5 methods of chinking a log home.

Posted by Terry Jennings on

5 methods of chinking.

When it comes to sealing your log cabin there are many different tools and methods. If you are purchasing your first cabin or chinking for the first time, you may wonder which method of chinking is the best? The answer will depend on your resources, skill level, and location. In this article we will go over each method and help you determine which method is best for you.

The top 5 methods of chinking are:

  1. Spatula  
  2. Grout Bag/Cake Decorating Bag  
  3. Caulking/Chinking Gun
  4. Bulk Loading Chinking Gun/ Caulking Gun
  5. Chink Pump

Chinking with a spatula.

A spatula kit for chinking. 5 different chinking methods

This is the easiest and the most affordable method. Just simply use a metal or plastic spatula to apply the chinking. It lets you get to in the tight spots, and hard to reach places. What are the disadvantages of using spatula? It can take much longer since this work requires a good technique and skills to make sure the chinking is troweled down between the logs. This method is most used for hobby projects. A good tip is to make sure that you have lots of water available as this method is often very messy.  

Chinking using a grout bag.

Grout bag for chinking a log home

Another low cost method is to use a grout bag or cake decorating bag to apply the chinking. Just make sure that you pay extra attention; sometimes the nozzle of the grout bag can get to wide for the tight spots. This method requires you to be attentive and neat, with a steady hand in order to apply your chinking evenly. So, if you are not good at cake decorating then probably look at the other chinking methods. You will still need a foam brush or spatula to go over your chinking once applied.

Chinking using a chinking gun.

Chinking gun

If you are looking for an easier and less messy method you can use a chinking gun and purchase pre-packaged chinking tubes. This method is great for avoiding the mess. The downside is that it is a bit more costly. Another benefit and disadvantage to chinking with pre-packaged chinking tubes is that you have to cut the end to the size that you want. This is an advantage for tricky homes and people who have chinked before, but a disadvantage for those who might want a nozzle.

Chinking using a bulk loading chinking gun.

Bulk loading chinking gun. How to seal a log home

The most popular method is to use a bulk loading chinking gun. These guns require less hand fatigue compared to simple chinking guns and they are powerful enough for most sealant materials. This method can be more time consuming and messy in terms of reloading compared to the tubes. This method will require a couple of nozzles and most likely a release agent to prevent the chinking from setting up your pump. You can either use an air bulk loading gun or a manual bulk loading gun.

Chinking using a chink pump.

Chink pump for chinking a log home. How to chink a log home.

If you are looking for the easiest way to chink and have some extra money you might consider using a chink pump. Variable speed pumps greatly reduce the time spent chinking log homes and creates less of a need for tooling. Chink pumps provide different size nozzles and different volume gallon buckets, making it suitable for any application delivering a fast and clean work. The only disadvantage is the price of the machine which can range in the thousands. Learn more here. 

Which method of chinking is right for me?

The best method of chinking is the method that matches your budget, skill level, and goals.

If you are looking to get started with minimum spend and do not have a large cabin then you might consider using a spatula or a grout bag. If the cabin is pretty big then it’s worth considering a chinking gun as it is faster but still not so expensive.

The most popular method is the bulk loading gun. This is still a low cost solution, that will take you less time and power to seal the chinks and will keep the logs beautiful and neat.

The fastest and easiest way is to use a chinking pump but its main disadvantage is the price, but don’t forget that you can always rent it.


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