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General Forestry => Timber Framing/Log construction => Topic started by: eddiebo on September 01, 2012, 11:02:47 PM

Title: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: eddiebo on September 01, 2012, 11:02:47 PM
I am researching this method of log home building. Is this a good way to build with logs if heavy equipment is not an option? Any one here build this way? Input please.
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: D L Bahler on September 01, 2012, 11:29:33 PM
A search of pièce-sur-pièce will be fruitful

I am not familiar with the particular French style, but I know of a very similar Swiss-German style of building, common in parts of the Canton of Bern. This style is indeed very well suited to building without large equipment. Essentially timber framing with a log infill, and in their view the log infill is suitable for bracing as well, so no angle braces are needed.
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: eddiebo on September 02, 2012, 10:08:09 AM
Thanks. Do you know what this method is called?
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: scouter Joe on September 02, 2012, 11:18:34 AM
There is a book called : The Short Log & Timber Building  Book : by James Mitchell . ISBN0-88179-010-9 . There is quite a bit of info in it that should help you . scouter Joe
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: D L Bahler on September 02, 2012, 12:19:32 PM
The Swiss technique is sometimes called Bohlenbau. Though you will get widely varying results if you try and search for it.

The principle, however, is very simple. You have posts spaced maybe 4 feet apart with grooves cut that then receive tenons on the end of the infill timbers. It is important that these horizontal timbers be free floating, and also that they not be relied on to bear structural loads due to the different shrinkage rates of vertical and horizontally oriented wood.
An update to the technique would be to instead cut the grooves on the ends of the horizontal timbers, and have them join to + shaped posts. This allows the posts to retain more structural integrity, as cutting grooves in them can lead to excessive splitting.
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: jander3 on September 04, 2012, 08:14:51 AM
If you can't get heavy equipment to the site, there are many rigging techniques that would be of use (lifiting shear, skyline, gin pole, etc.).    These allow one or two individuals to move quite heavy materials.   We are builiding a new timberframe structure up at our place where access is very difficult.   Step 1 is installation of a derrick crane so we can move logs and timbers to cut the joints and then install them on the building.

The Army Rigging Manual provides some excellent starting points for setting up rigging.

:  www.petrospec-technologies.com/Herkommer/knots/FM5-125.pdf


Piece-en-piece is pretty straight-forward.  Cut slots in your vertical timbers or logs.    Build a jig, to stack and scribe your infill logs.   Cut tenons and lateral grooves on the infill logs and slide them into the slots on the vertical timbers.

 

 (http://www.forestryforum.com/gallery/albums/userpics/17998/DSC01964.JPG) 

 (http://www.forestryforum.com/gallery/albums/userpics/17998/1998/DSC02468.JPG) 

 (http://www.forestryforum.com/gallery/albums/userpics/17998/1998/%5BDSC00346.jpg)

Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: barbender on September 06, 2012, 10:30:28 PM
The title of the James Mitchell book has been changed to The Craft of Modular Post and Beam, if I remember right. It has the most useful info on this topic I have seen.
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: oklalogdog on September 15, 2012, 07:42:21 AM
I have both books by James Mitchell - "The Craft of Modular Post and Beam" and "Short Log and Timber Building Book."  They are both excellent books IMO.
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: barbender on September 23, 2012, 09:04:19 PM
I thought they were the same book, this means I'll have to find the other one to read now.
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: eddiebo on September 24, 2012, 02:24:19 PM
I bought both books and they are the same. In general.
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: oklalogdog on September 25, 2012, 01:24:43 PM
Short Log book pertains more to log construction IMO.
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: john hass on September 30, 2012, 10:27:46 PM
hello- this is a great way to build. you can use any log length you want. if you want a 14 ft room use 14 ft logs or a combination. they really look massive if you use large diameter logs for the corners. use a level to mark the tenons and grooves, as they are about 2 inches wide. then saw them out. stack up wall logs so you can mark and cut several at the same time.  you will have shrinkage at the top if the logs arnt really dry. in fill with insulation and cover with a ribbon board  at the top. ive never seen really short logs used, it would be slow but it would work. if you were building long walls this would give you a wall less apt to curl than vertical logs. dont be afraid to try it. we need more artists not afraid to build out of the norm. john hass
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: D L Bahler on October 02, 2012, 01:05:52 PM
I could make up a few sketches, if you would like, of how a simple stavverk style vertical log structure would work.

Also, I can show you how a similar Swiss system works, using small sized and short timbers to frame in the walls, and having a horizontal timber infill. You could just as easily use half round logs, and even turn them vertical if you wish to.

Using a system like the Swiss/South German modular framing allows you to build a fairly large structure without the need of any large timbers.
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: grweldon on October 02, 2012, 01:55:33 PM
I don't know about anybody else, but I would surely be interested in seeing sketches...
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: eddiebo on October 02, 2012, 06:40:32 PM
So would I  8)
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: ChrisGermany on October 28, 2012, 12:19:12 PM
I would, as well.

The stave churches built with these methods are, for me, the apex of the wood builder's craft.
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: TW on November 02, 2012, 11:28:15 AM
Here is a link to a site about the reconstruction of a 18th century barn in Västergötland in Sweden. Piece en piece construction. The language is Swedish but those of you who do dot know the language may find the pictures interesting.
http://www.vastergotlandsmuseum.se/kulturvast_templates/Kultur_ArticlePageWide.aspx?id=68502
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: oklalogdog on November 02, 2012, 03:16:32 PM
Here is a video on short log construction or Piece en Piece.  I think it looks pretty good.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XI3WntNjH4w
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: beenthere on November 02, 2012, 04:00:20 PM
Wondering what keeps a good stiff wind from knocking it over?

Looks a bit like a stockade, but very vulnerable to falling down.

Does the dirt floor come next? 

I guess I'm not impressed at all, but if someone likes it and is willing to move in their, fine by me.
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: Jim_Rogers on November 02, 2012, 04:30:20 PM
Most log houses, at least I believe so, are assembled once at the location where they are made and then dis-assembled and shipped to the home site and re-assembled on the existing standard construction deck.

I would assume that is what is happening in the video above.

Maybe, I could be wrong but maybe.....

Jim Rogers
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: Jay C. White Cloud on November 02, 2012, 04:54:33 PM
Good Day,

I specialize in folk architecture of the Americas, Middle East, and Asian.  I have built this way and know several methods from around the world, (they are all similar,) and extremely stable and applicable to seismic areas.  There are several French Canadian Timber Wrights that specialize in  "pièce sur pièce" timber architecture.  What specifically would you like to know?


Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: Jim_Rogers on November 02, 2012, 05:30:21 PM
Welcome Jay, and thanks for your advice and comments.

Jim Rogers
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: Jay C. White Cloud on November 02, 2012, 07:21:09 PM
Back in the 90's I helped designed and facilitated the construction of just what you're doing.  It came out well.  What you are describing is a hybrid style "piece sur piece" log and timber structure.  Only advice I can give without knowing details, don't user fiberglass insulation, and make the slabs at least 50 mm thick with them terminating into some form of timber frame structure, (whether traditional or modern lamellar method.)

(http://www.forestryforum.com/gallery/albums/userpics/30330/ImgTour_102_5943.jpg) 

 

 

 

(http://www.forestryforum.com/gallery/albums/userpics/30330/ImgTour_102_5946.jpg)

(http://www.forestryforum.com/gallery/albums/userpics/30330/ImgTour_Living_Room_2.jpg)

(http://www.forestryforum.com/gallery/albums/userpics/30330/ImgTour_Den.jpg)
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: hardtailjohn on November 02, 2012, 11:53:45 PM
This outfit is not too far from me. I've seen a few of their homes and they're awesome! My wife and I were going to use the piece-en-piece style construction on our "barndominium", because of the length of the walls as well as the resistance to settling that's mentioned when the vertical timber takes the load.
John

http://www.nordiqueloghomes.com/b_system.html
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: Jay C. White Cloud on November 03, 2012, 12:55:10 AM
With the round log method, (as referenced above,) of “piece sur piece,” you get more gapping between logs.  This more often used contemporary style of “piece sur piece,” also is not as “weather and settling proof,” as the more traditional squared edge versions you can still find in many vintage structures of Eastern Canada.
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: oklalogdog on November 03, 2012, 03:18:46 AM
beenthere: "Wondering what keeps a good stiff wind from knocking it over?"

 Ha! the house shell in the video is to be moved and is for sale.  I went to their website.  Yeah, the footing looks a little flimsy but they won't leave it like that.  The posts will be attached to piers or some kind of stem wall.  The logs are all scribed to each other and then the ends are connected to the posts with either a tenon into a groove or a groove in both the wall log and post held together with a spline.  I'm not sure how sturdy the finished structure would be but since the posts carry the weight of the roof I am assuming it would be very similar to a timber frame.
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: eddiebo on November 03, 2012, 02:11:44 PM
Beautiful job J.C. Whitecloud. How did you chink between the natural edge wall slabs? I absolutely would do ours like that. Is that mortar chink? We want to use mortar chink. Our building system  consist of 4x6 treated post concreted in the ground 10 ft apart. 5x7 pine beams set on top of the 4x6's with 4x4 post in between, with notched spiked joinery to the beams. 4x4 are cemented in the ground that go up to make 8 ft walls. 2x4 framing between the 10 ft sections of 4x4's at 2 ft on center. Corner post are 6x6's. Top plates are 4x4 post joined together with lap joints. Sort of a piece on piece pole construction system. Will post pics soon. I will use pine log slabs on front applied vertically, and the natural edge slabs you used J.C. on sides and back. I love this way of framing, because I can dry everything in before building the floor system, and I am doing it primarily alone.
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: Jay C. White Cloud on November 04, 2012, 01:47:23 AM
The walls of the house in the photo are 300 mm thick.  They are constructed of fresh off the mill mixed conifer, full dimension 50 mm x 150 mm stud, 600 mm on center.  At corners and other load bearing location are solid wood posts.  Roof and interior is simple corbelled timber framing of Chestnut Oak, 200 mm x 200 mm and some 250 mm x 300 mm main load carrying beam work.  Walls have no vapor barrier and wet blown in cellulose insulation 150 mm thick.  Roof has polyisocyanurate foam board 200 mm thick.

Chinking on the interior is a traditional paper mache’ chinking.  This can be found in several locations around the world in folk architecture.  Exterior is a modern elastomeric chinking.  Would have used an adobe or lime plaster if possible but client were talked into the elastomeric type.  It is performing acceptably but will need to be monitored for “pulling.”  NEVER use any type of portland (concrete,) based chinking mortars.  They are very hydrophilic in nature.  When historical cabins started having their old mud chinking remove and replaced with concrete, water damage and rot set in rapidly, causing much more harm than good.  You can still find books and web advice for mixing different types of concrete as a chinking replacement, DON’T DO IT.  Why this advice is still being given makes no since to me and I continue to battle it in the restoration jobs I have to do.  I seldom use concrete, preferring stone, lime or adobe, when I can use it.  Many historical societies and museums no longer allow the use of portland based chinking in their restorations.

As for your wall, log, and timber configuration, I would have to see a model or cross sectional drawing to better understand it.  If you haven’t already begun construction, I would be glad to critique your intended designs.
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: schakey on November 06, 2012, 05:25:20 AM
Check out loghomeliberation.com,this is how we want to build using the WM MP100 moulder/planer and square logs with the t&g knife set.
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: eddiebo on November 06, 2012, 01:23:34 PM
Nice site.
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: eddiebo on November 06, 2012, 01:43:49 PM
Having trouble uploading pics of house building techniques. Will try again.

 (http://www.forestryforum.com/gallery/albums/userpics/30239/new_build_010.jpg)
 

 (http://www.forestryforum.com/gallery/albums/userpics/30239/new_build_007.jpg)
 

 (http://www.forestryforum.com/gallery/albums/userpics/30239/new_build_005.jpg)
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: grweldon on November 06, 2012, 02:04:15 PM
Very similar to the way I built my house, only your's is quite a bit larger.... Mine is 24 x 24.

(http://www.forestryforum.com/gallery/albums/userpics/29738/IMG_3621.JPG)
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: eddiebo on November 08, 2012, 02:04:59 PM
Any finished photos? Please post. What siding did you use?
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: grweldon on November 08, 2012, 02:49:15 PM
I posted a link to my blog... I think it was within this thread.  It was removed by the moderator(s) for some reason.  It details the construction history of my house.  I might be banned if I post it again.  I didn't really want to post it in the member's website section.  Eddiebo... I messaged the link to you...


Also, the house isn't yet finished.  No siding yet, just Tyvek over OSB.  I'm going to mill siding from SYP one of these months/years...
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: beenthere on November 08, 2012, 06:27:25 PM
You said "my house" like you might be living in it.  But apparently not.
You can still put a pic or two in your gallery here and post pics. ;)
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: 1938farmall on November 08, 2012, 09:52:07 PM
Jay C. White Cloud,  could you please give us your recipe for non-portland chink mix?  thank you.
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: grweldon on November 09, 2012, 07:55:24 AM
You said "my house" like you might be living in it.  But apparently not.
You can still put a pic or two in your gallery here and post pics. ;)

I HAVE been living in it since July 2008!
Title: Re: Any experts on Piece-en-Piece log construction? (Short Logs)
Post by: Jay C. White Cloud on November 10, 2012, 11:42:27 AM
Hello 1938Farmall,

Well there quite a few depending on the application.  Inside I like to use a clay or liquid wall paper type and for the outside, perhaps the same, if I have good overhangs on the structure, otherwise use a lime based mortar.  We didn't start having problems with old cabins and vintage brickwork until folks started throwing the water holding concrete mortars into any crack they could find in a building, be it brick, log or timber.

Now you asked about recipes, well I'd rather you tell me which one seems good to you for your application.  Here is where to start looking for many of the different kinds:

For lime advice, these are the folks: http://virginialimeworks.com/  You can then go out on the net and see all kinds of applications.

For paper, this co. can give you an idea of the look.  http://www.cotton-wall.com/colors.php  You can also use "liquid wallpaper" as a search query and find more than you could imagine.  You can also just take cellulose base insulation and start experimenting, (not great color choices without some effort,) casein makes a good binding agent.  Look at "paper mache" formulas for ideas.

For a bought premix, this is hard to beat, https://www.americanclay.com/shop/index.php but you can do a search for all types of "wattle and dub," "light clay" etc.

Let us know what you find and think about it.
 ;)