Public Surplus Sale happening at Salvage Texas June 2nd - 4th, 2017. Members are invited!
This Is A Special Illusion Wall W/2 Closets, A Trundle Day Bed, Teeny Loft, And Designed To Give The Illusion Of Much Greater Size Than It Has.  This Is A 12' Wide X 13'2" Loft Peak.

A provocative perspective for building Organic Cottages

Organic Cottages are a trend I think you will be hearing more about as we are forced to delineate between the idea of Tiny Houses on Wheels which the TV shows have made popular and the tiny houses that are not on wheels and are intended for living in full time. The idea of creating sustainable houses that could be transported but are not road vehicles is one I have built over 70 houses upon. Some have weighed in at over 20,000 lbs

The second roof above lets one leave the windows open and not have to worry much about the rain.

The second roof above lets one leave the windows open and not have to worry much about the rain.

and others well under 5,000 lbs.
My Little Green Vicky at home with her family of Tiny Texas Houses.

My Little Green Vicky at home with her family of Tiny Texas Houses.

The possibilities are many, and all have been built with 95% Pure Salvage. Two trailers have delivered 65 houses so why waste a trailer under just one house. For those that find their new homestead quickly, the axles and trailers will have little meaning later and will likely go to waste as they will seldom be used to move the house, but are tied to it for life.

On the truck and ready to roll, she looks big, and she is, at 15' 10" from the ground she will clear many bridges but not all, so we go where the state tells us when you have a permit.

On the truck and ready to roll, she looks big, and she is, at 15′ 10″ from the ground she will clear many bridges but not all, so we go where the state tells us when you have a permit.

Here she is as she leaves with the truck, 8 months of hard work.

Here she is as she leaves with the truck, 8 months of hard work.

Given the incredible reduction in airspace when the people move into tiny houses on wheels or others that are sealed up rather air tight, one should perhaps consider how much air one needs to survive. What quality of air would you like to breath? Consider the formaldehyde, plasticizers, vinyl, glues, and other materials that outgas into a very tiny breathing space, then factor in that the children under 8 have no blood brain barrier to keep these chemicals from getting into their brains while youngsters and hurting their brains for life. It is critical people understand the dangers caused by the environment that outgassing creates when the immune systems are compromised when they are stressed out by having to give up their homes they have been in for decades. After years of abusing our immune systems, the Baby Boomer generation is going to have to pay attention their houses as Lupus, Fibromyalgia, and other immune system or health issues plague them as they enter their 50’s and 60’s. Tiny Houses, if not built properly, will only aggravate the problem and result in consequences that few seem to be anticipating. Soon the evidence will be undeniable and the home being built as toxin free as possible will become a big issue for those that care about their health and that of those they love who share their tiny homes with them.
heaven roped off  2599

If you're lucky you may get inside to sleep up in the loft.  The dreams you'd have in Heaven are the best that can be sought.

If you’re lucky you may get inside to sleep up in the loft. The dreams you’d have in Heaven are the best that can be sought.

The big bed or the little bed, it matters not indeed, for if you get to Heaven, you may seldom want to sleep.

The big bed or the little bed, it matters not indeed, for if you get to Heaven, you may seldom want to sleep.

A tiny bath is all most people need.

A tiny bath is all most people need.

The entrance has its stairs now, as every Heaven should, a path to reach the afterlife, in this case of salvage from a dozen homes combined.

The entrance has its stairs now, as every Heaven should, a path to reach the afterlife, in this case of salvage from a dozen homes combined.

We should look at the environment we create for people that we call a home, as a due diligence owed to the people by the builders and the companies that create the materials being used to construct the typical houses being built today. Factoring the ecological, health, and energy costs of the materials we use is a responsible form of diligence that can be done if one sets their mind to it, but few builders do. As responsible stewards of the world and the continual call for stopping the pollution, imports of the last rain forests, issues of toxins created in the processing of the aluminum, vinyl, sheetrock, glass, etc. I suggest that we measure the cost of energy used to create and then separately, the energy required to live in housing, not just the amount we use after we move in, then perhaps we can make people more aware of the true costs of our houses from an energy, resources, and human energy perspective.

Here is a 4' wide tub with a matche set of play seats on the side.  Roofing shingles clad the walls and it is ready fr a bath, or more.

Here is a 4′ wide tub with a matche set of play seats on the side. Roofing shingles clad the walls and it is ready fr a bath, or more.

A bit of the bath view with the mirror and the bath, it is a space worth visiting, and spending one sweet night.

A bit of the bath view with the mirror and the bath, it is a space worth visiting, and spending one sweet night.

I look back into the years when I built this charming house.  My style has changed but still I love its shadows and the light.  The space is great to live in or just t take a break.

I look back into the years when I built this charming house. My style has changed but still I love its shadows and the light. The space is great to live in or just t take a break.

The should calculate the cost to create glass, plastics, vinyl windows, wiring, tubs, sinks, numerous parts, and the trees it takes to build as well. These are the energy costs that amount to more than what you will use while living in the house for decades, and likely, by the time the house is 15 years old, the ac system, carpet, roof, water heater, fogged up energy efficient windows, and many other parts will already need to be replaced, thus the added energy costs to create, ship, stock, sell, and install them adds to the superficial costs of operating a house for heating and cooling, which is all that is used now to determine the efficiency of a house. Seems rather short sighted to not calculate the costs of the materials it takes to build it in addition to the living costs after it is built when the former cost is the greater of the two. So the 15 or 20 year life of one product versus the 100 year life of another becomes more meaningful in the equation since the materials might create a structure with 3 times the lifespan and is using 1/10th of the resources, the impact is much greater.

Imagine how much iron ore had to be melted down to create these sorts of tubs and sinks.  All that is saved by using them again.

Imagine how much iron ore had to be melted down to create these sorts of tubs and sinks. All that is saved by using them again.

The ìLove House Bathî

The ìLove House Bathî

Love house interior

I love the highback sink and the antique decorative tin for a backsplash.

I love the highback sink and the antique decorative tin for a backsplash.

Now, if you can build a house with 95% of the parts costing you a total of 40 gallons of diesel fuel in energy, whether used to run the generator to de-nail the wood, to run the saws to build the house, the nail guns to shoot out and shoot in the new nails, or the few other new parts needed to build an organic sustainable house. The 5% of new items required are screws, nails, underlayment for exterior walls, insulation, wiring, and plumbing. The fewer materials you create anew to build a house with, the lower the energy and resource component in the bigger energy equation. Make the tiny houses energy efficient as well as organic, sustainable, and healthy… you have a paradigm shift in thinking about how to calculate the real cost of housing to the planet. IF 40 gallons of fuel, truly a small amount of energy released to manifest 95% of the house means that it costs 1 gallon of diesel per year of its first 40 years of its potential 100 year lifespan.
Nice original Cypress porch posts.  Though the porch floor is gone, it gives us a good look at what is below.

Nice original Cypress porch posts. Though the porch floor is gone, it gives us a good look at what is below.

Nice blues, yellows, white, and beige, but also a bit of excitement on the back porch.

Nice blues, yellows, white, and beige, but also a bit of excitement on the back porch.

Harwood day 3 3303
Better still is the amount of energy saved before the house was built by not having to create the other parts as well. For example, the cast iron sink that is 60 lbs with a thick porcelain coating on it was salvaged thus the savings by not having to create cast iron from iron ore, cast the sink in a mold, put it through a kiln to bake on the thick porcelain, and ship it to Texas from the far away foundries that create it. Add to that the average additional cost of going through the marketing chain from China where it likely would be made, ships, warehouses, big box stores, and eventually though the builder into the house cost equation, including advertising cost for all of the entities involved to make it all happen.
The true cost of the sink from a resource and energy cost is huge, human energy is still great, and thus, the old sink that would have been scrapped comes to life again to save the energy it took to make it, and bank it toward the future. The heat and fuel it took to create it is enough to fuel the entire energy needs of the organic energy efficient house it goes into for more than 50 years alone. The savings by not having to make new glass and cut trees to create the wooden windows that are rather energy efficient once weather stripped, again, enough to heat and cool the home for 15 years for it take a whole lot of energy to melt sand into glass. That does not value or mention the human energy required to blow the bubbles in a pit, lift it to the table, cut it and unroll it to create sheets of glass as they did up until 1919.

Looking in and up into the lofts....

Looking in and up into the lofts….

View from the master bedroom.

View from the master bedroom.

The Retreat would be a great house for the family to get away to, and being within 22 miles of San Marcos, even the college kids could stay here if they wanted to while going to school at Texas State, though a short commute, if one staged the classes right, it would not be so bad.

The Retreat would be a great house for the family to get away to, and being within 22 miles of San Marcos, even the college kids could stay here if they wanted to while going to school at Texas State, though a short commute, if one staged the classes right, it would not be so bad.

retreat shots oiled outside 090

rodents retreat 4

Rodney's retreat

Rodney's retreat

Here you can see them drawing out the corbel for under the tread.

Here you can see them drawing out the corbel for under the tread.

If one saves as much energy as a house would use in 100 years before it is built by not having to create the materials it will take to build it, and it only cost you 40 gallons of diesel fuel and some human energy to accomplish that feat, wouldn’t it make sense to promote that sort of building on a national scale. That would be the target, knowing it is possible, thus some could or shoot for something lower but similar in scope if one could not attain that high of a percentage of salvaged materials in the total construction. How do we inspire that sort of thinking and a shift in the paradigm that is presently dominating the building materials industry, the one of all new materials, imported, and without any significant points to count or regard for the energy it takes to bring it together in a house as part of the Energy Star and LEEDs rating systems. Once we transition to calculating the total cost to build a house, the savings from salvage and reward people for building with this standard in mind, we can create an industry from what is now trash.

If you tract the value of the materials that go into the landfill and see what taxes get paid on the building materials that now comprise 50% of the landfills across the country. They pay nothing in property taxes nor for the loss of resources, the release of carbon there after, or the pollution from the sites. If we take 25% of the landfills, just half of the building materials presently going into the landfill and use them to build houses instead that deserve the same tax free status as the trash in the landfill for the benefits to the planet in savings that they thus create. They keep the carbon trapped in the old growth lumber we can save, the siding, glass that was formed with coal pulled from the mines by 12 year olds, and respect the enormous human energy it took by our forefathers to create all of it. We respect them and the giant trees 4′ across and over a hundred feet tall by not throwing the lumber they were turned into long before the end of its usable lifespan. If we throw it away, there is no more. Instead, if we gave a lifetime tax exemption for what ever portion of a house that was salvage, people would be clamoring for 95% Pure Salvage, not just 40% so they could live in a tiny Organic Cottage for the rest of their lives. These are the sorts of legitimate rewards we need to offer the retiring baby boomers so that they have a choice in saving the world for the kids to come and being rewarded for using up what would have filled badly needed landfill space so that we do not have to build more landfills.

The front view shows the double doors to the grand entry where they used to let the wind blow from the front to the back out matching doors.  The metal roof shows major hail damage and that is one reason I think it is aluminum but I have not checked to be sure.

The front view shows the double doors to the grand entry where they used to let the wind blow from the front to the back out matching doors. The metal roof shows major hail damage and that is one reason I think it is aluminum but I have not checked to be sure.

The siding is in good shape on both sides of the house.  Windows are aluminum and upgrades from the original.  We will be giving those away to participants in the Bootcamp that want them and show it by their effort.

The siding is in good shape on both sides of the house. Windows are aluminum and upgrades from the original. We will be giving those away to participants in the Bootcamp that want them and show it by their effort.

The main body of the house was added onto later.  You can tell the difference by the type of siding used which is T117 on the back part.

The main body of the house was added onto later. You can tell the difference by the type of siding used which is T117 on the back part.

We brought back about 700 sq. ft. of t&g in a variety of colors.

We brought back about 700 sq. ft. of t&g in a variety of colors.

Brown, green beige, and natural colors.

Brown, green beige, and natural colors.

Another look at the 5" flooring in Long Leaf Pine.  It is also behing the wall board, in many cases, just cheap paneling covering it up.  All we have to do is take it out and put it in a pile to get to the good stuff below.

Another look at the 5″ flooring in Long Leaf Pine. It is also behing the wall board, in many cases, just cheap paneling covering it up. All we have to do is take it out and put it in a pile to get to the good stuff below.

This is my provocative proposal to those people who swear by the global warming theories, the stop pollution, save the planet, and resources, as well as our health and the future. Give the people a break on what they use to build with out of salvage and the jobs it creates can not be exported for the houses, barns, and buildings that need to be salvaged are here already. Building new houses from salvage will create millions of jobs in America and empower many to work without college educations and feed their families if they have one that is worthless. It is a way to create housing from the homeless and others we love with pure human energy, something we have an abundance of in this country. We can work our way out of this present economic problem without the government, global corporations, or handouts, just using this massive treasure of a virgin forest standing all about most of us in the central US, southern US, and other areas that were once industrial hubs and are now blighted. Let us move the created resources around the country where needed and get the truckers moving again. WE can not make bricks for what we can transport them for with oil so cheap. We can not find lumber the likes of what I get from salvaged houses in the south. Let us convert it to the future of this country instead of service and retail jobs that are floundering in most parts of the country these days. We can join together to create solutions.
The pop up table is on the back of the refrigerator cabinet.  Above is the convection oven.  On the far side wall, a trundle bed.

The pop up table is on the back of the refrigerator cabinet. Above is the convection oven. On the far side wall, a trundle bed.

The Monty Grand Kitchen was one of the nicest of them all.

The Monty Grand Kitchen was one of the nicest of them all.

Medicinal  Kitchen

Medicinal Kitchen

Here you can see the back side of the bar and the door to the bath opened.

Here you can see the back side of the bar and the door to the bath opened.

Top view of the Monty Kitchen

Top view of the Monty Kitchen

variety of baths 3580

variety of baths 3569

variety of baths 3584

variety of baths 3587
The concept of Pure Salvage Outposts are simply Resource Banks that people can gather the salvage in, barter, share knowledge, labor, and skills to help each other not only create houses, but communities where skills like teaching can be bartered for house parts, help, clothing and food if needed. Each person has something to offer in such a co op and all have much to gain. The common resources stored to build organic houses, mostly at the cost of human energy, not new resources, and the tools and spaces to build in, common trailer and truck to ship with, and the community to support each person in their progress to new skills and self sufficiency. Why not fund it with the gifts left to us by our ancestors, old houses, barns, and buildings full of treasure we could not otherwise afford?

The "El Campo Expedition" can be seen on Youtube in its Free educational seminar forms, as a music video worthy of great awards, and in a gallery deluxe on Facebook if you can find it amongst the treasure trove on that site for now.

The “El Campo Expedition” can be seen on Youtube in its Free educational seminar forms, as a music video worthy of great awards, and in a gallery deluxe on Facebook if you can find it amongst the treasure trove on that site for now.

This is my vision, my dream, for the Pure Salvage Living Renaissance to spread so all may share in the benefits of building incredible houses out of salvage and in doing so, empowering the masses to all have what they need, and know they are preserving the future of the planet for the generations that will follow. How better can we respect those who came before us, share the planet with us, and all it took to make these miracles possible every day?

If you have not heard the Song of Salvage in the two versions available as Music Videos…. Please do take a moment and enjoy them as they are full of great pictures and have a great tune to go with them.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pKXCz3rTqHA
and the other by Johnny B and the Apostles of Salvage…
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KbxfMai42SY

Thanks for sharing the vision and perhaps helping it manifest in your part of the world.

Darby