Reclaiming a Heritage Log House: The Log Home Restoration Process
It is both a comprehensive process and a labour of love to salvage an old log house and restore it to its original condition. Once the log shell is restored at the Stonehouse Woodworks log yard in Golden British Columbia, and is ready to be shipped to its new location, the process is similar to that of our new log homes. The logs are labeled, disassembled and loaded onto a truck for delivery and re-erection.
Initially, a suitable antique building must be found. We have established an excellent network of contacts around the country to help us locate the best buildings for our clients. We are avid Barn Watchers at Stonehouse Woodworks and are always searching for old hand hewn buildings as we travel the back roads of Canada. Once a building is located and deemed worthy of salvaging and restoring, an arrangement is made with the owner to purchase the building.
The building is measured, photographed, and labeled for disassembly. The process of taking the buildings apart can be quite complex depending on how many renovations, additions, layers of siding etc. have been added over the years of its long life. Though a dirty and physical job, the disassembly process is also quite exciting as the layers are removed and the logs and timbers are slowly revealed.
As the building is put back together in our yard we make the necessary repairs and modifications to ensure the building is fully sound and ready to stand for another few hundred years of service. If a log can be repaired instead of replaced then that is generally the preferred approach as we try to maintain as much original fabric of the building as possible. If it is deemed better for the health of the building to replace a log, then another log of similar vintage is used and re notched into the building. Once the building is re erected and standing as straight and true as it was the day it was built then it is again tagged and ready to be shipped to its next life.
Antique buildings were typically smaller than what most people would consider necessary for today’s modern conveniences. Often these heritage buildings are used as a feature part of a larger home, or as a standalone cabin. Several heritage log or timber frame buildings can also be put together to create one larger restored heritage log home.