Archive for August, 2016

South End ‘Hip’ Roof

Posted: August 31, 2016 in Uncategorized

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Jack, of the Onalaska Log Building School, suggested a short roof on the south side of our cabin too help keep rain off the logs.  Our gable ends will overhang by a full 8’ but a little extra protection never hurt.  All we had to do was leave our loft joyce logs hang out an extra 5’ then lay the rafters after going up two more rows.  Slick.  Most of the photos you are looking at are from one of my three Game Cameras on site.  I will situate them for security when I leave for the winter…but for now they are set up to record our progress.  One downfall of adding the Hip Roof was that we could no longer pull logs up from two corners like normal.  With the hip roof in the way we had to lift wall logs up from one corner.  It took more time but will be well worth it in the end. 

Extender Logs

Posted: August 30, 2016 in Uncategorized

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The cabin is 34’x28’…I probably mentioned that a ways back.  So that means with the gable ends hanging 8-9’ past the cabin wall the ridgepole and the EXTENDERS are 50’ long!  After we got up to the second floor…10 rows…we decided to add four additional rows.  We made that choice because we wanted the rafters to be at least four feet up from the loft floor so we would have extra room and not hit our heads too soon when walking to the edges of the loft.  Kapeesh?  So we added two normal rows…then on the long walls we added the 50’ extender logs…two on each long side.  Instead of passing normally past the walls they passed 8’.  This will allow us to set rafters out 7’ or so past the wall.  Then with 2×6 roof decking extending another 2-3 feet our total extension is very close to 10 feet.  That makes for wonderful log protection.  As usual Bonnie was our ‘go to’ winch specialist.  The new guy Tyler was our Designated Pinner(Sledge hammered rebar into the logs…over and over and over again.  5-600 pieces of rebar was pinned into this cabin.  Tyler didn’t pin them all).  Rob did everything that was asked of him as usual.  Me…well…I guess I did what was left.  We gained a mascot…Kona…Tyler’s 6 month old lab/pit mix.  Sweetest dog you’ll ever meet…lots of fun too…I may have thrown out my arm launching branches out into the forest for her to retrieve. 



Shed Dormer and Balcony

Posted: August 29, 2016 in Uncategorized

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This Shed Dormer turned out better than expected.  Of course its not complete.  We still need to finish the walls and tie it into the roof.  But the framing looks great.  At first while I was designing it I thought three windows would be nice.  Let lots of light in to the great room and the loft.  But as it morphed into a balcony with two windows and a door I am thrilled at the design.  Jack and Sharon at the Onalaska Log Building School took a look a few days ago and agree that it turned out well.  Tyler has been a HUGE help since August 15.  Thanks Ty!

Row 11-12

Posted: August 25, 2016 in Uncategorized

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11th and 12th rows…wow…this cabin is getting big!  I’ve included lots of pics that show the rigging we’ve used all along.  Only one log was placed by a boom truck…Big Red…the center post…the remaining over 100 logs have been raised by our lifting poles and pulley system.  You can see that we added a blue tarp during the 90 degree weather to shelter us from the sun…crazy for the NW.


Posted: August 22, 2016 in Uncategorized

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Almost one year ago when I was back in Florida building my log cabin model I came across a problem.  My gable dormers were not letting in sufficient light.  After just sitting on a stool staring at the model(I’m a visual kinda guy) I came up with this solution.  Instead of two small gable dormers I would make one long 16’ shed dormer.  Great…except for one thing…the logs below still needed protection from the rain.  Ok…make a scab roof under the shed dormer windows.  That didn’t work.  Then I saw it…instead of a short roof…level it out and make it a balcony.  Turn one of the three windows into a door…give the now joyce logs instead of the rafter logs a slight slope for water run off and all of a sudden you have a cool balcony you can sit at night and watch the sun set…perfect!  Well…kinda perfect.  Now…as usual…I’ve created a more complicated build.  That’s what life is for right…creativity…outside the box thinking.  Well…ok.  The balcony itself is up now…the issue over the next week will be to build the windows, doors and roof.  Watch as it goes up! How do you guys like the gnarly post logs!  I love ’em.  Oh yeah…a good friend of ours, Tyler, from Florida has come out to help us through the end of the summer…which is October 5th or so.  Thanks Ty!

Ridgepole Raised!

Posted: August 17, 2016 in Uncategorized

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The raising of the ridgepole(RP) was fairly uneventful…and that is good unless you are filming for a reality show and the producer is hoping for some drama.  We put up good rope guy lines to beef up the lifting poles before we started lifting.  We also measured and cut the height of the two outside ridgepole posts to give us the 5/12 pitch of the roof we wanted.  Then we cut ‘cups’ into the posts to ‘cradle’ the ridgepole as we set it down.  We used very long…24” x 5/8” lag bolts to secure the RP to the post.  Big Red in the center of course gave us the most work.  Rob had to use his 30” chainsaw to cut a 6” hole in the middle top of Big Red to fit the post into.  Big Red was 3’ shorter than our other post so we had to extend it by using the post.  We will hollow out a large DF(Douglas Fir) and wrap it around the post for looks later.  It seems since the day I saw and bought that big tree its been testing both my patience and my wallet.  The cost of the tree was nothing compared to all the other expenses it has incurred.  Building the footing $700…cement $600…lifting it into position $300…top post to stretch it up to the RP $250.  Sheesh…a 16”x21’ DF(Douglas fir) would have cost me $75!  I sure hope we get lots of memories over the next years because of ‘ol Big Red.  So now the RP is up and we can start to work on the wall logs above the loft.  Cool.

Ridgepole On Deck!

Posted: August 8, 2016 in Stacking Logs

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Well…my second favorite log of course!  50 feet long…almost 18” at one end…it will extend eight feet past both ends of our cabin.  With the extension of the 2×6 the roofing will extend a total of 10 feet past each gable end wall.  That my friend is GREAT LOG PROTECTION FROM THE RAIN!  It took five of us working as a team to get this bad boy onto the second floor deck…Jack, Rob, Sam, Bonnie and myself.  From the photos you can see that we used the two north end sets of block and tackle to initially lift the RP up onto the deck edge.  From there we brought the south end pulleys to replace those pulleys on the end and moved the north pulleys further back on the RP.  Eventually with that strategy we slide the RP to a center point on deck.  Next will be to hoist it straight up on to the three posts.

Joyce Log Extenders

Posted: August 4, 2016 in Stacking Logs

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OK…we now have a half loft…but we need a temporary floor over the WHOLE floor.  Because the joyce logs were cut long most of them spanned over the middle close to the north wall.  I could have used scaffolding but thought that was too heavy and expensive.  Later I will be using 16’x2x8’s for the main floor so I went ahead and ordered those to use as temporary loft extenders.  We lagged 2×8’s into the north wall to act as a hanger and brought the 2×8 extenders over.  We then had a strong temporary floor to extend over the Great Room to finish the wall logs and rafters.  Later we will dismantle and use these logs as main floor joyce lumber.  Ok…that was wordy…but I felt it was a good solution that some of you readers may use some day.