Building A Log Cabin

  Foundation
  Wall Construction
  Roof
  Door
  Window
  Chimney

Foundation
The foundation of this log cabin is made of stone pillars. The stones provide a sturdy base to support the cabin and act as a barrier between the cabin and the earth. The stones may settle over time and the foundation is carefully examined for damage or wear and subsequently repaired during restoration.



(southeast elevation)

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Wall Construction
The walls are made of logs, placed either vertically or horizontally, depending on the style and size of the cabin.


(cabin section)

 

The logs are notched at the corners to allow them to fit together. Corner notching is a notable characteristic of log cabin construction because it provides stability by locking the log ends in place, enabling the logs to fit together in a secure manner.

(corner detail)

Many different methods of corner notching exist, ranging from simple "saddle" notching to the common "V" notching or "steeple" notching, which get their name from the shape of the notch cut into the wood. These notching methods are marked by a cut into the wood that allows another cut piece of wood to fit together like a puzzle piece. Another commonly used technique, "square" notching, differs in that the logs are secured with the addition of pegs or spikes.

The number of logs used per wall varies with the size of the cabin. The spaces between logs are usually filled with a combination of materials in a process known as "chinking" and "daubing." This process seals the exterior walls, protecting them from weather and animal damage.

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Roof
Log cabin roofs are often gabled and are comprised of hand-split, wood shingles. The roofs often develop damage and leaks over the years and are commonly included in restoration.



(southwest elevation)

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Doors
Many log cabins have both a front and rear door. Due to the many times the doors are opened and closed over the years, the doors are often not in good working order and require repair during restoration. Both doors on this cabin are comprised of boards that are hand-dressed, open inward and are fastened to the log structure with pegs.

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Windows
This cabin features two windows, located on either side of the chimney. The windows hold glass panes, which were replaced during the restoration of this cabin.

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Chimney
This cabin has a chimney that sank and deteriorated into many different pieces over the years. The chimney was rebuilt during cabin restoration.

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