The great puzzle begins. We will use earthen mortar (sand-rich clay mix) to glue our “urbanite” (broken concrete) together. The first course is leveled atop a 2′ x 2′ gravel trench with drain pipe
We will leave the rafters covered with a tarp for an all-season work space. After the foundation, we’ll put down a gravel base for the future finished earth floor. While we cob the walls, we’ll tamp the floor with our feet.
Finally ready to start some serious cob. Site cleared; foundation dug; drainage and gravel trench installed; foundation rocks (most of them) hauled to building site and stacked; post and beams up! Next steps: rafters, tarp, mortar foundation and restart, then we are set for four-season cobbing! Lastly, we will finish the living roof. Hello, Summer!
It’s like a paragraph in the books about cob. But if the site is not perfectly clear, this “clear and level the footprint of the house” takes chapters of time. But what are they going to say? Repeat ‘Keep Digging’ for pages and pages? It would at least give the real feel of the task. We are “getting there”, as they say, but we like to take breaks a lot. The root is is gruesome work. I wish I had a real, USFS quality Polaski.