Timber Screws and Log ScrewsTimber screws are becoming very popular in Canada with Timber Framing and Log Construction, mostly replacing previous use of lag bolts. They are also being used in many multi purpose applications including decking and framing. Essentially, anywhere you have previously used a lag bolt you can now use these structural wood screws much quicker and simpler. With no pre drilling required, using big timber screws also simplifies what hardware and tools you will need. Only an cordless drill or impact driver is required.
Large Timber Screws Sizes - What are the most common sizes?
Different applications call for different sizes of timber screws or fasteners. Most manufacturers recommend going 50% of the way through the side member. For example, if you have a 6 inch timber and are attaching it to an 8” timber, this would use a 10 inch timber screw. The timber screw would then sit 6” into the first member and 4” into the side member. Attaching two 8” logs together we would use a 12 inch timber screw and so on.
10 inch Timber Screws
These tend to be the most popular as one of the most common size logs or timbers we see are 6-7”. These are available in packs of 10, 50 and then usually 250-300 in the case sizes.
12 inch Timber Screws
Are very popular as well as many logs and timber are in the 8-9” range. These are available in packs of 10, 50 and then usually 250-300 in the case sizes. This is one of the most common log cabin wood screws.
14 inch Timber Screws
Moving towards the higher end of screw lengths, the 14 inch timber screws work great on 9-10” members. These are available in packs of 10, 50 and then usually smaller quantities depending on manufacturer.
Heavy Timber Screws- Which brand is best for me?
Depending on your specific use or personal preference the below four brands of log screws, timber screws and landscaping screws have you covered. You will find differences in strengths, coatings, lengths, package sizes and costs. On the product pages for each one, you will find specifications and testing strengths in the documents.
Spax Timber Screws
For log home and timber frame construction, Spax Timber Screws are one of the most popular big timber screws on the market. These American made and German engineered screws offer a great combination of strength and value. Featuring no required predrilling, IBC Code Compliance and a proprietary coating to resist corrosion and prevent staining on wet logs. Spax Timber Screws come in a variety of sizes from 4”-16” and feature the T-40 deep T-star drive. These structural wood screws are available in packs of 10 or cases of 250. The XTM pancake head is perfect for countersinking and offers great pull down strength. Thread diameter on these is 5/16". Spax Powerlags come in 4”,6”,8”,9”,10”,11”,12”,14”,15”,16” sizes. View Product
GRK Timber Screws
Use a Climatek coating which is AC257 code approved for use in treated lumber. Suitable for both interior and exterior use. One of the strongest screws on the market, GRK Timber Screws are a favorite of many professional builders and are a pioneer in the large timber screw market. These heavy timber screws are the strongest log cabin wood screws available but also on the higher end of the price range. Thread diameter on these is 3/8”. Available in 6",8",10",12",14",15",16",20" View Product
LogHog Timber Screws
LogHog timber screws manufactured by Fastenmaster feature an oversized washer head to increase pull down strength. No pre drilling is required and they are ACQ approved. These structural wood screws have the 5/16th hex head drive. Thread diameter on these is 5/16”. They come in sizes from 7”,9”,10”,11”,12”,13”, 15”. View Product
OlyLog Timber Screws
OlyLog Timber Screws are manufactured by Fastenmaster as well. They feature slightly different lengths and are a more medium duty screw compared to the heavy timber screws listed above. These have the 5/16th hex head drive. Thread diameter on these is 1/4“. They come in sizes from 2.5”,4”,6”,8”,9”,10”, 12”,14",16". View Product
Landscape Timber Screws
Becoming increasingly popular in landscape use, log screws are quick, strong and simple. Requiring only an impact driver and the fastener, landscape timber screws speed up the labour required in pre drilling and application. Check the coating of the landscape timber screws to ensure it is appropriate for use. If the timber is treated, which is usually the case in landscaping, then you want to make sure your coating is compatible with treated wood.
Spacing of Timber Screws- How far apart should they be?
We are often asked this question. In most areas of the country, if you are building an engineer will have specified how far apart, in what locations to place the large log screws and the strengths required. Generally speaking we see some plans call for as close together as 9-12” around doors/windows and 36” in the wall areas. These are just general guidelines and are not to be constituted as recommendations.
Log Screws Material and Coatings- What do I need?
Consider your specific application or what your engineer has specified into the building. Log cabin screws are most often coated to resist corrosion and to be safe in treated lumber. They are typically heat-treated for maximum strength. Large timber screws usually have either the T40 Torx drive or the 5/16th hex head, both work very well and which one to go with usually is a choice of preference.
Where can I buy heavy timber screws?
As these tend to be specialty items, you don’t tend to find things like Olylog screws at Home Depot. As we cater to the Log and Timber market, we tend to carry one of largest selections of large log screws in Canada. If you don’t see it, ask one of our specialists to look into it for you and we can likely source it out.
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