Welcome to the Freeville Earthship, located outside of Ithaca, NY! Please feel free to explore our site for thousands of pictures and in-depth posts about our process building an earthship.

Saturday, June 30, 2012

4th tire course, 3rd thermal wrap tier DONE!

We worked really hard this week in the HOT weather!  We finished pounding and leveling the entire 4th course.  Then we decided to put up the 3rd tier of the thermal wrap (insulation board) and backfill more.  Our wall is getting taller and taller, and our dirt pile is really diminishing!  A special thank you to my mom, Char, who camped on site and worked hard from Wednesday through Sunday!  She said she didn't want to leave until the 5th course had begun.  Other visitors this week included Reuben and Chad's dad Gary.  Thanks everyone who is coming out to support us!
I found my mom taking a cool break in a cave Chad had dug from out dirt pile.

Reuben, me, and my mom working on the last tires of the 4th course

Chad and mom shoveling dirt against the 3rd tier of the thermal wrap to keep it perpendicular

Gary on the tractor to bring in more backfill
Sunset over the earthship

Friday, June 29, 2012

Video of our Earthship on 6/29/12

It's pretty fun to plan out and imagine the interior of our finished earthship, but I don't want to forget how cool it looks with the open rectangle and structure of the tires and dirt and cement.  Here's a walkthrough of the dusty tire wall and interior.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Cans cans cans!

Our current pile of cans
A can wall in someone else's earthship

We have been saving cans for months and months now, and have a pile of over 5,000.  (Yet, we still need more!)  The cans are reused as bricks to take up space in the interior cement walls.  My rough estimate of the number of cans in the picture of a can wall above is about 2,000.  If you can spare the 5 cents per can, feel free to drop your cans off to us! 

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Student Visitors

This past weekend, Chad and I had several students from our respective schools stop over to learn about the earthship and to pound a tire or two!  Thank you so much everyone, and come back any time!

Caroline Elementary School students and families:

Sisters Emma and Savannah pause from shoveling dirt to hug and smile for the camera

Tom pours a bucket of dirt into the tire and Savannah and Lauren push it into the sides 

Owen and Emma pounding tires with 8 pound sledgehammers!

Savannah takes a break to play in the gravel pile

Brothers Eli and Ben eager to pound some tires

Groton Middle and High School students and families:

Jenny and Cali got a great start on the 4th course of tires
Camille, Christine, Lisa, Alissa, and Josh (not pictured) added to the momentum!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

2nd tier of thermal wrap, Cisterns in place!

     Today was a big day in that we accomplished putting up the entire 2nd tier of the thermal wrap, backfilled it, leveled it off, and moved the four 1,700 gallon cisterns into place!  It looks so much taller now!  Onto the 4th course of tires...

3rd course done, ready to put up the 2nd tier of the thermal wrap

2nd tier of thermal wrap in place!

Laying some gravel as a base for the cisterns behind the thermal wrap

Gravel laid and leveled... now for the cisterns!

Slowly bringing them over on the tractor

All four cisterns in place!

These will eventually be buried and collect and store rainwater for our water supply

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Special Delivery

Today the truck from New Mexico arrived... it was a huge semi more than half full of building materials and components to go into the earthship!  Thank you to Paul, John, Gary, Adam, Bryan, Colin, and Shane for coming out in the rain for a few hours to help us unload everything!  It would have taken us hours and hours and hours without you guys!

Colin and Shane loading things from the road onto a tractor
John and Paul helping Chad unload from the tractor into the barn

Colin, Shane, Adam, and Chad, assessing their job

I found our beautiful doorway!
Muscle men Bryan, Shane, and Colin
Emptied in under 3 hours!

Monday, June 11, 2012

3rd course of tires= done!!!

We are now officially 1/3 of the way through our 9 courses of tires!
Pretty soon, we'll be placing our four 1,700 gallon cisterns behind the thermal wrap.  These will hold the rainwater we'll collect before it is filtered and pumped into our house.

Chad's dad was a huge help and came and dumped dirt with his tractor to backfill the tirewall. 
The beginning of our orchard: 6 apple trees, 3 peach trees, and a cherry tree

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Groton High School Students

Groton High School students Paige and Reid worked for a long time on Sunday to help us out with the build. 
They pounded tires,
...and taped some bottle bottoms to create bottle bricks

All in 90 degree weather!  Thanks Paige and Reid, you ROCK!