Friday, May 6, 2016
When most people envision log homes, they think of humble abodes hidden in the woods rather than huge sprawling estates. For the ultra-rich business magnates of the early 20th century, however, big was the only way to go. That’s why Louis G. Kaufman, bank president and early member of the General Motors board of directors, built a massive 266,000-square-foot log mansion on the shores of Lake Superior in 1923. He called it Granot Loma – an amalgamation of the names of his wife and three children – and today the estate still holds the record as the largest log home in the world.
Valued at $40 million, Granot Loma is also the most expensive home in the state of Michigan. It was constructed between 1919 and 1923 for a total cost of about $5 million – roughly $70 million in today’s dollars. Kaufman recruited 22 architects and over 400 Scandinavian craftsmen for the project. Logs for the home were transported from Oregon by rail.
The home features 23 bedrooms, 13 baths and 26 fireplaces. The fireplace in the great room measure 30 feet long, and its mantel is made of a beam salvaged from a shipwreck in Lake Superior. Other furnishings in the house include a chandelier made from the roots of a white pine tree and a Brunswick Pool table from 1900 inlaid with silver and mother of pearl.
The house is built on a plot of land measuring nearly eight square miles along with 13 other outbuildings including a dairy barn, pool house and multiple garages. Today, the enormous residence is listed on the National Registrar of Historic Places.
Monday, May 2, 2016
The mention of log homes immediately brings to mind many thoughts, like warm, cozy, historic, quality craftsmanship, timeless design and durability. Log homes can also be environmentally friendly as well, as attested to by a growing number of environmentalists who embrace log home construction. After all, log homes are one of the oldest forms of building, and have been trusted by homeowners for centuries.
Houses cannot be built from nothing, but they can be built with sustainable practices from renewable resources like sustainably harvested logs – a completely renewable resource. Some log home builders even intentionally source sustainably harvested logs for the homes that they build, and some especially environmentally conscious homeowners are able to have their log home constructed wholly or partly with logs that were harvested from their property.
Aesthetic considerations are also important in a home, and log homes often look particularly nice in rural, wooded areas. In the same way that adobe homes look perfectly natural in the desert, log homes blend in with the environment in a wooded setting and look as though they are part of the landscape.
Well-built log homes are also extremely energy efficient due to the thermal mass of the logs. The thickness of the walls in a log home makes the building easier to heat and cool than many other types of construction, and this thermal efficiency, in turn, reduces the need for energy consumption in all seasons. When combined with eco-friendly energy options like solar, wind or geothermal, log homes can even be nearly entirely self-sufficient in some instances.
Maintenance of a log home is similar to any wood building, with occasional resealing needed based on the weather. Plus, a quality log home will last for many decades, resulting in a lower environmental impact throughout its lifespan and an improved durability that makes them one of the most sustainable buildling options.
Schroeder Log Home Supply has been meeting the needs of customers in the log home industry since 1986. We offer guides, sealant, tools, fasteners and nearly everything you need to build, maintain and repair your log home. Shop our full product selection online now or call us today at 800-359-6614 to learn more.
at May 02, 2016
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