ASBN/Strohbau News

Straw Bale Training for European Professionals with certification (STEP) 2019

Herbert Gruber
vorgestellt von Herbert Gruber

deutsche Version

Welcome to the Straw Bale Training for European Professionals with certification (STEP) 2018-2019. You may register the whole training (400 h) or single Units. Language: English/German. Look also at last years STEP Training Galleries 2017


Free Infodays STEP 2019
Saturday, Feb. 2, 13:00 – 17:00, Baierdorf 6, 3720 Ravelsbach, (free) please register
Saturday, March 2, 13:00 – 17:00, Baierdorf 6, 3720 Ravelsbach, (free) please register
each with visit of the Virtual Building Site and our Straw Bale House
Please register for free to asbn@baubiologie.at


Short Overview of the next Units 2019 (Unit 2-5 consist of THEORY and min 5-day PRACTICE):
All dates subject to weather-related changes (practice) and a minimum number of participants (5)

Unit 1T (INTRO) Theory: 29.-31. März, Ravelsbach/NÖ
Unit 2T (INFILL & PREFAB) Theory/P: 1.-5. April 2019, Ravelsbach/NÖ
Unit 2+5P (INFILL & PUTZE) Practice: 13.-26. April 2019, Frauenkirchen, Bgld, Link
Unit 3T (LOADBEARING) Theory/P: 7.-10. May, 2019, Ravelsbach/NÖ
Unit 3P (LOADBEARING) Practice: 13.-17. May, 2019, in preparation
Unit 4T (WRAPPING) Theory/P: 1.-4. July 2019, Ravelsbach/NÖ
Unit 4P (WRAPPING) Practice: 5.-13. July, 2019, Ravelsbach/NÖ
Unit 5T+P (FINISHES, PUTZE) Theory+Practice (incl. Tadelakt): 19.-30. July 2019, Ravelsbach/NÖ

(basic) accomodation and food are included in all practical Trainings, in Theory-Units we prepare food and share the costs.

Registration & Infos: ASBN, Herbert Gruber, E-Mail: ASBN@baubiologie.at

Time-Schedule as jpg/STEP-2018-2019-TimeSchedule (updated on 22.10.2018):Register Now!

Complete Training (400 h): If you register the whole Training, we give you the Extra-Module 1 (energy self-sufficiency) as a free bonus (minus 180,-). So, as a package, we offer the complete course (8 Units), instead of 4.200, – by € 3.920, –. Payable at once before or by permanent order in 10 monthly rates à € 400, -/month.

Total course for second person, students & unemployed persons: € 2.990, -,
Payable by permanent order in 10 rates à € 300, -/month.

Booking individual/single modules: The eight modules can also be booked individually and independently of the certificate and the final examination. In order to participate in modules of your choice, the additional visit of Module 1 is highly recommended (introduction): You will receive a European pass of courses, in which all completed modules including assessment by the trainer are registered.

In any case, once you have completed all eight modules, you will be able to take the final exam and you will be awarded as ECVET Certified Straw Bale Builder (recognized in the European Union).

Registration & Infos: ASBN, Herbert Gruber, E-Mail: ASBN@baubiologie.at


FAQs (Trainers, questions & answers to STEP Training)


Musterelemente auf der Virtuellen Baustelle in RavelsbachUnit 1: Introduction in Straw Bale Building

We start with a general introduction into history and status-quo of Straw Bale Building. there is a lot to learn about the building material (straw bales) itself: Procurement, production, quality assessment, testing, handling, storage … The tools are presented and partly self-made (stuffers).

Theory & Practice: € 250,–/Person; € 180,– for Students
Partner-price: Your partner just pays the reduced students-price!

Language: English/German


Unit 2: Straw Bale-Infill, CUT-Technique, Prefab

We get to know the different wood frame construction methods: Wooden constructions (CUT in the middle, CUT supporting planking, double post) are infilled with straw bales without gaps (infill = filling in), prefabricated wooden straw components (modules) assembled professionally. Bales are cut, tied and / or efficiently compressed in the walls. In the practical workshop, a detached house in timber frame construction is filled with straw bales and then (in the second half) plastered with clay (and lime). We show how windows are sealed with flax and sealing tapes, how electrical cables are laid in straw bale walls and how details are executed correctly.

Theory & Practice: € 580,–/Person; € 370,– for Students
Partner-price: Your partner just pays the reduced students-price!

Language: English/German

Impressions from last years U2-Infill-Training 2017 in Ravelsbach and Valencia
Impressions from last U2-Practical Building Sites Pulkau/NÖ, Summerau and Ernstbrunn


Unit 3: Lasttragender Strohballenbau (in Kooperation mit Okambuva)

The initial straw building does not need any supporting construction for walls, the straw bales alone are „load bearing“. Wood is used for protection and support (base plaste, roof assembly, window frames), structural integrity (ring beam) as well as for additional construction. In theory, we handle the preparation and selection of the right bales, statics, the construction schedule and construction of load-bearing straw bale houses. In the practical workshop a building with small bales is built load bearing and plastered.

Theory & Practice: € 670,–/Person; € 610,– for Students
Partner-price: Your partner just pays the reduced students-price!

Language: English/German

Impressions from last years U3-Training in Styria (Trainer: Virko Kade) in Gallery
Impressions from last years U3 Praxisbaustelle 2017 in Fürstenfeld (load bearing, big bales)


Unit 4: Wrapping – External Straw Insulation

In „wrapping“ buildings are all around covered with straw bales. We show wrapping possibilities for insulation thicknesses from 15 cm with diagonal bracing, pallets, slats and facade panels. We learn how to make an additional foundation and set up an auxiliary construction, as well as the professional attachment and the complete, windproof design.
In the practical workshops, a barn and „Fachwerkhaus“ is restored and wrapped (inside) with straw bales and plastered with clay, for fixation we assemble a CUT hybrid construction.

Theory & Practice: € 490,–/Person; € 310,– for Students
Partner-price: Your partner just pays the reduced students-price!

Language: English/German

Impressions from last years U4 building saites in Plank am Kamp, NÖ (whole 36 cm bales) and Vienna(15 cm straw insulation)


Unit 5: Finishes (Clay-, Lime Plasters, Wood Cladding)

Only the most meticulously designed surfaces prevent structural damage in the long term, especially in diffusion open building construction. Material knowledge (clay, lime plaster) as well as a lot of practice from tbase plaster to fine plaster characterize this unit.
In the practical workshop, we plaster with clay (earth) and lime, manual plastering is shown as well as spray plaster.

Theory & Practice: € 820,–/Person; € 720,– for Students
Partner-price: Your partner just pays the reduced students-price!

Language: English/German

Impressions from last years U5 STEP Unit 5


bauphysikUnit 6: Building Physics & Sustainability

The knowledge of the building physical properties of building materials is an indispensable basis for their optimal use. It is thermal bridges, mold, moisture (condensation) … to recognize and avoid. We treat the subjects of thermal insulation, fire protection, sound insulation, moisture protection and heating and calculate and optimize straw construction according to their required properties. We show how sustainability, wellbeing and a healthy indoor climate can be implemented in a straw bale house.

Theory & Practice: € 460,–/Person; € 270,– for Students
Partner-price: Your partner just pays the reduced students-price!

Extra Unit Mass Storage Ovens/Solar Energy Autarky planned for 2019, Virtual Building Site Ravelsbach/NÖ
Topics: DIY-Solar Cooker, Solar Can-Ventilation, Storage Ovens, Pizza Ovens,…

Theory & Practice: € 250,–/Person; € 180,– for Students
Partner-price: Your partner just pays the reduced students-price!

Language: English/German


Unit 7: Solar Architecture, Design, Installation

The principle of „straw construction“: You learn to read plans and to implement construction plans and know how construction, insulation, electrics, water, building services and heating … interact. With a straw construction overview, you prevent building defects and repair building damage and keep the budget within limits. We also show how organic straw bale building is possible and how to save on building costs. With practical workshop planning of a straw bale house, videos and discussions.

Theory & Practice: € 460,–/Person; € 270,– for Students
Partner-price: Your partner just pays the reduced students-price!

Language: English/German


marketing-kommunikationUnit 8: Communication & Calculation

Market knowledge improves your bargaining position, knowledge of suppliers and prices enables costing. We show (open-source) tools and software for self-presentation (CI), administration and successful (social media) appearance. The basis of everything is communication and knowledge about target groups, other craftsmen (networking) and suppliers (where can I get what?). We show how the price of a straw bale house can be estimated, calculated and communicated. And explain the differences between soft and hard costs and show savings.

Theory: € 280,–/Person; € 180,– for Students
Partner-price: Your partner just pays the reduced students-price!

Language: English/German


Final Examinations to become a „Certified Straw Bale Builder“:
Written & Oral Tests (also on agreement).

€ 160,–/Person; € 80,– for Students; Virtual Building Site Ravelsbach/NÖ
Language: English/German


STEP-Trainers:

FAQs (Trainers, questions & answers)

BuildStrawPro-Site strawbale.training (Learning Outcomes deutsch/englisch)


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Über den Autor

Herbert Gruber

Herbert Gruber

Netzwerker seit der Gründung des ASBN 1999, Obmann des ASBN seit 2006, Buchautor (Bauen mit Stroh, Neues Bauen mit Stroh), Gesellschafter von StrohTec (Österreichs erster Strohbaufirma), hat in Ravelsbach im Zuge eines Haus der Zukunft plus-Projektes die Virtuelle Stroh-Baustelle ins Leben gerufen, wo seit 2010 regelmäßig Workshops stattfinden. 2015 gründete er die Kooperation StrohNatur, die nun auch Strohballenhäuser (mit und ohne Workshops) errichtet.