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Did you take Loghomeology 101 in college?

By Tom Heatherington

In case you missed the course, Loghomeology is the science behind log and timber frame homes. Regrettably, there are not any universities offering a degree in this field, but that hasn’t stopped what was once a cottage industry (no pun intended), in becoming one of the fastest growing segments of modern home building.

The log home industry is currently enjoying the largest growth phase in its history. The baby boomers have raised their families, some are retiring or looking for vacation homes, but most are simply at a stage where they can now choose how and where they want to spend the rest of their lives. A surprising percentage of this group is choosing to build their dream home from logs.

This does not mean that only retirees are buying log homes; far from it. In fact the number of log homes that are being built as a primary residence is at an all-time high. People of all ages, professions and economic conditions are looking for something more than your average suburban cookie-cutter house.

Unlike modern stick-built homes, log and timber frame construction has an extraordinary history behind their handcrafted construction methods and a vocabulary unique to the trade. Terms such as ‘Scissor Truss‘, ‘Purlins‘, ‘Chinking‘, ‘Saddlenotch‘ or Butt-and-Pass Corners and other terminology requires a college education to communicate with the experts. (BTW, these underlined terms above are linked to their definitions at

The good news is that one need not attend a university or take a class to learn this log-speak because a reference source is now available and requires no tuition or homework assignments. A website called ‘Loghomeology’ explains the terminology and the science behind modern log and timber frame structures.

If you are considering building a log home, one of the first questions you will be asked is which type of corner you prefer. Do you have a preference for the Dovetail, Swedish Cope, Saddle Notch or Butt and Pass corner? In some cases it will be a design option and in others, a structural issue may dictate or limit your choice. Nonetheless, having an understanding about what these terms mean and what something looks like will help you with your decision. is an encyclopedia of log and timber home construction terms, definitions, building techniques and pictures specific to this industry niche. Log and timber frame homes are related to stick-built homes in the way that buffalos are related to cows. There are many similarities, but they are very different animals.

When you are searching for information, you will not get bogged down with ordinary home building jargon as the emphasis is placed on terminology specific to log and timber frame construction. Helping you decipher the strange language of log and heavy timber construction is what is all about!

Oh, and by the way, when you have graduated from the University of Loghomeology and are ready to talk log-speak and kick bark peelings with the pros, you will want to spend some time browsing this Log Cabin Directory as we have possibly the most in-depth listing of log home and timber frame dealers, builders and manufacturers in the USA and Canada.

About The Author

Tom Heatherington is the founder and editor of the Log Furniture Directory and the Log Cabin Directory, “human edited” directories of log homes and rustic furniture and related information for the United States and Canada.