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Thread: Bark on the log cabin we are buying

  1. #1

    Bark on the log cabin we are buying

    My wife and I are pursuing a cabin in the Wasatch mountain area in Utah.

    We fell in love with a charming cabin built 20 years ago. From what I can tell its built extremely well.

    My question is regarding the logs. They left the bark on them. Is this a major red flag?

    I haven't gone around and inspected every nook and cranny, but from what I can tell, there doesn't look like any major issues. The bark is peeling in some places, but it gives the cabin a very rustic feeling.

    We have a contingency on inspection, so we can get out of the deal if we need to. I was thinking of trying to find an inspector who specializes in log homes.

    Thanks in advance for your thoughts.

  2. #2

    Bark on the log cabin we are buying

    Leaving on all the bark can be very problematic... think 'bug magnet.'

    Below are 2 pictures of the same log. 1/2 of the log was peeled, and 1/2 was not peeled. The log was set out on a seasoning rack for 1 year. Note where bugs burrowed into the bark on the unpeeled section. Bugs tend to be pretty attracted to logs that still have the bark on, and leaving on the bark can also create potential water/rot issues.




  3. #3
    Professional Engineer RockEngineer's Avatar
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    Bark on the log cabin we are buying

    It was not uncommon for builders many years ago to leave the bark on the logs when they built but as Ellsworth said it can attract bugs. Last summer I was at Yellowstone park and it was the 100th anniversary of the Yellowstone logde (I think it was 100 it may have been more). The guide talked about how the lodge had been built with the bark on the trees and it was that way for the first 40 or so years and then they decided to remove the bark for asthetic reasons. That log structure lasted a long time with the bark on so it isn't always a bad thing. You have to check under the bark for bugs. If the cabin is in a relatively dry climate with few bugs it may be fine. Here in Western Washington I wouldn't leave the bark on because things rot way too fast and bugs love the wet wood just under the bark.

  4. #4

    Bark on the log cabin we are buying

    My parents still live in a cabin with the bark partially on the logs. It was built in 1832 and still has the bark. I haven't noticed a bug problem or evidence thereof ever ,even in Alabama, but the bark tends to fall off easily. Stay in the place for a few hours...particularly at dusk and see if you hear or see anything. Also...knock a little off when no one is looking. See if its bug city under there.

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