Bale Stops Strengthen and Simplify Your Build

Having built hundreds of straw bale houses over the years, I’ve learned that bale stops do an incredible job of both strengthening and simplifying a build. I use them in every bale structure I work on. The most common placement for bale stops is at the top of the wall so that I can compress […]

A Glossary of Terms for Straw Bale Framing

Roof Frame and Carpenter

It’s important to understand the glossary of terms for straw bale construction framing. If you don’t know what something is called, you’ll have a harder time ordering the right materials from your suppliers. In addition, if you don’t know the right terms, you’ll have a harder time discussing things with your contractors, even if you’re […]

Scheduling Subcontractors and Inspections on a Straw Bale House

straw bale house Dining Room

It’s pretty obvious that they are differences between a straw bale house and conventional homes. What is not so apparent are the differences encountered during the construction process. For example, the order of operations and thus inspections is different for a straw bale house.

Timber Framing and Straw Bale Construction

straw bale house kitchen

In general, the detailing of a timber frame straw bale home is very much like that of a regular post an dream straw bale home; however, the differences are important to discuss. How the bales attach to the frame and how to best seal the air gap at the transition from plaster to frame are among the important details we will discuss in this article.

Creating Straight Bale Walls On a Crooked Frame

welded wire mesh on straw bale wall

It was immediately obvious while working on the exposed timber frame in Arlington, Vermont that the natural cut timbers would not line up perfectly with the plane of the bale wall once complete. What we did ended up working really well and created a beautiful and STRAIGHT wall.

Straw Bale and Steel Framing

steel framing straw bale house

Special care must be taken to protect straw bales from condensation when using steel framing in a straw bale house. Without isolating the steel from the bales, the risk of long term damage to the structure is high. Don’t take that risk. Instead, follow some simple work arounds to protect your bales and your investment.

Check out our Instant Download Framing Video and FREE Framing Report

straw bale cabin framing

Those of you who receive our newsletters already know about our instant download framing video and the FREE Framing Report that we are offering to people to “wet their whistle” for the details of framing a straw bale structure. The report is an excerpt from my ebook: A Modern Look at Straw Bale Construction and is full […]

Tiny House/Straw Bale Framing Video

Tiny House straw bale cabin

If you’ve been wanting a How-To guide to Framing Video to add to your collection, the wait is over! Straw bale construction is a wonderful building technique whether you are building a tiny house or standard size home.  It offers walls that are not only three times more fire resistant than standard construction but also […]

Water Isolation Walls

hose bib for straw bale wall

Water is the biggest enemy of straw bale construction. It comes in many forms from humidity to broken plumbing lines, but the results are the same: damage to the bales. Because water is such a major player in the construction of any home, we have to be careful how we intertie the two systems of bales and plumbing. One way is through the use of water isolation walls.

How-To Guide to Framing Video Preview

Roof Frame and Carpenter

Hey everyone!  This is Gabriella, Andrew’s wife writing. I wanted to share a preview of our brand new video, The How-To Guide To Framing For Straw Bale Construction.  The video is nearly 3 hours long and part of our How-To Video Series. You can get high quality instructional videos on foundations, framing, baling (load bearing […]

Framing Details for Partition Walls in a Straw Bale House

straw bale house ready for plaster

Below is a section from my upcoming book. The focus of the section is on planning for and installing partition walls in straw bale homes. I have also included a detailed description of how to properly layout framed walls. When framing interior partition walls, there are only a couple of differences from conventional construction to keep track of. I hope you enjoy this chapter on framing partition walls. You may find it a bit technical, since it is just a section from within the book, but it will all make more sense in the overall context of the book.

Run Your Rafter Tails Wild (Trusses Too!)

Straw Bale House Under Construction

When framing your roof, don’t waste time lining up your rafter tails. Instead, run your rafter tails wild and cut them all at once when the frame is complete. Decide where you want the ends of the rafters to be and then snap a chalk line from one end of the house to the other. […]