According to Click Green, hay bales can make an affordable, energy efficient and sustainable home. The bales have 75% more insulating power than a traditional stud wall filled with fiberglass insulation, and are non-combustible because they have little to no oxygen inside.
To begin, frame the dwelling as you would a “conventional” tiny house‘s post and beam structure, then fill in the openings with the hay bales. They should be stacked on top of a cement footing (or foundation) in order to prevent moisture seeping into the straw. Setting some protruding metal pieces into the cement will help lock the bottom bales in place and prevent them moving around.
Add a low outer brick wall to prevent rain backsplash from soaking into the straw. Gaps between bales can be filled with loose straw. Face the exterior with chicken wire and apply a skim coat of cement or a lime wash to the exterior. Soak the outer side of the straw first to promote a good bond between the straw and the exterior coating.
When you are done, you will have a snug, sound proof and sustainable home. The editors of Click Green recommend you check the supply of straw bales in your community before you begin construction. Come to think of it, that does seem like a good idea!
Source | Images: Click Green UK.