Hyperadobe Step-by-Step

From Superadobe, created by the Iranian Nader Khalili, was developed Hyperadobe by Fernando Pacheco of EcoOca in Brazil. The big difference between the two is that Superadobe uses woven polypropylene bags with barbed wire between the layers, whereas Hyperadobe uses a knit raschel, the same material used in packaging fruit. This leads to less cost compared to the poly bags.

Raschel is a knitted fabric which resembles hand crocheted fabrics, lace fabrics, and nettings. Raschel warp knits contain inlaid connecting yarns in addition to columns of knit stitches.

The raschel need not be burned to receive the plaster; Fernando works it as a "roughcast" to receive natural plaster. With vertical walls there is no need for barbed wire between the layers because with the open netting the soil of the bottom layer is merged with the new layer above.

The dream begins with site selection and marking the floor.

Foundation construction using forms that allow curves.

Here the foundation has been poured. The entrance frame was set into place before laying the Hyperadobe.

The layers of Hyperadobe begin with the soil chosen for the work, which is generally about 70% sand and 30% clay, but this can vary. It must have a good moisture content, neither too wet nor too dry, and this comes with practice.

To facilitate the placement of the netting, it is necessary to support a coil above the funnel. Four hands are best. The ideal is to have two funnels so that when you finish one the other is ready to go.

We developed a shoulder strap to make it easier to hold the funnel.

The funnel should be held with both hands at chest height. Roll out a little of the bag, fold the tip in your direction near where the layer will start. Step on the tip to dispense the soil at this point so you have full control of the material.

When the earth reaches the bottom of the funnel, take a small step backward.

This is the ideal curvature as the layer is formed, so as to prevent cracks.

Overlaying courses is very important.

The more tamping the better. This tamper is wrapped in plastic to keep it from sticking to the clay soil. See how all of the joints between walls are interconnected.

The more compacted (tamped) the earth is, the more solid the layer will be.

This is very well beaten with female power!

The bag is being released from the funnel naturally by the weight of the clay when it reaches the mouth of the funnel.

Align the wall with the outer wall of the foundation, and the subsequent layers will be aligned naturally. We must also respect the alignment of the doorway.

This template was placed as a guide until the window is finally fixed.

An entire layer (with soil and cement) was placed above the window form to facilitate completion. Notice the two pieces of steel reinforcement.

Here is another permanent window frame. You can see how several courses of bags were actually cut to accommodate this.

The funnel was made from an old fridge side. The bag fits tightly around the funnel, but it should not be too tight nor too loose, so that the bag does not get caught on the funnel or fall too quickly when placing the soil in the bag.

When a course reaches the end, use a knife or scissors to cut the material and close the layer and start again.

When you come to the end, give the bag a good shake to consolidate the soil, twist the tip of the bag, and put it under the layer. Then you can just start another layer that connects with the previous layer.

Here you can see how to twist the tip of the bag and put it underneath the layer.

Here you can see how the two layers ended in the same place, which is not good.

We raised the walls evenly throughout the house.

With seven people working 8 hours per day in 15 days we arrived at this point.

Everything we do comes from the intuitive, and we are moved by our love of Earth, which feeds every moment of our lives.

The earth is the perfect host and is where we find our essence. Love and light to the sons of earth.


The above video shows the construction of a cloakroom and a bathroom at EcoOca - Brazil. The technique was developed by Fernando Pacheco, engineer, and it is called HyperAdobe. It is a more ecological option to the Superadobe technique.



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