Thursday, September 2, 2010

Please Be Careful

Last night we had our first good soaking rain since the roof went up. First thing this morning I walked my dog down to the cabin to see how the roof fared. To my amazement the walls both inside and out were dry along with the interior floor. I found that to be a great piece of luck considering the walls are not chinked yet, the roof has no ridge cap and I had no idea how far to extend the sheet metal to keep the exterior walls dry. 

As I stood inside the cabin drying off and listening to the rain fall on the tin roof I was thinking this bit of luck was just the latest in a long string that started the day I dropped the first dead tree. Almost every phase of this project could be categorized as Extremely Dangerous.

It is no small miracle that I didn't die, or permanently injure myself, considering how little I understood about what I was planning to do. I took no safety instruction courses and my only experience with the chainsaw and axe was limited to cutting firewood. As I've fumbled along over the past few months I have learned that there are literally hundreds of courses on these skills and schools dedicated to log cabin building.

With all this in mind I thought it was time to clarify what exactly it is I'm doing with this blog. It is a "Brag Book". I started it with the intention of sharing my experience with friends and family who are unable to visit, sit around the cook fire and listen to me spin yarns about how I did it. As with every aspect of the project I have turned the journal into more than I thought it would be. 

In less than three months I have had over 1680 visitors who have made over 2600 visits from 49 different countries! At one point in July over 500 people a week were visiting. 
So ... I'm concerned that someone could get hurt. Of course I hope every visitor learns something and is inspired to get outdoors and learn more but I don't want anyone to consider this a "how to". Especially if your thinking of doing this alone like I did. It is dangerous and no one can help you if you make a mistake.

I am by any definition a novice and my cabin can only be considered amateur. Even my design's structural integrity is untested. There are many things I would have done differently if I could start over. Proper training and tools foremost. I do hope I have inspired and entertained but I don't want anyone to consider this a tutorial or instructions. 

Thank you all for joining me on this journey and I hope your enjoying it half as much as I am. Be safe!


  1. I think it turned out great! I don't even know how I stumbled upon your blog, but it's been fun to watch the progress!

  2. I've enjoyed following your progress. We live in a cabin, but don't know much about construction. Over the last two years we've watched our friend John building his float cabin and it has been a wonderful learning experience. But I know what you mean, there are lots of dangers to be aware of and to look out for. Here's to continued safe success. - Margy

  3. Thank you!
    We had a rip roaring thunderstorm last night and the cabin was still dry this morning! I hope to start filling the gaps this weekend.

  4. You did great! It'll be standing a very long time.

  5. Never too late to learn. I've taken classes in log cabin building, rigging, timber framing, and tree felling. I've also used the just do it, she will be alright method. I found that investment in knowledge is a good thing. I learned to fell trees after I had cut about 100 trees. I was lucky I didn't get hurt too. I had no idea what I didn't know till I learned.

    I highly recommend the GOL classes for tree felling. And, Ron B. who still teaches at the Great Lakes School of Log Building, well, I think he is the best instructor...period.

    You cabin is looking great. Rain on the roof and dry logs, now that feel alright, eh?

  6. Yes indeed Jon
    Thanks for the recommendations on classes and instructors. I love your cabin on the Stump Ranch.

    Everyone should heck out the link in my sidebar to Jon's blog - "Peeling Logs".

    Now that is the real deal!