Hello readers, The last article we have showed you how strategically we placed the new pits in the center of the courtyard for producing cob loaves to both projects on site, one of it being the 3 house prototype and the other one love house of new comer. Today you will get a deeper insight in the process, to effectively produce a cob ball the cob pits had to be made durable and water proof to perform appropriate mix and pump out the best quality cob balls of premium strength and quality. In the initial experiment of the cob pits we have faced some challenges like water getting clogged, the walls of the pit being damp and ultimately resulting in losing the shape of the cob pit itself. To counter these challenges and maintain standard design output we borrowed ‘Lime plastering technique’ used for the water harvesting tank and applied it to the two pits on the entire surface.
The ingredients of Lime Plaster and the steps are as follows –
- Make surkhi powder as you can see was a challenge
- Collect sub soil
- Keep lime dry
The ratio is 2 bhands of sub soil , 1 bhand of lime and ¼ th bhand of powdered surkhi. The surkhi and lime are mixed firstly to avoid any clogging due to humidity which the sub soil carries and then the whole ingredients are thoroughly mixed adding considerable amount of water to produce a pasty earth brown lime plaster ready to use. The first round of plaster could be a thin film all around the walls of the pit and then larger volumes of the mix is poured and simultaneously slapped and pressed to catch to the surface with the help of shovel and sponge is used to give additional smoothness. We deliberately left one of the cob pit open so it can be used readily when the pouring rains give sacredgroves a break. Also, it gives the ample time for the other two pits to set hard and strong as lime plaster property is such that it gets it has a longer setting time and longer the years the harder it is.
These new cob pits once set in place will be strong for the entire project and a solid cob pumping design. Hope these will give good user comfort like pools to perform the task of cob mixing while having fun. Join us in these pits and lets have fun while making beautiful natural houses at sacred groves.