's potential even in a not very sunny location... Positioning would affect it's efficiency, so perhaps redesigning a roof so that a solar panel gets as much sunlight as possible... also it is possible to design air circulation and insulation systems, which cut down on the energy that might be necessary for heating or cooling down a house. Positioning of windows affects the light in the house, clever thinking with regard to that, could also cut down on the energy being used in the house..... that's a bit vague, but there are plenty of examples of how energy self-sufficiency in a building is entirely possible in a wide range of climates....

uh.... oh yeah, the other thing i was going to say, re: context... a very useful reference point for building would be local vernacular architecture. Generally speaking architecture evolves slowly out of the materials that are available to the local area and it built to withstand the climate... which is why you will find that in a particularly hot climate like the middle east and parts of northern africa, the "vernacular" or local architecture, tends to be based around mud buildings with flat roofs, that both make use of the available materials and maximise the comfort inside the building by keeping the interior cool... Plonking in a shiny glass greenhouse, is probably not the most energetically efficient or sustainable solution..... I think that checking out the local vernacular styles that have evolved through centuries of people living in that particular local climate, undoubtedly should be one of the primary sources of reference, for any new sustainable build in a particular context.

i just realised this is the chat section, so i will stop round about there before i get too carried away. For more information on vernacular architecture, contectuality and sustainability, please refer to Mr. Victor Papenek's book, "The Green Imperative" (1995) Thames and Hudson. If you be wanting more then try, Mr. James Wines' book, "Green Architecture" (2000) published by Taschen... If you want to talk about fractals, complexity theory, deep ecology and how all that could possibly relate to eco-sustainable architecture, then PM me, because that's what i wrote my dissertation on, and i could jabber on for hours... smile


Aurinko freedom agreement reached 10th Sept 2006

if it makes no sense that's because it's NOn-sense.

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alien_oddity


alien_oddity

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: in the trees

Total posts: 7193
Posted:ultimatly i would love to work for the forestry commision and have a nice little house tucked away in the middle of no where.







ok so i would throw partys in the woodland clearings every now and then, but if i'm that secluded who's getting hurt?


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Skulduggery
GOLD Member since Aug 2004

Skulduggery

Pirate Pixie Crew Captain
Location: Wales

Total posts: 8428
Posted:I was about to say "way to be negative Mig" but I think NOn has already said all I wanted to and more very well. Thank you NOn!



Rave hun you might like to look at THIS web page.


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Gayle......!
SILVER Member since Jul 2004

Pooh-Bah
Location: Bristol !!!!!!

Total posts: 2444
Posted:I think they're great and i would love to have one soley on uniqueness alone.

Great find Skully! Just got to work out a way of getting Neal to buy me one!


Gayle.....!

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Mr_Chutney
SILVER Member since Apr 2003

Mr_Chutney

Tosser
Location: Herefordshire

Total posts: 1711
Posted:Whilst recycling product to make houses, why not make some furniture too biggrin


Non-Https Image Link


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Gayle......!
SILVER Member since Jul 2004

Pooh-Bah
Location: Bristol !!!!!!

Total posts: 2444
Posted:Maybe a new calling for Bov?

Gayle.....!

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Mr_Chutney
SILVER Member since Apr 2003

Mr_Chutney

Tosser
Location: Herefordshire

Total posts: 1711
Posted:Yeah probably- I amde that with a mate of min after rattling through something like 4 boxes of beer over a weeked (24 bottles a box). The hangover time, plus the opportunity to sit about (ahem Student) led to that. It couldn't be sat on, and sadly it was later destroyed by a drunken stumbler.

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Nephtys


Nephtys

resident fridge magnet
Location: Utrecht, The Netherlands

Total posts: 835
Posted:Their advertising video claims the houses can be built in any environment "from hot and dry to cold and wet, and anything in between".

I want one!


everyone's unique except me

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Skulduggery
GOLD Member since Aug 2004

Skulduggery

Pirate Pixie Crew Captain
Location: Wales

Total posts: 8428
Posted:After talking to Gayle, I think we need to buy a big bit of land and build a small village of these houses and call it HoP Town biggrin

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alien_oddity


alien_oddity

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: in the trees

Total posts: 7193
Posted:hug thanks for the link scully biggrin

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misscorinthian
SILVER Member since Sep 2005

misscorinthian

old hand
Location: Bristol

Total posts: 784
Posted:Are you kidding Skully?? Me and my husband have been looking into "opt out" communities for years- it seems houses in most are (even) more expensive than the norm though, which completely rules us out frown

XLenX

Devoted although mostly absent owner of the 1, the original... Asena

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KatP
SILVER Member since Jan 2005

KatP

Muddy fingernails
Location: Way oop norf

Total posts: 505
Posted:intersting!

Solar panels actually work better in 'cold' daylight than direct sun. Direct sun causes them to overheat and, as they contain semiconductrs, they don't like getting hot!

My parents neighbour (in Fife - failry chilly) has 3 solar panels and they provide all her hot water, and some of her heating, even in winter.


Your mother was a hamster and your father smelt of elderberries!

KITTENS!!!!

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TheBovrilMonkey
SILVER Member since Sep 2001

TheBovrilMonkey

Liquid Cow
Location: High Wycombe, England

Total posts: 2629
Posted:Written by: Gayle......!

Maybe a new calling for Bov?



I'll look into it, but it'll take a lot to pull me away from the duck tape wink

Written by: Skully

After talking to Gayle, I think we need to buy a big bit of land and build a small village of these houses and call it HoP Town biggrin



I think you're right, that'd be fantastic biggrin


But there's no sense crying over every mistake. You just keep on trying till you run out of cake.

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bluecat


bluecat

geek, level 1
Location: everywhere

Total posts: 5300
Posted:www.cat.org.uk is the site for the centre for alternative technology. its a bit slow loading at the mo for some reason... but they sell books on something like 10 different ways to build houses, including

http://www.txses.org/epsea/straw.html
which i like lots....


Holistic Spinner (I hope)

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Loki_the_trickster
SILVER Member since Feb 2006

Loki_the_trickster

Has sharp edges
Location: Stuck in the mire

Total posts: 1266
Posted:Written by: KatP

Solar panels actually work better in 'cold' daylight than direct sun. Direct sun causes them to overheat and, as they contain semiconductrs, they don't like getting hot!

My parents neighbour (in Fife - failry chilly) has 3 solar panels and they provide all her hot water, and some of her heating, even in winter.


very true.........a good friend of mine lives in a burm home (for those of you who dont know what a burm home is its entirely underground, built in the side of a hill, exept the south facing wall is exposed) its 100% off the grid. Solar panels, lots of skylights and windows on the exposed wall. This is in the state of Maine in the USA.....very long, cold winters up there, where it is is close to Canada. Anyway he gets the best charges on cloudy or overcast days and theres alot of them up there wink its very rare that his charge in his batterys goes below 90% so I dont think solar capabilities would be a problem in any region exept if you lived at the north or south poles where they have 6 month days and nights.


My ADD makes it so that.....Ooooo SHINY.....wanna go ride bikes....wait....where am I.....

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TheBovrilMonkey
SILVER Member since Sep 2001

TheBovrilMonkey

Liquid Cow
Location: High Wycombe, England

Total posts: 2629
Posted:Written by: bluecat

http://www.txses.org/epsea/straw.html
which i like lots....



I've been wanting to build a house from straw for years now, ever since I saw a programme on tv about them.

I may even manage to do it one of these days, although for now, that link's going to be my reading material for the next few days - cheers smile


But there's no sense crying over every mistake. You just keep on trying till you run out of cake.

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Skulduggery
GOLD Member since Aug 2004

Skulduggery

Pirate Pixie Crew Captain
Location: Wales

Total posts: 8428
Posted:Bluekitty you might like to have a look HERE and HERE.

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misscorinthian
SILVER Member since Sep 2005

misscorinthian

old hand
Location: Bristol

Total posts: 784
Posted:Btw- I was serious when I asked if you were serious....about the community. Oh, and incidentally my husband is a carpenter itching to do a self build (for us and/or other people)... particularly interested in straw bale in fact. I love all this stuff, grey water collection systems, reed bed sewage treatment, passive solar designs, sedum roof mats....the list goes ooon and on..I'm in heaven smile

XLenX

Devoted although mostly absent owner of the 1, the original... Asena

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NOn


activist for HoPper liberation.
Location: ffidrac

Total posts: 1643
Posted:Written by: bluecat

www.cat.org.uk is the site for the centre for alternative technology. its a bit slow loading at the mo for some reason... but they sell books on something like 10 different ways to build houses, including

http://www.txses.org/epsea/straw.html
which i like lots....



CAT's great, if you have a group of about 15 people, you can stay in one of their eco-cabins for a week, we went with my uni course. basically have to monitor all your water and power usage. when we were there the majority of their power was coming from hydroelectric, which means you have to trudge up a hill every day and top it up... although i think it's only set up that way to encourage the learning process, i'm pretty sure that it rains enough in machynlleth to provide continuous power. It has also has a meter in the cabin that tells you precisely how much energy inflow and outflow there is, and from where... they got a fantabulous reed bed system for all your poo as well... and indeed a strawbale house, i think they even do courses in it...
more strawbales: there have been a couple of Grand Designs that have used strawbales as well... one of them is splat bang in the centre of london somewhere, i actually saw the back of this building from a train (somewhere near kings cross i think) but that was quite an interesting one because it's a very modern building, but the entire back section was insulated with strawbales...

mr chutney, i like your chair, i'm intrigued to know whether it was possible to actually sit on it though, given that it appears to be held together with electrical tape wink


Aurinko freedom agreement reached 10th Sept 2006

if it makes no sense that's because it's NOn-sense.

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NOn


activist for HoPper liberation.
Location: ffidrac

Total posts: 1643
Posted:Written by: me

more strawbales: there have been a couple of Grand Designs that have used strawbales as well... one of them is splat bang in the centre of london somewhere, i actually saw the back of this building from a train (somewhere near kings cross i think) but that was quite an interesting one because it's a very modern building, but the entire back section was insulated with strawbales...



Islington it was...

and how's about this one as an idea for your HoP community?

these are all under the previous house sections of the grand designs website, they're not all eco by any means, but there are a few other that were built with wood frames, different energy saving methods... there was an underground one, plus the site gives you all the budget information for every build and links to suppliers, so if anyone wants to have a go....? smile

hmmm.... this is quite a nice reference site for alternative building methods, and seems to have various links to other sources on renewable energy... i found it because i was looking for a link to cob building, which is actually a quite traditional method of building (... yeah yeah vernacular architecture, it's all further up the thread...) using a mixture of mud, clay and straw. Take a bit longer than strawbale, but comes out pretty sturdy... the example they've got is a 500 year old house in wales... there's also another technique called rammed earth, which i don't know a great deal about, and it's not on this link, but you can probably gather how that works from the name...

... hmm... 'k i'll let someone else post now ubbangel


Aurinko freedom agreement reached 10th Sept 2006

if it makes no sense that's because it's NOn-sense.

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misscorinthian
SILVER Member since Sep 2005

misscorinthian

old hand
Location: Bristol

Total posts: 784
Posted:As far as I understand it cob is quite complicated and not that easy, and it would take a very long time to construct an entire building. If you can get it right though it looks amazing- not bad for a load of dirt.

I saw an article in a building magazine where someone had built a cob house and then a matching pizza oven. The oven was an outdoor thing which stood about 7 foot tall and looked like a giant chimnea (y'know those pots people light fires in) an ideal project to start with if anyone wants to experiment with the stuff.

The above link for a community housing project is a good way to go- but getting funding is a lengthy and difficult process. The last potential project we were involved in had been trying to get funding for 3 or 4 years with no luck. In the end the people trying to organise it gave up, so that was the end of that one.....NOn, beware if you ever meet my husband, you may be talking to him for a loooong time


XLenX

Devoted although mostly absent owner of the 1, the original... Asena

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Skulduggery
GOLD Member since Aug 2004

Skulduggery

Pirate Pixie Crew Captain
Location: Wales

Total posts: 8428
Posted:Misscorinthian I was semi-serious. I'd love to do it. I just didn't think there would be that many willing to join me in my dream.

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misscorinthian
SILVER Member since Sep 2005

misscorinthian

old hand
Location: Bristol

Total posts: 784
Posted:You never know...keep mentioning it!

I was thinking about this thread yesterday, and was wondering why people are still using the "conventional" methods of building over the "green" methods so much. We actually run our own business Eco-Logic Building Ltd (shameless plug)- the name suggests the nature of the company. Unfortunately we are still very small, and have to take on work as subcontractors so we don't run the jobs ourselves. This means we have our hands tied as to which materials and methods are used- 99.9 percent of the time they will be mass produced/non renewable/non recyclable crap which usually damage the environment in their production. All we can do is make suggestions to the project managers, and we are usually met with the "oh no, the client isn't into that sort of thing" or a similar response. To be fair, we are often on site after the major decisions have been made, but even alternatives on smaller issues are met the same way. It goes against the grain for me and what our company represents, but it's work and we can't turn it down.

I don't get it though- quite often the "green" alternatives are cheaper, and the materials easier to handle with the added bonus of less impact on the environment....what is putting these people off? Is it ignorance? Is it change? Is it a negative view of the words "green" and "environmentally friendly"? Unfortunately quite a few builders we know would fall into this last category- the moment you even mention recycling site waste you are branded odd, or a hippy, tree-hugger or whatever.

Sorry, quite long and a bit off topic- as you can see this is something close to my heart....I have done so much research and have so much information in my head and as yet have had no opertunity to put it to use! Frustrated!!


XLenX

Devoted although mostly absent owner of the 1, the original... Asena

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NOn


activist for HoPper liberation.
Location: ffidrac

Total posts: 1643
Posted: Written by: misscorinthian


I saw an article in a building magazine where someone had built a cob house and then a matching pizza oven.




ubblol what a fantastic house accessory! and what a sales pitch for estate agents.... "so that's the house, in a fine location as you can see and here... is the matching pizza oven!" brilliant! if we run away and make a HoP community, can we have a matching pizza oven too?? hehehaaaa....*sigh*

fantabulous to hear about your eco-building business miss corinthian! is it design, advising or actual building? or a bit of everything? I'm surprised there aren't more people who do want to build more environmental friendly, maybe you can start some scheme similar to CAT, where they offer professional advice to companies etc, about eco-friendly alternatives, they don't go and build them, i think they write like a report or something, evaluating your options, and get to charge quite a lot of money for it.... maybe it would take some time, and maybe they don't decide to go for it, but at least you can train them.... but like i say can't remember the exact details of it, have a look on the CAT website link that bluecat posted earlier on in the thread. Or even produce a series of booklets of similar... like reports that you can offer to people, give them all the comparative information between the eco-build and conventional build, including costs etc, (not forgetting to include costs potentially saved through better insulation from the materials or something....) You could also offer this to housing companies?? ... just a suggestion, not necessarily a good one, but could help promote both the materials and your company...

I think it's a shame also that so many builds still use conventional materials, but i think people associate the materials, with a certain kind of aesthetic that they don't necessarily want. That's why i quite liked the idea of that islington build that i posted the link too, they managed to make a quite modern looking building, even though they used also the strawbales... maybe if people were more aware of how versatile eco-friendly materials can also be, they would use them more. Trouble is, you can do pretty much anything with concrete, and do it cheaply... it'll take some persuading.

It'd be nice to see some more housing and design projects in the UK that use recycled bits of building also. I think there may be one.... an artist studios? if not it's in the netherlands, but it's made up of old shipping containers.... let me see if i can find a link....


Aurinko freedom agreement reached 10th Sept 2006

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NOn


activist for HoPper liberation.
Location: ffidrac

Total posts: 1643
Posted:hmmm... well the one i was thinking of is in the UK, somewhere, and it's website is www.theshipyard.org however i don't seem to be getting anything up....

i found cargotecture though, which is similar. (n.b. 'tis a flash site.) the shipyard one is a HUGE structure though, many layers of cargo containers in that one.

and this is quite a nice website i just found whilst looking for that... lots of exciting eco-friendly and recycled design. you have to scroll down quite a long way, but down there is also a house made of scrap! WAY down the bottom is also a stuffed animal chair made by the campana brothers, and i'd like to say that someone on my course made things from stuffed animals too! eek cruel and twisted if you ask me.... ubblol


Aurinko freedom agreement reached 10th Sept 2006

if it makes no sense that's because it's NOn-sense.

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Loki_the_trickster
SILVER Member since Feb 2006

Loki_the_trickster

Has sharp edges
Location: Stuck in the mire

Total posts: 1266
Posted: Written by: Skulduggery


Misscorinthian I was semi-serious. I'd love to do it. I just didn't think there would be that many willing to join me in my dream.


You'd be surprised how many of us are out there that dream of doing such a thing.......I've been dreaming of doing just that for years but in the USA.....but hey if I have to cross the pond to do it ubblol then so be it wink


My ADD makes it so that.....Ooooo SHINY.....wanna go ride bikes....wait....where am I.....

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