First In The World To Offer The New Concept – BYO

BYO is one of the biggest revolutionary ideas in log building to date. It is a concept I started …

BYO is one of the biggest revolutionary ideas in log building to date. It is a concept I started after the last LBANZ log home building course. The BYO concept give those of us (and I was one) who wish to build their own log home the ability to do so, better, faster, more efficiently and without fault.

I have priced hundreds of log homes for folk who simply can’t afford them, building costs are very high. Every year I teach a log building course, and I’m encouraged and humbled, by the number of folk who are determined and driven to get their own log home any way they can. Only a small percentage of my students may go off and build their own log home on their property because the fact of going it alone, ordering logs, purchasing all manner of tools and equipment from overseas is overwhelming with the sheer size and logistics of the project.

But now with BYO, you can build your own log home. The way this works is you build your log home right here at our log building facility at Natural Log Homes. You use our gear; our expertise and you can save hundreds of thousands of dollars.
We have been building log homes for 30 years and we are the biggest log home company in the Southern Hemisphere. You can work alongside our professional builders to build your own log home, we will show you how. BYO gives you all the hands-on experience, without the worry or the thought of doing the wrong thing that can be costly in a log home.

We have the technical know-how, sure a 14-day log building course gives you the knowledge to cut and scribe and fit naturally shaped logs together, but that alone, does not make you a proficient log builder. (A carpentry trade apprenticeship used to take 4 years to complete)

Myself and my NLH staff are right here in the yard with you to help with questions that often pop up during construction. Issues such as log selection (nearly a trade on its own) managing wall heights, floor joists logs, roof logs, tricky log trigonometry, log header and window sill lay out can be challenging for novices.

I wish BYO was available to me when I built my own log home. I certainly would have jumped in head first.

“My latest method BYO is more for the owner builder who wants to build their own log home, as much as they can, we know you are out there because you come on the many log building courses run around the world.”

Our test case:

  • Is a huge 422sq m2 story home. I priced this home as to be built by NLH, our customer could not afford this, so the option was hatched for him and his wife to build their own log home under our guidance in our yard with our gear and help. The first
  • Build Your Own log home and it is working well.
  • Built in our NLH construction yard in Geraldine for Palmerston North.

“BYO gives you all the hands-on experience, without the worry or the thought of doing the wrong thing that can be costly in a log home.”

The way BYO works is:

  • The home owner has a log home plan or NLH help them get the plan they want from our designers and they get the use of our long-time engineer associates.
  • Natural Log Homes will purchase their logs and help set out their sill logs and get the first round started – this can be complex and tricky for bigger homes.
  • NLH peel their logs, a tough job at the best of times.
  • I either teach the home owner the rest of the log building skills required, or in this case the customer did our extensive log home building course first.
  • Then they carry on building their log home walls beams posts roof pieces etc, using myself or another professional log builder right here at NLH, for guidance as required. They have the use of our tower crane (NLH operated) our loader (NLH Operated), for moving logs, our scribers and our other myriad of specialist log building tools and equipment, most of which you cannot get in NZ, and our scaffolding as the home gets larger.
  • The more I have thought about this the more I wish BYO was available to me when I built my own log home. I certainly would have jumped in head first.

What will it cost:

What you pay for is your logs, some crane hire use, some loader hire, some yard rental, a peeler for the duration, and usable commodities and any NLH staff as required. This is done as a simple monthly invoice. Each log home is different some are huge and complex some are small and easy, the agreed monthly invoice will respect these differences.

Can I do it?

  • If you have done, or intend to take up a log building course, then you are possibly wanting to build your own log home, then this is for you.
  • Over thirty years, I have taught log building courses to hundreds of people, women and men, adults and children, and I know for a fact that if BYO was available all those years ago many more of our friends would live in their dream log home today.
  • BYO makes more and more sense as I even write this. Many log building students and I have met hundreds simply will not build for themselves once they learn and realize the complexities of log home construction, and the logistics of massive logs and equipment that is required, and the hidden skills only a well experienced and professional log builder has.
  • By working with us in our yard they can have the confidence to go ahead and build their own home.
  • The builder must be free to work week in week out until their log work is finished, we then deliver their finished log home kit to their site.
  • What’s the catch? There is none!

The advantages are great:

  1. The first and biggest single advantage is saving money, you can save tens of thousands of dollars on your log home build by BYO. Not just a saving in labor, but savings in log purchase, cartage, machinery purchases, maintenance, numerous tools, (mostly from the USA), down time, mistakes, planning and engineering. The efficiencies are huge.
  2. Participation. You do the work, you are the artisan, you cut all your notches, you cut the saddles you cut all joins, but you do it correctly, we will teach you.
  3. Logs are hard to come by in some parts of NZ, finding good log home building logs is hard work, and it’s a huge investment so you want the best, and most forest owners don’t want to sell one lot of their best trees to an individual. One of our first log home building points we teach our students is buy the best logs you can. We have access to the best logs in the Southern Hemisphere, you can choose the best logs for your log home from our huge inventory of beautiful Douglas Fir.
  4. Delivery to your site, most folk don’t have a spare 2 acres of land to have logs delivered, to be put up off the ground, sorted peeled sprayed and handled etc, this way you are only delivering to your site the finished log home not loads of waste and bark.
  5. You choose the best logs from our inventory for your log home, the best logs not just from a heap you may have ordered incorrectly and have run out of good logs and are down to the rubbish.
  6. Machinery, green house building logs can weigh over a ton, you do not need to purchase a large loader for moving logs or a secondhand crane (dangerous to build with), You get the use of ours, how does one man operate a crane and lay the log on the building or the two stools by himself anyway? I can’t. A saw mill is on NLH site to cut your flats when required.
  7. Many small specialist tools are required for log building, and once your log work is complete you will not need them again, NLH has them all, for you to use.
  8. Log handling tools and equipment all available at NLH.
  9. Scaffolding, with the new health and safety rules all log work need scaffolding to complete some of the work, NLH has tons of safe and easy to assemble scaffolding.
  10. Technical know-how, sure a 14-day log building course gives you the knowledge to cut and scribe logs, but it does not make you a proficient log builder, myself and my staff are right here in the yard with you, to help with tricky or odd questions that often pop up during construction. You are monitored daily and can discuss construction issues as they arise.
  11. Issues such as log selection – nearly a trade on its own.
  • Managing wall heights, many novices get into trouble here, floor joists logs roof logs and tricky log trigonometry.
  • Help with log header and window sill lay out.
  • Help with Electrical layout.
  • Sprays, treatment and protection of logs.
  • Proper handling of logs we use hundreds of specially rated safety straps that can go on your logs to assembly.
  • Our log seal gasket you can install our gasket onto your logs,
  • Prior to assembly, pre-site set out you have access to our thirty years of assembly knowledge and believe me we have witnessed all the mistakes home owners and some builders have made.
  • Assembly we are the best, in the world.

And the most important – Safety:

  • A log home building site weather in our yard or at your home site, is a heavy commercial building operation, Safety is paramount, to us and it should be to you. I have witnessed many owner builders doing very dodgy and dangerous things with heavy logs. Most have gotten away with it, unfortunately some have not.
  • I have seen every type of lifting equipment used to move logs and some are out right dangerous, I want peoples log home to be enjoyable and affordable, not at the risk to themselves their partners or their children.
  • We have safety mechanisms in place and we have a safe working environment.
  • I will have Brook and Toni our very first BYO, customers comment on their progress and journey with us. Watch this space.