Build a Saddle Notch, Full Scribe Log Building Course – Spring 2021
The BC School of Log Building offers exceptional training in this 3 week comprehensive course. You will learn the techniques and knowledge necessary to build your own full scribe log house, or prepare for employment in the exciting log house building industry. For the required tool list, please select from the tabs below.
This course is now FULL. Please check back for fall 2021 dates.
**We’re optimistic that we’ll be able to safely and responsibly run our log and timber building courses because they are small groups and take place outside in the fresh air. If we have to cancel the courses due to Covid 19, your deposit will be fully refunded.**
Full scribe, saddle notch construction has become one of the most popular styles of modern, handcrafted log building. Also known as chinkless, round log construction, the saddle notch is an important innovation in the history of log building; it allows the buildings’ corner notches to remain tight as the logs dry and shrink in size over time. Join us for this extended round log building course where you will learn the techniques and knowledge necessary to build your own full scribe log house, or prepare for employment in the exciting log house building industry. Click the following link to watch a 4 min video of the Full Scribe, Saddle Notch log building courses: https://youtu.be/C4tvBR-YLfo
“This was the best course I have been on. The course content was excellent. The course was fast moving and very interesting. Dave is an outstanding instructor and very knowledgeable on all aspects of log building. The other students in the class were a great group and each brought something to the course. For people who learn by doing, you can’t do better than this course. I would love to take another course from Dave!”
John Koch, Blaeberry BC
*All courses are instructed in English*
This course will cover the following through a hands-on approach, while working on a full scale log cabin:
- Tools of the trade talk
- Safe log building techniques
- Chainsaw skills development for the log builder
- What makes a good building log
- Log house design
- Log selection
- Log peeling and preparation
- Log scribing (using the over scribing technique)
- Cutting saddles
- Notching and cutting the belly groove
- Laying out and preparing the first round
- Door and window openings
- Insulating the logs
- Installing loft beams
- Leveling the top round
- Laying out and preparing ridge pole and purlins
- Insulating the logs
If a tool rental is required, you can find our rental prices below this list. Reserve early to ensure availability.
The following items are required to ensure that you can fully engage in the course:
- Chainsaw 45-60 cc (in safe working order) 16”-20” bar length is best, over 20” bar is not recommended
- Full safety gear. Steel toe boots, saw pants/chaps, eye protection, ear protection, hard hat, work gloves.
- 2′ level
- 25′ Tape Measure
- Carpenters Square
- Chalk Line (red or blue chalk)
- Knife (large yellow Olfa is best)
- 1” or Larger Chisel
- Notebook & Pencil
- Log Scribes **See note below**
- Camera (optional but recommended)
** Log Scribes are an important tool for accurate marking and layout in the log building industry. They are a fairly expensive tool ($150.00 and up). If you think you will be building a house or cabin after the course I would recommend buying scribes, if you are unsure or just taking the course for interest it isn’t necessary to purchase scribes. I have several sets that can be used. I use Starrett 9” log scribes available online through Magard ventures; logbuildingtools.ca I find the Veritas scribes that are available through Lee Valley tools a lit bit bulky for log building but certainly do the job and are cheaper. Having your own set of log scribes for the round log building courses is necessary. I do have a couple of extra sets available for use so check with me if you would prefer not to purchase a set.
We have a couple of complete tool packages that we can rent to students for the duration of the course. This may be a good option for someone who is coming to the course by air, or for someone who would like to try out some different tools before purchasing their own.
As well as the items listed on the required tool list above, please bring to the course:
- A lunch and any desired snacks as well as ample drinking water to last the 8 hour day. (log building is hard physical work…)
- Rain jacket
- Sun screen
- Balance of course fees
- Log building is a very hands on activity that requires your full attention to perform safely and efficiently; no booze, drugs, or hangovers please.
Smoking is permitted only on the road outside the log building yard please (fire safety, a lot of sawdust….)
We love dogs but please leave your pets at home.
If you have any questions regarding the course, specific tools or where to buy tools please contact us.
Tool Rental Costs
- Complete Tool Package Rental $150/ week
- Just Scribes $30/ week
- Just Chainsaw $100/ week
- Safety Gear $30/week
Helmet, Chaps, Glasses, Gloves, Dust Mask
**Must bring own Steel-Toed boots**
Log Yard Address: 2701 Dejordie Rd. Donald BC
The log building course will be held at the Stonehouse Woodworks log yard in Donald BC. It is approximately 15 mins west of Golden on the Trans Canada Highway with inspiring mountain vistas and easy access.
Directions from Golden: Head West on the Trans Canada Highway, approx 15 mins until you reach the highway truck scales. Pass the scales and take your next right on Donald RD, then another immediate right on Dejordie Rd. will bring you to our gate. Parking is available outside of the gate.
Directions from Revelstoke: Head East on the Trans Canada Highway, over Rogers pass and towards Golden. About 20 minutes before you reach Golden and just after you cross the large highway bridges over the Columbia River and the train tracks, there will be a turning lane to your left for Donald Rd. Turn left onto Donald Rd, then an immediate right onto Dejordie Rd. will bring you to our gate. Parking is available outside of gate.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. What size of chainsaw do we need for the course?
We recommend a 45-60 cc size saw fitted with an 18’’ bar. The shorter bar length allows for safer, more controlled cutting when fitting logs. Stihl and Husqvarna are our recommended choices.
2. Do you rent tools if participants don’t have their own?
We have several complete tool packages that we can rent for the courses. These are typically reserved for students who are flying and can’t easily travel with a saw. Participants are still required to supply their own personal protection equipment.
3. Have any past participants gone on to build their own log buildings?
Yes, many students have built log buildings of their own after completing our course. Student projects have included cabins, saunas, houses, and outbuildings.
4. Have past students found log building employment after taking a log building course from the BC School of Log Building?
Yes, some of our students have chosen to pursue employment after completing their log building course and have been successful in securing a position in the trade. Our courses provide a great foundation for someone who is interested in working in the log building industry.
5. What do you do with the buildings that are constructed in the course?
We sell the completed log shells that are built in the courses. If the building is not sold prior to the beginning of the course, then the students in the course are given the opportunity to purchase the shell.
6. Where do students stay?
If you click on the ‘Location’ page of the website, you will find several options for accommodation during the courses including hotels and motels, b&bs, hostels and camping. You can also find a complete list of accommodation at http://www.tourismgolden.com .
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