Microhouse Update

From Chris, our construction manager:

During the last few days of September and the first week of October we will be constructing a prototype house, using prototype machines, and using a prototype process: swarming construction. Numerous volunteers, with various skill levels, will be refining a method of parallel processing to construct modular components of a house that can be quickly assembled to create a beautiful, durable, and sustainable dwelling for a couple: the Microhouse.

The build processes will proceed from an instruction manual, currently being designed, that will open the doors of creating one’s own shelter to almost anyone.

Every step of the process will be rigorously documented. As components are built, the instruction manual will be marked up with times for each step and notes for how both the process and the manual can be improved. At the end of each work day, debriefing sessions will capture lessons learned to refine the process. As the next day’s work proceeds, while some volunteers are building in the field, others will be revising the manual to reflect the lessons learned the day before. In this way, the learning will be captured as it happens. At the end of the build week, the product we will deliver is far more than a house, it is a process that makes building more accessible to everyone.

We are preparing now. We framed some sample modular carpentry, got the brick press out and installed new controllers, got the brick press-soil pulverizer-Power  Cube out, and we are planning the workflow. You can follow Chris Reinhart’s work – he is our designer and construction manager. See our last post to see how the design is evolving.


  1. Joanne Avery

    Hi Marcin,
    Sorry to contact you this way, but I couldn’t find a more private method. I just contacted Carlos Valle, it’s the Galapagos reunion (I am in the process of digitizing all my old negatives and got nostalgic) and we wanted to know what you were doing now. This looks like an amazing project! I am going to listen to your TED talk as soon as I have time. I am working on making my small place in UT as self-sustainable as possible, but I haven’t been here long and am just getting started. It would be great to hear from you, and Carlos says hello too!

  2. Al Friedar

    I am confused.. your “contact us” is not any kind of a contact page. Is that intentional??
    My question is I am looking for where all the parts are laid out and how to build each piece and measurement. I also need to know what tools I need .. what kind of welder, Do I need a plasma cutter not sure what that is but I have an idea. Does open source mean I can copy the design exactly… if so then I need many many measurements.. I want to go help a CSA grow and feed more people and build more homes too with the brick machine.. please write me back is there a cd to buy on each tool you might want to build? or are they all going to be on one? I don’t want all of the tools. Al