Cold Drafts, Warm Log Cabins

Sue | May 16th, 2012 - 5:36 am

Seeing a log cabin tucked in among the towering pines, snow piled high on the roof and smoke slowly curling heavenward, are things that some log home dreams are built from.  In my mind’s eye I can see that front door open and see the little wood burner crackling away in the corner, welcoming all who come. Keeping the cold drafts out and the warm in can be challenging in a cold Montana winter, but here are some features of our log cabins that help to make that happen.

little log cabin in the snowOne feature with our log home logs is the cut or profile with which they stack. This cabin here is our Little Snowy log cabin plan. This cabin is a Swedish Cope cut with full saddle notched corners. A Swedish Cope cut is where the logs stack with a half moon pattern cut from the underside of the log. The top of the log is left full round. The Swedish Cope stack allows the logs to stack together over a curved surface. This is a much better way of building a cabin than having the logs flat between the rows of logs with no overlap over the curved surface.

Between the rows of logs we use a double row of foam tape. This black material came into use in the 1990’s. It has greatly helped seal between the logs. Caulking can also be applied on the seam between each row of logs if desired.

The saddle notched corners play another roll in keeping the log home tight. With a saddle notched corner there is no area left for moisture to lay on top of the log ends. Saddle notched corners also stay tighter than a butt and pass corner as there is the interlocking of the two log ends together.

Most of the settling of a log cabin in the first year. After the first 12 months it is wise to go back over the home and check for any spots where air is escaping into the house. In these areas sometimes spray foam can be inserted. At times foam backer rod may need to be installed. Caulking can also help, depending on the side of the area. All logs will check some. Sometimes air leakage is actually traveling up a check in a log. So these are all areas to inspect.

Log homes are built from a natural product– the logs themselves. Some movement is usual. More movement will be experienced if the logs are green and or the logs are a cabin grade instead of premium grade. For our milled log home we always use premium grade logs. Also the logs are usually either dead standing or kiln dried, helping to provide a quality log cabin with warmth.

Cowboy Log Homes

Any projected costs, cost estimates, material costs, and estimated construction/ building costs, are only the opinion of Cowboy Log Homes and are drawn from our experience. Every home is custom tailored to meet our individual client's wants and desires. The construction of a log or timber home is based on two primary costs: material provided by the log home company and construction costs contracted with Cowboy Log Homes as the builder or another builder of the customer's choice. Final costs are obtained and contracted with each respectively. Cowboy Log Homes is simply the "glue" that helps bring these two together to provide a final culmination of a customer's project. * Please note photos and elevations may differ some from accompanying floor plans.
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