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Can anyone recommend log home design software that includes 3D capabilities? I would prefer software that was log home specific but if that is not available, a software program that includes log homes is acceptable.

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I second that request...I started my floorplan out with a simple 2D program called SmartDraw 2008. I found a free download online and it's a good way to lay down what you are thinking. I recently found Ez-Architect...but haven't had the time to see how it is. I'm no architect so it'll be a learning process.
I need this also - thanks Mike for asking. I tried the free SmartDraw also but it is not user friendly - and it is difficult to add in doors, windows, and furniture - and the way they have the dimensions make the drawing hard to read. I had too many problems to make it worth buying. Dee
I bought Better Homes and Garden Home Designer. It was on sale....It has been fun playing with but doesn't have logs for walls at least that I know of. Lots of extra free downloads and 3D with walkthru , landscaping. There may be better ones out there. I was just on a grab and go shopping and spotted it. I posted one plan I did in building and maintenace called ideas on design.It was Vista approved. http://www.homedesignersoftware.com/
I hadn't played with it much in the 3D yet and just looked up online and you can at least put log siding on it to give it a log home look.Check out the website and search for log home. It took a little to figure out how to use the basics but after that it is easy to add walls, windows, doors, delete them, change wall lenghts etc dimensions.
Having decided on a cedar log home, I am not interested in floor plans. I am interested in log home floor plans.

I cannot believe that the log home industry does not have a software program or at least an add-on package that is specific to log homes. The larger manufactures could have a add-on program for their products. I have asked a number of the manufactures and have received no responses. I will continue to search. If I find anything, I will pass it on.

Is anyone aware of a comparison of Ward and Katahdin, both products and company in general?
I'm also interested in building a cedar log home (under 1500 sq). Have you had any success in comparing Ward and Katahdin.
I just found Google SketchUp - there is a free version that appears to be unlimted. No log home (that I could see) - but offers a way to draw a floor plan and see in 3D. I am going to play with and see if it works for me. Has anyone tried this? Dee

http://sketchup.google.com/index.html
I have SketchUp too, but haven't spent much time on it yet...let me know how you make out and if it's user friendly. Good luck1
I tried SketchUp and it is way too complicated - too long/high of a learning curve. I went back to paper and pencil.
Hey Mike, great question... I see that Rob & Kathy Manuel suggested "Punch" software - good choice. If you want to compare the popular programs, I have identified 5 of the top sellers here. See, Floor Plan Design Software here.


I design log homes as well as conventional homes as my profession. I use Chief Architect to do this. It is a wonderful software. There are not any log walls as part of the system, but it is easy enough to create 3D objects to use. I have attached a rendering of a log home that I created using this software. When I worked for a national log home manufacturer, we used Archicad Software. They do include log walls as part of their package. I really like the software, but for the average user, it is very difficult. It is also very expensive. I feel that Chief Architect is the way to go.
www.homedesignguy.com
The Better Homes and Gardens software I was telling about is made by Chief Architect .It was inexpensive and sure has been fun playing with. I'm not sure if they are the same programs or not but it does seem professional in that you can do almost anything with it ,not that I have used any others. It seems like I get free downloads for extras like cars , landscaping , stairs,furniture, etc once every month or two since I have bought it. It does material lists, 3 D ,walk thru's, and probably things I haven't done yet.I have mainly been using it to do floor plans and hadn't got into the 3d yet . but did play with puting log siding on sum. That was kind of a pain tho.

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