Monday, August 1, 2011

First Layer - Part One

Scott covers the last bale with plaster.
Linda scoops up plaster
Many deep knee bends, push ups and stretches later, we are finished with the first layer of plaster on the exterior of the house. We couldn't have done it so well and so quickly without the help of our friends:

Doug and Shanna apply plaster to southwest wall.
Shanna Moler, Doug Moler, John Lee and Linda Peer. The only thing they got out of the deal was a good upper body workout. How lucky we are to have friends like them.

We were careful to attend to several small but important details along the way.
Electrical boxes masked

This included wrapping the exterior electrical boxes with masking tape, tucking wiring between bales and and behind poles, filling gaps behind bamboo and bringing plaster to the edges of plaster stops.

Scott covered in plaster at the end of a day's work
In several places we have wood abutting bales. These are problem areas because wood and plaster don't like to stick together.  Using Natural Finishes by Adam Weismann and Katy Bryce provided suggestions, but we conferred with our architect and decided to cover the wood surfaces and overlap the adjacent bales with expanded metal lath. This should provide the plaster a strong attachment surface between the wood and the straw. So far no cracks have developed at these joints.

Less than three weeks after we started stacking bales, we have now completed the first big step in the wall-building process. It is time for celebration.
We celebrate at Cafe Diablo.

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