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Monday, November 23, 2009

Replacing Rotten Logs

Several of the logs in the original barn had rotted away over the years. You can see in the picture below that two logs had completely rotted away along the back of the barn.

We cut out the old logs and had to jack up the corners of the barn to slip in new logs. We cut the lap joints on each log to match existing joints on the old logs that were still intact. Some of the old logs were different sizes and lengths making the joint fitting for each log a unique joint but I think it maintains the integrity of the original structure. We will treat each of the new logs to help "age" them so they have a similar appearance to the original logs.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

New foundation

We have been busy working on building a new foundation for the barn. The original barn was built directly on the soil with on four corner stones for the foundation. We have preserved the original corner stones and built the new foundation around them.

We had to temporarily support the front and back from above using some of the logs as "beams" so we could excavate and build the foundation from below without any obstructions.

The masons will come in and build a block foundation wall under the original logs to support the barn. In order to keep the barn upright and well supported we have had to build the new foundation underneath the front and back of the barn first and then (after the barn is supported on the front and back by the new foundation) we will excavate east and west side footings and build the new foundation there.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Most of the exterior walls were not salvagable in their current condititon so we deconstructed them saving the original lumber that was still good and will rebuild them after the footings are in reusing as much of the original materials as possilbe.

This is a photo of one of the crew working on the roof. We are removing the existing wooden shake roof and will replace it with a new cedar shake roof.

This is one of the temporary walls we build to support the roof lines while we pour new footings and rebuild the exterior walls.

Shoring up the structure

The roof structure over the main barn was sagging and the walls were about to collapse so we came in and added temporary bracing and used cable pullers and chains to winch the walls back into position.

With the walls shored up and the roof braced we began working on removing the last elements the need to be replaced and started excavating for the new footings.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Alpine Barn Restoration Progess: Deconstruction

We began by removing the old doors and other non structural elements we wanted to preserve and then began removing the modern elements that won't be included in the restored barn.

Alpine Barn Restoration

This barn was built in 1894 in Alpine, Utah. Our client asked us to preserve the structure and make the space useable again. This is the barn in its current condition. The project will include replacing rotting timbers and logs, adding a foundation, removing modern elements, and installing a new floor.

Check back frequently for more photos, and comments on the progress.


Harper & Company is construction firm that specializes in historic restorations, custom homes, and remodels. This is our first post to our new blog. We decided to set up this blog for our clients and friends to be able to follow the progress on our projects.