Lee Valley Tools Woodworking Newsletter
Vol. 1, Issue 5
July 2007
The Log Workshop - Part 3

Finishing Touches

Editor's Note: The following is the final article in a series of three. Part 1 can be found in Volume 1, Issue 3; part 2 can be found in Volume 1, Issue 4.

Is the devil in the details? With true evangelistic conviction, I say, "Yes!" Completing the finishing touches on any building eats up an inordinate amount of time and my log workshop was certainly no exception. Although the basic structure of the building was raised in a few months, years slipped by as I filled the space between the logs, completed electrical work, built stairs, interior walls, support columns and finished trim work. Looking back now, I see that ignorance was truly bliss.

After I spent the summer raising the building, fall loomed and the space between the logs had to be chinked before the winter winds blew. In log homes of the past, the hollow space was first packed with wood and stones before the mortar-like mixture of sand, lime, cement and water filled the gap. Today, wire lath is nailed across the space between the logs and two layers of chinking are troweled onto the lath. The initial scratch coat is left rough so that a second, thinner coat of chinking can be laid over top to produce a smooth finish.

Still smiling.
The author and her dad are all smiles, despite the physical pain they endured throughout the chinking process.
  Chinking layers.
The layers of chinking were troweled onto wire lath, which was nailed across the spaces between the logs.

Chinking was a laborious task during which time seemed to stand still and progress was measured by sore shoulders and numb hands. If that discomfort wasn't enough, cutting and fitting the wire lath only added to it. If at first the scratches from handling the wire lath were not apparent, they quickly made themselves known when bare hands came into contact with the lime in the chinking. The need to fill the gaps all the way up to the second story added another element of difficulty. If my contractor friend, Jim, had not lent me his scaffolding, I fear my dad and I would still be out there chinking today.


   Go to Page:   1   2   3   4   Next Page

Other Articles from this Issue
What's New in Woodworking
One Dozen Mechanical Pencils

One Dozen
Mechanical Pencils
5-Piece Spring-Clip Pliers

Spring-Clip Pliers
Veritas® Surface Clamp

Surface Clamp
Pocket Shop Reference

Shop Reference
    News & Events  
  From the Collection
Featured Patents
From the Archive
Customer Letters
What Is It?
    Subscriber Services

Privacy Policy

Newsletter Archive