Natural earthen walls in risky areas need reinforcement.
Steel is manufactured, but it sure resists bugs and mold well. For reinforcement hidden inside of massive earthen walls, I prefer it to wood or bamboo. I don’t want any families to think their walls are reinforced when they don’t really know if the reinforcement is still inside.
So steel is here to stay.
Natural builders should learn how to bend those half inch diameter inserted rebars accurately. Attachments can be made between separate lengths of rebar without adding concrete by hooking two pieces together. Bend the ends that stick up in wall tops or out of wall sides.
A 3″ diameter bend can make a hook without stressing the steel. Not sure how strong much tighter bends are in normal rebar.
Check out this information about bending. I want to see a photo of someone using a special jig on an earthbag wall to bend their inserted steel. Send me one and I’ll post it next!
BSI is working on better structural information for hazardous areas, and that includes some refined details about how to interconnect your inserted rebar so it all contributes as much as it can to wall strength. And to family safety. Stay tuned.