Kurt Bell

A life of courage, joy and independence.

Recycled Old Japanese Roof Tiles

An interesting and creative example of recycling in Japan. Tiled roofs (hongawarabuki) are a distinguishing feature of most traditional Japanese homes, as well as Buddhist temples, Shinto (native religion of Japan) shrines and many other types of old buildings. Kawara is the word the Japanese use to describe roof tiles in general, though there are in fact many styles and types of tiles with regional variations, and a large and specialized vocabulary is used to describe these. The convex marugawara-style (aka ogawara) tile are normally used in conjunction with the concave hiragawara tile to cover the open surface of a roof. When used together, these two types of tiles provide a strong and weather-resistant barrier which easily channels heavy rainfall. Japanese roof tiles are typically very well made and often outlive their intended function protecting structures from the elements. As a result, old roof tiles can sometimes be spotted in Japan being reused for unique and interesting purposes. Old roof tiles are sometimes used to reinforce earthen retaining walls, or stacked one next to another to make garden borders. Roof tiles are also buried vertically along dirt walkways with just the tips exposed a fraction of an inch above the surface to create artistic patterns and to act as paving surfaces. Decorative end caps called onigawara (ogre tiles) look especially nice as accent pieces within the home or on patios and especially when positioned amidst garden foliage.

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3 comments on “Recycled Old Japanese Roof Tiles

  1. Anonymous
    June 24, 2013

    This is ace! cannot believe that this has gone on in todays world. I am so glad I was sitting down for this. We wonder what will happen now?! I will watch closely to see this evolving issue moving forward.

  2. Anonymous
    July 7, 2013

    That is sick!! It amazes me that this keeps happening time and time again in todays day and age. I was relieved I am sat down. The gaffers know about the future. Lets see the problem to this.

  3. Anonymous
    July 7, 2013

    That is sick!! I am taken aback that this really goes on sometimes in todays day and age. I am very happy I was sat down. I are coming to terms about things moving forward. I will watch closely to see what is happening to this.

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This entry was posted on June 17, 2011 by in Uncategorized and tagged .
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