In December 2019 we trained about 14 man and woman to manufacture CSEB ( Compressed Stabilized Earth Blocks). How to analyze the soil by feeling; consistency, grade, plasticity, humidity and how to mix in the correct proportions. With the type of soil we have mostly clay, we added generally 60% of sand, and for higher strengths +10% muram (volcanic ash).
We produced a few hundred test blocks of 8 different mix type with variable Portland Cement and Hydrated Lime proportions. The compression strangers were from 2.9 MPa to 6.7 MPa. giving a range of possibilities for deferent qualities and costs for different structural uses.
At the end of February we started regular operation with Press-1 only and using Mix A ( 105 cement) and Mix C+(6%cement and 2% Lime). The objective was getting the operators to a rhythm capable to achieve a minimum of 500 full blocks (24x24x9cm) per day. Once this goal was consistently achieved by mid March we started with a second crew and Press-2. We made up to a maximum of 985 blocks per day.
Several days during these period were used to dry soil and sieve it. The rains have been a major obstacle to get a steady production. We were able to produce until April 1. a total of 6305 blocks, in 13 days of viable operation.
Unfortunately when we were getting up to speed, due to the Covid-19 pandemia the operation has been suspended as of April 3rd. There are no cases in Karatu until this date and hope that the mesures taken can contain the spread.
We wish to be able to start again in the summer…
Watch the video of the community working on this project for the Girls Dormitory.
We hope that you can always continue helping us with your support!