Sunday, July 18, 2010


Cut 12 notches and stacked eight logs yesterday. The walls are now over five feet high all the way around.
Which brings me to the next image. Drum Roll please...the first ever taken from INSIDE the cabin!

As you can see the gaps between logs are wide.

My plan is to wedge smaller logs (sticks) into the gaps and seal them up with mortar. Below is a quick example of what I mean for illustrative purposes. I'll whittle them down to make a better fit before the mortar goes on.

Today I'm heading back into the woods to forage for some more dead trees. I need six more nine foot logs to finish up the walls.

In  other news.  Kent over on the Tiny House Blog posted an update I sent him. Thanks Kent! His blog is an incredible resource for ideas and examples of all sorts of construction methods and man does it make my Google analytics go wild when Kent posts an update. I had 193 visits to the blog the day Kent posted the story!


  1. Hello,

    This is cool.

    I built a little cabin a couple years ago and used mortar. Be sure to put some roofing nails or something similar in the logs where the chinking will go. The mortar needs something to adhere to. The mortar isn't flexible, while the wood is, so it'll want to crack and spit the mortar out if it doesn't have something to hold on to.

  2. Kent is an amazing man. I love all his posts. - Margy

  3. Hi Mark
    Thanks for the tip. I have seen photos of people driving nails into logs before chinking and wondered what the purpose was. Makes sense. Thanks again. I'd love to see some photos of your cabin. Do you have a website or blog or something?

  4. Found it!
    Gaperville Creative!
    Cool site. I have a bachelors in Fine Art and worked for years as a phtographer. Small world. Cool site. I'll link it to my favorites!

  5. I built a 40x40 many years ago. your gonna have trouble with rot because your so low, and those big gaps are gonna be a problem to chink even with extra wood in there. Don't cchink until its been under roof a while. Good luck with all that, your learning a nice saddle notch, needs just a touch of cup.

    Delta Echo

  6. Thanks Delta Echo
    I'm glad you told me to hold off on the chinking until the roof is up. I was thinking about getting started doing a little at a time in the evenings after work. I'm guessing the idea is to get the roof on and wait to make sure its dry and settled before applying any mortar.
    Thanks again!

  7. Enjoying the blog and progress. Saw an episode of American Pickers the guys were looking for stuff in an old log outbuilding, found a bunch of old metal signs tacked to the walls, they were holding the chinking in the large gaps.

    Some people worry so much about rot and their work going back to nature that they are paralyzed into inactivity. They could never take on project like this. First thing a lot of people ask about my chainsaw carvings on standing dead trees is, ' but won't they rot out?' Yes, of course they will, so what, you'll still enjoy them for twenty years, if they rot at the ground, cut them down and put them on concrete, just keep them sealed and they should last a very long time. I do what I can. Check out for anti rot products. Also, don't want to be critical, but you should definitely consider getting the bottom course of logs up off of the ground. They actually will rot out very quickly being in direct contact with the ground, probably in just a few years. It's not too late to do that. I just put mine up on flat rocks. If I were going to do that with yours I'd cut some wooden wedges and sledge hammer under the bottom to jack it up and slide some flat rocks under. Put a piece of plywood or sheet metal between the wedge and the ground to keep the wedge from sinking in. Rocks at corners and in center, should be enough. Might have to dig a bit. But you should be able to do it with stuff off the forest floor and stay within the confines of the natural nature of the project.

    I'm inspired.

  8. Thanks for the thoughtful comments Mark!
    I couldn't agree more about people being immobilized by doubt. As a wise man once said - "The perfect is the enemy of the good."