The classic log cabin design with overlapping corners is probably the best-known type of garden building, but despite this log cabins can sometimes be undeservedly forgotten in amongst other types of garden building. People often only associate log cabins with a classic rustic look and choose a different type of garden building when they’re looking for something more modern and/or multi-functional. However, the truth is that log cabins can be delivered in many styles (including very modern) and can be used for many different purposes. For example, log cabins can be fitted with glass doors, front/side canopies and different roof types, completely transforming the look of this classic method of construction. In this article, we’ll try to help you understand the differences between log cabins and other garden buildings, as well as how to choose a log cabin and how to assemble it.
Log cabin vs summerhouse
Summerhouses are probably the most similar garden buildings to log cabins. A lot of people actually can’t tell the difference between the two, which is understandable given that they are mainly only distinguished by the way they’re built – overlapping corner connections are used when building log cabins, while summerhouses have mitred corners.
However, there are other differences that arise from their different construction, for example, because of the overlapping corner connections, log cabins are usually rectangular or square in shape, while summerhouses can also be pentagonal or octagonal. On the other hand, log cabins offer the option to have considerably thicker walls compared to summerhouses – this means that they can be larger, which is important if you’re looking for a garden building that offers a lot of space. Their increased wall thickness also means that your garden building will be more stable and durable, as well as more suitable as living space, making it more of a house extension than a garden shed. Of course, if that’s not what you’re after, and you only really want to use it for storage, then you can also opt for a model with thinner walls – log cabins really do come in many variations.
Most log cabins are also well-suited to being insulated, which is important if you’re looking for a garden building that you can use all year round. An insulated log cabin will be a cosy place in which to relax even on the coldest days of the winter, and adding insulation will also help you save money in the long term, by reducing the cost of heating your log cabin.
As you can see, log cabins are very versatile garden buildings and they can match up to or better summerhouses in almost every respect. Therefore, which is better mostly depends on personal preference. However, there’s no doubt that log cabins have some advantages that will be good for every garden.
What should you look for when choosing a log cabin?
Once you have decided that a log cabin is the right option for you, another question arises – which model should you choose? As mentioned before, log cabins come in various sizes and designs and can be used for many different purposes – from very small cabins that are only used for storage, to large garden buildings with multiple rooms that can serve as an extension of your living space. To ensure that the log cabin you choose is right for you, there are a few main things to consider. Thinking about these will help you find the right one for your needs, and to help you out we have listed them below.
The main choice you have to make is between a classic and a modern design. As mentioned earlier, log cabins are often only associated with the classic log cabin design, but they actually offer many variations – like glass sliding doors or even glass walls, or an asymmetric apex roof instead of a classic apex one. If it’s a classic design you’re looking for, choosing your log cabin should be quite straightforward – just choose the one that appeals most to you and fits your garden well. However, if you’re looking for something more modern, seemingly small details can make a big difference, for example, painting it in a modern tone and selecting a modern-style roof can help you to achieve great things in terms of design.
Quality of materials
It is probably no surprise that the quality of the materials used is the most important factor in ensuring the durability of a log cabin. Therefore, it’s crucial to pay attention to the materials used in the log cabin you’re about to choose – the best manufacturers will tell you about the timber they use. For example, Lugarde’s log cabins are made of spruce that’s grown in countries with a cold climate, as these conditions make the timber more durable. The timber should also be properly kiln dried to avoid it shrinking or expanding, and it’s also worth paying close attention to the quality of the windows, doors and roofing, to ensure that none of these becomes the weakest link in your log cabin.
Although insulation can be added later as well, it’s recommended that you install it straight away, as the log cabin is assembled. Therefore, before buying your log cabin, you should decide whether you’ll want to use it year-round or only during the warmer months. If you decide that you would like your log cabin to be insulated, you must make sure that the model you pick is suitable for insulating – most log cabins are, but it’s better to check in advance to avoid any disappointment.
Applying for and receiving planning permission can be a real hassle; therefore, it’s probably in your best interests to avoid having to get it. In order to construct a log cabin under permitted development regulations, the cabin must adhere to certain restrictions regarding its size and location in your garden. Of course, if your intended use requires a large log cabin, then you’ll have no other choice than to apply for planning permission, but, if you’re more flexible in regard to its size, it might be a good idea to choose a model that falls within the set size limits. As the regulations can vary between municipalities, we recommend contacting your local authority to find how you can avoid having to apply for planning permission.
How to assemble a log cabin
People often worry about assembling their garden buildings, but it’s important to remember that they are usually constructed in a way that makes them easy to assemble. In addition, the best manufacturers also take pains to create easily comprehensible instructions or even make instructional videos that serve as a visual aid, demonstrating exactly what needs to be done and in what order. Log cabins are especially easy to assemble because of their simple construction system – the tongue-and-groove beams should fit together perfectly, making it easy to create overlapping corner connections and making the log cabin easy to assemble from the bottom up. It’s also worth mentioning that at Lugarde we cut the wooden components ourselves, which allows us to ensure that they fit together absolutely perfectly.
Hopefully, this article has given you a better understanding of log cabins, their maintenance, and their possible uses. If you feel ready to choose your new log cabin and you’d like to find out more about our products, please take a look at our wide range of log cabins.
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