Hidie Hole

Mark Clipsham, Architect

A micro abode. Low cost to build, super-high performance and maintenance free. – DIY friendly. DO NOT build this without the plans – there are some very crucial safety concerns that must be addressed in its construction and operation.

This project was designed originally as a survival shelter and as a life capsule. As an abode it is meant to be used as a place of refuge and safety while living outdoors most of the time. As a life capsule it is meant to be built in one place and moved to another (and it can be used as a camper on the way) to be used as a very protected “womb” to live in while building a more permanent/larger home. Some other possible uses: a shelter along a long hiking trail, homeless shelter, farm hands, guests, writer’s retreat, disaster relief/refugees (can be stacked like bottles with catwalks), a place to wait out a storm on your undeveloped acreage while camping out, a place to hide out until things cool off. Since it can be sealed pretty much hermetically – the Hidie Hole can be left for years unattended as long as it is dry when sealed. It could be included in several places on a property while hiking or hunting with supplies in it. It can be made animal proof if that is the desire or need.

Options for passive heating and cooling. Heating the Hidie Hole is almost unnecessary – it is so well insulated and sealed it is pretty much a non-issue except for the most extreme conditions (Arctic/Antarctic). Earth sheltering this abode is the ideal but it can be left exposed. Because it is so well insulated cooling is more of an issue in hot climates then heating it is in cool/cold climates. Heat is generated from many sources including your own body – incidental cooling does not readily occur. To passively cool a space, or more importantly the occupant, there needs to be mass. Earth sheltering will help but will not cool enough. Either stone/masonry or water is the best method – in “direct contact” with the occupant at the heat of the day in extreme locations – desserts. These strategies are implemented on a case by case basis with the purchase of plans.

“72 SF” Basic; 100 + SF with bathroom; Porch/airlock 27 to 54 or more SF

Mark is offering 3 hours of consulting time with the basic cost of this plan, and this can be done before you receive the plans so that it is possible to have some custom alterations made.

All designs depicted are the exclusive property of Architecture By Synthesis and are copyright protected.

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Basic Digital PDF

3 Sets of 11"x17" Prints
(only available with the purchase of above)

Extra Set of Prints
$5 each


These plans include all plans, sections, elevations, details, etc. that are appropriate for this plan package. Four hours of consultation with the architect is included.



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I specifically disclaim any warranty, either expressed or implied, concerning the information on these pages. Neither I nor any of the designer/architects associated with this site will have liability for loss, damage, or injury, resulting from the use of any information found on this, or any other page at this site. Kelly Hart, Hartworks, Inc.

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