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  1. #1
    Bronze Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Posts
    91

    Default Replacing rotten logs

    I recently bought a log cabin, that has some rotten logs. that I am going. to have to. replace.They are not rotten all the way through,
    Any suggestions. will be greatly appreciated.
    Thanks
    Ray

  2. #2
    Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2000
    Posts
    42
    Location
    Webster, NY
    Tractor
    Craftsman

    Default Re: Replacing rotten logs

    Replacing logs does not sound easy. Is there any way to use a chain saw to remove the rotten parts (not cutting all the way through) and reparing or filling the void?

    You could always call a log home company and ask for advice.

    Doug

  3. #3
    Veteran Member scesnick's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    1,429
    Location
    Garrett County Md. ( Western Md.)
    Tractor
    Kubota MX5100

    Default Re: Replacing rotten logs

    I suggest you contact Log Homes by Old-Timer Log Homes, Custom Log Homes, Log Packages, Kiln-Dried Logs and ask them. They are very good people and will answer any question you have and not be in a big ruch like most companies these days.

    I bought a log home from them 5 years ago and they have been nothing but great to work with.

    BTW, I am willing to bet your logs were either not stained properly or were air dried logs and not kiln dried..
    Father, GNCC racer, KTM rider, Bow hunter, Farm owner.
    Kubota MX5100
    Dodge 2500 CTD
    Yamaha YZ 250

  4. #4
    Bronze Member koop's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Posts
    60
    Location
    Madison Virginia
    Tractor
    Case IH 495

    Default Re: Replacing rotten logs

    Quote Originally Posted by tensaw12
    I recently bought a log cabin, that has some rotten logs. that I am going. to have to. replace.They are not rotten all the way through,
    Any suggestions. will be greatly appreciated.
    Thanks
    Ray
    I took down and rebuilt old log cabins for ten years. Is this cabin old, new or do not know? What species of wood? Size of chink joint? Rotten areas are in corners or between corners? Can replace entire logs or patching the faces in the only possible option?

  5. #5
    Super Star Member EddieWalker's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Posts
    14,898
    Location
    Tyler, Texas
    Tractor
    Several, all used and abused.

    Default Re: Replacing rotten logs

    Pictures would really help.

    Are the rotten logs all in the same area, or are they diffrent areas around the house?

    For the logs that have surface rot, you can patch those with bondo. Get a chisel and remove all the bad wood. You have to get rid of all of it and get down to the solid wood. I use a chisel, the claw of my hammer and anything else I have to remove it. Then I like to use my dremel and a wire wheel on a drill to get it all.

    Next, you need to screw in some large wood screws parially into the logs. Make sure the heads of the screws are below the finish level of the logs, but that you have enough threads into the log to give some strength. You can't put in too many, but figure about every four inches, give or take.

    Use regular Bondo and mix it in small batches. Just put it onto the log and around the screws. Take your time and let it dry between each layer. Bondo dries fairly quickly, so it wont take long to build up a fair amount of material.

    I've done this with gallons of Bondo before, but most of the repairs I've made have been less then a gallon. Don't buy the Walmart version of it, make sure you get the real stuff. There is a big difference.

    When you start to get the bondo up to the level of the logs, you can start sanding it with a vibrating sander or an orbital one. I guess you can sand by hand too, but I wouldn't want to. hahaha As you sand, you shape the bondo to match the shape of the log.

    Most of the log homes built around here are milled D shape ones. The tops of these are flat, so they fit together good, but they also hold water where they extend past the corners of the home. I've found this to be a place that they rot out first. When I fix these areas, I build up the tops of the logs to give them a round finish to shed water.

    After it's all filled in and sanded to shape, I use regular wood stain to finish it off. You have to experimenet with different stains and colors to get the closest match. Don't think of it as stain, but a brown paint. Put it on thick and let it dry on the bondo. The stain will have enough irregular color to it that it will blend in with the logs very nicely. If a client isn't there to see me work on his log home, but comes back after I'm done, they have trouble finding the repair. People who don't know the repair was made will never know by just looking at it. If you look close and know where it was, you'll see it, but that's true with just about any repair.

    If you have to remove the entire log, then it gets complicated. The ones I've done have all been in lengths of four feet or less. First I get the old log out by drilling, chiseling and using a sawzall. No chainsaws. I would never use a chainsaw for several reasons. Saftey is one, but control and precision are the biggest concerns. When done, you don't want any other cuts in your remaining logs.

    It's improtant to cut the log out as square as possible so the new one fits in nice a tight. This might not work for your logs, but on the ones I've done, I screw on some blocks of wood on the sides of the log right above the one I'm replaceing. I then jack put my jacks under those blocks and lift the wall slightly. You have to judge this, but half to 3/4 of an inch is usually enough.

    I then modify the replacement log and existing logs so I can slide the new one into position. When it will fit, I put both liquid nails and silicone all around the log. I like to use plenty of this as it's what's keeping the elements out and the log in place.

    After removing the jacks, I can adjust the replacement log with a hammer and block of wood if I have to, but usualy it's pretty close. I finish it off by drilling a few holes into the existing logs and screwing the log into place for insurance. I like to get the screws well below the surface of the existing logs. Sand the logs and fill the holes and gaps with bondo. Sand the bondo and apply stain.

    Again, I've had homeowners have to stop and look for the new logs. If you can get the stain to match, it really will make it dificult to tell the new from the old.

    Good luck,
    Eddie

  6. #6
    Bronze Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Posts
    91

    Default Re: Replacing rotten logs

    To, ALL of you that have responded to my request for help. THANK YOU!!!!!
    I, have never been associated, with so many people, with so much knowledge, that are, so willing, to share it.
    I have not closed on this property yet, but, I am suppossed to next week.
    I WILL try to get some pictures up. Will probably need some help with that also.
    Again, my sincerest. THANKS for ALL your help.
    Ray

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