The Everett Log Home Build

Welcome to The Everett Log Home Build Blog!

We are documenting the entire process of building a custom log home at the base of the Great Smoky Mountains in East Tennessee!

We have chosen a cabin! A select number of cabin builds in the local area will be followed from initial design phase through final “turn-key”move in. We have decided to do all of the hard work, and would love to have you tag along.

Our first “blog cabin” will be the Everett home build in Walland, Tennessee. This home is based off of our very popular “Watts Bar” model, and features tons of open, living area, both in-doors and out. This is a spectacular home, and since this property has a great view, it’s a perfect choice to take in the scenery.


1/7/13 – 16:07

Excavation and Site Prep

Today was the official “kick-off” date of the Everett Log Home Build!

The build crew has cleared and prepped the land, and they are getting set to dig the footings and piers for the log home. Assuming we have decent weather, they should have the excavating completed within a few days time.

Stay tuned for more updates to come very soon, and pictures from the Everett Log Home Build pictures.



Concrete Pour for Footings

The concrete pour for the footings and piers is underway!

Today, after some delay due to the weather, we had our trucks set up and started pumping in the concrete for the footings and piers.

Once the building inspector came to review the placement of the steel and stepdowns, the crew was given the green light to go ahead with the concrete pour. So far so good!

More to come very soon. Follow this link to see more pics of the log home build.

Pictures include:

Concrete pump truck in staging area
Pump truck with boom ready
Concrete being pumped into footing
Footings at max fill
Brooming footings for textured finish (don’t make these too smooth or it gets dangerous)
Pump truck outriggers


Concrete Walls Being Poured

After all of the hard work on the forms, and then waiting even more on the weather, we are rolling again. Today’s concrete pour was also pumped from the pump truck, and is nearly complete. Very cool to see this stuff go together. Now that we are poured and ready, it is back to the waiting game to see how long the curing process will take before removing forms. Patience is a virtue, and we know that, but we are really starting to hate rain. Knoxville had a full months average of rainfall in 48 hours


Foundation Waterproofing

The basement walls are now cured enough to remove the forms. This is a slow process, and with all of the rain, it is a messy one, too.

Important note on this stage of the build. If the dirt and/or mud is like this jobsite, you have to take extra precautions to keep dirt and mud off of finished materials. Logs and other finish timber stain in this good-ole’ Tennessee red clay, so prepare the area with adequate amounts of straw or cover before the materials are delivered. Once the red is on, it is almost impossible to remove.


Subfloor Construction

Now for the framing!

Subfloor framing is now underway. The system is all conventional framing, 2x joists with a triple dropped girder beam with Advantech sheathing. Hopefully the floor system will be ready for the log system within a day or two, barring more rain or snow.


Log Wall System

The log walls are finally finished and the second floor is being prepped for install. Hopefully the next few weeks will be spent making up some lost time! We will spare you the details of the situation, but it is handled and won’t happen again. Strange times we are living in…

Well $#!T…

The weather wins again. If it isn’t raining, it’s snowing. This is a good example of why to expect the unexpected. We know these things happen, but that doesn’t mean we have to like it Mother Nature! Grrrr!


No Log Crew Today…

Log crew was out on this gorgeous Monday. Very sad indeed… The good crews are worth waiting for though. More progress for you tomorrow, we hope.

In the mean time, take a look at this gorgeous view.


Decking and Second Floor Completion

More progress on the decks and second floor system! Gotta get caught up and ready to roll on the roof. The guys have made great progress on the build this week. Very glad to see things back up and running like they should be. Lets see how much of this bad boy we can get finished up this week!

More Progress and an Important Note

So, long time no see! We have some updates to share, and a few lessons even the old heads can stand a refresher course on.

We have had some trouble on this job finding a steady supply of builders to work with our job foreman! One of the major victims of the economic down-turn has been the carpentry trade. Crews that have worked for many years before the down-turn, have had a difficult time, on average, coping with the amount of time off from steady pay. In some cases even losing their homes due to no work coming in at all. Here at Custom Timber Log Homes, we have been extremely fortunate to keep a steady supply of work and jobs coming in and going out. While we have been lucky, we have all had horrible stories of depression, job loss, and an almost non-existent new home build category over the last few years.

If you have had an appliance go out on you recently, you probably already know, we are living in a completely different world than we were 4-6 years ago. Now, if you attempt to go to your local hardware store for a simple part, water heater, or microwave, you will probably find yourself having to order one and have it shipped to you or to the store.

Companies that have been in operation for 40+ years are folding, or have folded in some situations. Most of us know one of these, or at least know of one of these situations, but the harsh reality is, not everyone has made it through this mess. Even if your best plumber, or roofer, or crew foreman is back physically, you might want to touch base with them before you get the project started. So, if you find yourself in a sticky situation with a builder or supplier you have worked with in the past, learn from the mistakes around you, from OUR mistakes in this case. Some of our crews have been busy non-stop, while some of the others have had some down time.

To deal with this, or similar situations, we have added a new form to our construction manual. The basic idea of the form is, now you must make sure your prospective carpentry crew is up for the task at hand. Some of the crews have lost crew members, some have lost cars and houses, and even more were down so long, they seem to have lost some desire and dedication to the craft with which they once loved and excelled. Hopefully this situation isn’t as common as it seems, but we thought we would go ahead and help as many people as possible.


Decking and Second Floor Completion

More progress on the decks and second floor system! Gotta get caught up and ready to roll on the roof. The guys have made great progress on the build this week. Very glad to see things back up and running like they should be. Lets see how much of this bad boy we can get finished up this week!

Roof Framing Begins

Second floor framing is in place and roof framing begins. The ridge beam has been placed and rafter layout is set. All overhangs and logs are placed in order to support all the overhang rafters (fly rafters).


Heavy Timber Rafter Install:

Work on the heavy timber rafters and roof system continues. Once the logs are all secured and the adjustable jacks are in place, the rafters can be installed against the ridge beam.

The roof of a real log home often confuses people, even if they are familiar with standard building practices. Roof systems like this one have a built-up roof installation consisting of heavy timber rafters, 2×6 tongue and groove decking, roofing underlayment (layer one), high density foam insulation panels, 1x vent channel material, OSB, then layer two underlayment, followed by the final layer of shingles or metal roofing. No small task for people unfamilar with log and timber home construction. This is our specialty, and we enjoy doing it this way as it makes the roof system MUCH more durable to extended periods of heat over the long term life of the product. Plus, this log and timber home roofing system looks spectacular!

The rafters are secured with matching heavy timber collar ties, and in this case, the ridge will be engineered material, trimmed out to match the other timber. In some situations the spans are too great to allow conventional material to carry the roof system. If this the case, such as this home, engineered material can be substituted to carry without adding more post locations below.


Making Good Time Again!

The crew has really hit the ground running hard this week and punched out a TON of work in a short amount of time. The entire roof is now framed, decking has been installed on a majority of the house roof with heavy timber 2×6 tongue and groove, and underlayment has been placed. BACK ON TIME!

Glad to hear it and SO rewarding to see the outcome after a few days of hard work! Unfortunately, the rain has moved back in… yeah, more rain… awesome…

Pics include: (click on each picture for a larger view and slideshow options)

Wall tie install on second floor
Valley Framing and angled cut
Heavy timber rafter install over the open area of the living room
Framing the upper portion of the roof (and an awesome sunrise)
Finishing up the second floor system and log wall corners (dovetail 6×12)
Porch framing and rafter overhangs
Getting ready for the valley install
Walk boards on second floor
Wall tie prep on second floor wall top
Shed dormer and roof rafters before trimming
Scaffolding set up on second floor system – ready for roof!
Close up of valley rafter compound cut (why we all have very big saws 😛 )
View at the home site! Wow what a beauty!


Log Home Roof System

The roofing process continues! After the heavy timber was installed, the rough electrical wiring was installed prior to the 2×6 tongue and groove decking. Be sure to allow for the depth of the notch when sizing beams!

Once the first layer of roofing underlayment was applied to cover the 2×6 tongue and groove decking, the foam insulation panels were prepped for install.

The roof, as shown in this log home roof cutaway, is one of the most misunderstood areas of log home roof construction. The roof of our log systems is comprised of several layers, as the illustration below shows.

Log Home Roof Construction

The insulation panels are currently being installed, and will be followed by vent channel, OSB, another layer of underlayment, and finally the finished roofing materials. It’s a long process, but one that ends (if installed properly) with one of the most energy efficient construction methods available. As with anything, it is only as good as the install, so make sure your carpenter understands the process thoroughly, and this will yield a highly efficient roof system for generations to come.

This home should be under final underlayment layer within a couple of days. Always awesome to see these come together!


Finished pics! More to come soon.

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