Log cabins are a simple, but effective structures that work by fitting logs together. Sometimes they can be purchased from companies that specialise in wooden house design. The main requirement is that the wood must be properly seasoned and machined to the right size, and that you have the blueprint to complete the construction task.
The basic materials
While cabins were generally small houses, there are some quite elaborate log homes, which are generally bought in from companies. You can construct them yourself, but you would be advised to enlist the assistance of a helper, especially when making a roof.
Never work on a roof on your own. Ensure that the cabin has a strong foundation. It should not lie in wet soil. Ensure that all legal design specifications are met. These can vary according to country.
For log building, the wood should be properly seasoned rather than new and should be cut carefully to the specifications of the blue print. Softwood is used as it is easier to work. Ensure that the wood is fireproofed and has fungicide applied to it.
The Norwegian way of laying the logs horizontally and cutting notches that fit into each other makes a very stable structure. The fireplace is ideally a stove, for which a chimney is constructed, but make sure that a chimney liner is applied to stop smoke filtering out.
The roof should be constructed strictly in accordance with the blueprint. It should be properly affixed with high quality fastenings. Roofing felt should cover the wood. Some people use green rooves, covering the roofing fabric with a turf layer, but other materials such as tiles, can be used as. This gives maximum insulation. Some cabins have a mezzanine floor that provides more floor space. Ensure that it is properly supported.
Doors and windows should be designed into the structure. The doors should have a strong door post, and there should be two of them to provide an escape if there is fire. Windows should be carefully cut to fit into the structure. The frames should also be wood and they should be given preservative like the rest of the cabin.
You should have a stone base for the fireplace. An indoor toilet is necessary. This can be attached to the sewers, but a compost toilet, which can be purchased, is easy. Wood buildings need to be connected to mains water for hygiene purposes, so this requires some planning and working with the water authorities.
You do not need both electricity and gas, but electricity is desirable if you want to run equipment in the cabin. You will need some device for cooking.