Webpage for the PlyPAD project

I’ve been putting together a web page to serve as a consolidation of everything we did and learned working on the PlyPAD project. I just finished a first draft, and I would love any feedback on what else I could add to make the page better.

It is public now, but not linked from anywhere on the website.


Let me know what you think!


That’s a great project and a good running start at yew write up. The clear story adds to the space, don’t let it get dropped… a shame that the module joint made the second set infeasible. What was the target materials budget for this unit in production?

Great question! I’ll add a budget section because that is an important part about building affordable housing and that nobody is ever transparent about. The target budget was $5,000 delivered and we’re right about there. If we were to do it again I think we could build one for under $3,000 delivered. We made some choices and used nicer grade plywood than we needed to to show off for the museum

That was well written, an excellent summary of a fantastic project. After reading it, I have a couple comments to consider.

Think you mean to use the word “clerestory” rather than “clear story” here:

“so that each module would have a clear story to let in natural light.”

Clerestory is a sort of window up near the ceiling. It is also spelled clearstory, but as I understand it, clerestory is the typical spelling (at least that is the word my window guy chose to describe mine…).

Same change here:

“two clear stories instead of four and each”

And a couple more times here:

“I have mixed feelings about the clear story. The clear story module is too tall to be transported on the back of a regular truck without hitting power lines, and is almost entirely uninsulated while the rest of the pod is insulated to R28. Because of these two concerns the second clear story was removed from the design part way through. That being said, the clear story does bring in beautiful light and makes the space feel like less of a cave which is important. It is a powerful design element which needs to be revisited from an engineering perspective.”

Finally, did you mean to say “PlyPAD” here instead of Maslow?

"A 12’ tall box joint like the ones which make up the edges of Maslow is very susceptible to any inaccuracy in the parts. "

As far as I know, a typical Maslow has no 12-foot box joints. If it does, I will find out soon!

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Thank you @mfpiechowski for the excellent suggestions those are exactly the types of things I was hoping to catch :grin:

Edit: The changes have been made

Thank you Hannah and Bar for doing this and to all supporting you.
The documentary is a pleasure to read and see…
Between Life, Work, Relationship and 3angular vs. 4ilateral, I almost forgot about the possibilities.
I would love to see more, the other houses not Maslow related and also like to know if you plan to follow up and through by getting feedback from the tenants?


Thanks @Gero! You are the people supporting us and we can’t ever thank you enough.

We asked if we would be able to get feedback from the resident and we were told that once someone moves in it is their home. They may give us feedback, but it will be up to them to decide so we are hopeful they will be interested in letting us know how to make the next one better, but we also want to respect their privacy and home :grin:

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Awesome write up and a great way to put maslow to work! It would be interesting to have an estimate of the cuting / build time assuming a final digital design prior to construction.

Wonderful project.

I only wonder why the bed is part of the house. Wouldn’t it be better to have a seperate bed that can be moved a bit from the wall, so that cold air that drops from the wall doesn’t fall into the bed but goes to the floor. That could prevent the owner of the space from backpains, and cold feet etc.

I hope you add a feedback option IN the house, Where the future owner can give his own feedback.
And share that feedback here on the site if possible. This way some of the PlyPAD’s can become part of the community. (if they want to, the privacy aspect is also something to consider in that regard)


I’m looking forward for updates. What about a PlyPAD subject section here on the forum?

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Great work sharing your knowledge working on the PlyPAD project @bar . This is something that can evolve into quite a movement, especially when coupled with Maslow’s democratisation of the CNC space. I’m definitely keeping a keen eye on things. One question please, is there a bill of materials, even if incomplete, available for the project? I’ve had a look on the web page and can’t seem to find any. This would be invaluable in analysing the cost and seeing if there are ways to achieve any savings in one’s own local context. I also second the thought about a PlyPAD subject section here if possible.

Do you plan on making plans, bom, cut files, and assembly instructions available?

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Here is another cnc’d building:

14’ x 16’ workspace or storage, etc.


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I agree. This is an excellent project. It should have a section of its own I think. Building for the homeless is becoming very important. The Women’s Village is a marvelous use for your brilliant minds and hearts. There is a growing movement to build for homeless veterans also. In Detroit, I think it was, advocates are even beginning to offer structures to the homeless for sale to encourage ownership and stability. God Bless!

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Thanks @beeline999! I hadn’t seen that makershed project before and I like how they did it a lot. The plans to build the PlyPAD are available at the bottom of the webpage. I haven’t put a complete BOM together, mostly because I haven’t had the time. Doing the PlyPAD was a great experience which taught us a lot about the ways CNC could play a role in construction, and it also taught us a lot about how to make the machine better (triangular kinematics). I am not sure I would recommend building our design exactly, but instead I would recommend taking the lessons learned and applying them to future designs.

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