Our Cabin Photos

If you have always wanted to build (or have built) a log cabin, we have compiled the phases we went through to make our dream a reality from a kit to a cabin. It took us from the summer of 2001 until the summer of 2007 to complete the project. Yep, six long years. We discovered that when you only have weekends and vacations to build a log cabin, it comes out great but takes a loooong time. But trust us, it is all worth it! Here’s how we did it.

Phase I - Introduction   Phase IV - Turning logs into a log cabin.
Phase II - Can ya dig it?? Excavation   Phase V - Inside Stuff that takes ferever!
Phase III - Ya need logs for a log cabin, right?   Phase VI - The Finishing Touches

Phase I… Introduction

 

Future Log Home Land

Here is a picture of the entire lake front before the construction.

Future Log Home Land - close up

Hidden behind a tree was our own lakeview outhouse!
We had to tear the outhouse down and get fancy-pants indoor plumbing for the cabin though!

Across the street from the future log cabin

Here is a picture of the woods on the other side of the road.
No skyscrapers and bright lights around us!

Phase I - Introduction   Phase IV - Turning logs into a log cabin.
Phase II - Can ya dig it?? Excavation   Phase V - Inside Stuff that takes ferever!
Phase III - Ya need logs for a log cabin, right?   Phase VI - The Finishing Touches

 

Phase II… Can ya dig it??

Log Home beginnings

The excavator, Mike Ray, begins the process of digging a big hole in the ground (July 6, 2001) and tossing out lots of huge boulders so we can bury a foundation in the hole.

Log Cabin big digs

Below is a picture of Mike Ray in the hole he dug measuring the level-ish-ness of everything.

Leveling the cabin foundation

Below is a picture of the foundation (July 18, 2001) with Cindy in the background. The neighbor’s house you see in the back belongs to the foundation builder, Mr. Roy. He didn’t hafta do too much driving to get to our job!

Log Home foundation

Phase I - Introduction   Phase IV - Turning logs into a log cabin.
Phase II - Can ya dig it?? Excavation   Phase V - Inside Stuff that takes ferever!
Phase III - Ya need logs for a log cabin, right?   Phase VI - The Finishing Touches

 

 

Phase III… Ya need logs for a log cabin, right?

Log home kit arrives

Here’s the do-it-yourself log cabin kit in a nice neat package! After the logging truck arrived from Lincoln Logs at the crack of dawn on Aug 15, 2001, and the rental forklift arrived about 3 hours behind schedule, (and a much smaller forklift than we ordered!), the logs and other goodies in the kit started getting unloaded.

Unloading the log home kit

Above is our van and trailer to help shuttle the hardware and small stuff.

Below is the small “toy” forklift straining under a load of logs. There were one or two people riding the back of the forklift to keep the precarious load balanced (I offered to ride on the back but they politely mumbled something about soft mud and too much weight??….)

Taking inventory of the log kit Unloading the log cabin kit

Phase I - Introduction   Phase IV - Turning logs into a log cabin.
Phase II - Can ya dig it?? Excavation   Phase V - Inside Stuff that takes ferever!
Phase III - Ya need logs for a log cabin, right?   Phase VI - The Finishing Touches

 

 

Phase IV… Turning logs into a log cabin.

Below are a couple of photos looking at the garage and basement door opening a few days after the delivery with the first rows of logs as it starts to grow. It looks like we’re really on our way!!

Log home foundation is ready Excitment builds as the log home starts

In the photo below (Sept 8, 2001), even without the peak, the kit is already starting to look like a log cabin!

Log home starts to take shape

Below are some shots on Sept 15, 2001 of the cabin ready for shingles. The first two shots are looking from the road.

Looking like a log home now!Log home is ready for roofing

The last two photos are from the lake side. Finally, it looks like a log cabin!!

Log Home from the backLog home from the lake shore

Phase I - Introduction   Phase IV - Turning logs into a log cabin.
Phase II - Can ya dig it?? Excavation   Phase V - Inside Stuff that takes ferever!
Phase III - Ya need logs for a log cabin, right?   Phase VI - The Finishing Touches

 

 

Phase V… Inside Stuff that takes ferever!

Starting the log home fireplacePutting on the chimney

After getting several bids on putting up a fireplace (a log cabin must have a roaring fire, right?), we hired a local guy who is semi-retired and probably prefers doing his Karaoke gigs at area VFW Halls but with some persuasion did a good job of putting up our fireplace. I don’t mind doing some stuff but I was glad to have him climb up that scaffolding on a coooold windy day to put the chimney on the top!

As we started the long tedious task of prepping the logs and staining them during one of the most rainy summers on record, I realized that, even though we were far from being ready to move in, there was a condo of robin’s nests going up between the logs. As you can see below right, we were being upstaged by a bunch of birds!

Caulking the windowsBirds settle in

Running the plumbing through the cabin was a long-time project, but once we had the toilet in, it was quite a relief (in more ways than one)!
Plumbing the log cabin

If I thought the plumbing took a lot of time, I never realized what a pain it would be to design and build an entire electrical system and make it to code.! Drilling a gadzillion holes through basement ceiling joist boards and then pulling all those wires from the panel through those boards to their destinations.

Fortunately, the end result was a success; the electrical inspection went smoothly.

Electrical box in log home

Many more tasks went on during this time such as building the two flights of stairs from basement up to the loft. As well, we hand tilled the root-riddled yard (wearing out two tillers in the process) to turn the jungle into a somewhat usable lawn.

Stairs leading up from the basementThe log cabin yard takes shape

A log cabin dog
Of course any lake-front log cabin must have a couple of friendly dogs so we rescued two labs thru American Lab Rescue. Dusty (left) had been abandoned on a highway in Georgia and Dixie (Black Lab) was a puppy lost during Hurricane Isabelle in the Florida panhandle. As you see, they’ve adapted well to their new abode.
The labs gather firewood
Log Cabins and dogs are a match!

 

Below are the kitchen cabinets in the works. The photo shows the sink area with the frige to be on the left. The gas range will be on the right side of the photo.

Log home kitchen cabinets

Phase I - Introduction   Phase IV - Turning logs into a log cabin.
Phase II - Can ya dig it?? Excavation   Phase V - Inside Stuff that takes ferever!
Phase III - Ya need logs for a log cabin, right?   Phase VI - The Finishing Touches

 

 

Phase VI… On To The Finishing Touches

As we get closer to completion, it is time to install wood floors, frame and build the interior doors and closet doors, and install the loft and stair rails.

We got three bids to put in the wood floor, with astronomical prices and no follow-up (yep, even the guy who came by and measured the floor and gave us a price never returned our calls to finalize plans). Finally, we decided to do it ourselves.

The final result was worth the back-aches that Cindy and I had from putting the entire thing in! Plus we saved a chunk of money (even after the Advil).

Right photo is the loft looking down the stairs, the bottom left is the great room, and bottom right is looking at the kitchen from the loft.

Loft in log cabin
A new wood floor in log home
View from loft to kitchen

 

Now you know how it was built from a kit. You can do it yourself too! Feel free to leave any comments below or let us know if you have any questions or  wonder about any details we left out. We love to hear from you.

The log home is finished!

Phase I - Introduction   Phase IV - Turning logs into a log cabin.
Phase II - Can ya dig it?? Excavation   Phase V - Inside Stuff that takes ferever!
Phase III - Ya need logs for a log cabin, right?   Phase VI - The Finishing Touches

 

 

2 Responses to Our Cabin Photos

  • Rick Brady says:

    What company did you buy your kit from. How much $ did it finally take to finish the build and did you have any big set backs?

    • Jim Smith says:

      Hi Rick. We bought ours from a company in Mass called “Patlin Enterprises”. The rule of thumb that they gave us was that it costs about 3 times the cost of the kit to get it assembled. That seemed to work well for our budget. The biggest setback was when we tried to get a contractor to put in our wood floor. We got 4 bids and when we were ready to move forward, all of those contractors were booked solid and too busy. I taught my wife how to use a chop saw and nail gun and, with enough Advil, we put it in ourselves. I bet contractors are hungry enough in this economy that wouldn’t be a problem. Good luck to you!
      — Jim

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