Annabel Log Cabin Review

The Annabel Log Cabin is known for its sleek and modern design. Take a look at this customers overview of their installation proccess for the Annabel Log Cabin.


The customer writes as follows

Bought an Annabel Log Cabin in the summer and thankfully the weather was kind and allowed me to get it all up and painted without too much interruption. Overall, very pleased with the cabin – spacious, robust, easy to build and looks great. Delivery was quick even under the Covid problems and the driver was great – he did a great job of getting it down our narrow cul de sac and right up to the top of the driveway which meant I didn’t have so far to carry everything round to the garden. I have added some description and pictures of the build.

This is the site prior to preparation. It had quite a slope on it so needed to remove a lot of soil to get a level starting point. Also had to remove some of the fencing and move another area to give about 50cm clearance all round and have good airflow.

Annabel Base Prep

The site levelled off and ready to dig out the foundations.

Rather than trying to lay a concrete base and struggle to get that flat, I chose to lay concrete foundations (about 200mm deep) and then laid medium density blocks on top to give a level and solid base. You can see the damp course for under the concrete.

Turned out to be relatively straightforward to get the blocks down and level. I used adjacent blocks and checked across to other blocks as I went along to make sure it was completely level all the way round.

Laying the base for the Annabel Log Cabin

I used the composite foundation beams. They are a little tricky as they are not very straight and level but that improves as you build up the walls and some weight comes onto the beams. You just need to nudge them into the right place but when they have enough weight on them so as not to move the overall cabin – I did this when the walls were pretty much complete.

You can see the start of the walls here – just needed to make sure everything was square especially for the first five layers or so. I used a large square but found that measuring the diagonals was the better way. That also helped make sure the space for the door was correct.

Building the walls is really easy – it is just giant Lego! The walls go up really quickly – I had the walls up within half a day. One thing to watch is making sure the wall segments between the windows and door remains vertical and even. That said, when I came to paint the cabin, I took the windows and doors out so it was then easy to nudge them back into place and get them perfect. I used a further layer of damp proof under the foundation beams – probably overkill.

In the second image, this is the cabin fully assembled with the roof and facia boards all in place. I did have to cut some additional blocks to support the facia boards at the front and back to make sure they were strong and rigid. All looking good!

Annabel Log Cabin Installation Process

I used a rubber roof which was easier to lay than I thought. I put a drain in one corner which in hindsight was probably not the best solution – while it drains OK, there is a small pool of water always left. Perhaps a better way would be to fit a gutter at the back to catch the water over the whole width. The rubber comes up the side of the facia boards which are set slightly higher than perhaps normal – and the rubber folds over the facia boards a little. I then used some timber as a capping to firmly hold the rubber at the edges all the way around.

This is the cabin now fully painted and the fencing all back in place to finish it off. Prior to painting I treated the whole cabin – inside and out – with a wood preserver. There were two coats of undercoat and two top coats. I used Sikkens paint throughout – a little expensive but wanted to make sure it was going to be well protected and would last given the investment in time and money. Painting took ages – a full day to paint one coat – was pretty glad when that was finished. I did try using a roller but it wasn’t great at getting into the chamfers between the logs so settled on a brush.

Annabel Log Cabin Painted

I removed the windows, the doors and the door frame which makes both them and the cabin easier to paint. I also used clear varnish on the inside of the cabin to seal it thoroughly.

I then sealed all around the bottom of the cabin with clears builders silicone sealant – between the foundation beams and the foundation and between the foundation beam and the bottom log – and that stops any water from getting through.

Annabel Log Cabin Paint Details

As I live is right on the edge of the Peak district, it is very windy so I took the precaution of fitting the storm braces. We did have a few windy days and nothing moved.

As this is primarily being used as a workshop / storage unit, I opted to use the plywood boards from Tuin – really solid and much cheaper than elsewhere. These were all set on medium density blocks on a concrete foundation which makes them stable and rigid. I also treated each board with wood preserver. If we choose to change the use at some point in the future it would be easy to fit insulation, lay a nicer floor and so on.

I would definitely recommend reading through the instructions and all the helpful advice on the Tuin website before you begin – it made it so much easier as the instructions that come with the cabin are rather limited. Overall, put in the effort to get the foundations right, building the cabin is much more straightforward and quicker than you think, painting was easy but it is a big area so does take some time but the end result is really satisfying. Now just need to sort the rest of the garden but perhaps that’s a job for next summer.


Thank you so much to this customer for this overview of the installation process for their Annabel Log Cabin. A real transformation with a striking colour scheme to match the sleek style of the Annabel.

Interested in more reviews like this? You can find more with a range of cabins at: Tuin Pictorial Customer Reviews.

Clockhouse Log Cabin Customer Walkthrough

This customer review and walkthrough was certainly a delight to receive, while I will try and do this well thought out structure justice in this blog. All credit goes to Mr M for this detailed walkthrough of his installation of the Clockhouse Log Cabin.


Mr M writes as follows:

This blog is intended for information purposes only and should not be used for formal instruction or standards in anyway. I’ve produced this blog to capture and share some of my ideas in building the Clock House log cabin from Tuin. I am not a qualified builder, electrician, carpenter or any other trade, nor am I an expert in log cabins; this is my first build. I love making things and I consider myself to be a “reasonably competent” DIY’er.

Our requirements

We are a family of four, my wife and I and our two teenage boys, living in a reasonable sized house. We wanted to extend the house to give us more room and some breathing space, but lockdown happened and things changed. My wife and I are fortunate that our jobs remained, but the two of us working from the dining room table is not a viable option in the long term. The house extension was unaffordable for us and too high risk in these uncertain times, so we decided on a garden building of some description.

Some friends recommended Tuin so we made some investigations and sketched out what we wanted. Basically, we had three requirements;

1) Home office for me permanently and a second desk for Elaine and the boys to use
2) Chill out/TV/gaming area
3) Home pub/bar area for socialising

Tuin offer a massive range of options so we sketched out a few layouts and matched these to some Tuin designs. We settled on the Clock House as it was the right size, and looked attractive. We really didn’t want a “box” in the garden.

With the dimensioned plans of the Clock House on the Tuin website, I sketched out a layout as shown below. For reference I use Microsoft Visio for these sort of sketches.

Clockhouse Log Cabin Layout

Layout of Clock House showing plenty of room for home office, pub/bar and chill out spaces

With this settled we then researched all the various options for the project, the main ones detailed below:

A. The base
There is some excellent information on the Tuin website regarding the base options. For me, this is the most important aspect. Get this wrong and you’ll struggle with the build and longevity of the cabin. I decided on a concrete base for three reasons (i) we have a slope in the garden which can be easily dealt with by a bit of digging; (2) I believe concrete is a great way of dealing with damp by the application of damp proof course and damp proof membrane, and (3) I am an old school engineer and wanted a solid structure to build my cabin on!

B. The roof
Easy one this for me. Clock House a nice pitched roof so the shingles option was a no brainer. We opted for the free shingles offer from Tuin.

C. The floor
Lots on information on the website regarding the floor, but fundamentally this choice boils down to affordability and intended use. I plan to use the cabin all year round as my home office. It’s a large structure so, in my mind, the floor should be substantial. I also want to do it once only and have it last for the life of the cabin. I therefore decided the floor options from Tuin were best for us. After a little googling I calculated you can’t buy that quality wood for those prices from a timber merchant, so again the Tuin option was a no brainer. I ended up going for the 25mm floor. Probably overkill for our needs but for an extra few hundred I felt this was worth the peace of mind.

D. Insulation
As we intend to use the cabin all year this was a necessity. Once again the Tuin website provided great information. I decided on 50mm insulation boards for the floor and roof, a damp proof course to go under the foundation beams and a damp proof membrane to lay on top of the concrete base.

Constructing the base

I’m not going into the details of laying a concrete base as I am in no way qualified to do so. There is lots of stuff on the internet on how to do this. My biggest challenge was how to get the base perfectly flat and level as it is quite large at 5.5m x 4m.

I had a load of old decking boards laying around so I selected the straightest and flattest and used these to construct the shuttering. A couple of day’s hard graft digging by hand and laying the shuttering got me to a good position.

Clockhouse Prepping Base

Preparing the base. All done with lots of old wood, some decent hand tools, a long spirit level and plenty of string. Chickens are optional!

It’s really wise to use string as the basis to work out your levels. If you look closely at the picture you can see how I’ve used it. The shuttering is held in place by wooden stakes. Once I was happy with the level I screwed it all together using battens to ensure it wouldn’t move. Next, in went some hard-core. Again I had some old blockwork and patio slabs so I smashed these up and used them as the bottom foundation layer.

Clockhouse Base adding Hard Core

Hard core going in. Be careful not to move the shuttering

Finally, in went the scalpings. I needed approximately 1.5m3 so I ordered 2x1m3 bags. Many wheelbarrows later and lots of tamping by hand with a tamper from Screwfix the base was prepped for the concrete.

Continuing the base adding scalping

Scalping’s in and tamped down hard and flat. Note the re-enforcements to the shuttering I added to ensure no movement when the concrete was poured.

Finally a week later I had the readymix concrete delivered. 3.5m3 all to be borrowed in manually. With the help of two friends and #1 son we did this in approximately 45mins. The next hour was spent levelling and tamping down to a flat smooth surface.

Base Concrete Laying

Pouring, levelling and tamping. Take your time, get it right. There is no going back from here!

Taking Delivery

One week later the log cabin was due for delivery. Slight hitch from the hauliers in they they were a day late. No biggie, just a little frustrating although perfectly understandable during lockdown. The huge articulated lorry arrived. We are lucky in that we live on a quiet road and we have room in our front garden for the drop off of the pallets. They are massive and a little daunting if I’m honest.

Clockhouse Delivery

I checked over the pallets for damage and found a few scrapes and minor splits in a few logs. I took photos just in case but they turned out to be very minor and did not affect the build in any way.
The next task was unpacking and carrying the logs to the back garden. I was staggered at the volume of wood. It took 2 hours to unpack and lay out but by doing this properly it certainly helped the construction. I tried to lay the logs by size and shape, and the order they would be assembled.

Clockhouse Part Checking

Erecting the main structure

Several reads through of the instructions and lots of YouTube videos later I was ready for the build. To be honest, the instructions were not great. I am mechanically minded so I managed to understand them, but I did wonder how non-technically minded folk would fare with this build.

First job was the foundation beams. I’d opted for the black composite beams as opposed to wood. They’ll last forever and they actually look really nice. They were actually quite twisted and bent due to how they were strapped to the pallets but once they were laid out they were easy to straighten with a little pressure.

I spent a good hour positioning the foundation beams the base, measuring the diagonals to ensure they were square then cutting to length. It’s vital these are positioned perfectly, and once done, I laid down the first row of logs. Once happy I carefully lifted them to place the damp proof course underneath. One final measure and I was ready to build.

Clockhouse Foundations Installation

DPM under the foundation beams

Happy with the foundation beams I started the main structure. With the help of #1 son we were up to the final logs within a couple of hours and ready for the gable ends and purlins. So far this was very straightforward. One tip is make sure you install the windows with the way they open in mind as they are left and right handed.

Clockhouse Log Cabin Installation

Up to now, I was really happy. All straightforward and simple and safe to erect. The gable ends and purlins were a different proposition though. With hindsight, I should have borrowed/rented some scaffold of some description. Doing this with ladders was a real challenge and I found it extremely difficult to stop the gable end logs from moving. In the end I used a nail at each to pin them together which helped a lot but was not ideal. The purlins were also slightly twisted which made it even more difficult. On reflection I wonder if the whole gable end structure should have been assembled with screws then installed as one unit?

With all the purlins now in, we were done for the day. No matter how hard I tried I could not get a perfectly straight row of gable end logs. The picture below shows the run out. With some careful persuasion I did rectify it to a degree but I could not get it perfect.

Roof Purlin Installation

Gable end run out which I did improve but only slightly. Main structure all completed. Very pleased!

The Roof

What’s the best way to describe installing the roof? Real hard graft! Simple as that. The Clock House has approximately 120 roof boards. I put 2 nails in each purlin per board. That’s 1200 nails! If you are not used to this sort of work, and I am not anymore, it’s just hard going and very laborious. I had a ladder with a roof hook which was ok but I’ve lost count of the number of times I went up and down that, even with help from #1 son! I did consider hiring a nail gun, but decided not to as that would add an element of rushing to the job, hence more likely to make a mistake. It eventually took a full day to complete nailing the roof boards.

Clockhouse Roof Installation

#1 Son giving me a break nailing the roof boards. The ladder angle looks awful! I think that’s just a photographic effect!

Now for the insulation board and the shingles. This was the most worrying part of the job for me. I’d never laid shingles before and was a little anxious that it would look horrible and I’d be stuck with it for the next 10 years. Lots of internet research that evening and I felt prepared.

First up was the insulation boards. 50mm boards from BuildBase as recommended by my builder friend. Easy job. I purchased 5kg of 65mm clout nails also from BuildBase. To help retain and conceal the boards I used the long planks that made up the pallets the cabin was delivered on! A trim up and a light sanding and they were perfect. My overall plan was that everything other than the main construction and essentials was to be re-cycled so this was a great start!

Insulating the Clockhouse Roof

Insulation boards up and nailed in place. 1 on each corner and 1 in the centre of each board. Note the pallet plank sits nicely to retain the insulation boards.

Now for the shingles. First job was to mark a line for the first row. I used a string line and spent time getting it spot on. The first row went up and looked really good. I found a really good YouTube video from IKO which showed it done really nicely. From there on, it was just a matter of taking my time over each one.

Log Cabin Shingle Installation

Once all the shingles were up I decided on a capping run to really finish it off. Again lots on YouTube here. I looked at lots of pics on the Tuin website and noticed that very few had done this. I think it looks great as once finished you cannot see any nails on the whole roof. Very pro!

Roof Shingle Capping

Cutting the capping shingles was very straightforward. The finished product looks really neat and adds additional protection.

It took me a full 1 ½ days to complete shingles; 2 ½ days for the roof in total. The main challenge was the pitch of the roof is at such an angle that I couldn’t stack anything up there easily. Hard graft and time consuming but I was delighted with the finish.

The floor

Another nailing epic begins! At least I was not working at height. First job was to lay out the floor joists and cut the insulation to fit. This is where the nice flat concrete base was beginning to pay dividends. I’d ordered the 26mm thick flooring from Tuin and for some reason (I think I saw it on a blog somewhere) I was expecting the floor joists to be 70mm. It turned up with the standard joists at 45mm so I had a small problem to overcome as my insulation boards were 50mm thick. To over come this and in the spirit of recycling I decided to cut shims from the shingle offcuts to raise the joists by the required amount. Perfect.

First the damp proof membrane went down. A few quick calculations and I worked out that by running the joists front to back at 500mm spacing’s I’d get a perfectly symmetrical layout with efficient use of the insulation boards. Although Tuin recommend 400mm minimum, in my opinion 500mm is ample for 25mm thick floorboards.

Clockhouse Flooring Installation

Final calculation for the floor was the length of the boards. I wanted a nice symmetrical look so I calculated 3 lengths to align with the joist spacing and leave 10mm clearance around the perimeter. This resulted in the joists being symmetrical to the building when laid staggered. I’ve tried to show this in the following pics. The cuts align beautifully with the door opening to give a really nice finish. I really took my time nailing the boards, aligning the nails to add to the finish. I was well pleased with the result!

Clockhouse Flooring Installation

After pinning the beading around the edges, I was done. I decided to lay the beading flat and used a mitre joint. The floor in total took 1 complete day.
Final task was to seal between the base and the foundation beams as added protection.

The electrics and network

Clockhouse Log Cabin Electrics Installation

Now I was structurally sound and waterproof I could begin the electrics and internet network. I sketched out my plans and had ordered the components so was ready to go. It’s really important to plan this layout carefully. Mine are shown in the following diagrams.

Finishing off

The last few jobs before kitting out and furnishing were treatment of the wood and fitting the Clock House feature. Regarding the treatment, we opted for the Embadecor in Walnut. Three coats on the outside. Looks lovely as you can see.

Clockhouse Treatment And Clocktower Installation

Scaffold is essential to install the Clock House feature. I borrowed one from my local builder friend.

Finally the Clock House feature. There were no instructions for this so I decided to assemble it on the ground and install it using scaffold. Far too heavy for ladders! We fixed it with 3 x 100mm screws at the front just under the eaves on the outside of the cabin, and 1x100m screw at the pack point from the inside of the cabin. This is a really tricky task requiring very careful placement and measurement.

At the time of writing I’m 3 weeks in to the project. I’ve been working from home in the cabin for a whole week now and it’s brilliant. I’ve spent every spare hour on this project but it’s worth it. My first desk is in and I’m constructing the bar from left over floor joists, the delivery pallets and some wood I salved from a recycling yard. A second desk, a sofa, TV and a few pictures and we’re there! But before all that we are going to paint the interior with Embalan timber paint which Tuin kindly swapped for us for the two tins of walnut stain we didn’t use.

Clockhouse Garden Office Finish

Conclusions

The quality of the Tuin product is exceptional, as is the customer service. I would thoroughly recommend them.

The Clock House is quite a complicated build. The roof and Clock House feature do add additional levels of complexity so you might wish to consider this if you are self-building. That said, I managed it by careful planning and taking my time.

The layout plans I drew up were invaluable. Although I tweaked the ideas as the build progressed, it’s vital you have a basis to start from.

For me, the concrete base is a must for a cabin of this size. Every day I look at it I’m glad I went down this route. I personally could not imagine this log cabin in a similar setting on any other base type.

Overall, I don’t think you can beat this project for value for money. The utility and space it has provided the family is fantastic.


Thank you so much to Mr M for this extremely in depth overview of the installation process for his Clockhouse Log Cabin. A real transformation providing multiple uses within this Log Cabin, certainly sounds like a hit for all members of the family!

Interested in more reviews like Mr M’s? You can find more with a range of cabins at: Tuin Pictorial Customer Reviews.

Ulrik Log Cabin Customer Review

As the drastic change of seasons starts, you may find yourself weary of starting your Log Cabin build. It’s during these times where you should keep a close eye on the weather reports and strategically plan your build around those few days of mediocre weather.

Just as these customers have done, in this post we will see Mrs R’s process of building her Ulrik Log Cabin, completed with pictures to show us the process.


Mrs R writes as follows:

We went for the Ulrik 3.8 x 3.8m cabin as it wasn’t too big but a nice size for our garden.
The delivery came mid-morning and took about 3 hours to unload and put in some order for the build. It started to rain (typical) but we managed to cover all the parts.

The build is on a raised concrete base and so we opted for the free composite foundation beams that were on offer at the time of purchase. They are never going to rot.

The following day the job was started. I must admit it looked a bit daunting but definitely exciting. Once the first few beams are down and making sure it’s as square as possible the build is pleasantly easy. We had very little issues with bent or warped timbers, some needed a little persuasion, however.

As each timber was put in place it was treated to a generous splosh of wood preservative including all the joints. This made the build a bit slower but whose rushing. We didn’t go mad with the camera probably because we forgot but we did manage to take a few snaps along the way.

By the roofing stage (day two) the kids had deserted me. This was to be expected, besides there was little help they could offer. Again, this is straightforward just a lot of nails to bang in… Tongue and groove complete. It starts to look like a cabin – Nice!

We went for the free shingles (green) which we thought would look better than felt. My husband had never laid shingles before found it to be not difficult. The only hassle is working on the roof and its angle. The shingles can be unforgiving on the knees.

The wood that was first treated with preservative now gets a “ten Year” guarantee undercoat from Sandtex.

Had to send the kids down the side of the cabin as it was a bit of a squeeze to paint. They had more paint on them than the cabin! What colour to paint it though?

We went for Bay Tree green, again by Sandtex (10yr) with a Grey Stone satin trim.
Two coats of each.

Wasn’t going to bother with guttering but its surprising the amount of water that comes off the roof, and we have had some rain as of late.

With the outside complete apart from a bit of paint for the guttering fixings it was time for the inside.

The electrics first. We had already run in some armoured cable when we done the base. This was now connected to an RCD consumer unit with a separate breaker for a ring main and a lighting radial circuit.

Treating inside the Ulrik Log Cabin

The electrics complete and certificated. The inside was stained with Ronseal 10-year Natural Oak in satin twice. Now it was time for the floor.

2 x 2 beams, insulation in-between and moisture resistant T & G flooring followed by a light oak effect laminate top.

The floor complete it was just kitting it out. Of course, the T.V went in first. The kids said we can’t get Netflix. So, I had to get a Wi-Fi extender that works a treat thank God.
A cheap sofa and chair from DFS, a small coffee table in the middle. The table under the T.V was made by my daughter whilst in her last year at school. Very nice – it has LED lighting as well ☺
A beer chiller (of course) and some blinds etc.

That’s my review over. Still some bits to do but almost there. Hope you enjoyed taking a look. It was a lot of work but very enjoyable and anyone can do it.

Have fun!!


Who could resist a helper as cute as the dog! Thank you to Mrs R for sending in this review filled with progress images, now that the WiFi has been sorted to reach the cabin, I can see myself spending hours in this Ulrik Log Cabin!

Looking for some more Log Cabin inspiration? You can find more reviews like this at: Tuin Pictorial Customer Reviews.

Is the Ulrik Log Cabin too big or too small for your garden? We have hundreds of Log Cabins in our range to choose from.

Shepherds Hut Deluxe Review

Now that the seasons are changing it’s starting to get quieter for this industry, but we do still have customers installing their cabins! For example, Mr M’s installation of their Shepherds Hut Deluxe to which he kindly sent in some images along with some commentary and tips for future installers.


Mr M writes as follows: 

A stable-full of beams and panels. Get it all under cover if possible. We started off by completing the base after correcting the three warped centre joists with modded joist hangers.  Note the bases – just paving slabs laid on a bed of sand.  Nearest is a thicker cast concrete slab also laid on sand to correct for the slope away from the wall.

Shepherd Hut Deluxe Base

Extra joist hangers were needed to correct 20 degree warp in the beam. Tuin supply 18 but you will need 10 or 12 more if your beams are not straight. Ours were cut-down joist hangers (they are only twisted plates) – not brilliant quality but good enough.  Not sure if Tuin could sell you more of the real thing, I didn’t ask. (Note: We do sell joist hangers)

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This is by far the most tedious part of the build

Shepherd Hut Deluxe - Staining

Apply preservative and stain/paint as many parts as practicable before assembly – pay particular attention to the end grain.

Flooring goes on late into the evening    note two teenage helpers; almost as essential as the tea and hammers. Also note the clamps – you will need them. We are using cut-clasp nails.  You will need roughly three packs – 14 nails in each board.  It may sound overkill but it makes the base really secure, better safe than sorry.

Shepherd Hut Deluxe Flooring

Sides are on in the next image, as are the steps and the door hinge beams. Pay close attention to getting the hinge beams vertical in all planes prior to the roof going on or the doors will be skew-whiff.

Shepherd Hut Deluxe Walls

The roof and doors are on the next picture, I did the doors first as the roof will get in the way.  The roof is easier than expected, just keep it all tight at first with your sash cramps to keep it nice and square.  This is a month or so after the previous pic – I fell off our original step ladder adding the first feather roof beam and cracked a rib.  Highly recommended replacement cherry-picker ladder featured!

Shepherd Hut Deluxe Doors

The completed hut.  Looks good doesn’t it? The picture was taken after first frosts of the autumn (October 5th). I haven’t added the eight end roof arcs yet. We plan to add a wriggly tin roof eventually, and the roof arcs will finish that off nicely. 

Note replacement glass fibre reinforced felt laid across the arc – there are six pieces all glued and clout-nailed with the overlap away from the prevailing wind – important in Highland Perthshire! Laying it this way uses less felt and we think looks better than length-wise. It is certainly easier to do as it has no tendency to want to slide off. I suggest that you check YouTube shed covering videos which show a proper drip edge rather than wrap the covering round the roof edge as the instructions show – that will encourage the rain water to travel up to the sides of the hut via capillary action and you don’t want that. 

The completed Shepherds Hut Deluxe


Some very handy tips in this review, though we are sorry to hear about your step ladder incident – I hope it healed nicely! The end product shows how perfectly the Shepherds Hut Deluxe fits in with its surrounding garden, truly marvelous! Thank you again for sending this in.

Interested in more reviews like Mr M’s? You can find more with a range of cabins at: Tuin Pictorial Customer Reviews.

Gijs Log Cabin Customer Review

Hi everyone,

The heatwave continues to beat our expectations – And so do our customers! Installing their Log Cabins in this heat, determined to see the finishing result. For example, Mr S’ installation of their Gijs Log Cabin. With plenty of pictures to back up his words, but need I say more? Lets read what Mr S has to day about our Log Cabins.


Mr S writes as follows:

I chose to buy the Gijs from Tuin for a few reasons, I’ll list them in case it helps anyone else.

  •  Design – loved the size of Gijs with the overhanging canopy
  • Value – You get a lot for your money and the free shingles offer was great
  • Floor – I wanted to do my own thing and they didn’t force me to buy one from them
  • Website – I love all the reviews, advice, blog, instructions etc on the website. By far better than anyone else in this market.
  • Service – They look like a company that cares about their customers. They do, I have been very impressed.

I wasn’t disappointed and would thoroughly recommend this cabin.

I thought I would contribute to the website by offering my thoughts on the build process, and some photos. I hope someone finds this interesting or useful.

Foundations

I have a sloping area at the back of my garden where the cabin was going. I really didn’t like the idea or expense of excavating and laying a concrete slab so having read the website advice and doing some other homework decided to use pads with a wooden framework on top. I also wanted to install a decking area under the canopy so the foundations I needed were almost 6m x 6m.

Gijs Log Cabin Base

I used 2 different kinds of pads. 6 of them (4 corners of the cabin plus middle of the front and back walls) were excavated to about 30cm deep by 50cm square, then filled with concrete. I then sank a couple of those hollow construction bricks into the concrete and filled the holes with concrete. The other pads (about 16 of them) were expected to take less load, so I made these by laying some sharp sand and placing a concrete paving slab on the sand, then building up from there using dense concrete bricks. I didn’t bother using mortar – I’m no brickie and my builder friend said they would be fine! If you are using a similar method I strongly recommend taking time to ensure they are all level, it saves a lot of time and hassle later on.

After this I put a layer of weed suppressing cloth down so hopefully nothing will grow underneath.

Gijs Log Cabin Base

I then built the frame using treated 2 x 6″ timber from the builders merchant. I put a double thickness on the edges where the cabin walls would be. Possibly overkill but I like things to be solid. I needed to use a few wedges here and there to make sure there was contact between all points on the frame and the pad foundations. At this stage I also build the frame for the stairs that will lead up to the deck.

I am a relatively keen DIYer and found the foundation stage hard work physically, but quite rewarding. I haven’t built any foundations before, and had to put up with some sass from my builder friend who thought I’d over-engineered everything. He may be right.

Cabin Build

I have helped a friend build a similar cabin so knew roughly what to expect. First stage was delivery.

Log Cabin Delivery

Unfortunately my drive is too narrow for the fork-lift which is 3.8m wide so we had to leave it on the road. The driver was very helpful and the communication about delivery dates and times excellent. Unfortunately this left me with the task of shifting everything to the back of my garden quickly before I got a parking ticket. Fortunately my son had just finished his GCSEs and was willing to help – for some pocket money…

I made one mistake at this stage. I stacked everything horizontally at the bottom of the garden except the doors, which I stood in the house for a couple of days before the build. It was only after they warped that I read the advice on storing them flat. Store them flat!

The build is really straight forward if there are two of you – more pocket money for my son. Some of the wall pieces were hard to get in due to warping but could be fixed with some clamping and hammering as advised in the build video.

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We had the walls and about 1/3 of the roof completed on the first day. Be very careful of the ends of the apex pieces. They are held on by a very thin strip of wood and break easily. I broke two of them off. It didn’t make a difference to the build and I was able to stick them back in place for the cosmetic look after it was finished. One problem I had was getting the purlins to sit flush with the walls. Mine were a bit warped and didn’t sit all the way down. The website advises getting a plane out, but I wasn’t too happy about that. I ended up coming up with my own solution of laying draught excluder tape along the front and back walls so that when I added the roof beams, it closed all the gaps. There’s certainly a better solution to this, but it seemed to work for me.

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Roof

Finishing the roof seemed to take ages, but I was very glad I owned a nail gun. Mine’s a weedy electric one so I alternated between the proper clout nails and my nail gun to make sure it was solid. I then cracked on with laying the roof shingles. Again I found this quite straight forward, just a little time consuming.

I decided against insulating the roof because I’ll mainly be using the cabin as a workshop and I don’t get cold easily. What I didn’t consider however is heat! We’re in the middle of the 2018 heat wave and the black shingles act like a giant radiator – the roof is hot to the touch on the inside. Maybe next time I might put a layer of insulation up there.

Gijs Shingle Installation

Floor

I did decide to insulate the floor. I cut OSB board to hang between the joist then cut up sheets of expanded polythene to fit into the voids. Over that went a layer of plywood screwed to the joists, then an engineered wood oak floor that clipped together really easily. It looks lovely.

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Finishing

After quite a few test pots we finally opted to use Sikkens HLS (1 coat) and Sikkens Cetol 7 (2 coats) in light oak. It has a slight gloss/silk sheen to it which I like but won’t appeal to everyone.

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Final thoughts 

An excellent product from Tuin at a very reasonable price. The quality of the boards was excellent with a handful of warped ones. Service, before during and after has been outstanding and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend Tuin or this cabin. If I were to do anything different in the build process I would spend more time getting the foundation pads exactly in the right place, square and level. A couple of mistakes cost me some time and headaches later in the build (including the use of a car jack to lift one corner up while I put in some shims!). Best of luck with your builds!


A very appropriate treatment choice for this Gijs Log Cabin and a beautiful setting to pair with it! Thank you to Mr S for sending in their honest review of their experience with installing their Log Cabin.

Interested in more reviews like Mr S’? You can find a load more at: Tuin Pictorial Customer Reviews.

Newcastle Log Cabin Customer Build

It’s been a little time since we’ve had an in depth customer review – Understandable with this heat, not many people would want to install their log cabins in the recent months. But we do have a fair few customers who like to challenge the heat! For example, Mr & Mrs C, who have kindly summed up their journey of their Newcastle Log Cabin installation within this article.


Mr C writes as follows:

After weeks of research it looked by all accounts that Tuin were the people to buy from! And after several hours reading the wealth of information on their site I was not only convinced these guys knew what they were talking about, but also had a real passion for the product. Si, I hit the button and bought a Tuin 58mm Newcastle cabin, to become my new office/workshop.

The cabin arrived bang on time and unloading was a doddle with their side loading forklift. I was relieved to find the whole package was very securely wrapped and un-damaged. The cabin had to sit on the drive for a week as I finished off the groundworks, but the packing kept everything dry and clean.

The Unloaded Newcastle Log Cabin Package

First job was to clear the site. A step ladder, a beer and a chainsaw! What’s the worst that could happen right? (Not recommended! – Meg)

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Next was a quick beer while the wife unloaded the hardcore – Then while we waited for her to break the larger lumps up! (I hope you realise that I’m making this bit up right?)

Access was tricky, but a concrete pump soon got the job done!

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Base finished! Ready for the retailing wall. 28° heat, what could be better than digging sleepers into the ground 🙁

Newcastle Base Prep

Next, the build begins. (Seemed a shame to hide my nice retaining wall) Unfortunately, the cabin wall bearers had twisted badly in the searing heat. This made the first logs down a little tricky, but as the walls started to go up the bearers had little choice but to flatten out.

Newcastle Log Cabin Wall Installation

Every log slotted into the next like they were machined out of metal, I was amazed at the accuracy of each cut. The logs were straight and clean – I was starting to feel quite happy!

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End of day one! Apart from being sick of hammering nails into roof boards, everything else had gone like clockwork.

Newcastle Log Cabin Roofboard Installation

Next day came the doors and roof. (Oh, goody, more nails!) The shingles were of excellent quality and easy to lay. I had opted to insulate from within the cabin, so we just laid them out on to the roof boards.

Newcastle Log Cabin Roof Shingles

I think the floor was my biggest disappointment – after the way the rest of the cabin had gone together, I was expecting the floor to do the same? But, some of the cuts were not accurate on the ends of the boards and some different widths. But at the end of the day it’s just a floor. (Note: Our floors come in generic packs and are not cut to fit specific cabins, that’s why we try to give you more than enough to floor your Log Cabin – We’re sorry you had difficulties! – Meg)

Newcastle Log Cabin Floor

I have now been in my new cabin for a month, during this time we haven’t had a drop of rain and 30+ degree temperatures! The cabin is drying out, but (so far) the wood is being extremely stable. The few small cracks that appeared as we installed it have (more or less) stayed as they were. Nothing has warped or buckled.

I really am being honest when I say, we are extremely pleased with our decision to buy a Tuin Log Cabin. Everything from start to finish has been great! I did have to call for a silly question and the aftersales help was brilliant – A big thank you to Alex and the Tuin team!

The Treated Newcastle Log Cabin

Finished!! 🙂


I must say, that shade of treatment really does suit the Newcastle Log Cabin! I’d just like to say a big thank you to Mr and Mrs C for their honest review of our products – We are sorry to hear that you had problems regarding the flooring, but are relieved that you still love your log cabin!

Interested in more reviews like Mr and Mrs C’s? You can find a load more at: Tuin Pictorial Customer Reviews.

Log Cabin Hot Tub Covers

Due to the popularity of our recent Log Cabin Pubs blog post, I decided to continue with this concept as a sort of series- Showing some of the main ways that our customers have used their Log Cabin for.

This example being, as the title suggests, hot tub covers! Hot tubs have had increased popularity over the past couple of years after seeing our western neighbours use them as one of the ultimate relaxation must haves – Though of course, we don’t want to be sunburnt in the process.. Nor wanting to clean out all of the leaves that will land in everyday, hence why a lot of our customers have found our products as the ideal solution.

Some examples include:

This is our Rianne log cabin.The 2.5m gazebo is a perfect for size for you hot tub while the having the cabin dimensions of 2.5m x 2.5m that can be used for a range of purposes including: garden pubs, summer house or as general storage.

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This is our Syros Gazebo made from untreated larch, meaning that it will weather through time similar to how oak does; however if you want to preserve the rich colour of larch then you can treat it with products such as our Carefree product, this can help protect the wood from the elements of nature.

This Syros has been shown to be used for a hot tub cover that will be a stylish and an effective solution. The addition of shingles that can give it a rustic look that cannot be said for plain roofing felt, not to mention the longitivtiy of your Gazebo and it’s roof.Syros-Hot-TubA cheaper alternative for the Syros Larch Gazebo is this Wooden Pergola. This is smaller but can be use-full for those smaller areas around your garden, at 3m x 3m pergola you still have plenty of room for your hot tub. Due to the roof material being polyethylene, we would recommend to use this as a temporary/seasonal solution, due to the pergola being less structurally stable compared to our gazebos.


Pergola-Hot-Tub
The Marit Log Cabin Gazebo (4m x 4m) is similar in size to the Syros, however, you can gain some privacy and peace of mind with the additional walls, depending on where you position the Marit gazebo- You can also benefit from the additional protection of the side walls from the wind and potential rain.

Marit-Hot-Tub-GazeboThese pictures are of the Barbara Log Cabin Gazebo which is 3.5m x 3.5m that can, just like our other Gazebo’s and the pergola, be converted into a perfect hot tub cover. This Gazebo is like the Marit, however, this Gazebo has a flat roof that many people can think of as more modern and stylish.

This style also benefits from a low log cabin height, which is ideal to be able to install this without the need of planning permission (always check with your local council). The feature of the side walls, like within the Marit, can give you more privacy.

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This is our Jutka Gazebo which benefits from two side canopies which increases usability, as demonstrated with the hot tub and the sitting area, perfect place for a get-together, party or even just for your own personal getaway for the upcoming summer. The overall size being 6.78m x 6.78m make this an ultimate garden must have, all while being stylish (watch out for the jealous neighbours though!)

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This Elburg Log Cabin is bespoke within this picture, with the addition of the extra doors on the gazebo side of the building. The Elburg normally only have them on one side, however that small factor doesn’t stop anyone from adding them in order to increase the usability potential: this could be as a hot tub cover as shown as below, a summerhouse with outdoor dining as well as a general storage use.Elburg-Log-CabinThese two hot tubs images are from the Mega modern log cabin which measures at 5.75m x 3m which makes it almost ideal for your hot tub, if you’re quiet you could probably hear it calling to be used for a hot tub cover/storage.

A factor that is nice about this is that, like many others it has an outdoor area, however due to the mega moderns size, its proven to be ideal for the end of your garden, a secret get away for the summer. It also makes a nice change from having a hot tub under the gazebo, allowing you to use it during other seasons.

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The Annette Corner Log Cabin is another product with a modern design. This log cabin is 7m x 4m making it a good size for those slightly larger gardens, and every slightly larger garden needs one thing… a hot tub! As luck would have it, this desirable timber structure can easily be the hot tub cover that you need.

Another bonus to the list is that, unlike most other log cabins like this one, the side porch area has extended out the front giving you a nice affect that follows the typical southern houses with the the porch out of the front, just think of the possibilities…Annete-CoverThis final picture is of the Rosenheim Log Cabin which, like the others has been converted into a cosy hot tub cover that looks like it could be the beginning of a brilliant time, the log cabins size of 3.8m x 3.8m is comfortable for most average sized hot tubs and can fit in most gardens, its style can make it look like its a small old fashioned house that would fit in almost anywhere.

The lighting to this Rosenheim Log Cabin is what really pulls this all together, setting the mood to a romantic and relaxing one. Perfect for those with a stressful lifestyle- Just go into your garden and enter your Cabin of relaxation.
Rosenheim-Blog-Interior

This Tourist Gazebo has been adapted and transformed into a hot tub and bar area, reminds me of the swimming pools in Cuban resorts, where you can swim to the bar…

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As well as this Meaghan Log Cabin, freshly installed. The Meaghan Log Cabin measures to 4.5m x 4.5m, the ideal size for a hot tub enclosure – And the positioning of the roof skylights are just perfect. Allowing you to look up at the stars without getting so cold in the night.

This Ben Clockhouse Log Cabin has definitely proved that a cabin can serve multiple uses- Which has turned into the ultimate social location, with a hot tub placed under the canopy and the enclosed cabin being used for a garden pub:

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These are just a handful of the images our amazing customers send us, if you liked viewing these- Follow our FacebookTwitter and Instagram pages we also have plenty of boards on the Tuin Pinterest page.

If you’re not looking for a hot tub cover, there are plenty of other ways to utilise a Log Cabin, see our Log Cabin Pubs post for a collection of how our customers have transformed their Log Cabins into a garden pub. Out  Uses Of A Log Cabin post can also provide plenty of inspiration!