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Thread: Log longevity while building

  1. #1

    Lightbulb Log longevity while building

    I would like to build myself a log cabin, and I am starting to seek out some special logs. Probably will use red pines and I want the 24" plus logs. I envision this venture will take me 5 - 10 years before I have a completed house, maybe more. My question is will my logs be ruined by then, i may start this winter, but will have no roof on for many years. I have no shed big enough to keep them in, I can tarp them but have been told they need to breath. Any suggestions or am I just wasting my time if it will take me that long to complete?

  2. #2
    LHBA Member loghousenut's Avatar
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    At some point in time the logs will rot. Where you live and what species you choose can make a big difference but it is still a race against time and Ma Nature. Tarping the logs will not solve the problem.

    The 5-10 year time frame is not a problem but having no roof for "many years" certainly can be. Additionally, there are methods of log home construction that are particularly vulnerable to moisture and the damage that it brings with it.

    Due to the particular method of construction taught in the LHBA class it is common for LHBA homes to be roofless for one and sometimes two winters with no ill effects. This is also a method that is particularly geared toward owner/builders with no previous log home building experience.

    If you are serious about building your own log home with your own hands, you will want to investigate what this organization has to offer. I can think of no other method of hand building a log home that is as forgiving, and as long-lived, as the LHBA system.

    Read on Jacks.

  3. #3
    LHBA Member loghousenut's Avatar
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    Why is it so darned easy to post twice on this rascal forum and so hard to get rid of the double post?
    Last edited by loghousenut; 08-02-2012 at 11:22 PM.

  4. #4
    Jacks, is that 5-10 years to get under roof and stained? or 5-10 years to be completely done? if 5-10 years to get stained, perhaps you could fell your trees in stages? for example next spring cut enough for 4 courses. peal and borate those logs. then stack those courses and be done for the season. repeat next year? just a thought good luck! FWIW, we figure it'll take us 5 year to be done too

  5. #5
    LHBA Member dvb's Avatar
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    I cut my trees in 2007, peeled them in 2008, stated stacking in 2009, finished stacking in 2010 and built a roof over my logs before winter. I kept them stacked on sacrificial logs to keep them off of the ground and I treated them with Boracare as soon as I peeled them. I also treated them each spring. I only had a problem with one log and it spent the winter in contact with the ground, I missed a hump of dirt that reached this particular log before it was peeled. This was a small area near the end and I was able to cut it off and still have adequate length. My trees were also beetle kill so they were dead a couple of years before I cut them. I live in Colorado at 8,700 ft elevation where it is fairly dry and the winters are very cold.

  6. #6
    5 10 years before I get a roof over them, and it is more likely will be 10. I really would like to secure some special big logs, so I really don't want to cut as I go because I may not be able to secure them

  7. #7
    LHBA Member StressMan79's Avatar
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    Jacks, Where are you? I built in NE wash, and it is just wet enough to grow trees there. There's a fire burn ban every summer. But My logs were peeled in 2009 and sat un-treated and uncovered for 2.5 years (2 winters). no rot at all. They have very tight rings and were off the ground. This would not be the outcome if I lived in alabama, and were building with logs that were a plantation, say 60 years old. Mine were ~120 years old and 14" tops. Them were some tight rings.

    -Peter

  8. #8
    I live in northern mn, I don't think they will rot necessarily, more worried about about dis coloring, mold, can I get them to look new again after I get done ?

  9. #9
    JACKS!! northern MN? really ??? we're building in northern MN too take the class so you can help us with our build!!! chinking the garage last 2 weeks in August (if everything goes to plan )

  10. #10
    LHBA Member Codeman's Avatar
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    If I did it over again I would do the foundation and be ready to stack when the logs are ready to peel. Down here in Arizona I think peeling em, treat em, then I would paint the ends. My logs really checked more from the heat I think than anything. Also they are real gray on some. I know the grey and stuff can be cleaned off later. The fresh green logs looked better but where way heavier. Good luck.

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