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Log cabin with TOO tapered trees.

 
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I and my partner just bought five acres with the intention of creating a small csa/mushroom farm in central Arkansas. The property is entirely wooded with oak and hickory mostly. We want to build a log cabin about 14'x14' to avoid any permitting issues. There are plenty of trees but they are all quite tapered. Probably 15" every ten feet or more. Is there a method to compensate for the taper or should we look at other building methods. I can't find anything on tapered logs on google. I've considered just using my draw knife to flatten the high ends once the logs are in place to keep it straight but that will be a lot of work.

We are grateful for any suggestions.
 
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You may find this video useful (in Finnish, but you can probably figure it out)



As far as I've seen, very few cultures used the logs "as is." All trees taper to some degree, so you have to do something to standardize the width or you'll have major problems keeping your build level.
 
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Hi Philip,

I and my partner just bought five acres with the intention of creating a small csa/mushroom farm in central Arkansas.



Congratulations...

The property is entirely wooded with oak and hickory mostly. We want to build a log cabin about 14'x14' to avoid any permitting issues.



Sounds great and some wonderful resources...The structure shouldn't take more than two to three months to "dry in" even if new to this work...

There are plenty of trees but they are all quite tapered. Probably 15" every ten feet or more.



That's o.k....

Is there a method to compensate for the taper...



Yes...Several...

...or should we look at other building methods.



Only if you want to...It is a mater of "style selection" as this biome type will take several vernacular forms of wood architecture...

I can't find anything on tapered logs on google.



It's there...just often in other languages...and in books (often in other languages...)

I

've considered just using my draw knife to flatten the high ends once the logs are in place to keep it straight but that will be a lot of work.



You could...but it's not necessary.

If I may, please going through a number of my posts on foundations, and timber-log work. I think it may be helpful...

Regards,

j
 
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If you're going with the classic "Lincoln Log" style cabin built with notched round logs, it's simple (not the same as easy). Basically you accept the taper, and compensate by laying the next log up in the other direction. That way the tapers cancel out, giving you a level build.

In practice you need to do a lot of measuring to make sure you compensate for all the tapers. And cutting the corner notches cleanly becomes harder.

Hope this helps!
 
Phillip Benjamin
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Thank yall for the advice and I watched that video which helped. We begin construction next week!
 
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