Beginning of the Log Cabin Boom in the early 80,s

Way back in the early 80,s the Japanese market was just getting started and the US market was also pretty strong at the time.

Seemed there was always work
The cover photo of full log gables house ended up in Winthrop Washington and the design of this roof system would be strong enough to withstand earthquakes, I believe, yet it wasn't strong enough to withstand the force of the Methow River when it got backed up and let go.

Apparently the house just floated away in one piece.
How disheartening that must have been to watch.

I know I was disheartened hearing the news 10 years after it happened. One thing I do believe in very strongly tho is the design of the roof system is the most important part of the whole structure

The horizontal logs in the gables are probably the weakest link in the whole log structure unless they are cross tied with the logs going the other way to eventually tie together the walls and purlins and ridge together as one unit

The drawbacks of log gables that aren't properly re enforced are many ( shrinkage being the biggest issue to address )

That being said,  properly built log gables  with cross tie to the main structure is probably one of the strongest roof structures going in terms of earthquake, wind loading and overall natural movement of the logs over time.

Unfortunately again, the cost of building such elaborate roof systems seem too prohibitive for most buyers.

But , I for one would not have any other system if I lived in an area that was prone to earthquakes.



When I was in Japan in the early 90's we were building for Nissan Trading Co at that time.

We were competing at a log home exhibition and the city of Tokyo decided that they wouldn't let are log home be in the exhibition unless our walls were tested with their earthquake testing equipment.


This meant building a prototype of what we had that they could actually test the strength of the individual corner system that we were using at the time and are still using today only with 3/4" THROUGH BOLTS instead of the then 5/8"

Of course to our delight , our corner system passed with flying colors and even after pressing the corners with over 25 tons of lateral pressure, the system could not be broken.

This is the strength of the log wall system.

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