Date(s) - Sunday, May 24, 2020 - Sunday, June 28, 2020
9:00 am - 5:30 pm
HOST & LOCATION
Our California host is Chad Wilkins, a travelling musician and creator of Chad Wilkins Music, where you can listen to his latest songs. From his bio: “Mystic Minstrel, Chad Wilkins, is an American/Australian singer-songwriter bringing heart-songs that reveal a better way for a generation in transitional times on our planet! From his lively, progressive grooves, to his deeply prayerful chants, spanning many genres, Chad’s rootsy folk anthems carry themes of love, gratitude, risk, honour, and pure vibrant LIFE(!) – giving voice to our cry for spiritual transformation, harmony with the Earth, and hope for a bright future. Chad tours extensively, living approximately half of the year in Australia and half of the year here in the US. We are fortunate to have his musical energy and sounds throughout the workshop informally and more formally at our end-of-workshop Celebration Night! Please bring your musical instruments regardless of your experience so we can jam together around the fire at night. Chad’s brother who lives across the way from the building site will be offering up his kitchen for the workshop meals (yeah!) and will be hosting the Oven Workshop right after this workshop. His father and uncle also live on the property and will be enjoying and supporting the workshop flow.
The workshop site is located about 10 miles south of Placerville, in a small town in the heart of Gold Country. We will be an hour from Sacramento and 1.5 hours from Lake Tahoe, just a few miles from the Eldorado National Forest in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada. The region is very green with many lakes and the Cosumnes River only a 5-minute drive away for refreshing bathing in the afternoons and on weekends. A little farther of a drive one can get to a variety of Hot Springs. This area is also known for its many wineries. Students will definitely have alot of adventures available in Nature and in the surrounding towns and cities on weekends. San Francisco is only a 3-hour drive away for those wanting some big city action.
The building site is located on the family hill among the pines, oaks and cedars, where Chad’s dad Spark, brother Tyler, and others in the extended family also live in their homes scattered across the hill. It’s way out there in the forest, with a beautiful swimming hole nearby for us to enjoy at the end of our beginning-of-summer work days. The weather in June is phenomenal. It can get pretty hot, but early summer is usually not too bad. We’ll be catching the tail-end of spring which is the most beautiful time of year to be here, with wild flowers scattered about the hill. Nights are refreshing and not cold anymore and mosquitoes are minor, mostly at dawn and dusk if any.
The Advanced Cobber Certification training offers a complete foundation to roof build over a period of 5 weeks. We will be building Chad’s 15m2/ 165 ft2 music studio/living space. The foundation will be built in Week 1 from the local rock on and near the land using lime and sand mortar. On Day 5 we will also pour the first layer of cob floor over tamped gravel and insulation. In weeks 2 & 3 we will build the circular Cob Wall with opening and fixed windows, niches, shelves, bottles, other useful natural elements inserted into the wall for hanging speakers and other musical equipment, electrical and plumbing fixtures and pipes/housing, and the roof connection. In week 4, we will sculpt and plaster the wall, allowing it to dry enough for the reciprocal living green roof to be installed in Week 5, along with the second floor coat on the final day. Students will learn ALOT by building every day with continuous instruction both practical hands-on and theoretical using lecture time, slides and videos. You will leave fully confident to build your own cob house or someone else’s, which is your next step after graduating from our training! This will take you to the next level of understanding and experience after which you will be a much more competent workshop assistant and builder.
ADVANCED COB BUILDING WORKSHOP DESCRIPTION
The 35-day Advanced Cob Building Workshop consists of 25 days of theoretical instruction
(lectures with graphics) and construction for 4 hours in the morning and 3 hours in the afternoon.
Students arrive on Sunday, May 24th, and settle in. The workshop begins at 4pm with an Opening Circle, a Host Site orientation and Introduction to the Project. Dinner is served at 6pm and followed by an Introduction to the 5-week Workshop. Monday morning we begin digging the trench for our Cob Building!!!!
Following Breakfast, the morning session lasts 4 hours with a 20-minute snack pause. Lunch break lasts 1.5 hours which includes rest time before the 3-hour afternoon session begins. Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays there is a 60-minute lecture, followed by construction. Tuesdays and Thursdays we start building right after the rest time. After class in the afternoon there is a 90-minute break before dinner, in which students are encouraged to stretch, do yoga, relax. There is often someone officially or informally leading yoga or some other movement practice in the morning and/or afternoon. There will also be 3-4 evenings (once a week) after dinner for showing slides, videos and having Course-related discussions. Other evenings are free and sometimes other students offer informal courses in their specialties and passions.
The 35-day Course will offer practical learning by building a complete 12m2-15m2 (depending on number of students) curvilinear building from foundation to roof, as described in the “Project” section above. Those who complete the 35-day Workshop will receive an Advanced Cobber Certificate of Completion for Foundation, Cob Walls (which includes Door, Windows, Shelves, Art, Electrical & Plumbing), Floor, Plaster & Roof.
The Advanced Cob Building Workshop begins on Sunday, May 24th, 2020 at 4pm with the Opening Circle and Introduction to Site & Project, the Welcome Dinner and Introduction to the Course. It ends on Sunday, June 28, 2020 after the Closing Circle & Lunch.
Students can arrive a day or two before to acclimate and settle in but will need to
cover their own food needs unless a work trade is approved by Host.
The daily schedule (subject to slight modifications due to climate) will be:
6:30-7:30 Yoga/Chi Gong/Meditation 7:30-8:30 Breakfast
8:00-9:00 Slides/Videos/Discussion (once a week)
Students will learn every phase of building a cob building from foundation through the roof in
lectures/theory. In addition to the lectures, slideshows and videos will be shown to support and
enhance their understanding of cob materials, cob building, design, geography , budgeting,
business options and legal issues.
Our hands-on practice will include:
digging foundation trench
pouring gravel and inserting drainage pipe (if applicable)
building foundation stemwall
analyzing soils and materials
making test bricks
deciding on correct mixture
deciding on best location
making cob w/ partner and solo
building with cob
preparing and inserting the door
preparing and inserting fixed and opening windows
preparing and inserting shelves
inserting bottle windows and other objects
inserting electrical wiring and plumbing in walls
preparing and applying earthen plasters (2 coats)
pouring an earthen floor (2 layers)
preparing walls for roof connection
building roof frame
building roof covering
making small-scale cob designs of future projects, time permitting
In addition to Cob Building practices, the Course material also includes:
legal cob construction practices
creating a cob business (building/teaching)
assisting, interning and teaching with CruzinCobGlobal
REQUIREMENTS & IMPORTANT INFORMATION
Students will need to come prepared for physical labor from Day 1.
Work clothes appropriate for the country and climate we are in
Work boots or other closed-toe shoes
Flip-flops for cobbing days
Rubber dishwashing gloves (for lime mortar)
Wood Hand Saw (cheap), Level (2ft), Hammer (if possible)
Ear Plugs (roof week)
4”-6” Diameter Round Plastic Container Lids (plastering)
Sample of Your Soil (Optional)
These workshops are designed for people that want to learn how to build a complete structure from
start to finish in a professional manner and amount of time. They are very intensive and, while we
make time for yoga, stretching, dancing, music, relaxing….all students are expected to be present and participating in all building/learning hours unless ill or have some other significant reason. This is
because we design the size of the building and organize the structure of the workshop in accordance
with the number of students and when people are absent it impacts the whole group and the other
students have to work harder. In addition Instructors try to set up building work according to students’ preferences and learning needs.
That being said, the workshop intensity also changes from week 1 to week 5. The first foundation week breaks people in with the work of moving, lifting, rolling and placing rocks and is a new and demanding physical experience for most students. It also includes the first layers and coat of cob floor. The second and third weeks of cob making and building are similar to the rock foundation week in physical demand but are more flowing and active in movement and cardiovascular exercise. The fourth week finally slows down and the body can rest as students tap into their creative source and design and sculpt the walls and around niches, shelves, windows, etc. Plastering follows sculpting and is also an enjoyable lightweight physical experience that lends itself to talking and sharing at the wall in a meditative rhythm as the students have bonded and shared deeply through a variety of experiences for a month. In the fifth week, the roof is the beginning of a change of pace from the earthen building work including carpentry skills, power tools, hammering, screwing, trimming, etc. But now the workshop is in its final stretch and there is a boost of energy to wrap up the green roof and the second floor coat, the grand finale on the last day.
For students wanting a more mellow slow-paced cob experience along with time for personal
exploration and experimentation, these workshops are not for you. However you can find a more
suitable workshop online that is usually for a shorter period building a garden wall, a bench, a
compost toilet or some other small-scale project.
Students are required to read “The Hand-Sculpted House” before the workshop begins and any
other book they find, as well as watching videos on YouTube, especially the ones posted on
CruzinCobGlobal’s website under Gallery to get an idea of what is expected. Please bring your
Students must tend to their own personal needs, drink alot of water, rest when needed and exert themselves at a steady pace. Students who cannot do the strenuous physical work should let us
know before the workshop begins so we can adjust appropriately. It is totally OK to come for the lecture/theory part, and then help the building part in less physically demanding ways, ie cutting
straw, sifting for plaster, hammering nails into frames or shelves, sculpting, plastering, cutting bottles. There is alot to do besides making and building with cob!!!!
Finally, please bring a watch or use your phone to be prompt and ready for each part of the Course
including meals. Feel free to share your dietary needs with CCG or the Host and bring your
essential snacks and foods, pillow and whatever you NEED to be comfortable and happy. Feel free
to also bring slides, videos, movies and books to share, as well as a sample of your soil to test.
TRANSPORT & LOGISTICS
Students without a personal vehicle or not carpooling (we will organize a carpooling list a month before the start date) can take a bus (Greyhound/Trailways) to Placerville and an Uber to the site 20 minutes away. Students can fly into San Francisco or Sacramento. Usually all students can get rides from other students to the site from their home base (if in driveable distance) or from the closest city or town along the way.
MEALS, ACCOMMODATIONS & WHAT ELSE TO BRING
Students will be fed 3 high-quality delicious meals a day during the weekdays prepared by experienced cooks. CruzinCobGlobal hosts always serve amazing food to cob students in gratitude for their hard work! Since this is California there is no lack of amazing vegetarian food, which will be the basis of our menu. Students that have non-vegetarian requirements can bring personal items to complete their diet and other requirements can be presented to the cooks a month before the start date so they can make sure to have what is needed. We will try to meet people’s requirements of course so it is important to communicate them as soon as possible. On weekends, food will be available for students to prepare if they are on site, because the cooks will be off-duty.
Students will be camping close by in the lovely meadows, or in the forest. Compost toilets, hot and cold showers, a dining area, yoga/dance space and a cozy hangout communal area will be offered for maximum comfort and enjoyment during this wonderful and transformational time together. The site has normal cell phone service which students can hotspot to their computers if desired..
For those not wanting to camp, there are a few indoor options available on the land for a reasonable fee. Please inquire.
Our host Chad’s additional recommendations to bring are:
Bathing Suit for lakes, rivers and hot springs
Hiking/Backpacking gear if desired for weekends
Warm jacket for evening time
Raingear (occasional rainshowers)
There are many local stores in case you forget something!
Claudine Desiree is the original “Cob Queen” of Santa Cruz, where she founded the original “Sunflower Cob Building” which quickly morphed into the California-based “Cruzin’ Cob”, the cob workshop and building business that evolved over a decade. Once her three sons were “out of the house”, she went for her dream of traveling around the world on a bike teaching cob workshops everywhere every few months to continue supporting herself by offering up what she loves in the countries and languages she is passionate about. To work internationally with no home base required a new name and a website, hence CruzinCobGlobal was born naturally and appropriately and, after 5 years on the road, Claudine has finally found a new home….for now. On the island of São Miguel in the Azores (where are the Azores?) she will establish a home and a small Cob Village called “Quinta da Vida Boa” for retreats, workshops, education and just plain chillin’in with friends and family!!!! CruzinCobGlobal will continue to do the important work of building the best houses and best communities ever of course… with new Teachers hitting the Cob road in 2020 as CCG-trained students begin leading workshops and builds around the world. Claudine will also keep teaching in her favorite places and spreading the Cob everywhere, with more focus on the Azores land and project now. California will always be one of those favorite places, her and her children’s home for 20 years. And the demand to learn Cob in California is always growing with the fires and earthquakes threatening conventional houses. Africa, Asia and Eastern Europe are calling too! And the best part is we have a “legal” Cob Code to use anywhere in the world thanks to the CRI architects’ and engineers’ hard work and focus!
REGISTRATION & PAYMENT
The fee for the 5-week Advanced Cobber Certificate Course which includes tuition, camping and all meals (including weekends when students will prepare for themselves) is:
Very Early Bird Rate: $2525 (in full) by January 24th, 2020
Early Bird Rate: $2625 (in full) by March 24th, 2020
Full Rate: $2725 by April 24th, 2020
***This workshop will be followed by a 7-day Cob Oven & Benches Workshop from June 28-July 5 on the same site. Students wishing to stay on for the next workshop will get a 10% discount on tuition! Go to event page to register…8-student limit***
Payment can be made by bank transfer in USD or Euros, using Transferwise, Paypal, Zelle or Venmo. To hold your spot in this workshop you will need to pay the full amount or a 50% deposit that will be non-refundable after March 24th, 2020. The balance will be due by April 24th, one month before the workshop start date. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to register.
We always offer four work trade discounts, 2 in the kitchen making breakfast in the morning and 2 helping prepare the site in the morning before breakfast. Each work trade is for one hour a day for $10 off per day or $250 off either the food cost or the tuition cost. Work traders need to pay a 50% deposit at the time of their registration to guarantee their spot. To apply for these work trade positions please contact email@example.com as soon as possible because these are the first spots to go.
CHAD AT HOME!
WE LOOK FORWARD TO DANCING WITH YOU IN THE MUD!!!!
Location: Chad's Farm