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Community and Q&A

Are there any builders, architects, engineers, or homeowners interested in industrial hemp building?

Kristin Steen | Posted in Energy Efficiency and Durability on

Energy and bio-friendly materials significantly solve many issues I see here, and despite code/cost and other issues, it is a solution many are embracing…

Hempcrete, hemp fiber insulation, hemp particle board, carpets, furniture are all available and becoming more mainstream alternatives with immense positive experiences. Anybody have experiences or interest in this?

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  1. Malcolm Taylor | | #1

    Have you ever worked with, or do you have any experience using this material?

  2. Kristin Steen | | #2

    Hi Malcom -

    I have ordered a bag of hempcrete, and am going to experiment myself, but I have not yet actually used it. The workshops have been too far from me ( Austrailia, California, etc) and I want to get one going here in NY - I have construction experience, am trained as an architect ( not licensed, but went to Pratt Sc of Arch a long time ago) ...

    So, the short answer - not yet! I do have a homeowner here that is interested, and am working up specs...

  3. Malcolm Taylor | | #3

    I hope you will fill us in on how you find working with it when your project goes ahead.

  4. User avatar
  5. Malcolm Taylor | | #5

    “You could smoke a telephone pole’s worth of our stuff and still not get high,”

    Now where's the fun in that?

  6. Alan B | | #6

    "“You could smoke a telephone pole’s worth of our stuff and still not get high,”

    Now where's the fun in that?"
    The gasoline used to transport the person to the "telephone pole" can be used to get high

  7. User avatar
    Hallie Bowie | | #7

    I just had a client ask me about hempcrete. Since it's R value is only 2.3 per inch it seems like a hard sell for cold climates. It would take another 5 1/2" of wall thickness to get up to an R40 compared to using cellulose. And until there is a North American source for the raw material I expect it is cost prohibitive too.

  8. Stuart Friedberg | | #8

    Hemp fiber is a great industrial fiber with a lot of uses and quite reasonable production costs, and much of the world has been using it all along. However, it's not a solution for every problem. If linen (flax bast) or sisal is appropriate, hemp is probably appropriate. Hempcrete has to compete with lots of other batt alternatives (e.g., blue jean batts, straw batts, ...) to the more conventional fiberglass, rock wool and blown cellulose.

  9. user-7053876 | | #9

    As of February 2019, the Highland Hemp House addition is receiving plaster on the interior walls. The hempcrete walls are 12" thick and enclose the 2 x 4" wood framing. In June of this year, I will be retrofitting the old part of the house with hempcrete. Located in Bellingham, WA, I am committed to sharing what I learn from utilizing hemp and lime as a monolithic wall system.

    1. Zephyr7 | | #10

      Do you happen to have a picture of any holes cored or drilled through this material so that we can see the internal structure? I’ve worked in old concrete buildings before and they used to use straw in the concrete for reinforcement. Im curious what the appearance of the hempcrete is I’ve never worked with it, or even heard of it before this forum.


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