Cabin restoration project – Construction is finished, furnishing has begun

If you have been keeping up with my blog, you know that I have been spending just about all my free time working on getting the homestead site into shape and have not been able to do much bushcraft-related stuff. I’m hoping to bring you more bushcraft posts once the homestead work slows down. Until then, may I present you with another cabin post. πŸ™‚

I’ll spare you the list of a million odds-and-ends jobs I’ve been working on out at the old farm and cut to the slightly-more-intersting chase, the cabin progress. The contractor finished the tiny bathroom shell, built a safety railing next to the stairs-opening in the loft floor, fitted the remaining molding, finished the front porch and covered the ends of the logs with boards in the traditional style. The only job left for him to do is to install the wood-burning stove.

Once this work was complete, I had to brush off the entire interior surface of the cabin to remove the sawdust which had accumulated from the construction work. Then I oil-treated the floor, and when that dried, my friend Juha and I moved some furniture in, hung cabinets etc. By the way, the kitchen setup is still VERY temporary. I’m still not sure what kind of counter and sink will be there, but I had to put something there in the meantime. Decorations and such will also be added as time goes on.

Juha also graciously helped me to demolish what was left of the old storage building whence the cabin came and the old wood shed as well. There’s still a lot of wood to clean up, but at least the most dangerous and tricky part is done.

The Woodsboy and I have spent two nights in the cabin since my friend and I set it up. With a total floor space (including the loft) of 33.5 mΒ²/360 sqft, it was a lot more comfortable than staying in the 3.7 mΒ²/40 sqft changing room in the sauna building! While we were there, we set up the kitchen with cooking and eating implements and a 20 L water tank over a basin for use as a temporary sink. We also installed a Nature’s Head composting toilet in the bathroom.

The first night we were there, we slept a little cool (as I mentioned, the wood stove hasn’t been installed yet), so the next day I had to figure out a way to warm up the place. I rediscovered a vintage Swedish kerosene heater in the old farm house, dusted it off, checked the fuel (full tank), adjusted the wicks and lit it up. It worked perfectly, and we had heat! To be on the safe side, we stayed nearby outside the cabin while the heater was running and then vented the building after turning it off to let any fumes out.

I’m happy to report that we also have our first piece of “farm machinery,” a classic Stiga riding lawnmower given to us by the Woodsboy’s great-grandparents and repaired by his grandfather. This will be a huge help in keeping the lawn under control, not only so it looks nice, but to keep ticks and snakes away as well. It can also be used for light-duty hauling jobs around the future homestead.

As with the lawnmower, all the furnishings you see in the cabin were either given to me second hand or scavenged from the old farm house, with the sole exceptions being the wood-burning stove and composting toilet, which I bought new. The stuff may not be pretty, but the price is right! πŸ˜‰

I’m very happy with the progress that has been made so far, but there’s still much to do. By the end of the summer, the cleanup work should be done and the cabin should be painted, set up with electricity etc. I’ll also throw up some kind of firewood shelter in preparation for winter, as we will be spending a lot of time there then as well. Projects for the fall and the coming years include a greenhouse, chicken coop, gardens and lots more.

Until next time!

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38 comments on “Cabin restoration project – Construction is finished, furnishing has begun

  1. The place looks wonderful!

  2. Twin Acres Homestead says:

    Your cabin is looking amazing.

  3. Smashing job, mate!
    And that heater is a really nice find! Keep a jerrycan with fuel handy and you have instant warmth in case of need. We used such a heater for a whole winter and as long as the burning is clean (no smoke or smell) and you vent well, you should be fine. Beware when you get a sort of stinging feeling in nose or throat or a fast upcoming headache! Then you really need to vent properly.
    I’ll be seeing you at the end of the year.

    • Thanks, Ron!

      The heater really is a great find. Never hurts to have backup heating in the north! Thanks for the safety tips. πŸ™‚

      See you this fall!

      • If all goes well, yes.
        And we will be talking about that toilet, then. I am most interested….
        I have been told that human faeces, and cat’s and dog’s as well, is not to be used in compost, due to certain bacteria?
        Does it have a urin separator?

        • I have also heard that about using human and certain other feces. On the other hand, I have heard that if you compost it properly for at least 2 years, it can be used in food gardens. Personally, I am not planning on using human-waste compost on our garden(s) for the time being. I bought the composting toilet as an alternative to putting in a very costly septic system. I will compost food scraps, yard clippings etc. for gardening, though.

          Yep, the Nature’s Head toilet has a urine separator. Very important in keeping odors down. We used it for two days, and there were no odors whatsoever when the toilet is closed, which impressed me. Even with the toilet seat up (and the solid waste door closed), there’s only a faint smell of compost. They recommend venting the toilet to the outside with a tube, but I have not done that yet because we don’t have electricity to run the fan.

  4. Wade says:

    Looks awesome ! Great job !

  5. I’m with the others, looks great! Cabin is great and your choice in furniture is great also!

  6. wgiles says:

    Well done. For something that was just lying around, that Kerosene heater looks remarkably good.

  7. Charlie says:

    The cabin turned out very nice!!

  8. I think someone mentioned it already above… Looks good!

  9. Carol says:

    Great job!! I’m impressed!! Didn’t know you were a builder!!

    Carol

  10. Wow, what a spectacular slice of paradise!
    I love all the wood furnishing…it adds a classic, rustic touch :).

  11. Skaukraft says:

    That looks very good WW.
    Love what you have done to the place.

  12. Found this blog a few weeks ago and I gotta say, after reading through all the log cabin posts I am very impressed with how its turned out and how much work has gone into it. I can wait for some more bushcraft/ camping posts and to see how this cabin looks furnished.
    Keep it up man, this is one of the best!

  13. Wow!!!
    What a great work!
    Very nice the cabin and the place!
    This is an interesting blog!
    Ciao Mattia

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