WOODALLSCM.com January 2019 - 25 shaded area and you want cedar shakes, pressure-treated cedar shake works great in those areas. If you’re in a dry climate, like a desert, a regular cedar shake would do fine. There are areas in California and some places where there’s wildfire considerations, where due to building restrictions and codes you have to have a metal roof. Prichard: A good bug is a dead bug. Are there ways owners can deal with bedbugs that may have made it into their cabins? Spencer: We haven’t had a bedbug issue in a long time, but when we did, I bought a propane heater and locked it inside the cabin that was infested and heated them out. That worked well for us. Prichard: There’s a number of ways you can go at it. You can hire an exter- minator. It’s hit-and-miss with that because bugs actually have to come in contact with the spray being used and a lot of our cabins have little tiny crevices.They could be laying eggs and maybe after you spray a few weeks later the eggs hatch and then you have the problem all over again. You can heat that cabin up. Get it above 130 degrees and seal it for about 24 hours or so is one way of doing it, but if you have a deluxe cabin that can cause some damage inside. One of the ways that we have had a lot of success with is using Nuvan ProStrips. You can buy them, set them up in the different rooms of your cabin and seal it up. Get that heat in combi- nation with the blowing of the air throughout and usually in about 24 hours you’ll have a lot of success. Prichard:Lets move into refinishing cabins.Benedict,what is the process to make an old cabin look brand new again? Benedict: In my mind there are four main reasons why you want to put a finish on your cabin: you want it to look nice; you want some UV protec- tion for the wood so it doesn’t turn gray; you want some water repellent properties and something that’s going to keep water from soaking into the logs; and you want some sort of pro- tection from fungus, mold and mildew. So, when you’re considering what you want on the outside of your cabins you want to find a product that’s going to meet most of your goals. What we generally recommend using is a semi-transparent trans- oxide penetrating stain and at Prairie Kraft we have something called TWP (TotalWood Preservative), that’s going to meet all those properties.You can go down to Home Depot or to Sherwin Williams or any of those paint stores and you’re going to find something that maybe meets one or two of them, but it’s going to be really hard to find something that’s as good as TWP. We use the semi-transparent prod- uct because it has some color to it, but you can see through it — one of the things that makes your camping cab- ins so pretty and so appealing is that they show the natural wood grain. The other thing to think about when you’re refinishing your cab- ins is that no paint or stain lasts forever. You’re probably going to be doing this again after a few years and you want to make that job easier on yourself. So, use something that’s going to come off and that’s going to get you back down to bare wood with the least amount of work possible. Prichard: What is the best way to get the old stain or finish off? Benedict: We recommend using an aqua pressure washer. It’s like a steam bath and it’s going to break down those finishes faster. It’s also going to help sterilize any- thing that’s on the cabin walls; we also recommend bleach in some cases. There are other ways of getting the paint or stain off, as well — I’ve heard of corn-cob blasting and all kinds of stuff. Sometimes all you need to do is hire a couple high school boys at minimum wage to spend half a day sanding the cabin with a right-angle sander/grinder. Take all that old finish off and you’re back to bare wood, then you can put a finish on the cabin that you like. — Ben Quiggle WCM In this before and after picture a wood floor has been sanded and refinished, giving the cabin a better appearance.