Saturday, September 12, 2009

More on mud walls

Since the outside half of our mud walls was up dry, thanks to the terrific weather, we put up the inside half on Thursday. Again with the help of seven other hard working friends, we got the job done in one day. Thursday's work went smoother for three of reasons, we had more practice, the outside wall gave us something to push against, and the new mud was easier to apply.

We started at 9:30 by mixing up the little bit of mud we had left, and uncovering the new load of mud we received for the remainder of the walls. The old mud had gotten harder, because the weather had been unusually dry and windy. The new mud, having been covered with plastic, was ready to go.

The inside walls went up much easier than the first time. The first reason was that all of us had experience at it. Also, since the outside wall was already done and the big gaps in the bamboo lattice were filled up, the new mud went on much smoother. Finally, the straw in the new mud had been chopped up finer and had rotted longer, so it was easier to spread. The smell was quite a bit stronger, too.

One other interesting feature of the different mud is the color. The mud we used on the outside of the building was from a nearby source, and is tan in color. The newer mud is chocolate mousse color. You can see that in the photos.

We will cover the walls once more with a thin layer of mud with a higher sand content for the sake of appearance and making it varmint proof. Now there are lots of gaps in it as a result of the mud drying. Sandier mud won't crack as much.

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