How To Build a Log Home the Easy Way: Books and Equipment
Updated September 10, 2012
Contents: Log Home Books, Wilderness Survival and more coming. Time to get out of Dodge and get back to nature.
The log home as constructed by the Finns over thousands of years is a comfortable structure that allowed the people to live and thrive in the North. The Finns brought their technology to North America early in the history of Canada and United States.
The Finnish Log Cabin:
The construction of a new home was a familiar task to the Finn. At first he built a crude shelter (kota), by placing poles of a few inches in thickness together in a circle about twelve feet in diameter, much in the fashion of the Indian wigwam. Soon after, he began work upon a log cabin (pirtti). The Finns were the first to introduce this type of structure in America, its use spreading to the English colonies after the middle of the seventeenth century. For the Finns the log cabin served both as a home and as a bath house (sauna) until he found time to build a more pretentious dwelling. Then the old building was used only for the latter purpose. Numerous other structures were made to serve as storehouses and granaries. A peculiarity in their form is found in the fact that an air space of two feet was provided under the floor to avoid dampness. this is still a characteristic of Finnish buildings in rural districts." George Einar Ray (Rambo is originally a Finnish Name, changed from Ramppanen and dates from this early period of American history) In fact, the first treaty between the Natives and Europeans was done in a Finnish Log Cabin. This site brings you a resource guide to those who are planning to build a log home.
Finns love their cabins in the country, especially by a lake. Package
log cabins like this, and even all types of homes, are available from Finnish
manufacturers. This one, by Puutalo is fairly typical. It has three different
configurations including a living area: 1) with a sauna and dressing room,
2) with a sauna and a shower/washroom, or 3) with two bedrooms.
My home away from home one summer on the Cassiar Hwy No.37, 3 hours north of Kitwan'ga BC, Canada, at the Swiss owned Bell II Heliskiing Resort. Each room had a Tulikivi Finnish soapstone wood stove (expensive, but the best there is) and the main lodge had floor to ceiling soapstone fireplaces.
If you want a stove/fireplace that will keep giving you heat 12 to 24 hours after the fire has gone out, your only choice is naturally, soapstone.
My own 2003 experience with soapstone stoves is the Tulikivi line from Finland. I had the good fortune to have
spent a month in an exclusive Bell II Heliskiing Resort (all beautifully built log cabins) in the Canadian mountains,
north of Smithers BC. In the summer, it must be close to the mosquito capital of the world. The heating stove in the room was different; I had never
seen anything like it. A basket
of wood stood beside it, with small blocks about 8 inches long. I immediately started a fire in this stove that has the pipe exiting near the floor. An hour went
by, and I felt the outside of the stove. Hardly warm! I added wood once or twice to keep the fire going
and to see if I
could warm up the surface. It got a little warmer but not like a steel stove.
The next day I got up to a wonderfully warm stove. I looked into the firebox and there wasn't even an ember
glowing; the stove wasn't hot but it was awfully warm! The Lodge booklet filled me in. It was a Tulikivi stove from Finland. Every room in the Lodge had a Tulikivi stove or
fireplace. Tulikivi is not your ordinary stove, so there was easily several hundred thousand dollars worth of fireplaces and stoves in the Lodge. It is one of the most efficient stove systems ever designed, which releases only a minimal amount of pollutants.
A stove that captures heat is far better than one that smolders and creosotes your chimney. One of the drawbacks of modern stoves is that they burn the wood efficiently but too quickly. Soapstone solves that problem. If you can afford it, buy one.
You can find Tulikivi Finnish soapstone stoves in your area or order through Amazon.com
one of their products below.
A word on solar power. Recent advances in technology have made all solar panels on the market obsolete. The new generation of solar panels of 2008/9 (some say longer) are supposedly 5 times more efficient and cost a lot less. This we have to see. See Nanosolar