Dale Williams, 58, has been a custom homebuilder for 30 years in beautiful Western Kentucky. He’s built several homes for himself and his wife Carolyn and likes new challenges. In 2004, Dale was ready for a crowning achievement. “I saw a log magazine that caught my eye and quickly realized my next project would be building with logs,” he says.
When he mentioned this to Carolyn, she was hesitant at first. She felt that log homes deserved to be built on a special property, like a lakeside, hillside, or wooded acreage. So Dale soon found the perfect setting: a verdant 26-acre parcel with a winding driveway and spring-fed pond, conveniently located within 10 miles of Bowling Green.
Next, Dale and Carolyn researched different types of log homes and ultimately decided to go with half-log on top of 2-by-6 construction. This would allow Dale to easily do all the work himself. While looking for a wood supplier, Dale became fast friends with Phil Lakamp, owner of Missouri-based Midwest Wholesale Logs of America. Lakamp offered advice on wood selection and provided building tips to help the Williams’ plan take shape.
“It was very exciting to see Dale and Carolyn take on this project and watch the house go from dream to reality,” Lakamp says. “They came to Missouri to see the wood we had and they fell in love with our white pine half-log with Swedish cope profile and saddle notching.”
For Williams, the exterior style provided an authentic full-log look without the possible twisting and shrinking that may occur with some logs; the flat 2-by-10 tongue-and-groove timber for the interior made it easy to decorate and hang cabinets.
Dale decided to build a large workshop on site so he could concentrate on the project. The Williamses also used it as a temporary home. “It wasn’t hard to live in this setting, even if we were in a workshop,” says Carolyn. “We could take all the time we needed to get the project done, without long trips back and forth to our other home.”
They started the home in June 2004 and, by fall 2007, only had a few small areas left. Ninety-four-pound Carolyn even helped by cleaning, staining, and finishing all the floors and other woodwork. “We are now in the process of moving into the home and look forward to having guests over to enjoy it with us,” says Dale.
The three-tiered 8,700-square-foot-home has five bedrooms, four full bathrooms, and 2.5 baths. It has a 100-foot porch on one side and a 50-foot porch on the other. The best spot to watch wildlife is from the 16-by-24-foot deck built alongside a man-made stream that spills into the natural pond at the bottom of the hill. Deer, turkey, and a wide variety of birds are attracted to the watering hole, making it a popular photo spot.
This article ran longer in the May 2008 issue of Country’s Best Log Homes.