Systems

ArchitectDAVID TAPIAS

CollaboratorsRICARD PAU, CARLOS GONZALVO

FabricationFUSTES SEBASTIÀ

Year2015-ONGOING

PhotographJOSÉ HEVIA

Blockhuts System

Bringing CNC fabrication techniques to the limit and using DfMAD principles, we are able to make an entire hut that is easily assembled by two people in one day, with no auxiliary means needed, and with no screws or nails. This and each piece design allows for a total disassembly and reassembly as many times as necessary. Each part is subtracted from a standard pine beam section. It is sourced from local saw mills.

CHARACTERIZATION AND QUESTION

The countryside is abundant with materials one can build with. In some occasions, one may not have enough time to wait for a felled tree to dry, or might need to build something that leaves no footprint on the site and can be easily disassembled, transported and reassembled elsewhere. This is the framework from which we started thinking about ways to build a hut.

How can it be easily assembled, disassembled, transported and reassembled in a totally different context, while creating a neutral environmental impact?


HYPOTHESIS AND PREDICTIONS

By working with standard wood beams sections, thick enough to provide sufficient insulation and thermal inertia to an indoor, while being light enough to be easily transported by two people. And transforming them with CNC milling tools so that each part fits another by geometry, without any nails, screws or metal plates, providing enough water and air tightness for a long lasting mono-material structure that is as robust and light as possible.


PROTOTYPING AND EXPERIMENTING

Digital

Height +20 cms.

Height +40 cms.

Height +80 cms.

Height +220 cms.

Assembly process

Physical

To help us check and find the potential flaws of the BIM model, we made a 1:10 model in collaboration with Rels. Even though we had revised the digital model to the point we thought it was ready, the physical model unveiled several aspects that needed to be reconsidered:

We worked together with Fustes Sebastià to develop the full scale prototype. Their closed production cycle allowed us to choose the right logs, felled from one of their forests, and carry out short trial and error physical prototypes of the different system components. First by testing milling times and the limits of their CNC beam router and checking the right joint tolerances, and finally by assembling all the full prototypes in the workshop to make sure everything fit.

In summer 2015, we assembled the prototype on a hill in Porrera (Priorat). Over the past years we have been able to test its endurance, observe which parts should be slightly or radically different, and we keep track of these iterations in a new BIM model, always ready for F2F production. It still sits there today, welcoming guests to the Camp Commons project.

CASE STUDIES