Results 1 to 13 of 13

Thread: Costs and options when buying logs

  1. #1
    Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Kanagawa, Japan
    Posts
    37

    Default Costs and options when buying logs

    I've read through some threads discussing moving logs (helicopter, etc) but did not see anything on sources for logs in AK, other than a reference to the forestry service to contact for suggestions on cutting your own.

    What are some sources folks have used for purchasing logs and what were the costs per log...

    Are different species and dimensions available?

    Many thanks
    Jim

  2. #2
    Member Dirtofak's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Beaver Creek
    Posts
    2,267

    Default

    I helped build a 1600 sq ft log 6 years ago using the 10" milled logs. It was a pain and still is. The logs are still shrinking and are very humidity sensitive. Over 4" of settling/shrinkage.

    Smaller cabins seem to be using the D logs that many of the mills cut.

    There are several independent log home builders in the Mat-Su area.

    The 2 homes that are truely amazing that I have seen lately were shipped from Montana and Idaho. The new one on Lake Louise is magazine quality!!!

    I heard that there is one very nice home near Lake Louise Lodge that is for sale. I have not seen it on the realty web sites. Here is one that I just stumbled on:

    http://www.landinalaska.com/J062/J062.htm

    Mike

  3. #3

    Default

    There must have been 200 stacks of logs along the Hope Road that were cut 4 years ago, by the forest service. These were beautiful house logs. No one wanted them, so they are being cut up for firewood. SAD Very SAD.

  4. #4
    Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Kanagawa, Japan
    Posts
    37

    Default

    Wow, I guess the forest service is the place to ask...

    I'm not much of a fan of D-logs, but I'd not complain if land I bought had a d-log structure on it. It's hard for me to complain about food I didn't cook, or a cabin I didn't build...

    Although I do a lot of hobby woodwork and am trained in log building, I admittedly have not built a log structure. However, proper notches (saddle style), scribing and planning allow for settling ahead of time.

    A properly scribed and fit log home takes a lot of time, but the corners and walls should actually get tighter as they settle. Doors, windows, staircases, vertical columns and plumbing are certainly more involved due to settling, but it's part of a properly planned project.

    I think this is the reason most scribe fit log homes (owner-built anyway) are modestly sized. When folks have "gold balls", they can afford to buy those fancy magazine ad log homes from a professionals.

  5. #5
    Member matjpow's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    KGB
    Posts
    301

    Default

    Apparently they did away with the House Logs Permit. Does anyone know anything about how to get a permit to cut house logs? I was originally thinking that I could just get a firewood permit and get logs that way but when I read the fine print I found out that you cannot cut trees bigger than 9" with a firewood permit. Are 8"-9" spruce logs big enough to build a log cabin with? Keep in mind this is a recreational cabin I am building, so energy consumption is not going to be as big of a concern as if I was going to make it a residence. I am planning to use whole logs and use foam and permachink.

    Also, what about beetle killed dead standing trees. There are a lot of those near my land. I have read about using dead standing trees, but would beetle killed trees be too rotten to use? I do have trees on my land up to 24" but I don't want to cut down all of the good trees. I'm not sure I would be able handle 24" logs very well either.

    The only info I can find on timber sales is for commercial operations. It seems a bit fishy that they would do away with personal use log home permits. Isn't this supposed to be our resource?

    http://dnr.alaska.gov/commis/pic/permits.htm

    http://forestry.alaska.gov/timber/fup.htm
    That's what she said...

  6. #6
    Member AKDoug's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Talkeetna
    Posts
    5,714

    Default

    The location of quality house logs in road system Alaska is as well of a kept secret as the best sheep hunting spots. I have two customers that are log builders. They spent a lot of time driving and looking at logs when it comes time to build. There's a guy in Ester and another in Tok
    Bunny Boots and Bearcats: Utility Sled Mayhem

  7. #7
    Member matjpow's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    KGB
    Posts
    301

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by AKDoug View Post
    The location of quality house logs in road system Alaska is as well of a kept secret as the best sheep hunting spots. I have two customers that are log builders. They spent a lot of time driving and looking at logs when it comes time to build. There's a guy in Ester and another in Tok
    Ok...so I'm still in the same position. I know where some good trees are. Just not sure how to legally harvest them. I'm also a bit irritated that the State has made it more difficult for individuals to harvest timber. Part of the point of building this cabin is to do as much myself as possible. The journey is more important than the destination kind of thing. Of course I don't want to go to the trouble of building it, if it's going to be sub-par. I've been looking at a lot of log cabins around here and found some info on the net. I've noticed that many small cabins don't have very thick logs.
    That's what she said...

  8. #8
    Member matjpow's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    KGB
    Posts
    301

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by jagfish View Post

    ...Are different species and dimensions available?
    Spruce trees are typically used for log construction up here.
    That's what she said...

  9. #9
    Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Kanagawa, Japan
    Posts
    37

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by matjpow View Post
    Part of the point of building this cabin is to do as much myself as possible. The journey is more important than the destination kind of thing. Of course I don't want to go to the trouble of building it, if it's going to be sub-par. I've been looking at a lot of log cabins around here and found some info on the net. I've noticed that many small cabins don't have very thick logs.
    If you can make the time, I'd highly recommend going to a log building course/workshop (if you haven't already) to get the training and practice to maximize your efforts. You instructor will have advice on tools and building materials. I don't know if they have such courses in AK...I'd suppose they would somewhere.

    As for log diameter...because I'd want to build with saddle notches, I'd go as thick as I could reasonably handle for transport and moving on site. Also, the thicker you can go, the fewer logs you will need to make a wall. If you are cutting notches and scribe fitting each log, you'd have a lot less work on the cutting part with 7 or 8 big logs as opposed to 12 smaller ones (to reach your desired wall height).

    I'd prefer logs that were a minimum 12 inches at the small end, that could put them up to 24" at the base depending on taper.

    Naturally, thicker logs also means more insulation.

    If you are using d-log construction, that's a different animal...

  10. #10
    Member Rock_skipper's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Deltajct
    Posts
    2,499

    Default

    There are some advantages with building with D Logs.

    The most important is that you can fur out the inside for the electric, add some insulation and vapor barrier it. You can also add an interior that gives you the log cabin look and feel.

    Its all about how you look at it.

  11. #11
    Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Kanagawa, Japan
    Posts
    37

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Rock_skipper View Post
    There are some advantages with building with D Logs.

    The most important is that you can fur out the inside for the electric, add some insulation and vapor barrier it. You can also add an interior that gives you the log cabin look and feel.

    Its all about how you look at it.
    True...however, if someone were going to lay d-logs, then add insulation, vapor barrier and other lumber/covering to inside...that's a lot of work to try and have the best of both worlds.

    In that case, I'd opt to just do traditional lumber built with tons of insulation and maybe an extra thick wall for added R value...

  12. #12
    Member Rock_skipper's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Deltajct
    Posts
    2,499

    Default

    It all depends on the look you want.

    You could go with lumber and log siding, its a personal choice.

  13. #13
    Member matjpow's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    KGB
    Posts
    301

    Default

    I like how D-logs look. Much better than the fake log siding.

    I'm sure going to a log building class might be beneficial however I can get a lot of real life experience volunteering to help with cabins around here. One thing I have learned through reading and talking to people is that there are uncountable ways to build a log cabin. Besides that, most of the classes I have seen offered are more geared towards log homes. Although the two get used for each other, what I am planning is a "recreational log cabin." About 350 square feet including the loft. It will be used for weekend getaways. I do want to build it to stand up to the elements but energy efficiency is less critical than a primary residence. It's also in an unincorporated area so I don't think I have to worry about building codes.

    I am still steering towards 8-9" logs. I can get lots of them for next to nothing. I have found a lot of examples of this diameter for log construction. I realize that I will be using more logs but the cost factor is a big thing for me. I can afford to buy logs but why, when I can get them myself. I am a penny pincher. I feel like when I save money by doing something myself, the end product is worth more to me. Also, I get paid to sit around and wait for the highly unlikely to happen. I like manual labor, but only when I don't have do it for a living.
    That's what she said...

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •