Laminated vs. Log Wall Systems

One of the first questions people often ask us is, "How do your cedar homes compare to log homes?" If you've seen our model home or had a chance to look through our literature you can see that our homes are built with decorative grade cedar. Chances are slim that you'll come across another log home manufacturer that uses decorative grade materials. However, some of the biggest differences in our timbers are not in how they look, but in how they are made.

Unlike traditional log producers, our manufacturers use laminated timbers in the design of our wall systems. The next time you're inside a large, open beam building take a closer look at the glue lam beams that support the roof. These beams were chosen for their stability and for their strength to span large distances. Strength and stability are just two of the reasons why we use laminated timbers in our homes. As a homeowner, these are significant features to consider - but there's more!

Classic laminated corner sectionClassic laminated corner section D-Log Laminated Timber Corner SectionD Log laminated corner section Phoenix 5-Lam Timber Corner SectionPhoenix 5-lam timber corner section

Advantages of a Laminated Wall System
vs. Traditional Log

  • Our kiln-dried, glue laminated wall timbers do not shrink, settle, twist or warp like a traditional log. You do not have to allow 6"- 8" of space above doors and windows to anticipate future settling in our homes.
  • The laminating process prevents knots from falling out. It also means that when a timber checks (or gets a crack as is the nature of wood), it can only penetrate the first inch of the timber. A crack in a log home can easily extend through the log to allow air penetration and heat loss.
  • Lighter, kiln dried timbers are easier to erect at the construction site. Each design is pre-cut to precision tolerances and is assembled without cranes or heavy equipment. Kiln drying reduces the weight of the timbers and also reduces shipping costs.
  • A laminated timber home requires no chinking maintenance. Due to precision cutting, fitting and minimal shrinkage, our homes to not require chinking. This means less maintenance for our homeowners!
  • Kiln drying eliminates bugs which may be present in the wood. (Air dried lumber may have bugs present but dormant for up to 7 years without detection.)
  • Laminating increases the strength of the timbers by 70%. Pound for pound, a laminated cedar timber is stronger than steel!
  • Kiln dried lumber has industry standards of no more than 15-19% moisture content. Our laminated wall material is kiln dried to 12% moisture content. For comparison's sake, air dried lumber has no industry standard.
  • Laminating allows the use of second growth materials, thereby sparing old growth trees. These also ensures us a constant supply of wood versus the dwindling supply of old growth needed for big timbers.
  • No spiking or sledge-hammering are required on a laminated timber home.
  • Unlike other manufacturers, we provide a complete weather tight shell. Our home packages include more than just walls and a roof. We also provide, windows, doors, interior walls, stairs, insulation, moldings, trims, window screens, floor system and all structural fasteners.


What Our Clients Are Saying...

"An Extremely Positive Experience"

We have had the pleasure of knowing Mike and Judy Flanagan since 2001. We met at an Open House for their business, Cedar Homes of Washington. We were looking at cabin packages to build a retreat in the mountains for our family. Their openness, friendliness and willingness to help is genuine. We never felt any pressure to give a commitment. The fact that the home they live in is a product they built themselves from a kit is a positive statement that they know the design and build process - have been through it - and know first hand about long term maintenance, etc. for these type of structures.

The summer of 2004, we had a contractor build the shell of our cabin and it was an extremely positive experience. There have been minor issues that have come up during the building process, such as shortages for hardware. Mike and Judy have always promptly returned phone calls and remedied the situation in short order. We cannot think of a way that they could improve the way they conduct their business or improve their customer service.

-- Jim and Susannah Lake