Log Home Basics

 


Article by: Mercedes Hayes

As we start to research log homes, , Air Conditioner Rentals it quickly becomes apparent that there is much more variety than one would ever think. Not only do log homes , Bathroom Showers - Your Options Explained come in all shapes and sizes, but the logs themselves come in as many variations as you can imagine. Once you decide on the look you want, you can start eliminating manufacturers , A Guide to Home Dehumidifiers that don't provide your system.

There are two categories of log homes: handcrafted , Leather Is A Great Choice In Your Decor and milled log homes. , Remodeling Online Initially, you may not realize what you are looking at, but there are some basic guidelines that will clarify the differences. A handcrafted , Things to look for when buying a new mattress log home , Crystal Chandeliers - How to Make Them Really Sparkle is just that; the logs are peeled by hand, notched by hand, and in many cases, each log is scribed to fit exactly on top of another log. In many handcrafted homes, , Air Purifiers: Healthy Home Solution the logs are stacked alternately, so the large end of a log is stacked on top of the tapered end of the log beneath. A milled log home , Is a Hot Tub for You? Top 5 Questions You Need to Answer will feature , Crystal Chandeliers - How to Make Them Really Sparkle logs that are uniform in shape, and the logs will be cut to fit together, such as with a tongue-and-groove or Swedish cope, so that they stack easily and evenly. There is a big price difference between a handcrafted , Bakers Rack - A Must Have and a milled log home. , Crystal Chandeliers - How to Make Them Really Sparkle This is mostly because of the intense labor , Countertop Materials: Comparing Kitchen Countertop Materials required to construct a handcrafted home, , Is a Hot Tub for You? Top 5 Questions You Need to Answer and because of the larger diameter logs that are normally used. The vast majority of homes , Kitchen Sink Manufacturers: Where To Find The Very Best built today are milled log homes. , A Guide to Tropical Wall Murals

If you see a log home , Guide to Buying a Flat Screen TV with round logs and chinking, that is a first indication that this is could be a handcrafted , Leather Is A Great Choice In Your Decor log home. , Kitchen Sink Manufacturers: Where To Find The Very Best Chinking was historically a mortar-like material that filled the gaps between the logs. Modern science has created an acrylic compound that expands and contracts with the wood; it is applied as a wide white , Reduce The Cost Of Heating Your Home With Solar Power stripe. If a handcrafted , Reduce The Cost Of Heating Your Home With Solar Power log is not scribed, then chinking is a must because the logs leave gaps along their length. Some people do use chinking as a design , Guide to Buying a Flat Screen TV feature even when it's not necessary, though for the most part milled log homes , Where Did We Get Clocks From Anyway? are not chinked.

The characteristic corner of your log home , Cleansing Your Space will speak volumes to the person who knows how to , Find A Roof Leak read it. The profile and joinery system of the log will usually be reflected on the ends. For instance, on a handcrafted , Crystal Chandeliers - How to Make Them Really Sparkle log home , Helpful Household Rust Tips you'll see the different diameters of the stacked logs. To stack them, these corners will be notched so that each log sits directly on the log below it (like a Lincoln Logsâ„¢ toy). A milled log that is saddle-notched will stack the same way (of course, every log will look exactly the same). Because saddle-notched logs are staggered, course to course, the log ends will be visible on the interior , Lighting and your Kitchen - How to Design a Lighting Plan that Cooks! corners of the house , Kitchen Bar Stools - They're Not Just For Breakfast Anymore! as well as the exterior. This gives a very rustic , Fireplace FAQs - 4 Key Areas look. A butt-and-pass corner gives you an end where there is a space between every other log. This is because one log butts up against the intersecting log, which runs past it. These logs are all laid on the same course, so that with the interior , Bakers Rack - A Must Have corners of your home, , Is a Hot Tub for You? Top 5 Questions You Need to Answer the logs will come to a squared edge.

On milled logs, there are many joinery systems to choose from. Today, the most popular joinery is called a "Swedish cope". This is where each log is scooped out to fit snugly on the curve of the log beneath. It gives a very smooth and natural , Desk Clocks For Your Home Or Office look. Another joinery system is the tongue-and-groove, or double tongue-and-groove depending on the manufacturer. , How to Replace the Rollers on Your Patio Sliding Glass Glass Door The tongues are cut into the top of the log and corresponding grooves at the bottom. These create a tight fit and stack easily. A more traditional, early American notch is called the dove-tail, which is a mortise and tenon notch usually cut into squared timbers. , Marketing For The Home Builder There are many other corner systems available, but these are the most commonly used.

The shape, or profile of your log is another feature , Crystal Chandeliers - How to Make Them Really Sparkle which will help you decide what kind of package to purchase. Many people prefer a "D" log, which is round on the outside , Cleaning Solution: Why We Need To Read The Label And Be Aware Of The Contents and flat , Guide to Buying a Screen TV on the inside. , Remodeling Online This gives you a horizontal wood-paneling look, and is easy to hang pictures on. Others prefer a round log, which is a little more rustic , Marketing For The Home Builder and presents many challenges - such as how to , Air Conditioner Rentals join the logs to the sheetrock. Squared timbers, , Laminate Floors which give a more Appalachian look to the home, , Remodeling Online tend to be tall and fairly narrow, and are often grooved for the application of chinking. The average milled log home , Kitchen Sink Manufacturers: Where To Find The Very Best will use pine logs in 6" and 8" diameters. You can also find them in 10" and 12" diameters. Anything larger than 15" will probably roll you over to a handcrafted home. , Duct Tape Wallets Cedar logs are an upgrade, and can be found in 6", 8" and occasionally 10" diameters. Some manufacturers , Fireplace FAQs - 4 Key Areas more rarely use oak, cypress, fir, hemlock, larch, poplar, spruce, and walnut. These rarer woods , Desk Clocks For Your Home Or Office will be a price upgrade. Because of the superior log care products , Using Mirrors in Home Decor on the market today that protect all the logs effectively, the wood , A Guide to Home Dehumidifiers species largely becomes a matter of personal taste. The best rule of thumb when choosing log species is to stay with a wood , Commercial Pressure Washers that is native to your area. The logs will adapt to the environment , Bathroom Showers - Your Options Explained more comfortably.

Newcomers are continually amazed to discover that the logs are their own insulation. To compare a stick-frame wall , Marketing For The Home Builder to a log wall , Is a Hot Tub for You? Top 5 Questions You Need to Answer by using the "R-value" is not comparing "apples to apples". Logs have a lower "R-value" than insulated 2x4 walls. , Dealing with Bright Sun In Your Windows However, they work on the principal of thermal mass. Because of the cellular structure of logs, they tend to absorb the heat , Where Did We Get Clocks From Anyway? and hold it longer than traditional walls. , Cleansing Your Space The logs will actually absorb the heat , Desk Clocks For Your Home Or Office from the interior , Where Did We Get Clocks From Anyway? of the house , Bakers Rack - A Must Have (or from the sun, , Reduce The Cost Of Heating Your Home With Solar Power if facing south), and when the temperature , Cleansing Your Space drops at night, the walls , Cleansing Your Space will generate that heat , The big surprise with a Sectional sofa. back into the house , The big surprise with a Sectional sofa. until the temperatures , Selecting Right Types Of Air Purifiers equalize. They take longer to warm up, and stay warm much longer. Conversely, they stay cooler in the summertime.

Some producers feature , Leather Is A Great Choice In Your Decor a half-log system, where the logs are attached outside-and-inside to 2x4 or 2x6 stick-frame walls. , A Guide to Home Dehumidifiers This adds the extra R-value of an insulated wall, , How to Replace the Rollers on Your Patio Sliding Glass Glass Door along with the beauty of the log, and also makes it easier to install electrical wiring. Ultimately, these systems are a bit more expensive than full-log, because of the additional cost of the lumber. But they do give the added ability to vary the interior , Wood Pellet vs Corn Stoves: The Choice May be Out of Your Hands of your house, , Where Did We Get Clocks From Anyway? so that some interior , How to Find Quality Kitchen Cabinets walls could be sheetrock, stone, , Industrial Evaporative Coolers - Cooling At Lower Costs or tongue-and-groove. In any case, many modern manufacturers , Helpful Household Rust Tips use the half-log system on their second floor, , Wind Turbines - How to Harvest the Wind to compensate for the huge windows, , Bathroom Showers - Your Options Explained which may displace so many logs that the wall's integrity could be compromised. Also, because the large windows , Choose Your New Kitchen Countertop Wisely Or Be Very Sorry Later settle at a different rate than logs, the stick-framed second floor , Kitchen Bar Stools - They're Not Just For Breakfast Anymore! equalizes the overall settling. With the best manufacturers, , Home Air Purifiers: Healthy Home Solution you won't be able to tell on the outside , Industrial Evaporative Coolers - Cooling At Lower Costs where the full logs end and the half logs begin.

Once you've chosen what kind of log you want, you will discover that manufacturers , Garage Sales - Good For Everyone each specialize in their own unique fastening system. Almost all manufacturers , Miracles Always Happen Under A Tent ( A Gazebo Or A Canopy)! use double-sided foam tape between log courses. Some companies use lag screws, , Wind Turbines - How to Harvest the Wind threaded bolts, or spikes to add integrity to the walls; others use fancy spring-loaded through bolts that compress the logs. Once again, the choice becomes a personal preference.

It would save , Industrial Evaporative Coolers - Cooling At Lower Costs a lot of work for the buyer to get a "turnkey" price on the logs, the lumber, the windows , Duct Cleaning - Proper Principals and Practices and doors, , How to Get the Best Basement Finishing and the roof , Laminate Floors - what is commonly known as a "weathered-in shell". However, this complete system only makes sense if you are local , A Guide to Portable Dehumidifiers to the manufacturer; otherwise, you'll be spending thousands of dollars to ship ordinary lumber across the country. After all, there is no difference between a roof , Where Did We Get Clocks From Anyway? used on an ordinary house , A Guide to Home Dehumidifiers and a roof , A Guide to Home Dehumidifiers used on a log home. , Wood Pellet vs Corn Stoves: The Choice May be Out of Your Hands You choose the kind of roof , The Need for National Regulations and Testing in the Home Improvement Industry you want, but it'll come from the same manufacturer. , Metal Shingles The same goes for the floors, , Garage Sales - Good For Everyone the doors, , Countertop Materials: Comparing Kitchen Countertop Materials the kitchen, , Selecting Right Types Of Air Purifiers and the heating system. Windows , How to Replace the Rollers on Your Patio Sliding Glass Glass Door can be a little tricky; you'll have to find a manufacturer , How to Find Quality Kitchen Cabinets that is willing to make a extended window-sill (or jamb) to accommodate the thickness of the logs. Most major window , Industrial Evaporative Coolers - Cooling At Lower Costs companies are able to do this.

Remember that log homes , Shop Online For A Top Quality Adjustable Air Mattress are completely custom. No log home , A Guide to Dehumidifiers company will offer you a choice of kitchens , How to Replace the Rollers on Your Patio Sliding Glass Glass Door or bathrooms , Sinks To Brighten Your Bathroom like a development builder. You will have to shop for these yourself, , The big surprise with a Sectional sofa. and the possibilities are limitless. Your builder may make some decisions for you, but you will be better served to pick your own flooring, , Cleansing Your Space light , How To Find A Roof Leak fixtures, faucets and even door , Guide to Buying a Flat Screen TV knobs. Most manufacturers , Leather Is A Great Choice In Your Decor do not want to have anything to do with the foundation; that is not their business. You can use any kind of foundation you want, but you'll need to contact a local , Metal Shingles contractor to do that job, or have your builder do so. Almost all log home , Reduce The Cost Of Heating Your With Solar Power manufacturers have an in-house architect who will configure your plan , Wood Pellet vs Corn Stoves: The Choice May be Out of Your Hands to fit their own particular system. Unless you have a lot of money to burn, don't hire an outside , Miracles Always Happen Under A Tent ( A Gazebo Or A Canopy)! architect to design , Is a Hot Tub for You? Top 5 Questions You Need to Answer your house, , The Need for National Regulations and Testing in the Home Improvement Industry because the manufacturer , Laminate Floors will have to rework the plans , Where Did We Get Clocks From Anyway? anyway. If you want a quick start, the manufacturer , Where Did We Get Clocks From Anyway? will have a set of stock plans , Reduce The Cost Of Heating Your Home With Solar Power for you to choose from, and alter to fit your needs. Or you can design , Miracles Always Happen Under A Tent ( A Gazebo Or A Canopy)! your home , Kitchen Sink Manufacturers: Where To Find The Very Best from scratch, and give them a rough set of drawings from which they will devise a set of building , Duct Tape Wallets plans. This service is usually offered at no extra charge; there may be an up-front fee that is credited toward the final cost of the package.

Log homes , Crystal Chandeliers - How to Make Them Really Sparkle are not maintenance-free - nor are they overwhelmingly laborious. Although the products , Remodeling Online on today's market do a fantastic job of protecting the logs from sun, , Shop Online For A Top Quality Adjustable Air Mattress rain and insects, they do need to be re-applied ever three to five years depending on the wall , Selecting Right Types Of Air Purifiers exposure. This "maintenance coat" is much easier to apply than the original coats of stain, and no, you don't have to strip off the old coat first. So it's not as bad as it sounds! However, you must inspect the logs at least once a year for excessive cracking (or checking) - especially when the check opens upward, creating a water , Wind Turbines - How to Harvest the Wind trap. These need to be caulked on the exterior walls. , Duct Cleaning - Proper Principals and Practices Also, do everything in your power , Duct Cleaning - Proper Principals and Practices to direct rainwater away from the house; if you have an overflowing gutter, deal with it at once. A damp log attracts rot and insects.

Expect your milled log home , The big surprise with a Sectional sofa. to take anywhere from 4 to 8 months to construct, depending on your weather, , A Guide to Home Dehumidifiers the availability of the crew (are they sharing your job with others at the same time?) and your planning. The most important thing you have to plan , Lighting and your Kitchen - How to Design a Lighting that Cooks! for is protecting the logs and the lumber from the elements. Set aside a large space (preferably covered with gravel) exclusively for the logs; you don't want them sitting in the mud. Cover your gravel , Marketing For The Home Builder with a tarp, and bring extra tarps for the logs. The logs are going to get scattered as the crew picks through them, and they're going to get stepped on and tossed around. They're going to get rained on, and you'll be amazed how quickly the logs weather. , Decorative Metal Tile You'll have to immediately remove the plastic , Laminate Floors wrapping when the logs are delivered, or they'll get covered with mildew. The tarps will do the job. If your windows , Kitchen Bar Stools - They're Not Just For Breakfast Anymore! get delivered with the log package, you'd be best served to rent an enclosed trailer to store them in (FRAGILE is the operative word).

But I'm getting ahead of myself. As you may have gathered, people who build log homes , Air Conditioner Rentals tend to be more hands-on than with other kinds of construction. Log home , Reduce The Cost Of Heating Your With Solar Power customers are usually very well informed by the time they break ground - and they need to be! Cost overruns are often caused by unforeseen difficulties, and since your house , Lighting and your Kitchen - How to Design a Lighting Plan that Cooks! is a one-of-a-kind, you're in for quite a challenge. Luckily, the industry has matured quite a bit, and you are no longer completely on your own.

EzineArticles Expert Author Mercedes Hayes
Mercedes Hayes is a Hiawatha Log Home , Reduce The Cost Of Heating Your With Solar Power dealer and also a Realtor in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. She designed her own log home , Decorative Metal Tile which was featured in the 2004 Floor , A Guide to Portable Dehumidifiers Plan Guide of Log Home , Using Mirrors in Decor Living magazine. You can learn more about log homes , A Guide to Tropical Wall Murals by visiting http://www.JerseyLogHomes.com.


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