The first house is nearly completed and work has begun on the second house.
The ramming looks much better as the team are more used to the process.
During the last two weeks of January 2011, I visited one of my students who was on one of my rammed earth courses in September 2010. He was about to start the rammed earth walls on his project in Maun, Botswana, Africa.
Here is a video and and some pictures of what we got up to...
Panoramic view of the site
The development is being managed locally by Tineo Investments (Pty) Ltd
This is what is being built on the site, two 2 bedroom and two 3 bedroom single storey houses with rammed earth walls and a traditional thatched roof
Every day the lads get the pots boiling ready for lunch... Pap! (porridge to you and me)
They call him Terry... Terry Hill... he attended one of my UK courses and invited me over to help get the rammed earth wall formers built and teach the guys on site to prepare the earth and ram the walls
Some of the lads working on the project (Don't worry, they don't get locked up in there, that's where we keep materials etc)
Meet Alfred, he's in charge of the labour force and for ensuring that everything gets built as per the plans
The timber yard where I selected the materials for the formers, finding straight timbers is almost impossible
Maun has a good selection of builders merchants, it's a shame things are so expensive though
Here we are on site, the small building used to be a house but I made it into my workshop whilst I was there
Not much room inside as it measures about 4 metres square, can't imagine living in it with a family
Every now and again Terry let me out for exercise
Alfred, Titus and Terry start setting up the formers I made in the workshop
Corner formers can be tricky to get set up but they're getting the hang of it
Levelled and tightened up
Straight sections are easier to set up
Terry is going to ram the walls using a hammer drill with a modified head and the rotation disabled... interesting idea
They have a big petrol mixer available to blend the earth prior to ramming
Here is a short film showing the rammed earth process being adopted in Botswana
This is a typical house, although this is well decorated compared to most
Although the old Thunderbox and Hosedown is usually located out the back
Time to go on safari, just one problem... the truck is a two-seater and three are going
Time to build a "Saf-Cab" (Pat Pending)
The Saf-Cab is a real head turner, might be because it's the only wooden one around
Saf-Cab complete with its photovoltaic solar panel
Our home for the night
Meet Titus, he's running the project and is also an experienced safari guide
An elephant's skull greets us at the Moremi Game Reserve
A visitor recption building with a similar roof to what is planned on the project
This is where I stayed, see ya Terry, It was a blast!