With so many makes and models to choose from, it can be a nightmare finding the perfect log cabin for your garden. Here at WhatShed, we’re all too aware of this.
Today, in an effort to help steer you to the cabin of your dreams, we’ll be putting The Rho range of log cabins by TigerSheds under the microscope. For those in the market for simple, yet extremely hardwearing, compact cabin, The Rho might just be perfect.
Thanks to its pent (single sloping) roof design, The Rho takes up no more space than is strictly necessary whilst remaining comfortable inside. We were hugely impressed with its overall construction, the quality of the materials used, and the attention paid to small decorative details.
We were fortunate enough to spend some time inspecting The Rho at TigerSheds’s salesroom in Leeds recently. The model we viewed was the largest of the range, the 14’x10’ offering, finished with European double glazing. We particularly enjoying being allowed to explore the cabin without pressure from a sales representative. This meant we could really scrutinise the product, something not possible with every garden building manufacturer.
Despite its rather basic visage – it’s not much more than four walls, two windows, and a flat roof, you can clearly see that the building has been expertly crafted, even from outside. Small touches like the chunkiness of roof purlins, the attractive panelling around the roof, and the size of the doors and windows make this cabin an ideal budget offering for those wanting to transform an outside space.
Anyway, with introductions and first impressions out of the way, let’s begin.
What we rate
Timber milled in Yorkshire.
Professional home delivery service.
Compact model – great for smaller gardens.
What we slate
Installation is expensive.
Perhaps not a grandiose in appearance as other models.
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How We Rate It
LONGEVITY OF MATERIALS9/10
EASE OF INSTALLATION6.5/10
VALUE FOR MONEY9.5/10
Let's Take a Closer Look...
The Rho range of log cabins comprises of six different sized garden buildings. Details of the dimensions can be found in the table below. In addition to this range of sizes, TigerSheds also offers custom dimensions at an extra cost.
One thing that really stood out about the TigerSheds service was the fact that the company will reduce the height of any log cabin so that it abides by local planning regulations.
Since The Rho stands at a maximum height of 2328mm, it will not need planning permission (as is required on buildings over 2.5m when positioned less than 2m from a house). Many other log cabins (both by TigerSheds and other manufacturers) are taller than the permitted height and whilst TigerSheds will reduce the height, this can make the ceiling uncomfortably low with apex or even reverse apex roof designs. This is not the case with The Rho and it therefore would be a strong choice for those living in areas where such restrictions are enforced, as well as those with a smaller garden.
Like its entire range of 44mm cabins, The Rho by TigerSheds is constructed using slow-growing European redwood. Whilst this is certainly not the cheapest possible timber for the job, the manufacturer has clearly aimed to build a cabin that will stand the test of time.
We liked that TigerSheds proudly announces its decision to use slow-growing European redwood too. Many manufacturers omit details like this, and we can only infer from such an omission that the quality of the wood used is not something they wish to boast about!
Cheaper, inferior woods, such as Baltic white wood, are often used by manufacturers to increase their profit margins on each building. This much faster growing material is certainly less expensive but is much more prone to warping or splitting than that used in the construction of The Rho range.
Another strong plus for The Rho is the fact that all the timber used in its construction is milled at TigerSheds’s own facility in Yorkshire. This means that every cabin is cut to order, and materials aren’t stored in potentially suboptimal conditions when waiting to be bought. Therefore the risk of imperfections in your finished cabin is substantially reduced and any that have slipped through TigerSheds’s quality control are easily rectified.
The Rho range of garden cabins is delivered untreated. The manufacturer states that it is best to coat the wood with a spirit-based treatment within 14 days of erection. For this, TigerSheds offers two different products. The company’s own is called TigerCare and is available in three natural colours and clear. Meanwhile, TigerSheds also stocks Cuprinol that will not only protect your new garden building but also give it a more striking look since it comes in a total of six slightly more exotic colours.
We seriously rate TigerSheds’s decision to go with 44mm walls as standard. Rather than cut corners, the company once again displays its commitment to providing solid, long-lasting garden buildings here.
The timbers comprising The Rho are assembled using a double tongue and groove system. This results in an incredibly robust product that provides exceptional warmth, longevity, and security. Whilst visiting the Leeds showroom, we tried our best to give The Rho a wobble, but the thing just wouldn’t budge!
As you can see from the picture below, the walls are not only sturdy but beautifully finished on the outside. Each timber has been chamfered on all edges. This gives the cabin a bespoke finish and it is such attention to detail that makes TigerSheds stand out as a quality manufacturer to us as reviewers.
We’ve found that some manufacturers will supply log cabins with much thinner walls. This might save both the customer and company a bit of cash in the short-term but since it is the longevity of the building that suffers, it is ultimately the customer that loses out from such cost-saving choices.
Another feature of The Rho range we rated was the inclusion of storm braces –additional supports that bind the structure even tighter during high winds. Many manufacturers would have failed to include such a handy and potential-cabin-saving addition. Evidently, TigerSheds wanted to give its customers the best possible shot at enjoying their garden building for as many years as possible.
The Rho’s roof is a classic pent shape (single sloping roof). This might not have the same “wow-factor” as the likes of The Shere and The Delta 44mm log cabins (both TigerSheds products) but for certain customers, the lower roof will be ideal.
Since planning regulations demand that all buildings less than 2m from a house must be under 2.5m tall, the lofty Shere log cabin would need reducing in height by over 30cm to make it compliant. TigerSheds will provide that service for free but the problem is that the walls must also be reduced by the same amount to retain the impressive roof design. This results in a much smaller-feeling cabin than the standard Shere we viewed in Leeds. However, this is not the case with The Rho range. The pent roof, standing at just 2328mm will not require planning permission no matter how close it is positioned to your house.
In terms of its actual construction, the roof uses 19mm tongue and groove boards with recessed purlins. This perfect, gapless finish makes unsightly drafts highly unlikely. Supporting these boards are sturdy 44mm by 122mm timbers which, like other elements of The Rho range, will surely add to its longevity.
As standard, The Rho range comes with heavy-duty mineral felt as a roof covering. This is good to see from TigerSheds. Some garden buildings are sold with no roof covering whatsoever for the listed price. They can either be added at a cost with the alternative being to let mother nature do her worst on your new, expensive exposed woodwork.
Fortunately, this is not the case with The Rho. The default mineral felt option will provide more than enough protection from the elements. However, it can be upgraded to shingles at a cost. The singles come in a range of four colours and have been battle-tested in Snowdonia (they’re the same as those used on a Youth Hostel in the Welsh mountain range).
Floor and Bearers
Another aspect of The Rho range that impressed us was its floor. Like the walls, there’s very little give in it. This, again, is down to the choice of materials TigerSheds have used. The 19mm, tongue and groove floor boards sit atop a hefty 58mm x 44mm tantalised frame that has been pressure treated for extra rigidity.
We believe that the floor offered was study enough to take the kind of everyday abuse a family might throw at it. However, TigerSheds does offer upgrades to the thickness for those wishing to use The Rho as a workspace. Further customisation can also be achieved with the use of decking. Two sizes are offered at an additional cost – 8’ and 12’.
Although certainly contributing to the premium price point of The Rho when compared to similar cabins, we liked that the standard floor was so well made. We’ve seen many examples of 11mm floors in similar buildings that just don’t have the same sturdy feel. Top marks again, TigerSheds!
Windows and Doors
All Rho cabins come with draft-sealed, single-glazed glass throughout. This standard offering is 3mm. Each of the two windows open fully and the sizeable double doors make access easy. There is one window on the same wall as the double doors and another on the customer’s choice of side walls too. Such flexibility is once again only facilitated by the firm owning its own sawmill.
All the glass on The Rho can be upgraded for an additional fee. Both toughened glass (4mm) and double-glazed (two 4mm panes with a 6mm gap) are available. Whilst these do provide heat retention and security perks, the standard glass will make your cabin more than habitable in all but the coldest months.
We particularly liked the attention to detail on the window and door frames. Each is tastefully finished with architraves both inside and out. The obviously-joiner-crafted fittings provide another example of TigerSheds refusing to compromise on quality where perhaps some of their peers may.
About style, windows and doors on The Rho range can be upgraded to either Georgian Style, full-pane with toughened glass, or PVC. These can certainly help add character to your cabin but do, of course, carry an additional cost.
In terms of security, TigerSheds have not gone for the cheap option favoured by some competitors. Doors are fitted with mortice locks as well as top and bottom bolt locks as standard. For additional peace of mind, however, there are also host of upgrades that can be added. These include a sturdy five-lever lock and a choice of alarm systems.
Delivery and Installation
As part of the listed price, TigerSheds offer to deliver your shed personally using a crane. This is certainly a welcome addition to the service. Although many of TigerSheds’s competitors will offer delivery as standard, we often find that this involves hand uploading during which pieces can become damaged.
Also problematic is when a manufacturer claims to provide a delivery service, but the actual job is performed by a third-party company. If a delivery company were to damage a piece, the process of complaining/having said piece replaced could prove to be much trickier than with TigerSheds. Thankfully, since TigerSheds offers to deliver its using its own staff and equipment, you are much more likely to receive your garden building damage-free from the off with the Leeds-based company.
At the best part of £800 at the time of writing, the installation package provided by TigerSheds certainly isn’t cheap. However, for those less competent at DIY, the elderly or infirm, or those who are simply too busy, the peace of mind secured by having a trained professional who is experienced with the assembly of such products is worth it – particularly given that all liability for damages occurring during both delivery and installation will be with TigerSheds.
All told, The Rho range of log cabins from TigerSheds is a beautifully constructed set of cabins by a quality manufacturer. Although certainly not the cheapest offering on the market, the attention to detail, quality materials used, and almost limitless customisation options make this collection an absolute winner in our book.
There was little to dislike about The Rho cabins in terms of their construction. Our inspection of the salesroom in Leeds allowed us to fully explore the range, inside and out. We were suitably impressed by the craftsmanship that has gone into each and the fact that timbers were cut to order in TigerSheds’s own mill inspires great confidence in the quality of these buildings.
Those seeking a sterling quality, space-saving cabin with all the finishing touches of a more grandiose garden structure can do much worse than The Rho. We strongly recommend!
So, How Does It All Stack Up?
This is high quality all the way through with no corners cut anywhere.
LONGEVITY OF MATERIALS9/10
As long as you treat the cabin on an annual basis and do not abuse it then we feel that you could actually get a life time of use from this building.
Without forcing you to make bad compromises but giving you just the right amount of options to customise.
EASE OF INSTALLATION6.5/10
This is a two person job, but as long as you can both tell the difference between a hammer and a screwdriver, you will be fine.
VALUE FOR MONEY9.5/10
This is one of the best value log cabins we have seen.
Final Thoughts: Final Thoughts: We love the smooth design and are sure you will too when it is standing with pride in your garden. The quality of materials they have used all the way through the building along with the frame makes for one very solid and long lasting log cabin. If you want a log cabin that looks good and is very strong, then you will struggle to beat this one.
Prices around: £2299 to £3039
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