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How to build an earth rammed wall?

How to build an earth rammed wall

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framework for earth rammed walls, two wooden side panel and concrete base

Step 1 – Build framework

Build a framework, typically constructed out of wooden side panels and supports. The height will depend on what size wall you are building. The width should be measured from the inside of the framework and will be the width of your wall. Typically, rammed earth walls are 300-360mm (12-14″) thick.

A house construction will still need a concrete base ready for flooring, but if you are constructing a shed or wall, a hard, flat base (or even a thin layer of rammed earth) would be sufficient.

6-8 inches of moist earth in wall framework before being tamped

Step 2 – Add first layer

Fill the structure with the first layer of moist earth. This should be about 150-200mm (6-8″) deep.

Moist earth = mixture of sand, gravel, clay and concrete.

earth rammer ramming soil within wall framework

Step 3 – Use earth rammer

Compact the moist soil with a manual or mechanical earth rammer.

second layer of moist earth in wall framework placed on top of already tamped down layer

Step 4 – Add next layer

Add the next layer of moist earth and compress again.

fully rammed earth wall within framework, many layers of tamped earth fill the framework to the top

Step 5 – Continue to top of framework

Continue until the layers of compacted earth reach the top of your framework.

completed earth rammed wall without wooden side panels

Step 6 – Remove framework

After an hour, remove the framework, leaving the rammed earth wall. It should now be pretty solid. The wall will continue to harden until it is as firm and strong as a concrete wall.

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