Rethink Your Life!
Finance, health, lifestyle, environment, philosophy
The Work of Art and The Art of Work
Kiko Denzer on Art
Cob: post for PatrickJeanne Leimkuhler jleimkuh at fine.interart.com
Mon Aug 21 07:59:15 PDT 2000
Hello Jeanne; I have been using a mortar mixer for the past couple of years with great success. My recipe closely follows yours. I put in all the water, clay and half the sand. The wetness of the mixture and the grittiness of the sand help to break up the clay. When the mix is nice and smooth I add the straw. Short straw does seem to work better, but you can compensate this by adding as much as you want. I then add the rest of the sand to get the desired consistency. Dump this straight into a wheel barrow and deliver it to the wall. It is great to have 3 or 4 barrows handy. Another thing that saves your body is to spend the time to build a scaffolding system that can be adjusted in 1 foot levels. This means you are always putting the cob on the wall at a comfortable height. Have the scaffold wide enough so that you can ramp the wheelbarrow right to the spot where you are working. This saves bending over to pick up the cob. You can then fork the cob directly on to the wall. It is fast, efficient and doesn't wear you out. Can you post this on the cob list for me., I have not figured out how yet. Patrick on Mayne ----- Original Message ----- From: Jeanne Leimkuhler <jleimkuh at fine.interart.com> To: <coblist at deatech.com> Sent: Monday, August 14, 2000 8:50 AM Subject: Cob: ants and mortar mixers > Wow, a simple little ant problem sure has spurred a lot of activity on the > list. We are also currently working on a cob building and have found ants > burrowing into the top of the wall and building nests. We just sprayed the > area with the hose until they realized that they had to leave or drown and > then packed that area with cob. Problem solved, for now. > > What I really wanted to write about today is the wonders of a mortar mixer. > We have been cobbing since last fall on our building and although I think > foot mixing is fun, good for your body, quiet and definitly a more pleasant > experience all the way around, I am amazed at the efficiency of the mortar > mixer. My husband, Joe, purchased an old beat up mixer from a local > contractor, that wasn't running, for $50.00. He had to sand blast the old > mortar off, take off the paddles and cut new rubber scrapers, straighten > the main shaft and do some small engine repair. But damned if he didn't get > that thing running and we tried it out last Saturday. It mixed cob so fast > that we were barely done putting the first batch on the wall before the > next batch was ready, and the batches are twice as much as we were able to > mix on a tarp. This will totally change our building experience. This is > our third year of weekend building on a guest house for some friends and we > are ready to move on to other projects. Now I can actually imagine us > finishing this building in the near future. > > I have a couple of questions for anyone with mortar mixer experience. > First, the cob is not getting stomped, so I'm not sure if the clay > particles are getting flattened out like they are supposed to. We found > that the mixing worked best if we put the clay in first with enough water > to break down all of the clay lumps. When is gets really creamy, we add the > sand. Is this doing the same thing as stomping the clay? > Second, When we add the straw into the mixer it seems to be breaking up the > straw into smaller pieces. Since we want the straw to stay as long as > possible, does anyone have a technique to keep this from happening? > > Thanks, > Jeanne and Joe > Bloomington, IN > > > >
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