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Not a new idea, although you're much better off with the content of the bag including a cementing agent to help it hold it's shape after some kind of treatment is applied.

Concrete is a good example. It can be largely sand or rock by volume, but the cementing agent will harden it to provide structural stability.
 

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look up "earthbags" on youtube...

edit: here's one example...

you might not notice it, but they are laying out barbed wire between bag layers (acts like really strong velcro to stick the bottom bag and top bag together)

there are more videos and info online that go indepth and explain it better

edit 2: one more...


edit 3: I didn't look at the video in the op at first cause it was too long...it's the same kind of construction (basically) that I posted videos of, just a different shape it looks like.
 

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earthbags are really strong. you don't need to add anything to the earth in the bags to stabilize it, because you are using compression to do that and then covering with a concrete shell (stucco).

there's been extensive testing on this method of construction, and they do well in just about every natural disaster.

This blog has information and sells books and videos about it: http://www.naturalbuildingblog.com/

also, check out:
http://earthbagstructures.com/
http://earthbagbuilding.com/
 

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Not a new idea, although you're much better off with the content of the bag including a cementing agent to help it hold it's shape after some kind of treatment is applied.

Concrete is a good example. It can be largely sand or rock by volume, but the cementing agent will harden it to provide structural stability.
That is also what I have used when building or improving the bunker / underground storage - storm shelter.

I would use sand or earth bags but first of all I have only a couple bags and sand is not too easy to acquire. Any rock - stone free earth I have is for a garden, mainly container gardening.

Here is one pic of some hardened 80 pound bags of concrete which I have stored about 10 feet in front of the steel front door of the bunker. >



I hate to have let those 12 good bags get hardened, which they did when I had to leave them over the winter until the next June. But I did not have time to use all of the bags that summer a few years ago. I can use them, if necessary, as more good protection for the slightly vulnerable front door.

Or if I need them elsewhere, such as for walls, I will use them. I have also obtained quite a few hardened bags of concrete from the Encampment, WY landfill. And one more pic showing a wall I made the past couple summers and the huge amount of dirt and rock from the large hole dug for the new cabin. I used 5 eighty pound bags of mortar to hold these bags together. Only the top of the bags are shown with maybe 25 bags total, many of them buried. The hole that I can look and shoot out of the bunker is shown in the middle of this pic >

 

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Two thoughts come to mind.

A simple pocket knife can cause your walls to come tumbling down and where is gets "cold" the frost line can easily go 4 feet deep. Unless those sand bags/earth bags have 0 (zero) moisture you would still have to use plenty of insulation.

Although, I'm sure that "acoustically" your sand/dirt home would do a great job of blocking out your neighbors and that kid driving down the street with is obnoxious stereo going BOOM BOOM BOOM..
 

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Two thoughts come to mind.

A simple pocket knife can cause your walls to come tumbling down and where is gets "cold" the frost line can easily go 4 feet deep. Unless those sand bags/earth bags have 0 (zero) moisture you would still have to use plenty of insulation.

Although, I'm sure that "acoustically" your sand/dirt home would do a great job of blocking out your neighbors and that kid driving down the street with is obnoxious stereo going BOOM BOOM BOOM..
actually, no...

if you watch the videos (not just the couple posted in this thread but many more also posted on youtube) the ideal is to use a mixture of sand and clay that is wet when filling the bags and it'll harden in place. Barbed wire is laid down over each layer of bags and holds the next layer (on top) in place like velcro (but much stronger). also, each layer is tamped down. you need to keep the bags covered with a tarp or something to prevent sun damage (ideally you're using the polypropylene bags) and when finished placing all the bags it's covered with stucco.


I've looked into this method of building and am going to try it when I get a piece of land to build on. (I'd like to try using this method to build something underground. I don't remember if it was on youtube or a thread here, but I saw someone else who used this method to build an underground shelter/root cellar but I don't think he finished it.)

edit: here's a vid I watched a while ago (a little granola for my tastes, but some good ideas)...
 

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Why not mix some dry Portland cement in with the sand. Stack them up and they will harden up just like the ones stored in my garage.
I'm guessing because cement costs money. Generally people who do the earthbag thing have adobe clay soil on their property (ideally anyway). The clay mixed with sand is perfect for this and will harden much like cement.


It's not all that different from rammed earth building (just with bags).
 

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yeah, it's not sand in these bags, it's more like road base. About 70% sand, 20% clay, 10% silts. It's compacted t a point that resembles compressed earth blocks or rammed earth.

When we made adobe, we would mix 5% portland in there, but what worked even better was about 5-10% lime. Those blocks would harden up real nice, and would ring like a bell when you thumped 'em.

I've seen plenty of earthbag buildings go up, and they do fine without any stabilization of the soil. Again, this style has been tested in some serious natural disasters, like earthquakes and tornadoes.

Here's a photo of someone taking down an earthbag dome. Look at how they remove all the soil under the walls, and there is no collapse:


http://www.earthbagbuilding.com/Testing/amazing.htm
 
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