Category Archives: Cordwood Construction

Round & Rectangle Cordwood: Best of both worlds

Who doesn’t love round?  Everyone right.  But there comes a time when folks who have been living in round (or nearly round) start to complain about the idiosyncrasies. Just recently a friend who lives in one of the most beautiful 16 sided cordwood homes ever, said to me.  “Rich, if I had it to do over, I would build a rectangle.  Every time I have to make a cut for roofing, flooring, cabinetry it has to be 11 degrees.   It takes forever to do the work.”

However, combining round and rectangle cordwood styles provides the best of both worlds.

Don Gerdes Reedsburg3.jpg

Don Gerdes an engineer from Reedsburg, Wisconsin built a post framed “curved front” attached to a rectangle.  Here are some pictures of his beautiful creation.

Sierra Exif JPEG

Cathy Hubbart and Don Gerdes in 2006.

Don Gerdes Reedsburg2The interior shows off Don’s Brilliant Bottles invention (which light up at night) and its curved walls.

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Brilliant bottles are made ahead of time as a single unit to mortar into the wall.  They boast a changeable LED light in the middle.

Don Gerdes Reedsburg11.jpgPlowing snow is easier with a straight line.Don Gerdes Reedsburg13.jpg

The workshop garage doors make it easily accessible.

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Hanging cabinets on straight walls is a breeze.

Don Gerdes Reedsburg4.jpg

From curved to rectangle is a smooth transition.

Rairlee and James Frame it firstOctagon with a “square” back room.  Rainless’ B and B in the Adirondacks.

Sebastien Demers 10Post framed, curved front with a rectangle on the back, a masonry heater and two stories high by Sebastien Demers. Sebastien Demers 12 build a modelA 3D model with a round front and   a rectangle on the backside by Sebastien Demers of Quebec.

Round, Rectangle, Octagon, or 16 sided?

When deciding which style of cordwood to build it is of the utmost importance to know that every cordwood author recommends building within a post framework.  The reasons are very simple:  1.  The roof can be built before the cordwood is finished.  2.  With the roof on, the materials stay dry and so do the builders.  3.  The cordwood wall building can be completed in manageable sections.  4.  You can cover the walls that remain unfinished and continue interior work. 5.  It makes the building inspector very happy.

Even if one decides to “go round,” a framework can be hidden in the middle of the wall using wraparound cordwood. Why would anyone build a hidden framework within the structure?  To get code approval, to make certain the roof is going to be properly supported and to allow for the use of  a “slower setting mortar” which reduces mortar cracking and log loosening.

16 sided cordwood creates a large number of 11 degree cuts:   The roof sheeting, the roofing material (metal or shingles) and the many valleys that accompany 16 sides.  Then the interior ceiling the interior flooring and the interior cabinetry all require angle cuts.  The cordwood itself will end up having small, tight mortar joints on the inside and larger ones on the outside.

If you decide to build an 8 sided octagon, keep in mind that you will need to re-engineer the structural parts (think posts and rafters) if you want to go larger than 300 sq. ft.  One way to get the curved and the straight to work together is to build a half round, half rectangle home.  

Bottom line, the choice is yours.  If you plan to build 16-sided cordwood, you can do yourself a favor by checking out the successful 17 page building permit application for a 16 sided cordwood home in SE Minnesota.  The approved permit is, in its entirety, in the book Cordwood and the Code: A Building Permit Guide.   It is meant to be copied and pasted and modified for your local building codes.  BN new 2 with logo.jpgThis beautiful round cordwood guest cottage,  by Bruce Kilgore and Nancy Dow has a post and beam framework hidden in the middle  to support the roof. BN new wraparounds with logo.jpg

Should you wish to learn how to build a cordwood cottage, cabin or home, please visit www.cordwoodconstruction.org   While you are there, click on the pictures, read the brief articles, check out the latest workshops and newsletter and if you are interested click on the Online Bookstore to see all the cordwood literature available in print and ebook format.

If you have questions that aren’t answered on the website you can email me at richardflatau@gmail.com  

Cordwood Construction Best Practices Front_Cover_-_CC_Best_Practices small pixelsReaders have requested a brief bio, so here goes:

“Richard & Becky Flatau built their mortgage-free cordwood home in 1979 in Merrill, Wisconsin. Since then, they have written books, conducted workshops, facilitated the 2005,  2011 and 2015 Cordwood Conferences and provided consultation for cordwood builders.  Cordwood Workshop Vide,  Cordwood Construction Best Practices (print) and Cordwood Conference Papers 2015 are the newest publications available from their ever expanding online cordwood bookstore.”  www.cordwoodconstruction.org

DVD label cover yellow

Here is a jpeg of the new Cordwood Construction DVD cover available at http://cordwoodconstruction.org/

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Cordwood: Open to the Public

If I had a nickel for every time someone asked me if there was a cordwood home they could visit… :0)   Most cordwood owner/builders are very kind & like to share, but they are also  homeowners and usually very busy with householder tasks.

In order to help the folks who want to get a “peek at cordwood” here is a list of sites open to the public, or BnB’s where you can spend a night wrapped in cordwood.Bracebridgelodgebest_high_resolution httpwww.bedbreakfasthome.comdatapowermedia.jpgThe Cordwood Lodge in Bracebridge, Ontario.    http://www.bedbreakfasthome.com/datapowermedia/

Cordwood Education Center with Summer small pixels with logo.jpgThe Cordwood Education Center at the Merrill School Forest near Merrill, Wisconsin is open to the public. Maps are provided at the entrance  https://www.facebook.com/SFWeAreMAPSchools/Kinstone cordwood chapel a.jpgKinstone Academy is open to the public for self guided tours.  There are three cordwood buildings, a yurt, a sauna, a tepee and a light straw clay cottage.  www.kinstonecircle.com 

KInstone Rick Swanson 3Mermaid Cottagw with logo low rez.jpg 2.jpgKimAnna9 with logoKimAnna16The Mermaid Cottage near Del Norte, Colorado is not necessarily a B & B (no breakfast:0), but it is a gorgeous vacation rental.   http://mermaid-cottage.org/ Cordstead 1 with logo.jpgThe “Cordstead” boasts 4 round cordwood buildings.  The concept is to give you a “cordwood living” experience to see if  a cordwood home is your cup of tea.  Sandy and Angelika are the finest of hosts.  https://thecordstead.blogspot.com/ 

Kinark Sustainable Living Center Canada cordwood entrance

The Kinark Sustainable Living Center in Ontario is an excellent place to camp, have an outdoor experience and check out their natural buildings.   http://www.koc.on.ca/about-us

Barna 1 with logo.jpgThe Barna’s Vacation Rental is in Houghton, Michigan in the Upper Peninsula.  Nicole built this as her college dorm room and now rents it to weary travelers. http://www.homeaway.com/vacation-rental/p281714Rairlee and James Frame it first 3 - Copy.jpgThis beautiful cordwood rental by Rainlee is in the White Face Mountains of upstate New York.  https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/4872916?s=vcDi Rairlee and James Frame it first 2 - CopyRairlee and James Frame it first 4 - CopyRairlee and James Frame it firstSome suggestions for visits:  Call ahead, make sure you are a considerate visitor, don’t overstay your welcome and enjoy the experience.kinstone-42The cordwood sauna (above) at the Kinstone Permaculture Academy is also available for rent and so are the yurt, the teepee and the straw-clay cottage (below).  www.kinstonecircle.com  

kinstone-straw-clay-cottage

cordwood-education-center-solar-tour-2014The Cordwood Education Center at the Merrill School Forest in Merrill, Wisconsin USA is also for rent.  You can contact the Merrill School District for more information at https://www.facebook.com/SFWeAreMAPSchools/

cordwood-education-center-august-2015

If your goal is to find out if cordwood living is for you, take the time to visit and check out some of these places.  With a rental you can poke around and enjoy your stay rather than imposing on someone to open their cordwood home at your convenience.

Should you wish to learn how to build a cordwood cottage, cabin or home, please visit www.cordwoodconstruction.org   While you are there, click on the pictures, read the brief articles, check out the latest workshops and newsletter and if you are interested click on the Online Bookstore to see all the cordwood literature available in print and ebook format.

If you have questions that aren’t answered on the website you can email me at richardflatau@gmail.com  

Cordwood Construction Best Practices Front_Cover_-_CC_Best_Practices small pixelsReaders have requested a brief bio, so here goes:

“Richard & Becky Flatau built their mortgage-free cordwood home in 1979 in Merrill, Wisconsin. Since then, they have written books, conducted workshops, facilitated the 2005,  2011 and 2015 Cordwood Conferences and provided consultation for cordwood builders.  Cordwood Workshop Vide,  Cordwood Construction Best Practices (print) and Cordwood Conference Papers 2015 are the newest publications available from their ever expanding online cordwood bookstore.”  www.cordwoodconstruction.org

DVD label cover yellow

Here is a jpeg of the new Cordwood Construction DVD cover available at http://cordwoodconstruction.org/

 

Cordwood Tool Shed w/Pitchfork

Greg Zahn wanted to honor his grandfather’s woodworking legacy by building a cordwood tool shed in Manitowoc, Wisconsin.  He asked if Cordwood Construction Resources LLC  would teach an onsite workshop and we jumped at the chance.  Photos & video below.  Greg Zahn 4

Large doors will accommodate any size project.  Greg Zahn 6Greg Zahn 1Note the pitchfork and saw embedded in the mortar.Greg Zahn 8Looking toward the lake.  Nice view!Greg Zahn 7

Beautiful recycled glass bottles make for a colorful glass display.  Note that some of the colored bottles are placed on the outside.    Greg Zahn 5Greg Zahn 2A tools.jpg

Tools of all shapes and sizes were embedded into the walls of the aptly named Cordwood Tool Shed.

Greg Zahn 3

A large window will grace this side of the shed.

Greg Zahn Shed 15

Greg is an architect by profession and so his excellent drawing would naturally reflect his prolific skill set.

Manitowoc 3.jpgFolks attended from all over the country, but the majority were cheeseheads (aka Wisconsinites).  Manitowoc 7.jpgSmiles, laughter and learning were the order of the day.  Manitowoc 12Manitowoc 13

Manitowoc 4Manitowoc 5Manitowoc 1.jpgAs you can see, a good time was had by all.

Videos from the workshop (link below).  Special thanks to Anna Trzyna of http://www.getinkahoots.com, who was incredibly helpful in getting the videos she took on my Youtube site.  Thank you Anna!    https://www.youtube.com/cordwoodconstruct 

Should you wish to learn how to build a cordwood cottage, cabin or home, please visit www.cordwoodconstruction.org   While you are there, click on the pictures, read the brief articles, check out the latest workshops and newsletter and if you are interested click on the Online Bookstore to see all the cordwood literature available in print and ebook format.Cordwood Construction Best Practices Front_Cover_-_CC_Best_Practices small pixelsIf you have questions that aren’t answered on the website you can email me at richardflatau@gmail.com  

Readers have requested a brief bio, so here goes:

Richard & Becky Flatau built their mortgage-free cordwood home in 1979 in Merrill, Wisconsin. Since then, they have written books, conducted workshops, facilitated the 2005,  2011 and 2015 Cordwood Conferences and provided consultation for cordwood builders.  Cordwood Workshop Video (DVD) 2017,  Cordwood Construction Best Practices 2017 (print & ebook), Cordwood House Plans, Cordwood Shed Plans and Cordwood Conference Papers 2015 are the newest publications available from their online cordwood bookstore.   www.cordwoodconstruction.org

DVDandPrint

Here is a picture of the print version and the DVD label in one composite.

 

Cordwood Carriage House

Want to have your cordwood cake and eat it too?  Building a cordwood garage with living quarters is a excellent way to practice your cordwood technique & tuckpointing.   In addition it provides a place to lay your weary head after a hard days work.Sierra Exif JPEGTwo and a half card cordwood garage with living quarters upstaris MinnesotaThe garage (aka Carriage House) has a room-in-the-attic truss.  It allows for a 400 sq. ft. living space in the attic.  Water was plumbed into the upstairs, as well as electricity.  The roof pitch is 8/12. Flatau Minnesota carriage house with logoThe stackwall corner posts are built at the same time as the post and beam framework.  Then the roof is applied and braced.  Finally the cordwood infill.  Stackwall corner as post in Minnesota with logo.jpgThe stackwall corners are a old fashioned way to build with cordwood, but the owner learned a new way to make them so they functioned as a post and allowed the roof to be put on ahead of time.  MN stackwall corner with double post framework.jpgThis is the lake home that was built next to the Carriage House in central Minnesota. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe building inspector/code official requested that pressure treated lumber be used on the exterior framing.  150 year old barn timbers from Janesville, Wisconsin were used for the interior. Dregnes woodstoveAn enamel Vermont Casting wood stove provides heat.  (Below)Another look at the framing, the timbers and the stackwall corners.   The lake is in the background. Sierra Exif JPEGHolding up the roof

This wood carving would have made a nice corner post, but it would have been very difficult to tuck point.

Below are some current photos of the Carriage House.Julie dale MN 1Julie dale MN 2Julie dale MN 3Julie dale MN 5(Below) Matt & Carrie built a similar room-in-the-attic two and a half car garage in Wisconsin.  They are very pleased with the upstairs living space.  Carrie is an architect, so she had a leg up with exterior and interior design.  Carrie and Matt Steiger 3 with logoCarrie and Matt Steiger 4 with logo

Nicely designed tiny interior space. Carrie and Matt Steiger 1 with logoShould you wish to learn how to build a cordwood cottage, cabin or home, please visit www.cordwoodconstruction.org   While you are there, click on the pictures, read the brief articles, check out the latest workshops and newsletter and if you are interested click on the Online Bookstore to see all the cordwood literature available in print and ebook format.

 

Cordwood Construction Best Practices Front_Cover_-_CC_Best_Practices small pixelsIf you have questions that aren’t answered on the website you can email me at richardflatau@gmail.com  

Readers have requested a brief bio, so here goes:

Richard & Becky Flatau built their mortgage-free cordwood home in 1979 in Merrill, Wisconsin. Since then, they have written books, conducted workshops, facilitated the 2005,  2011 and 2015 Cordwood Conferences and provided consultation for cordwood builders.  Cordwood Workshop Video (DVD) 2017,  Cordwood Construction Best Practices 2017 (print & ebook), Cordwood House Plans, Cordwood Shed Plans and Cordwood Conference Papers 2015 are the newest publications available from their online cordwood bookstore.   www.cordwoodconstruction.org

DVDandPrint

Here is a picture of the print version and the DVD label in one composite.

 

Cordwood Home of 40 years

Folks have been asking about our northern Wisconsin cordwood home and how it has “held up” after 40 years.  Here are some pictures, commentary and a few links, should you care to delve deeper. Flatau's Chateau winter with logo30′ x 40′ Post and beam framed with Northern White Cedar on a frosty November morning. Flatau's Chateau for book CCBP with logoWe capped it with a truss room-in-the-attic (a Swiss Chalet style roof).  It gave us an additional 560 sq. ft. of living space (two large bedrooms and a half bath). OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAInterior walls and ceilings are made from locally milled Norwegian Pine (also called Red Pine).   In a nutshell, our cordwood home is doing just fine.  The mortar is in good shape, there is no degradation of the wood and our home is cool in the summer and warm in the winter.  Who could ask for anything more?OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAt 720 pounds, the Hearthstone Wood Stove supplies all the heat we need.  Having a large thermal mass, a passive solar design and an attached solar/greenhouse room helps to moderate the interior heating and cooling. Flatau's Chateau 1b.jpgThe photo above was taken when the Mother Earth News sent a photographer from New York to document the Mortgage Free Cordwood Article we had written in 1980. Flatau's Chateau 2005.jpgThe always reliant Yellow Transparent apple tree provides fragrant blooms every spring.   Note the domestic hot water solar thermal panels on the roof. Flatau's chateau 2 interior with logo.jpgThe Home Comfort wood cookstove is used many times a year, but especially around the holidays.  Rich Becky and Summer with logo.jpgMany articles have been published about our little cabin in the woods over the past four decades, here are links to the last and the first.

Mortgage Free Cordwood Home

Mother Earth News Magazine (first article)  

Should you wish to learn how to build a cordwood cottage, cabin or home, please visit www.cordwoodconstruction.org   While you are there, click on the pictures, read the brief articles, check out the latest workshops and newsletter and if you are interested click on the Online Bookstore to see all the cordwood literature available in print and ebook format.

Cordwood Construction Best Practices Front_Cover_-_CC_Best_Practices small pixelsIf you have questions that aren’t answered on the website you can email me at richardflatau@gmail.com  

Readers have requested a brief bio, so here goes:

Richard & Becky Flatau built their mortgage-free cordwood home in 1979 in Merrill, Wisconsin. Since then, they have written books, conducted workshops, facilitated the 2005,  2011 and 2015 Cordwood Conferences and provided consultation for cordwood builders.  Cordwood Workshop Video (DVD),  Cordwood Construction Best Practices (print & ebook), Cordwood House Plans, Cordwood Shed Plans and Cordwood Conference Papers 2015 are the newest publications available from their online cordwood bookstore.   www.cordwoodconstruction.org

DVDandPrint

Here is a picture of the print version and the DVD label in one composite.

 

Cordwood & the Stone Circle

Where can you find three cordwood buildings, a Yurt, a Straw-Clay Cottage, a Tepee, a sauna, the largest Megalithic Stone Circle in the USA (and is open to the public)?   Kinstone Circle near Fountain City, Wisconsin, is where.   Kristine Beck, the owner and inspiration for the 36 acre site, has created a place for people to refresh, renew and revitalize.  www.kinstonecircle.com 

For your viewing please here are some photos of this amazing place.The sun has created an angel of light on the finial of the Kinstone Chapel  thatched, cordwood chapel is a beauty.jpgThe 12 sided cordwood chapel with thatched roof.KInstone Rick Swanson 1The Dragon’s Keep with living room.   Most excellent photos are courtesy of Rick Swanson.  http://www.foxswanarts.comKInstone Rick Swanson 2An entrance center with a Star Wall. KInstone Rick Swanson 3Looking to the every changing horizon.Kinstone chapel interior moon and sun wall1a with logo.jpgThe chapel has nature motifs from St. Francis of Assisi’s poem The Canticle of Brother Sun and Sister Moon.  The yellow orb is Brother Sun.  Stone circle with Kinstone chapel in the background low rez.jpgThe stone circle is the largest in the USA.    Visit www.kinstonecircle.com for more information, about classes, natural building and other offers.The reflection pool flows to the Kinstone Chapel.jpgThe reflecting pool gives one a chance to sit and refresh. Kinstone sauna 2 with logo interior.jpg

The sauna is inviting and cozy.

Kinstone sauna 1 with logo.jpgThe exterior is 12′ x 16′ and makes a nice footprint for a tiny cabin.

KInstone Straw clay cottage.jpgThe straw-clay cottage sits on a pier foundation and has three coats of earthen plaster.  It has honey bee motifs in the walls. Kinstone Dragons Keep 3The scales of the dragon in the Dragon’s Keep are apparent and the trapezoid window shows her wing.

Kinstone 49The large dragon (there are 24 in all) shows off his green eye.  Kinstone 51The 10 point “shed” provides a nice coat hanger for weary travelers.

Kinstone Dragon 3A

The bottle brick pattern was created using a cardboard template before any bottles were added.

Should you wish to learn how to build a cordwood cottage, cabin or home, please visit www.cordwoodconstruction.org   While you are there, click on the pictures, read the brief articles, check out the latest workshops and newsletter and if you are interested click on the Online Bookstore to see all the cordwood literature available in print and ebook format.

Cordwood Construction Best Practices Front_Cover_-_CC_Best_Practices small pixelsIf you have questions that aren’t answered on the website you can email me at richardflatau@gmail.com  

Readers have requested a brief bio, so here goes:

Richard & Becky Flatau built their mortgage-free cordwood home in 1979 in Merrill, Wisconsin. Since then, they have written books, conducted workshops, facilitated the 2005,  2011 and 2015 Cordwood Conferences and provided consultation for cordwood builders.  Cordwood Construction: Best Practices DVD,  Cordwood Construction Best Practices (print) and Cordwood Conference Papers 2015 are the newest publications available from their online cordwood bookstore.   www.cordwoodconstruction.org

The Cordwood Workshop Video label. DVD label cover yellow

The 30 menu items. DVD Menu 1

DVD menu 2

The Drone View is especially spectacular!

 

 

Mermaid Cordwood Cottage featured in Czech Architectural Magazine

The prestigious Czech architectural magazine Drevo & Stavby: Kvalini Casopis recently featured the Mermaid Cottage.  Kimanna & Michael built this beautiful BnB in Colorado using cordwood construction with mermaid motifs.   Although this article is written in Czech, fear not, for there is a translation further down the page.  The article calls cordwood wonky and funky folk architecture.  I quite agree. Mermaid Cottage 1

Mermaid Cottage 3Mermaid Cottage 2

While the words are in Czech, the pictures tell the story of a gorgeous place to spend a vacation.  The building is a post and beam framed, cordwood masterpiece.  The cottage is registered with AirBnB.  For details on how to spend a night or a month visit   http://www.mermaidcottage.org/

Here is the translation of the article (I love the idiomatic translations):

  • If you are able to accumulate enough logs, you can cheaply build a full house somewhere between a wooden cottage and a wooden heap of Earth alchemy. For someone, the building of a house can be as demanding as a crossword puzzle for a graduate. For a builder of cordwood technology, this is just a leisure time activity with an ecological subtext that is no more complicated than going through TV channels. It’s just a little tedious. However, if you are the owner of a forest or a large pile of bark that is rid of logs, then the construction of your house will be economically beneficial.
  • Architecture is a bit crazy, but with “hairy,” green roofs, cozy proportions, and folk creativity, these houses have an unmistakable sparkle.   Looking from the distance, it looks like a stone house. That it is a wooden building is obvious only after a closer examination. While wooden houses built in the traditional way usually require long and high quality wood in large quantities, for a house built with cordwood masonry technology – wood-trimming you need long beams only a few for the load-bearing skeleton of the house and the rest, that is, walls, are already built from short softwoods wood.
  • Thickness of the wall is determined by the constructor by how long the logs cut. They are placed in a bed of a mixture of sand, cement and lime perpendicular to the longitudinal axis of the wall. If the filler gaps between the inner and outer mortar layers, for example, sawdust, are used, the insulation properties of the wall increase. If it is made of soft, well-dried wood (for example, pine, larch or birch), which at least changes its bulk properties, the logs will not burst or separate from the mortar, and the wall will breathe well, respectively work with indoor and outdoor humidity. The presence of lime in the mortar, but also the filler prevents mold formation.
  • Some might consider it an act of despair of the poor. Another for building somewhere halfway between a heap of logs and a wooden cottage. The truth is, however, that in countries where building law is more congenial, this method builds not only permanently habitable houses, but also public and commercial buildings. A somewhat old-fashioned look can, of course, be combined with modern mitochondria of ecological operation such as a solar energy system, floor heating stored in a sand bed, capture and use of rainwater or a “cool” green roof.
  • Fans of natural construction are welcoming this return to the roots, the Czech construction office is catching up. But if we always have to meet standards, how many interesting and functionally tested housing alternatives have arisen just because the norms have been around and over and over?
  • Cordwood technology can ideally be used to build a small house by self-help. It is a frequent choice of alternates, dreamers and hypers, simply people who are enthusiastic about a simple, sustainable construction that does not cost much. Assuming basic rules such as preventing the interlocking of the logs, keeping the roof overhead and stripping the top structure off the ground, for example, a stone wall, then such a house will last forever, as evidenced by the findings of Siberia or the United States of America, up to a thousand years.
  • The log walls look the same from the inside as the outside. If you have artistic tendencies, you can create a series of mini-bottles from bottles or decorate it in funky style; beads, shells or colored shards …
  • Try this house:   The “Mermaid Cottage” Del Norte – a cordwood chalet located in American Colorado, and you can rent it through Airbnb.  http://www.mermaidcottage.org/

Here are a few more photos of Kimanna & Michael’s masterpiece.  KimAnna14 with logo.jpg

The mermaid shower.

KimAnna15 with logo.jpg

The mermaid bathroom.

Mermaid Cottage low rez with logo.jpg

The lovely Kimanna tuckpointing to her heart’s content.

KimAnna17 with logo

The mountains make the setting serene and restful.

KimAnna10 with logo.jpg

If you love light and color, this may be worth a visit.

Should you wish to learn how to build a cordwood cottage, cabin or home, please visit www.cordwoodconstruction.org   While you are there, click on the pictures, read the brief articles, check out the latest workshops and newsletter and if you are interested click on the Online Bookstore to see all the cordwood literature available in print and ebook format.

Cordwood Construction Best Practices Front_Cover_-_CC_Best_Practices small pixelsIf you have questions that aren’t answered on the website you can email me at richardflatau@gmail.com  

Readers have requested a brief bio, so here goes:

Richard & Becky Flatau built their mortgage-free cordwood home in 1979 in Merrill, Wisconsin. Since then, they have written books, conducted workshops, facilitated the 2005,  2011 and 2015 Cordwood Conferences and provided consultation for cordwood builders.  Cordwood Construction: Best Practices DVD,  Cordwood Construction Best Practices (print) and Cordwood Conference Papers 2015 are the newest publications available from their online cordwood bookstore.   www.cordwoodconstruction.org

The Cordwood Workshop Video label. DVD label cover yellow

The 30 menu items. DVD Menu 1

DVD menu 2

The Drone View is especially spectacular!

 

 

 

Roofs 4 Cordwood Homes

When planning your natural home, the roof becomes a very important part of your design.  From looking good, to insulating, to adding extra space, to protecting your walls, a good roof design is an essential part of every home.

Here are a few ideas “topping off ideas” to consider for your cordwood construction dream home design.Roof Gormely Minnesota building the roofA roundwood, log cabin style roof for the second floor. Roof king post truss.jpg

A simple “king post truss” can be handmade and spans a maximum of 16 feet.

Jessi hoy peterson9 living roof with logoA living roof needs a sturdy framework, proper waterproofing protection and good drainage.   The rule of thumb with living roofs is to build them like a fine cabinet maker. Ernie Slatter  roof framing.jpgThe angle cuts for a round living roof can be complicated for a beginner.

 

Cordwood workshop sauna 6.jpgA simple shed roof is very easy to build.Issac Haumesser MO larger pixel with logo

Issac built his own trusses and then cut his own dragon skin shakes by hand.Roof separate from structure.jpgThis roof is separate from the building structure.Kinstone 20 Tension ring and circular metal roof bracket makes for a strong system.jpg

A ring collar and tensioner helps to keep the poles in good alignment.

Truss room in the attic

This truss room in the attic adds an extra 560 sq. ft. of living space on top of our cordwood home. Flatau's Chateau winter with logo.jpg

This is how it looks from the outside, somewhat of a Swiss Chalet style. The pitch is 8/12.

Roof common gable or common rafter roof.jpg

A common rafter takes longer to install than a truss roof.

Reciprocal roof with cordwood and logoReciprocal roofs are beautiful, but do not provide adequate insulation in cold climates, but they sure do look good!Peter Turkow d Waterport NY with logoPeter Turkow’s childhood cordwood home.  Known as “The House with the Hat.”

These photos are meant to stimulate your planning juices.  This is certainly not a comprehensive treatise on how to build a roof, but rather a starting point from which to begin.  You will need to research the cost, buildability and “look” of the roof you choose for your dwelling.  Good fortune!

Should you wish to learn how to build a cordwood cottage, cabin or home, please visit www.cordwoodconstruction.org   While you are there, click on the pictures, read the brief articles, check out the latest workshops and newsletter and if you are interested click on the Online Bookstore to see all the cordwood literature available in print and ebook format.

Cordwood Construction Best Practices Front_Cover_-_CC_Best_Practices small pixelsIf you have questions that aren’t answered on the website you can email me at richardflatau@gmail.com  

Readers have requested a brief bio, so here goes:

Richard & Becky Flatau built their mortgage-free cordwood home in 1979 in Merrill, Wisconsin. Since then, they have written books, conducted workshops, facilitated the 2005,  2011 and 2015 Cordwood Conferences and provided consultation for cordwood builders.  Cordwood Construction: Best Practices DVD,  Cordwood Construction Best Practices (print) and Cordwood Conference Papers 2015 are the newest publications available from their online cordwood bookstore.   www.cordwoodconstruction.org

This is the Cordwood Workshop Video label. DVD label cover yellow

These are the 30 menu sections from the Video.DVD Menu 1

DVD menu 2

 

 

Cordwood Cabin North Bay, Ontario

Fred Robson has built a beautiful “Cordwood Bunkie” as he calls it on the shores of the magnificently beautiful Lake Kawawaymog in Ontario.Fred Robson bunkie 2 with logoFred makes mandolins and guitars and is a very talented craftsman.  You can see his talent in this light and airy cordwood cabin.Fred Robson bunkie floor with logo.jpgThe floors are acid etched with a compass motif.Fred Robson's cordwood cottage, acid etched floor and handmade bed wiht logoFred built his own bed and now he has to make it!

Fred Robson bunkie exterior2 with logo.jpgThe octagon windows add a nice touch of light.Fred Robson sauna Ontario with logo.jpg

His practice building was a cordwood sauna.  It gets might cold up on Lake Kawawaymog .   Very nicely done Fred!

Should you wish to learn how to build a cordwood cottage, cabin or home, please visit www.cordwoodconstruction.org   While you are there, click on the pictures, read the brief articles, check out the latest workshops and newsletter and if you are interested click on the Online Bookstore to see all the cordwood literature available in print and ebook format.

Cordwood Construction Best Practices Front_Cover_-_CC_Best_Practices small pixelsIf you have questions that aren’t answered on the website you can email me at richardflatau@gmail.com  

Readers have requested a brief bio, so here goes:

Richard & Becky Flatau built their mortgage-free cordwood home in 1979 in Merrill, Wisconsin. Since then, they have written books, conducted workshops, facilitated the 2005,  2011 and 2015 Cordwood Conferences and provided consultation for cordwood builders.  Cordwood Construction: Best Practices DVD,  Cordwood Construction Best Practices (print) and Cordwood Conference Papers 2015 are the newest publications available from their online cordwood bookstore.   www.cordwoodconstruction.org

This is the Cordwood Workshop Video label. DVD label cover yellow

 

These are the 30 menu sections from the Video.

DVD Menu 1

DVD menu 2

 

 

Cordwood Doghouses around the world

Our furry friends need the warmth of a well built cordwood wall just as much as humans.   Here is an attractive Swedish cordwood doghouse courtesy of Olle Hagman.

Cordwood Doghouse Olle Hagman 1 with logo

Oliver helped me with the creation of the Wisdom of Downward Dog.

Cordwood dog

If you want to try the cordwood method with a practice building, this is a good starter project.  Olle was kind enough to send another cob mortar doghouse from one of his workshops.

Olle Hagman doghouse in Sweden 1.jpg

Below is a stackwall corner doghouse and its owner reside in Michigan.

Doghouse cordwood in Michigan from Lyn Wood.jpg

This roundish cordwood has bottles to enlighten the savage beast.

Cordwood doghouse from Susan Teague.jpgA Siberian Husky from Russia loves his log cabin.Log end doghouse  Konstantin Bogomolov.jpgTom Huber built this masterpiece in Michigan.Dog house cordwood www.cordwoodconstruction.org  photo credit Tom Huber with logo.jpg

A nice white pine doggy house.

Dog House from Andreea Rusu

Some dogs like to loll on top of their green roof.

nick kautzer dog houseShould you wish to learn how to build a cordwood cottage, cabin or home, please visit www.cordwoodconstruction.org   While you are there, click on the pictures, read the brief articles, check out the latest workshops and newsletter and if you are interested click on the Online Bookstore to see all the cordwood literature available in print and ebook format.

Cordwood Construction Best Practices Front_Cover_-_CC_Best_Practices small pixelsIf you have questions that aren’t answered on the website you can email me at richardflatau@gmail.com  

Readers have requested a brief bio, so here goes:

Richard & Becky Flatau built their mortgage-free cordwood home in 1979 in Merrill, Wisconsin. Since then, they have written books, conducted workshops, facilitated the 2005,  2011 and 2015 Cordwood Conferences and provided consultation for cordwood builders.  Cordwood Construction: Best Practices DVD,  Cordwood Construction Best Practices (print) and Cordwood Conference Papers 2015 are the newest publications available from their online cordwood bookstore.   www.cordwoodconstruction.org

DVDandPrint

Here is a picture of the print version and the DVD label in one composite.