The Log Blog by Appalachian Log Structures

Carpenter Bees, Log Homes and Other Exterior Wood Structures

Posted on Fri, Mar 8, 2013 @ 01:37 PM

carpenter bee trapWelcome Spring!  With such a light winter in the South this year it seems that the carpenter bees are beginning to hatch a bit earlier than normal.  If you live in a home (log home or otherwise) with wooden structures like porches, decks, fascia trim, etc. now is the time to begin thinking about how to protect these area of your home from this wood destroying insect.

Besides the badminton/tennis racket method which will give you a good workout while swatting at these pests, there are several other products on the market today that will help you reduce and in some cases eliminate the drilling bees.  Keep in mind that since these bees are not ingesting the wood just drilling in to it - topical coats of borates will do little to deter the carpenter bee. 

If you live in a log home or a wood sided home you may want to try a great "green" product called NBS-30.  This liquid additive may be mixed with the finish that you are using on the exterior of your home.  By mixing NBS-30 with a good penetrating product the effects of the additive will last longer as it is not only on the surface of the wood, but penetrates in to the wood as well.  You can use NBS-30 as a topical treatment by mixing it with water - but it works the best with penetrating finishes.  The main ingredient is citronella - the same natural ingredient that is put in candles and burned around outdoor areas where people gather.  Not only does the carpenter bee not like the smell, but spiders, flies, lady bugs and most other insects don't like the smell either.  I've used this product on my dream log home with great success and like the fact that I'm not using a chemical around my house.

If you don't live in a log cabin home but have wooden structures or wooden members on your log home you may want to try one of the traps that are offered.  Most homeowners have seen some of the damage that carpenter bees can do to fascia boards around the perimeter of the roof structure.  A clever individual came up with the idea that by drilling holes the same size as the carpenter bee in a piece of lumber, then making a channel on the back of the wood and placing a glue like substance in these channels - the lazy carpenter bee will enter the pre-drilled hole and get stuck in the glue on the back side.  After initial installation, these traps can be taken down and cleaned and used year after year.  These facia bee chambers are great to use in these areas since the 1" lumber is what the bees like best.

Another trap that I've used for the past two years is pretty ingenious.  Although a very simple design - it works GREAT.  When I first hung the carpenter bee traps at the peak and tips of my log cabin homes gable end I thought I had wasted my time and money.  After less than 4 hours about 1/2 the bottle was FULL of carpenter bees!  I was laughing at how simple a trap it is but what a fantastic job it was doing.  I've almost eliminated the carpenter bees around my house since I've trapped so many over the past two year which means they've not been able to re-produce.

If you have a pretty severe case of carpenter bees (barns, outbuilding, sheds, etc) where you don't do a lot of upkeep or maintenance the carpenter bee kit will be a good solution as well.  Although it does use a chemical dust - it is effective.  You'll need to read the directions and follow them carefully to eliminate the problems but it does work well.

Using a combination of the above products will help eliminate carpenter bees around your home and keep them from coming back.  After all - you spend enough time taking care of your home (both inside and out) so why not spend a little time now so you can save a LOT of time later taking care of those nasty carpenter bees. 

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Tags: log home, log cabin home, dream log home, dream log cabin home

A Company’s Legacy of Log Home Living

Posted on Fri, Jul 27, 2012 @ 09:44 AM

custom log homeLooking back 20 years ago next month, my wife and I were putting the finishing touches on our log home and preparing to move in.  Over the previous 18 months, we planned, sketched, met with banks, met with builders, scheduled the work to be done and prepared for our journey in to the building process.  We started construction in March of 1992 and by mid-September were moved in.  Building a log cabin home in South Carolina during the summer months is NOT the best of planning but we pulled it off. 

Along the way we learned quite a few things about building a log home and the construction business in general.  Over the past 20 years I’ve been willing to share these experiences and assist several hundred homeowners to successfully move in to their log home.

There are several employees, including myself, at Appalachian Log Structures Inc. that live in log homes and have done so for quite a few years – over 200 years combined in total.  My father, the founder of Appalachian Log Structures, who passed away in 2010, lived in two log homes (my mother still does), the President of Appalachian personally built both of his log homes (lots of sweat equity there!), our VP of Marketing has lived in two log homes, our VP Sales lives in #13, the 13th log home to roll off our line over 32 years ago (see photo above).  The Manager of both our production facilities in Princeton, WV built his home in 1992 as did my sister and her husband who since has moved in to my Grandmothers log home and remodeled it.  Over the years we’ve had other employees and family members build log homes and they are still living in them today.

In addition to employees most all of our Independent Representatives either live in or work from a log model home (or sometimes both!).

So you see, when you contact someone at Appalachian Log Structures you have the opportunity to speak with someone that has first hand experience of building and maintaining a log home – experience that is valuable to someone just starting the process.  In addition, all of us are willing to share our knowledge and experience so that you too can have the opportunity to live the log home life like so many us have been blessed to do.

When you are ready to start your log home, we’re here and waiting to assist you.  We’re only a phone call or a short drive away so come on by for a visit and let’s get you started on your dream log cabin home.  Contact your Local Sales Representative today!

Tags: log home, log cabin home, log structures, dream log cabin home

Almost Heaven Log Home

Posted on Thu, Apr 26, 2012 @ 03:39 PM

log home ownersNo one can tell you better the advantages of living the log home life than someone who actually LIVES in a log home.  In previous blogs we have discussed how to plan, questions to ask, what to look for when building a log home.  Now we will share with you some of our homeowners experiences.

Once Mr. & Mrs. Lewis finished their beautiful log home by the Greenbrier River in West Virginia we couldn't help but ask if they would allow us to photograph their log home as well as get some additional insights into their experinece in building a log home.  CLICK HERE to read how they made their decisions and how they came to choose Appalachian Log Structures and learn what was important to them when completing their home.

In addition - enjoy some wonderful photos of their completed log home and be sure to start making notes on what you want in your dream log cabin home.

When you are ready to start your log home project please be sure to contact the local Log Home Building Consultant in your area.  We're ready to share with you our experiences and insight to make your project a dream log home come true!

Tags: log home, log cabin home, dream log cabin home, log home life