We Gotta Get This Shed Done - Daily Video Project to Finish our Hyperadobe Earthbag Solar Shed Office

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Updated October 15, 2021
Family standing in front of earthbag building

That's right, friends, it's another daily video series! We are going to work day and and day out until this hyperadobe solar shed office is finished - and take you along for the ride. Let's get started.

Day 1

We begin our journey picking up where we left off - i.e. we just finished our solar, batteries, and electrical installed. So now we continue plastering the inside of the building. The goal today is finishing the interior brown coat!

Day 2

With the brown coat finished, it's time to start the finishing coat. Too many finishings? Maybe, but that's what we did!

Day 3

We continue to put final plaster coats on in the guest room while Jonathan installs internet antennas and measures for the television they'll be putting in. Nine Nine is all kinds of adorable.

Day 4

Yep, it's more final plaster coating in the guest room. Going a little slower as we do detail work around bottles, lightswitches, windows, and outlets. Also, we fix our front gate.

Day 5

Today is our youngest' birthday! Ada is 10 years old. We can't believe it! Most of the day was spent celebrating, but we did manage to come back and finish the last bit of plaster coat in the guest room. On to the office!

Day 6 

We live in wine country and it's harvest season. Ashley helps a local vineyard by waking up at 3am to go pick grapes. Then, back at home, we create a form for our first ever concrete pad! We end the day stomping grapes and showing off our new 'Get This Shed Done' T-shirts!

Day 7

We finally finish our form, get the area prepped, and start pouring when the delivery truck shows up. Let's lay our first concrete pad!

Day 8

So. Much. Sifting. But first Ashley attempts to fix hairline cracks in the guest room. Then we prep for finishing plaster in the office and Jonathan cleans up all the 'shed' around this place!

Day 9

The boys head to town for some fun at an Airsoft field while the girls keep working on the final coat in the office. We also explore some decorative cob!

Day 10

We push through and FINISH the final plaster coat in the office! What a huge step! Just a few more touchups and the interior walls will be complete 🎉.

Day 11

Today we're cleaning up the last of the bottles, wiping down the walls, and getting ready for the floor in the guest room!

Day 12

We were so excited to get going on the floor, everything went according to plan...Until it didn't. But you'll have to wait until day 13 to find out why!

Day 13

We don't always get it right and we're here to show you our mistakes so you don't make them, too. We failed the first attempt at our earthen floor, but then found the magic combination of mortar sand, our soil, tiny bit of clay, straw and water. It resulted in a pretty sweet floor!

Day 14

We installed our mini split! Wahoo! Cool air never felt so good. But it wasn't easy getting here. As always...there's problems along the way.

Day 15

We're trying a different scratch coat fortified with 10% cement to see if it will hold up to our crazy monsoon rains better. Our cob was solid until the sideways rains came. We're hoping this is the magic mix.

Day 16

That's right, more scratch coat. It's going to likely be days of scratch coat but that's just the way it goes. Plus, we're introducing a new venture we're calling 30 Days to a Better You...Tube :)

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Day 17

Today we're starting on the office floor and answering some of your frequently asked questions!

Day 18

Today we lay the rest of our earthen floor in the office, but we also add some more river rock detail! Check it out!

Day 19

Today we go mattress shopping for the first time in a good 10+ years. PLUS, we buy all the things for inside the solar shed. Let's do this!

Day 20

Today we officially start on our front door overhang. We've been talking about it for months, but it's finally time! We begin by measuring a bunch and setting cement braces for our posts.

Day 21

Today is the day, let's build this overhang - decking and all 💪!

Day 22

Storms are rolling in so we had only a few minutes to get the underlayment on and the wood of the overhang painted. Check it out!

Day 23

We start the morning by petting Nine Nine way too much 😂. But then we measure the overhang so we can order our metal roofing, the windows so we can order custom blackout blinds, and then lay the FINAL earthen floor coating in our hyperadobe solar shed office.

Day 24

Today we're touching up our floor due to a minor mishap with our mini split. We're also adding chicken wire on some wood to help our exterior coat of plaster attach better! One day at a time, we're getting this shed done!

Day 25

Jonathan had to take the truck into town for an oil change and errands so Ashley and the kids spent the day rocking the exterior scratch coat on the West and North walls. They got so much done!

Day 26

With everyone back together, we rally and finally complete the exterior cob scratch coat (again - monsoon rains washed a lot of the first coat off). Getting excited to finish this phase of the build!

Day 27

Very productive day today friends! We created some tinted test batches trying to find the right shade for our exterior final coat. Then we worked on some decorative cob elements. And finally we laid down the first linseed oil coat on our floor. Whooo!

Day 28

Lots going on today, friends! We had our buck delivered for goat breeding, replaced our Shelter Logic Garage-in-a-Box cover, and put more coats of linseed oil on the earthen floor in the solar shed.

Day 29

Today we put our final two coats of linseed oil on the earthen floor in the solar shed, retire our ground deploy solar panels for the Airstream, and clean up the mess from the Shelter Logic Garage-in-a-Box re-covering.

Day 30

Let's freeze stuff! Our freezer is finally here and we're trying to fill it up :) And a special delivery from our favorite coffee shop, Talking Irons! Thanks Sara and Thomas. Plus, we got to clean the linseed oil off of our rocks!

Day 31

Today we're waxing our earthen floor in the guest room. Turns out we didn't order enough wax so at least we have one room done, and just in time for the mattress to be delivered. Jonathan and the kids set up the bed, and Ashley stains the window sill.

Day 32

This day did not go as planned, but we're rolling with it and having a couple popsicles.

Day 33

Lots of little projects accomplished today, friends! First we added a heatsink to our REC BMS to help it when balancing our massive battery bank. Then we installed our front door trim (finally), hooked up our off-grid internet in the shed, and got our front door cement pad area prepped.

Day 34

Day 34 and we're getting shed done! We got the metal roof panels on and poured an entryway cement pad. Busy day and we just barely beat the storm.

Day 35

More big steps today friends! We finished the metal roofing on our overhang, talk about our cement tinting experiment, created more decorative + functional cob around the windows, and the girls started a fun new project.

Day 36

We're dragging a bit today, but we pushed through and got one thing checked off the ever growing list. Gabions around the posts. This is not structural at all, just visually pleasing :)

Day 37

With almost everyone gone today for dental appointments, Ashley and Jett start testing our final plaster coat and realize we need a better sifter.

Day 38

Hip Hip Horray, we had a productive day! It feels so good to get these little things checked off our list. We installed the blinds, waxed the window sills and worked on the exterior some more. Guys! How about that sifting? Ahh, I love this family. Let's keep going!

Day 39

Let's get some balls on the walls! Today we're working on the west wall of our Hyperadobe Solar Shed. We'll be adding spheres to cast shadows to create micro climates on the west wall that gets pounded by the sun in the summer. This (theoretically) should help the west wall not heat up as much. At least that's what Cal-Earth says :)

Day 40

Alright friends, short day today as we continue to add our final plaster mix to more of our building. One step at a time, but we're in the final stretch!

Day 41

Today we race the rain and finish our West wall relief spheres and exterior plaster coat on the entire circle part of the building. Only one side left!

Day 42

You asked for it, we've got it! Nine Nine had the best morning ever, and we managed to capture it all on film for you. Enjoy! We also finished the balls on the west wall, and started plastering the FINAL south facing wall. OMG!

Day 43

Oh my friends, WHAT A DAY! We finish the exterior plaster coat on the entire building AND finally fix our standing desk. Plus we install some exterior solar lights, and even start cleaning up a bit.

Day 44

After our long, hard road to finishing the exterior coat yesterday, it was time to have a little fun, and get the dirt cleaned off bottle bricks, windows, doors, and more.

Day 45 (Last Day)

Oh my friends, it's the last daily solar shed video. Can you believe it? We can't! Today we finished cleaning windows, FINALLY put plants in our flower beds, and started a few small building projects. Get ready for the big reveal coming soon!

We Got This Shed Done!

This 200 square foot sustainably built earthbag structure was built by our family of 6 over the course of a year. We used over 3400 feet of linear hyperadobe tube mesh, moved 80 tons of dirt, sand, and clay, and installed a 7200 watt, 28kwh lithium solar system to power our property. Techniques explored include hyperadobe earthbag, bottle bricks, cob, earthen floor, earthen plaster, bas relief, passive solar, negative reveal ceiling, archways, and more.

Watch the walk-through tour here.

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Jonathan Longnecker

About the Author

Jonathan Longnecker is the strongly opinionated tattooed and bearded half of Tiny Shiny Home. He loves making music, designing brands, building websites, exploring the outdoors, and living off-grid.

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Posted August 18, 2021


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