Cob Project Early March Update

Things are happening behind the scenes with the cob project.  After January’s scavanging of “urbanite” for the foundation, Greg came up with a first cut of a floor plan that manages to weave together a bench system, rocket stove, and little sink. Randy and Greg worked on more procurement activities with success at the local reuse places and little hidey holes in finding more urbanite along with windows and doors.  A little nook in the woods with quite a panorama over the tobacco field was cleared.   


Next up was digging the foundation, root cellar, and drainage trench.  A mini excavator was rented from First Source in Mebane, and Greg and Randy spent a day playing with this toy.  We were graced by an audience of what appears to be an Eastern Fence Lizard, shown below sunning itself on the urbanite.  


At the end, we declared that the day’s effort was good enough to allow us to proceed to the next step of a bit more digging by hand and then putting in the drainage system and building the foundation by dry stacking the urbanite.   This activity is currently planned to coincide with Randy’s birthday-what a great way to celebrate a trip around the sun.

A series of workdays are planned in April (4/8, 4/9, 4/22, 4/23, 4/29, 4/30) to raise the walls of the new tiny cob building. Cobbers are being sought to help, no experience/special skills necessary, just a willingness dive in and work with clay, sand, straw, water, and a few other hearty souls.  Greg Allen from Mud Dauber School is a local expert on natural building, and will be sharing what he’s learned over the past decade at the workdays. To sign up for one or more workdays or learn more, contact Randy at



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