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BellaOnline's Southwest USA Editor

Build Your Own Adobe Home

How'd you like to build your own home with adobe? It really isn't as frightening as it sounds.

All you need is time, and some money- but not nearly as much as if you bought or had a house built. Experience isn't necessary either, if you are the handy-man, DIY type person.

Adobe brick, which Webster defines as: "an unburnt brick, dried in the sun, made of alluvial or playa clay," is the easiest and cheapest material available for a comfortable attractive home. And one of it's economic (green) features is that is livable in summer without much air conditioner use. Adobe is a wonderful insulator against both cold and heat.

If you decide to "build it yourself", there are, naturally, several major decisions to make regarding your new home. And it is best to get these over before manual work begins.

First, will you buy the adobe or go all the way and make it yourself? This decision should be influenced by the location of your homesite. If the soil isn't the right type for making adobe brick, their is no point in attempting it. Another consideration... how fast do you want to get done? It takes a long time to make adobe and this will stretch the building time considerably.

Another thing you need to decide on early... should you get all the material on hand before starting work? You might like to build the doors and window frames in a s the bricks are laid. Or, you can put in some type of anchorage, such as wood sleepers, so the frames can be fitted later. This latter method gives you a chance to shop around and pick up bargains. It also strings out payments... making for easier financing.

Let's say you have decided to buy the bricks, which for outside walls should be 4x12x16 inches. Your next job is to figure out how many you need. Of course that depends on the size house you are building. Just remember to order extras. Adobe bricks break easily and you must figure a small loss in handling.

Now... with sufficient bricks on hand your are ready to get going.

The rest of this story Tips For Building Adobe Homes

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