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Old 03-09-2010, 07:55 AM
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Default Underground Cinder Block Storage



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Morning All,

I was trying to figure out if this would be the best place to post this and thought it would be better so then any place else because of the often talk about bunkers and such. My question isn't so much nuclear related, it's more like mold and flooding related.

I am thinking about building an underground food storage using mortar and cinder blocks. However I don't want to have to live in a desert climate to build something like this and not have to worry about too much moisture in my cinder block cellar. My ideal location would be Wyoming, Montana, Colorado or Idaho. Since it snows in the winter and the ground is quite wet in the spring and such, I am wondering about the feasibility of the long term survival of the building in using cinder block. Can cinder block erode away over time if the conditions are not properly dry? Would one have to worry about flooding through the cinder block?? Of course I know better then the build something like this below or close to the water table. So a High Location will reduce chances of flooding dramatically.

My thoughts are to build a small building under ground and make it level as possible, I thought about slanting it to help combat any adverse water problems but don't really want to do that. The roof would be constructed out of T Iron Supports and Stainless Steel Plates (if not prohibitively expensive). And I would have the entrance be through the roof of course. The Depth would be about 8 ft and the roof would be level to just below the frost line. At first I wasn't going to do this, I was going to put roof to just below grass root level until I remembered the climate I was thinking about building this in.

The other option I thought of would be to use rebar and concrete for everything except roofing once again, but would cinder block be cheaper?
Old 03-09-2010, 08:03 AM
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You might find an old pool liner, put it down first as a vapor barrier. It is a lot thicker than say 6 mil plastic, and you can lay block, pour forms and such, as long as you are careful not to puncture. I saw an ad in craigs list for an old pond liner, that may work as well. Good luck and let us know how you do.
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Old 03-09-2010, 09:14 PM
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There are some very good sealers for block such as drylock. Also make sure you have good drainage around the outside of the structure maybe a 4 inch perforated pipe and fill this area with gravel then fill in the rest with dirt.
Luke
Old 03-09-2010, 09:24 PM
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You can build something like the pic here and then cover it with dirt to make it look like part of the hill, but before covering with dirt wrap it in plastic membrane to control the humidity, we have several in my property.
Then we plant wild shrubs and grasses all over it, you have to be 5 feet from it to see it.
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Old 03-09-2010, 09:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hawkeye Alex View Post
You can build something like the pic here and then cover it with dirt to make it look like part of the hill, but before covering with dirt wrap it in plastic membrane to control the humidity, we have several in my property.
Then we plant wild shrubs and grasses all over it, you have to be 5 feet from it to see it.
radiation travels in a straight line or in the dust.. meaning you should make it a L shape.. more protection that way.. other then dust getting in thats the only other problem.. (dust contaminated by radative partacles)

I learned about radiation and its effects in grade school.. helps that my dad fixed xray equipment so I had an old x ray tube to show and x rays..
Old 05-05-2010, 10:17 PM
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Awesome, Hawkeye, Can you post the plans or instructions? Thank you in advance.
Old 05-06-2010, 11:00 PM
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here was something i had looked at doing for the entance of the home was to make it look nice along beening part of the hill .. i did look the land over and went with the system that was diff than in the picture ..

when i design the entance and stageing area for the trash can and the shelter electric and freshwater and black water and sat tv lines into and out of the shelter entance .. i went over diff looks and design from the aussa type bush fire shelter design to the tornada and other bad weather design to ww.2. shelter entances and gates units to secured the entance ..so i tried to make the entance as basic a area to come into get the mud or dirt off you feet ..along with the trash can set up that can be wheeled out and dumped as need ..plus design to hold the basic 30 days of trash before need to be dumped ..the second chamber has a area to ditch the partol gear on pegs before going down into the shelter stairwell to the shelter it self .. ..

but here is a few design ideas for the entance in a hillside entance .i took them from my saved photos of the entances area i was looking at doing to the first entance in the home and then down into the tank home entance combo mud room and stowage area for the home before going down into the shelter propler ..

the first design is great for a bad weather shelter but as nbc shelter i am not really likeing it for it was to exposed in the area ..it lets people know there is a shelter in the area.

the second design is a ww.2 school bunker entance with a steel cage to protect the people inside and to lock out the people from comeing into the bunker to play around.. the design would work great on the doors from the other side of the entance where the person could shut the door on the entance and then swing the unit over the door and sealing the door off from a person trying to enter the shelter after the door was sealed to protect the people inside as a layer of protection beside firearms and other unit ..do this in layers and it make the people trying to get inside the shelter to work harder trying to get you along with giveing people a more time to deal with the problem ..

the third design is a down under ausa fire bunker entance design i like the way it fited into the hillside and work as part of the landscape ...to me that has a better chance of beening hidden by putting a trap door system over the unit entance to hide the door ..

the fourth design is from the drawing of a down under ausa fire bunker design with the twin doors and round fire bunker if the downs with redesign with a two 90.dregee turns and a some basic redesign of the shelter it would make a great little home nbc warfare bunker unit ..
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hillside%20installed%2001.jpg   img25666.jpg   side_entry_fire_shelter1.jpg   side_entry_fire_shelter_final.jpg  
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Old 05-08-2010, 11:06 AM
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When I built my basement I had the blocks coated with a spray on rubber membrane on the outside.
Then I put 2 inches of pink foam over that.
I also put 8 mil poly and 2 inches of pink foam under the floors and put hot water heat tubes in the floors also.
It stays at a very constant temperature all year around and dry.
I think the blue foam is better from what I read for floors because it has more compressive strength.
6 years and still ok knock on wood (my head maybe).
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Old 05-08-2010, 11:18 AM
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Build it then have it sprayed with line-x or something similar. The military has used line-x sprayed cinder blocks bunkers. The are water proof, and in most cases bomb proof. When a normal explosion takes out a bunker, a sprayed one is held together by the line-x. I dont think i would try it, but i shave seen clips before. Any brand (some are mobil companies) should repel the moisture.
Old 05-08-2010, 06:00 PM
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You need to research the water table. If you don't, you will soon have an underground water tank. In those states you mention, it's probably well underground, but not in all places. There are plenty of bogs in Colorado.
Old 05-08-2010, 07:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hawkeye Alex View Post
You can build something like the pic here and then cover it with dirt to make it look like part of the hill, but before covering with dirt wrap it in plastic membrane to control the humidity, we have several in my property.
Then we plant wild shrubs and grasses all over it, you have to be 5 feet from it to see it.


how did you pour the roof?
Old 05-08-2010, 07:44 PM
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my grandparents have a root cellar on their house (Ohio, built in the '50's), the walls of the entire basment are concrete/cinder block, they are painted on the inside with a concrete paint, the outside is whatever it is they do for basements. The floor is concrete. She keeps canned goods, paper towels, etc., etc., etc., etc. in there and never had a problem with mold, mildew.
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Old 03-16-2011, 06:34 PM
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Default Roof for underground cinder block bldg

I was looking for the answer to cryptkeeper's question to Hawkeye Alex regarding how he poured the roof but not able to find a response ... if there is one can you re-post and if there's not one can you provide best method found? We're going to build larger than food storage and not sure what the best materials and process should be. Any and all responses welcome.
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Old 03-16-2011, 07:10 PM
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In 1972, I built a 12' X 18' x8' deep cellar into the side of a hill, dug out, poured a 8" footer 18" wide, layed CONCRETE block for the walls , poured concrete floor part way up on the first row of block. Put morter 1"-1.5" on the outside walls and then a heavy coating of roofing tar, with a 4" footer drain. Also put morter on the inside walls at least 1" thick. Bought swimming pool sealer called " Theroug-seal "? spelling. It come in a power and mix with water and brush on with a large stiff brush. Color is light blue or light green. used 2x4, 4x4's around the inside walls to support a 1" wooden board top on the inside of the bock and formed around the top outside walls and used rebar and poured a 4" concrete flat roof, before I poured, layed down tar paper. Back filled with dirt, with gravel against the wall so ground water can drain down to the footer drain easy. Then I built a workshop building on top. Today it still looks new and is dry and cool. Hope I said all of that good enough to understand. Pops
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Old 03-16-2011, 07:35 PM
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Thanks for the information, I was thinking about somewhat similar when buy my house. I think to place him on top a room of tools to dissemble the entrance.

Very good ideas have delivered me about how build my undergound food storage, thanks again.
Old 03-21-2011, 01:23 PM
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I'd like to ask a question that is somewhat related, and I don't know where else to go with it.
I have a home built in 1920 and the windows in the basement are crap, for heating reasons and security reasons....mostly worried about security now but especially now that we are filling our basement with preps. I want to replace the windows with cinder block. I don't know if I can just place cinder blocks and mortar in there or if I need some sort of bar, like re-bar or something connecting the new block to the surrounding blocks?
Old 03-21-2011, 04:57 PM
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You do not have to rebar the windows to place block in them, the mortar and block will be strong enough
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Old 03-21-2011, 06:53 PM
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You should ensure that the water table is low enough and that the frost line is not going to cause ground heave, which can break the cinder block up from lateral ground pressure. If you have damp soil for whatever reason and it freezes, you need to make sure it won't ruin the structure.
Old 03-21-2011, 07:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cryptkeeper View Post
how did you pour the roof?
form it like any other concrete pour. make it at least 8" thick assuming a minimal load on the roof with sufficient #4 or #5 rebar on 12" centers (at least)

the rebar should follow into the walls, which should be poured solid.

the form should be supported on the walls with concrete screws (TapCons) and underneath with 2x4s and/or 4x4s located appropriately.

the easiest way to pour the actual concrete is right off the back of a concrete truck. baring that, use a concrete pumper. if the pour is out in the boonies and you cant manage to use either one of those methods, get a 5 gallon bucket, a ladder, and a good back surgeon.

after several weeks (yea, weeks) remove the forms and voila...concrete roof. after the concrete has hardened sufficiently if youre bored soak it on as frequent a basis as possible with water to help strengthen it.
Old 03-21-2011, 07:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Izaana View Post
I'd like to ask a question that is somewhat related, and I don't know where else to go with it.
I have a home built in 1920 and the windows in the basement are crap, for heating reasons and security reasons....mostly worried about security now but especially now that we are filling our basement with preps. I want to replace the windows with cinder block. I don't know if I can just place cinder blocks and mortar in there or if I need some sort of bar, like re-bar or something connecting the new block to the surrounding blocks?
what fitfortrip said. also make sure whatever was in the window is completely removed to expose the bare concrete of the cinderblock so the mortar adheres betterer. mortar doesnt stick too well to painted things.

ive seen people do the opposite of what you want to do, making windows into concrete block walls. more often than not after a period of time the blocks at the top of the new opening separate and fall out. its very entertaining to witness. especially when the opening is filled with a large A/C unit which comes tumbling down from the 2nd story of a building along with a cinderblock.
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