Point Arena, CA


Kirk Mobert

Start Date: 

Monday, May 1, 2017

End Date: 

Tuesday, August 15, 2017


$5600 +discounts


To be determined


The Natural Builder's Apprenticeship Program: advanced training in natural building 2017 DATES ESTIMATE ONLY - TO BE ANNOUNCED SOON/ Point Arena, CA 14 weeks ~ $5,600 20% off for full payment 90 days in advance; 10% off for over 30 days in advance; 10% off for family and friends coming together. Maximum total discount 25%. Instructors: Kirk Mobert and Bryan Burnoski The Natural Builder's Apprenticeship Program is advanced training in natural building. This is our sixth year teaching an apprenticeship program, and it has been designed for people who want to make their livelihood from natural building as builders and/or instructors. Apprentices will experience an intensive building curriculum during their time with us. We teach a wide selection of powerful natural building techniques, stepping through the building process, from design to finish. After their time with us, we help to connect our apprentices with other projects around the country (and abroad) where they continue working with experienced builders and can get kickstarted into a Natual Building career. Some of the things an apprentice can expect to learn include:• Factors to consider when selecting a site to place a natural building. • Designing for utility, comfort, aesthetics, and to make best use of materials available. • How to build with cob, a combination of straw bale and cob, adobe bricks, and other techniques. • Practical experience of the entire process: site selection, design, site preparation laying foundation, building walls, embedding doors, windows, niches, arches, shelves, completing the roof, an earthen floor,  applying plaster finish. • How to build a rocket stove for ecologically efficient heating. Part of SunDog's philosophy in building is continually asking how to maximize local resources and use as little fossil fuel inputs as possible to get the required job done. Knowing that compromises are inevitable with regard to operating outside of the fuel economy, we challenge ourselves with building methods, techniques, and strategies that are more indigenous and depend less on fossil fuel consumption. Apprentices learn the versatility of using different natural materials for building a variety of structures, and for plastering and repair work. We believe that teaching and passing on these ways of building will be most important to future generations. Another challenge SunDog has made for itself is to build "roofed" or otherwise fully protected, small, quality earthen structures within our 9 day workshops. In our workshops, we build small single bedroom sized structures or outside kitchens and bathrooms from the foundation to the roof. Apprentices play a large role in organizing and taking part in the various phases of these workshops. While these buildings are theoretically built in 9 days during the workshops, there are a couple weeks before and after for site preparation and finishing work, in which apprentices play a central role.