So you’re the proud owner of a parcel of land out in the wilderness and you want to tame the wilds (all while proving your mettle as a builder) by putting a log cabin out there. But the question “how to build a log cabin” lingers in your mind. So what do you do? Buy an already built log home or start your own log home building project?
Whether you intend to build it yourself or you’re considering buying a cabin, you should be familiar with the basics of this type of building. The fact of the matter is, that building a log cabin is an exciting subset of the field of construction considering the sheer variety of ways in which you can put a log home, together.
If you’ve been researching log cabins for any length of time, you probably know that a lot of different materials can go into the process. You might even have an idea about what kind of timber you want to use to give your home, the exact personalized look you have envisioned in your mind. You know the difference between Atlantic White and Douglas Fir and the different aesthetic, each of them gives to the abode.
In fact, you might have even researched so much through internet articles and the DIY channels that by now, you might even feel that you know how to build a log cabin without having even touched a buzzsaw to that end before.
Yet few people are aware of one of the most important design considerations before they go about hunting for the materials of the home. That is the structural type of the home, determined by the shape in which each of the logs of the walls of your building will be cut. The style will change not only the look of your house, but also the general process of building it, so it is important to be familiar with the 5 structural types of log homes before even considering how to build a log cabin.
The Square and Rectangular Type
Here the logs are cut in a fairly uniform fashion. This often makes them easier to cut in the initial preparation stage as well as easier to stack. Of course, this gives your cabin a much more angular look than it would otherwise have.
Round Log Type
As the name suggests, the “round log” type of construction gives each of the logs, a more circular appearance with a rounded cut. The top and the bottom might be shaved off into a line to make it easier to stack the logs. This type of design is often called the “double round” style in common parlance.
Swedish Cope Type
The Swedish Cope type will result in a cascading look for your log house. In this style, a small circle is cut out of the bottom of the log which corresponds to the rounded top of the log beneath it.
Some people express reservations about a rectangular design for a log cabin, believing that rectangular cuts make the structure look too much like the angled constructions of the city. The D-log has all but the visible edge of the wood cut straight but has the outer side retain its natural rounded shape. This allows for the ease of stacking of the rectangular type while maintaining the rounded log appearance of the timber.
For those who want the ultimate in aesthetic appeal, the handcrafted structural type is the way to go. Here each log is processed by hand and molded to fit in harmony with the others. It is considered to make for a stable and attractive construction. Those who know how to build a log cabin prefer the handcrafted type.
As you can see, there is more to buying a cabin than just picking out the color of the wood. Even the cut of the wood needs consideration. Now that you know what types are available, you can go about making an informed decision and build your dream log home.