In a handcrafted building, the log is still the natural log. The only difference being that it has undergone removal of the outer bark and part or the entire inner bark layer. Nature’s own intended character remains intact in the look of your finished home. Logs that have been changed from their indigenous profile, either by hand, machine, or both, but still “joined” in a process that includes the custom hand-fitting of these elements, are still considered to be handcrafted. A prime example of this would be a “hewn” log wall, where the logs have been flattened on their sides and then either scribed or chinked together by making use of notches, or maybe incorporated into a piece en piece system of log work. The tradition of piece-en-piece was a natural log home construction choice in areas where long logs weren’t as abundant.
A machined or milled log home is a mechanically hewn log and is designed to be identical in dimension to every other piece in the building. In other words, in this case, the log has been transformed into a factory-manipulated “log.” The aesthetic advantage of a handcrafted log building is that it is unique and distinctly different from every other due to the natural uniqueness of every log. Typically you will find larger diameter and length of log in handcrafted homes versus the machined log home. This larger diameter is beneficial in thermal performance as well as fire resistance values. Studies have proven that, provided the home is well built, the insulation values are high.
Typically you will find larger diameter and length of log in handcrafted homes versus the machined log home. This larger diameter is beneficial in thermal performance as well as fire resistance values and studies have proven that provided the home is well built, the insulation values are high.
One distinctive thing about handcrafted log homes is that they are not limited by size. The main thing that sets handcrafted log homes apart from other homes is the logs they are built from. Handcrafted homes are constructed using logs from 10 inches in diameter all the way to 24 inches or more. Handcrafting is more attractive and more expensive than standard construction or milled log homes. Owners are paying for hours and hours of hand labor to turn the home into a masterpiece. Handcrafted log teams can take weeks and sometimes even months to complete a project. The handcrafting of the logs begins with hand peeling. This removes the outer bark and cambial wood. The inner beauty of the log is revealed and the natural deviations throughout the log are enhanced, instead of being milled away. Each log is then selected by hand for placement in the log structure. Logs which are twisted or inferior are weeded out before the hand peeling ever begins.
Once the handcrafted log cabin home reaches a height of about 10 feet, then the roof system is set into place. Some small log homes only require a simple ridge beam. Larger homes may require purloins, handmade log trusses, hip beams, and other more complicated roof configurations. There are more complicated homes as well. Those plans are actually a stacked log home on the first floor with an entire post and beam superstructure on the upper level.
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