A Guide to Self-Building with Slipforms
By Tomm Stanley
Born and raised in the USA, author Tomm Stanley hopped around the world working in Antarctica, Australia, southeast Asia and New Zealand, where he found a partner and settled down. Tomm and Sabrina had lots of rocks available on their land, and so slipforming was the obvious choice for building their dream home. Thomas J. Elpel had the good fortune to meet Tomm Stanley while vacationing in New Zealand and was privileged to receive a personal tour of the house.
The slipforming method they used is similar to early slipforming methods used in North America, with one significant improvement: Instead of wire ties to hold the forms together, Stanley ran threaded rod through plastic sleeves, and used wingnuts on the outside of the forms to tighten the forms. The plastic sleeves stayed in the wall, but the threaded rod could be used again and again.
This book is most appropriate for builders in mild climates since Stanley used only the thermal mass of the walls to moderate hot and cold temperature extremes, much like adobe houses in the southwest. There is no insulation in the walls to moderate more extreme climates, such as here in frigid Montana.
The author uses both Imperial and metric measurements in the book, which makes it useful to readers anywhere. More importantly, Stanley emphasizes a planning method where rooms are designed to utilize standard-size building materials without much cutting and fitting.
Stanley has an informal dialogue style of writing, which includes his thoughts, philosophy and stories along the way. He includes coverage of passive solar principles for mild climates, plus how to make a house fit the landscape. Also included are sections on moulding and casting techniques, with some coverage of working with recycled windows and doors, plus paint stripping and wood finishing. Revised and expanded edition, 2009. Stonefield Publishing. ISBN: 978-0-473-14821-8. 210 pages. Formerly distributed by Chelsea Green Publishing. HOPS Press, LLC is now the exclusive North American distributor for this book.
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