Brick layout

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How a builder imagines the block wall will go together must be clear from the start. You can have blueprints but nothing can take the place of visualization. Here we took some of the discarded test blocks and placed them as they were imagined on the stem wall.

The first picture shows the first three blocks laid to begin an English weave with a running bond. The idea is that no seam will be closer than 6 inches to any other. The head joints can float anywhere from 1/8 to ½ inch and it will not weaken the bond. Notice the white insulation placed on the ledge for a model. If you were building this above the Mason-Dixon, that ledge would need to be 2 inches. Remember, CEB earth blocks have zero(that’s 0) R value so cold can creep right through. The insulation adds a bit of time so that the normal thermal lag between diurnal cycles is lengthened. The inside wall must be plastered with mud to maintain the phase-change cooling effect of this type of construction.

Okay, you can see in the second picture how the next layer of blocks will fit over the first to keep the weave or joints properly spaced. The cracks and nicks (called plaster keys) are all useful in that they add irregularities where the mortar or plaster can stick. These are just test blocks anyways, so they are rougher than those we will actually use.

Finally the block joints at the door post are shown in the third picture. This way of stacking is “toothed” so that the block wall can be shuttered and poured with cement to lock the cavities and block extensions into solid concrete—reinforced all the way from the foundation to the door lintel and finally to the bond beam. Notice that even with a toothed end, the running bond is maintained.

Hope this makes the design of the slab and stem wall clearer.

#Stemwall #CEBFoundations #CEBblock

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