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This Old House profiles EverLog Systems

Apr09cov-sConcrete cabin fever

Montana residents Loie and Monte Turner always wanted a log home but not the maintenance hassles or termite invasions that can plague one. So they turned to a surprising substitute: concrete. “This is about as solid as a house as you can get,” says Stewart Hansen, co founder of EverLog Systems, which built the Turners’ home and some 40 others from “logs” of concrete that are cast in molds made from real logs, then painted. The process yields long-wearing, heat-retaining timbers with a bark like texture – knots, cracks, and all. Hansen says the logs, which cost $75 per square foot of horizontal surface, can save up to 40 percent on heating and cooling costs and up to 30 percent on insurance fees. Faux logs may offend purists, but their energy-saving qualities are tough to deny.