In the mind of the wood selector is making a log building. Log building needs straight pines with as few branches as possible LOG BUILDING FINNISH NATIONAL BOARD OF ANTIQUITIES office of ethnology Script by EERO NASKALI Music by EERO NASKALI ANTTI NASKALI Commentator JARMO HEIKKINEN Director and cameraman MAURI FRONT producer FILM PRODUCER MAURI FRONT Logs are cut traditionally at midwinter and time of new moon. Intent is to make a smallish house with draught lobby out of logs, with traditional methods. Building site is in Lyytikkl at SoutheastFinland If the log is buttressed, it is heavy to narrow off with a broad axe.
If there is more than 3 inches wood to be narrowed it helps lot if one chops perpendicular traverses with normal axe. Then cut up leftover thick pieces off with normal axe too. There should be left 14 inches leftover on each side what is chopped off with broad axe. Stock are carved to logs, which are dried in spring wind. To ensure even dehydration bark is carved off with drawknife. Earth base is made to this building for test and educational purposes where insulation of base floor is made from dirt.
Builders are carpenters Auvo and Ismo Kokkonen, Raimo Laamo and Seppo Kauppinen. I think it’s good now. For bed floor’s ventilation, there is holes in stone foundation. Let’s measure crosswise, to see if it is lopsided. Put it to the corner. Measuring crosswise is way to ensure that corners are square. In log building every logs underside is carved to match subaltern log. And the lowest log to match stone foundation. Warmth notch is made for improving corners tightness which is stuffed with tar oakum. Horizontally piled log buildings we had perhaps even at the time of migration of peoples.
Traditional Finnish Log House Building Process
At least since 12th century there has been round based joint notched, as known as dog’s neck cornered, round log buildings. In 15th century they started to carve wall log’s insides Both side carved wall log, like this, ages somewhere at 17th century. Moss is put beetween logs to seal the meeting. And tar oakum is stuffed to meetings of corners, doors and windows. To strengthen walls, logs are fastened together with dowels which are placed to holes which are drilled through logs. Size of the brace is about 1 inches.
When dowels are hit, one must be aware to leave gap to bottom so pegs don’t carry the log when it sinks. Gap must be more than inch per meter of the wall. Doors and windows holes of shafts are drilled with 2 inch brace. Joints in partition beetween lobby and bedroom are not extended through walls but logs are joined with furrow joints. Joint cleft extends half way of 6 inch thick log. This building has long corner which has replication in two of this property’s buildings. The neck of joint is carved about inch narrower.
Both sides of the neck are beveled. To ensure working thermal insulation of log wall, there must be warmth margin wich is wide enough. Outer walls and wall beetween cold room should have margin of 10 cm. Back of the lower log is carved to evenly convex. With log scriber’s wide spark gap one can draw lower log’s shape to upper log. The log which are under carving is fastened still with log dogs. Margin is carved that way, that chute is straight sided. When margined log is set top of the lower log, margin stay little open in sides.
Margin which is open from sides makes it easier to stuff oakum to meetings. Walls are now height of bottom of windows. In this building, Door’s and windows’s top are in same line. Place of window is measured from the door. And other window’s height is measured from first window. In log building, shafts are supporting window and door holes. In this case Tshaped shafts are carved from one wood, like they did it before. Only lengthy, straight grained logs are chosen for wall logs. When logs are carefully doweled every about 1,5m.
And holes are shafted with solid singlewooded shafts walls keep their straightness for long time. Wall’s other places one can joint it from two logs. but top log of doors and windows is always made from fulllenght sturdy, straight logs. because this log which binds whole building, dilutes window holes. When shaft is applied, one can stuff oakum to notch, because there are no access to there later. Shaft shouldn’t be nailed, because it prevents log’s sinking. Hole for window should be so big, that beetween top log and window’s frame there will be 2 inches big gap for sinking.
Joists are planed before placing. Those edges are carved with draw knife and final planing with plane. Ceiling joists are jointed to platelog with dovetail style joint when walls are height of platelogs. Notches extends for about half way of thickness of wall. To ends of the ceiling joist are notched dovetail notch which sits tightly to platelogs notch. When raising heavy logs higher than shoulder, it has been traditionally raised with ramps and rope. Logs that are upper than ceiling have margins too, although walls don’t need to be isolating there.
In many buildings gables are made from logs, so before building it one must think pitch of the roof. With model one can draw lines to logs and then carve excessive wood off. Because we didn’t have fulllenght log for ridge beam, we jointed two logs together with hook notch. Structure of roof truss is as simple as possible beamlike roof truss has support of ridge beam, side walls and two ceiling joists. After fitting, roof truss’ are nailed to ridge beam, ceiling joists and side walls. Gable’s and partition’s log ends are carved to same line with roof struss’.
Ridge beam is doweled also from both ends and with partition. Both inside and outside of walls needs to be hewed near roof and ceiling before building roof. Hewing is one of the most challenging works for carpenter, who can do it usually does whole finishing work. This kind of broad axe has been made that way, that one can change handle quickly from left to right handed. Corners can be hewed only from determinated directions. To end of roof truss’ are nailed ‘wind board’ and ‘drip board’ which extends few centimetres out.
And there will be tight boarding at overhang, and loose boarding up from that. Lenght of corners depends on thickness of logs and is little longer than wall log is thick, so if wall is 6 inches thick, corner will be 7 inches long. Corners are hewed as thick as walls are. To start making shingleroof is needed to put holder shingle before line board. Line board is set about 3 centimeters over ‘drip board’, it’s water spout too. Normal shingleroof is thoroughly threefold, first shingles are short, 13 of fulllenght shingle.
When putting shingles, one must be careful that they are overlapping correctly. Third shingle layer comes with fulllenght shingles. Lenght of shingle is about 17 inches and lenght of shingle course is 5 inches. Shingles are nailed on average on second shingles sides, and nails must be so up, that next shinglelayer covers them. If shingleroof is made good out of good shingles, it can last 14 century. Short shingles are nailed again, for ridge course. Firstly putted holdershingles are cut lastly. For protecting shingleroof, ends are nailed with sideboards and for ridge, ridgeboards.
It has been general habit, that lastly when ridgeboard is nailed for place, starts ‘ridgerising’ celebrations. ‘Ridgeraising’ has roots in past, when raising heavy ridgebeam needed neighbour help. Helpers were awarded with regale after work. Protecting and keeping dry dirt floor’s log structure under floor have been used birch bark traditionally. Making dirt floor starts from placing dirt logs which come about 70 centimetres inside from walls. Dirt floor’s vital condition is proper ventilation. Ventilation channels which are masoned with rocks and tiles, stays certainly operational. Dirt floor structure’s corners has strenghtening joints.
Logs doesn’t have margin. Supporting beams on floor, which partially leans on dirt floor’s logs, are traverse for house. Beetween wall and nearest supporting beam on floor there is 5 inches wide filling hole. Filling hole has covering, which is dirt floor’s boards. Those are next to every four wall of bedroom. Leaks and dells can be filled from gaps of dirt floor boards. And to center is left empty room, which is used in this kind of houses for cool repository. Floor will have trapdoor, so one can access repository.
There should be working room beetween window’s frame and top log for sinking. So frame can be fastened with wedges. Because of sinking of walls, frames can’t be nailed to wall logs. Only at most to window hole’s shafts. Frame’s vertical and horizontal lines are checked with bubble level. Accepted position is confirmed with nails. Already glazed and hinged frames can be put to place. Beetween frame and wall goes plenty of tar oakum, which is covered with wide weatherboard. Making floor starts with placing dirt floor’s boards. Boards are unattached, only skirting holds them in place.
Floor boards which stays within dirt floor’s boards forms solid floor when fastened together. Floor boards are sawed only from two directions, so foot is little wider than other end. And they are put alternately. Floor planks are sawed from dry, straight pine tree to avoid warping. Floor planks are pegged together to solid raft. Because wide planks are going to dry, we didn’t nail it at all. Thick pegging strenghtens floor and prevents little warping of planks. In warm room planks are going to dry more but after couple years and after tightening floor, gap can be filled with narrow plank.
Tightening is easy to do, when floor isn’t nailed to beams. Because of dirt floor, skirting must be stronger than regularly because they are used to fasten dirt floor’s boards to place. Uneven places are planed with plane in finishing. Lobby’s floor will be filled with sawdust. Boards are nailed to bottom of beams, and gap is covered with planks. Insulator consist from tarred board and dry sawdust. In Lyytikkl’s main building there is same type of ceiling. On the ceiling there is tarred paper, and thermal insulator is sawdust and cutter’s shaving.