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The Oak Leaf

By May 1, 2010March 8th, 2024Newsletter

Welcome to the May 2010 issue of The Oak Leaf! For new readers, this is a monthly newsletter that is sent by e-mail to those that have expressed an interest in Gastineau Log Homes. We use this as a way of communicating technical, design and industry information. For more information, check out our web site at

Check out our new website! Same address: but new photos and information! Read our blogs on our website too. Our new Image Gallery has LOTS of pictures that you can view!

Please “Like” Gastineau Log Homes on Facebook!

Trivia Question: They were thought of as being very glamorous. But where were Fred Astair and Ginger Rogers born? (The answer is at the end.)

Breaking News!! Approximately 93% of Homeowners are just fine! The overwhelming majority of Homeowners in this country are NOT losing their homes. They either own their properties free and clear or are making their payments on time. Despite what you hear on the news! Of the approximately 129,400,000 homes in the U.S. there are only 7 – 10 million of these in some state of default. That is roughly 7%. That means 93% of the homeowners are doing OK. (And houses are selling! We had a report this week from a customer that their home sold in 2 weeks after putting it on the market!)

Trying to Sell Your Home? We have an article we can email to you on “Ten Sure Fire Ways to Distract Buyers from Focusing on Your Home.” Includes some great tips on what you can (and should not!) do when you are trying to sell your home! Email us and we will send it to you.

What is a GLH Wall Guide?: Recently, a builder complimented us on the engineering and ease of installation for our wall guides. He advised me to promote these to prospective customers because, as he stated, “No other log home company in the industry has anything like this in their packages.” So here goes!

Typically, a log home is constructed with log exterior walls with 2 X 4 and 2 X 6 frame walls that partition or divide up the interior living space into rooms. We call those frame walls the “partition” walls. It is very important that these partition walls be attached to the log walls in a manner that allows the logs to naturally dry and settle. The GLH wall guides provide a very secure attachment of the frame walls to the log walls but allows for any log settlement. An added advantage to the wall guides is that they provide a very strong and stable vertical surface. This minimizes the chances of a log wall bowing over the years. If you would like to see a diagram of a wall guide, go to this page on our web site: GLH Construction Details

Still confused about R-values and how thermal mass affects the performance of buildings? I recently read a thorough yet easy to understand article on this subject. You can find it at: link name


Log raising in Ava, MO: We will be having a log raising in Ava, MO on June 12th. For more information, call our office at 800-654-9253.

What is certified lumber?: The goal of certifying lumber is to provide a method of verifying the sustainability of wood that is being harvested and used. Sustainability has been defined as development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs; a definition created in 1987 at the World Commission on Environment and Development, a division of the United Nations. To measure the sustainability level of lumber, two main areas are evaluated: harvesting and chain of custody. The harvesting process is evaluated based on how trees are planted, grown, cut down and replanted to ensure the long-term health and existence of a forest. Chain of custody tracks exactly who or which company touched a piece of lumber, tracing it from the company that employed the person or machine that cut down the tree until that wood is delivered to a job site or other final location.

Dozens of product certification programs operate worldwide, while two programs take center stage in the United States: The Sustainable Forestry Initiative and the Forest Stewardship Council. Both are independent third-party organizations that certify the harvesting process and chain of custody for lumber producers.

As one article stated, “For consumers who’d rather not purchase garden supplies representing the remnants of a ravaged rain forest or live in a house made from lumber pared from old-growth, certification offers an opportunity to shop with a conscience, providing a sort of “Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval” for forest products harvested around the world.”

Although millions of acres of forest are now certified, it still represents a very small percentage of the US (or Earth’s) forest. The fundamental questions are is it necessary and are consumers willing to pay for the additional expense? (And the cost is not nominal.) Most forest management and harvesting in the US are currently done in a sustainable manner. The additional requirements to become certified can be more clerical than changing what is actually being done in the forest. Therefore, the value of that extra effort just for certification can be questioned. The purpose of regulating the chain of custody is simply to be able to accurately identify the certified materials. The cost of maintaining these records is substantial. Are consumers willing to pay for this additional expense? Especially in home building where this additional cost will not be accounted for in the appraisal of the home?

Everyone wants to be a good steward of our environment. Those of us in the timber industry require a reliable, good quality source of raw materials. The goal of certification is reasonable and attainable at a cost. However, the jury is still out as to how much more regulation is needed between the forest and the consumer, particularly for wood products from the U.S.

For more information:
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Did you know GLH has a Lay a Way plan?: Material prices are only going to go up as new home construction increases. You can lock in today’s low prices with the GLH Lay A Way plan. This program not only locks in today’s price but also allows you to start paying off your home so that you can have a smaller mortgage when it comes time to build. Over 500 current GLH homeowners used the Lay A Way plan to build their dream log home! If you want to build in the next three years, give us a call and we can explain the details!

Upcoming Log Raising and Open Houses:

May 1, 2010 Middletown, NY

Call 845-361-5102 or 800-654-9253 for more information.
(Note: There has been a lot of rain but the log raising is still on!)

2010 Upcoming Building Seminars at GLH:

May 1, 2010

June 5, 2010

July 24, 2010

September 25, 2010

November 13, 2010

Answer to the Trivia Question:

Ginger Rogers was born in Independence, MO and Fred Astair was born in Omaha, NE. Of course, those were not their names at birth!

Quote of the Month:

“I know that you believe you understand what you think I said, but I’m not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.”
― Robert McCloskey