Some basic building techniques we used:

The bathroom is inside the main dome, so we built a bag wall using smaller bags (sewn to size), tied  into the larger bags of the outer wall. Well, this was a blunder.. Read on

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Bathroom i

On left: Bathroom inner wall which is 14″ being built up. Door buck needs fitting now. Below:  Tying-in of the next dome at footing level. The RHS of the same door buck – is being filled in too – back towards the main entrance.

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Footing for joining domes




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The level checks the levels of the bags in a row.

The water level compares the height of the bag with reference to a datum elsewhere on the row.

Soon we will be checking in the vertical plane as well – to make sure we are not leaning in or out. Plenty of checks and double checks available.

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The internal bathroom walls being tied into the dome wall.

Hot tip..

As the internal wall is 11″ wide as opposed to the 17″  wide bags used in the dome wall, they tamp down slightly lower than 17″ walls. Tamping these sewn bags too hard resulted in the breaking the stitching of the narrowed bag. We used 1/4 inch ply in the bag layers to make up height. Its not a load bearing wall. You can see the plywood fitted below the two un-tamped bags on the top layer.

Using two different size bags turned out to be a no no. The heights were not the same and tying the two together was a challenge. Using plywood to make up height also made the wall a little wobbly. A roof over the bathroom, under the main dome, tied it all together eventually. Do not use dissimilar bags! A bathroom wall made from Wattle and daub would have served better. Quicker to build and a lot cheaper.


Setting some windows:


image e1361238075844 300x225 BuildingThe “A” team setting the window frames.
Josh, Frank (Frankie baby..) and Toby.

The windows are set just under under 3 feet and the others are set at the 3 feet level.

The windows all had to be reset later! Change of scope to fit larger windows that were on hand. So we cut through the bags and lowered them.

(The next dome will be smarter?)

Four large windows in the lower level and one in the bathroom. Plenty of light. Like really …



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Trial window is set in the frame. The curved part will be wattle and daub.

the eaves sticking out may serve as eaves  –  again wattle and daub or as a support structure for paneling outside the dome as per Japanese building techniques.  Wait and see.

Fitting the wedge bags was really quite simple.

tamp down hard. The last three bags can be filled similtaneously to give a very firm fit.

A wood  maul makes a handy heavy tamper!





Go ahead and spray paint some notes to yourself relating to bag heights etc.  The bags on the RHS are 1″ higher than the datum. Next set we lay will compensate. We hope anyway.

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Tamped wedge bags








Fitting a log over the kitchen space:  The aromatic cedar (Juniper, not Jupiter as that’s a planet?)  was dead standing and cut down over a year ago. Peel and fit using bags to secure.

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Log fitted over the future kitchen.



The log was sealed with two coats of Tung oil and covered with black plastic for UV  protection.

The log will be wire wool treated and coated once more when the roof is up.

its a beautiful piece of wood with “sticky outies” on it… Over the kitchen place we will hang pans etc so that oil can drip on the nice earth floor?  Just kidding










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