Author Topic: Vertical Log Cabin  (Read 74128 times)

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Offline glenn kangiser

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Re: Vertical Log Cabin
« Reply #125 on: January 22, 2008, 10:41:40 PM »
Good link, and the one I recommend to people considering buying kit log homes -- don't.  Skip Ellsworth seems to know what he's talking about.  I don't think it was posted lately and I'm not looking through the 8 pages either. :)
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Offline desdawg

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Re: Vertical Log Cabin
« Reply #126 on: January 23, 2008, 04:36:09 AM »
I followed the link but what I was was an artists rendering of a horizontal log home. Do you have to take the class to access the page?
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Offline glenn kangiser

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Re: Vertical Log Cabin
« Reply #127 on: January 23, 2008, 07:30:27 AM »
Should be quite a bit of info there. http://www.loghomebuilders.org/

More pix here. http://www.loghomebuilders.org/image/tid/3
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Offline akemt

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Re: Vertical Log Cabin
« Reply #128 on: January 23, 2008, 08:20:03 AM »
You don't have to become a member to see the student log home pictures...but these are only the "Log Home of the ___" award homes.  There are TONS more on the forum and in the member forum there as well.  The link worked for me.  Sometimes you have to scroll down.  The website has switched to a new program (or company) and not all of the bugs have been worked out yet.  Hopefully you were able to find the link through the main page instead.
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Offline manoka

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Re: Vertical Log Cabin
« Reply #129 on: January 23, 2008, 11:15:10 AM »
I guess, I am getting the same pictures as desdawg, of Mark & Lisa Sherrodd's log home, which is definitely more "piece-en-piece" than vertical log style. Upstairs they used something vertical, but it doesn't look like logs.

Offline Ernest T. Bass

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Re: Vertical Log Cabin
« Reply #130 on: February 13, 2008, 08:42:34 AM »
I'm still trying to iron out a few details of the construction process we will use for our vertical log cabin this spring... Glenn had mentioned the concern of diagonal bracing for the walls in another thread. I think spiking the logs to each other, as well as to the top and bottom plates would help, but I foresee a couple problems... First of all, pounding large spikes or chunks of rebar into the side of a log all day long sounds tiring to say the least. :) No gravity to help as in conventional log construction... Timberlock screws are an option, but a very expensive one. I think that gluing plywood splines between all the logs would add a lot of diagonal strength, but what happens if the logs shrink or the glue dries out and cracks down the road?

Here's a link to a lot of vertical log construction pics:
http://www.loghomes.co.za/

Click on "chapel" to see a step-by-step album of the process. They don't appear to spike their logs together, I don't see any glue, and the splines appear to be sawn from regular lumber. Also, notice how the logs are all erected at different lengths, and cut level across the top after the walls are up. This process really intrigues me... I actually chatted with the guy on IM, but he doesn't appear to want to share too much info outside of his class, which I can understand... :)

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Offline glenn kangiser

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Re: Vertical Log Cabin
« Reply #131 on: February 13, 2008, 09:16:08 PM »
For log spikes I cut 1/2 or 5/8 rebar into 16" lengths.  Use a wood auger with a lead screw on it and pre drill a hole the same dia. as the nominal rebar size.  1/2 hole for 1/2 inch rebar etc.  Use a 4 lb sledge hammer to drive the spikes in - you will need it.  The fit is real tight and really holds well- I accidentally lifted a post when I hit the beam with my backhoe.
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Offline glenn kangiser

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Re: Vertical Log Cabin
« Reply #132 on: February 13, 2008, 09:17:37 PM »
"Always work from the general to the specific." J. Raabe

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Offline Willy

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Re: Vertical Log Cabin
« Reply #133 on: February 13, 2008, 09:23:40 PM »
If you have a problem driving a lot of re/bar use a Spline Drive Roto Hamer. I got tired of driving ground rods with a post driver one day. I tried my 1 1/2" Roto Hamer by just slipping it over the rod. I pulled the triger and the 5/8" X 8 ft rod just worked it way into the ground. It would work on rebar also, try it. Mark

Offline glenn kangiser

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Re: Vertical Log Cabin
« Reply #134 on: February 13, 2008, 09:26:01 PM »
I have used mine for driving concrete anchors also -- but damages the ends a bit - nuts on first.
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Offline Ernest T. Bass

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Re: Vertical Log Cabin
« Reply #135 on: February 14, 2008, 06:03:33 AM »
This may or may not be a problem worth mentioning, but just something I was thinking about.. What about the fact that every rebar spike puts a hole through the edge of a spline? I know it's not much, but if there's 2 holes per log, couldn't that be letting some drafts through the walls? I guess it depends on the type of chinking used... We'd rather use a more old-fashioned/natural chinking of some type of stabilized clay mix, but it may not work well with the very tight-fitting logs...

Also, if we do drive spikes/rebar sideways through each log, wouldn't driving them in at alternating upish/downish angles brace a the wall better? If I play a virtual model in my head, it just seems much harder to tip over a log that is spiked at a downward angle into the log next to it, versus spiked straight through. I'm probably going overboard though, as I think two spikes per log would be plenty strong enough regardless of their angle. :)

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Offline glenn kangiser

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Re: Vertical Log Cabin
« Reply #136 on: February 14, 2008, 06:52:05 AM »
The rebars driven into the same size holes will be so tight that there is no room for drafts.  You will work to get them in.

1/2 inch rebar will have a tensile strength of around 10- 12 thousand lbs.

The rebar could but would not have to go through the spline.  For connecting tops together I would run them at a 45 with about 8 inches in each log.  Not totally critical - just get it close.  I would also spike a bond beam into the top to tie them together.

Alternating angles could help with the bracing.

These are the bits I use.  You will need a 1/2 inch heavy duty drill to run them - pulling them back every so often clears out the chips.

"Always work from the general to the specific." J. Raabe

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Offline Willy

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Re: Vertical Log Cabin
« Reply #137 on: February 14, 2008, 07:46:07 AM »
The rebars driven into the same size holes will be so tight that there is no room for drafts.  You will work to get them in.

1/2 inch rebar will have a tensile strength of around 10- 12 thousand lbs.

The rebar could but would not have to go through the spline.  For connecting tops together I would run them at a 45 with about 8 inches in each log.  Not totally critical - just get it close.  I would also spike a bond beam into the top to tie them together.

Alternating angles could help with the bracing.

These are the bits I use.  You will need a 1/2 inch heavy duty drill to run them - pulling them back every so often clears out the chips.


AWWW A "Ship Auger Bit" boy have I drilled a lot of holes with them over the years as a electrician! Mark H.

Offline Ernest T. Bass

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Re: Vertical Log Cabin
« Reply #138 on: February 14, 2008, 09:53:29 AM »
Yep, we've got one of those. :)

If we went with the method of leaving the logs untrimmed and cutting the tops off after the walls are up, I'm not sure how to keep the top of the wall in a very straight line while building. I suppose some strings could help, and the walls could be adjusted somewhat later.. The beauty of this system would be the perfect joint between the log tops and the bond beam (top plate). 2x4s could be tacked to the walls and used as a guide for the chainsaw to make a perfect cut. You could groove the tops of the logs and spline between them and the bond beam as well...

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Offline Redoverfarm

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Re: Vertical Log Cabin
« Reply #139 on: February 14, 2008, 04:48:46 PM »
Yep used them plenty in my log cabin.  In fact I am still using them after a year and a half.  But I downsized to 1/4" for pilot holes to bolt the inside dressed ceiling joist/beams with lag screws. Then a 1" plug later to cover the holes that were countersunk.  I used the 3/4" for wiring routes from one course to the other for electrical boxes and switches.  ( Might keep that in mind if you are going to use recepticles on the log walls. It is easier now than almost impossible later to route wires and boxes in logs)  Yep I did miss a few boxes but with the 18" auger I can still get them in by drilling near the face down at an angle near the center and get the wires through. Not easy but not impossible.

If you could find an Alaskan Saw Mill that uses a chain saw then you could face cut the top plate and the top logs. Similar to one that PeterNap had pictured in his post of "milling a few boards".  http://countryplans.com/smf/index.php?topic=4023.msg47716#msg47716

If you are not considering to "chink" the verticle logs then you might want to face each side to mate with the other log to insure a proper fit.  Not real sure how much shrinkage will occur.  What you end up with today might not be the same as you have in a year or so.  The difference I had was mine were already seasoned and there was almost no shrinkage just a little settling. 

I believe IMO that a combination of spline and either rebar or spikes would be the way to go. Splines to take care of the shrinkage and rebar or spikes(60D) for holding position. You could actually incorporate the log to log attachment and the top plate at one time by drilling your holes at a 45 deg angle from the top plate down through two verticle logs at a time.  Then skip to the next two and repeat.  That way everything is tied together.
« Last Edit: February 14, 2008, 05:12:31 PM by Redoverfarm »

Offline glenn kangiser

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Re: Vertical Log Cabin
« Reply #140 on: February 14, 2008, 05:43:52 PM »
Probably about 3/4 to 1" per foot of diameter from reasonably wet on shrinkage of soltwood.

I have seen 4" Eucalyptus shrink to 3".  It varies.
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Offline Redoverfarm

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Re: Vertical Log Cabin
« Reply #141 on: February 14, 2008, 06:44:25 PM »
Glenn that is what I was getting at. If the logs are still fairly green and butted together that once dried there might be a gap or 3/4"-1-1/2" between. That why I suggested a spline (maybe 2") if the logs were not going to be chinked.  Either way I would wait at least 12 months before chinking or attaching any fixtures (window & door trim).  There again if they were faced without splines and there was substantial shrinkage chinking might be the only option.  I have seen 2" wide strip of 3/4" stock beveled 45 deg on each side and keyed into the gap with sealer behind. 

Offline Ernest T. Bass

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Re: Vertical Log Cabin
« Reply #142 on: February 14, 2008, 07:44:24 PM »
Yes there will be a bit of shrinkage as these are going to be pretty green logs.. I've seen triangular strips of wood tacked between logs with insulation behind, similar to what you mentioned. You can just tap the strips in a little tighter if the logs shrink.. I would think that the method might be a little drafty, but with the splines in there it might work well (for a cabin, anyway).

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