At WhatShed, we’re all-too-familiar with the challenges of shopping for the right log cabins. Manufacturers tend to hide details, and present the best possible image and price on their sales pages… while masking small details that add up to extra expenses and extra work. Often, the consumer is left feeling a bit alienated, confused, or ends up being motivated by gimmicks and artificially low prices.
Well my friends,
We’re happy to be with you through your buying process… and hopefully through our careful analysis, we can help you get to the heart of the matter more quickly.
For this review WhatShed went to the TigerSheds showsite in Horsforth Leeds and inspected the 10’x18′ (2950×5350) version of the Shere that they have on display. As a note the version on display has the upgraded double glazing and the guttering pack.
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How We Rate It
LONGEVITY OF MATERIALS8/10
EASE OF INSTALLATION8/10
VALUE FOR MONEY9.5/10
Let's Take a Closer Look...
Dimensions & Prices
The Shere offers a classical looking pent design log cabin in a nine different sizes as listed below. The only section of the building that appears to be of modular construction is the flooring. This is a good sign as often modularity in construction of walls and roofing can compromises the strength of the building vs the same sized building that’s not modular.
10′ x 14′
2950mm x 4150mm
12′ x 14′
3550mm x 4150mm
14′ x 14′
4150mm x 4150mm
10′ x 16′
2950mm x 4750mm
12′ x 16′
3550mm x 4750mm
14′ x 16′
4150mm x 4750mm
10′ x 18′
2950mm x 5350mm
12′ x 18′
3550mm x 5350mm
14′ x 18′
4150mm x 5350mm
The Shere uses “European Softwoods” throughout the whole cabin. – “Softwood” is a technical term for conifers, so don’t confuse that with the more common usage of the adjective.
Although I found no specific mention of timber species (mostly likely Spruce), I did find it interesting that TigerSheds operates their own mill in Yorkshire.
That gives me confidence immediately. – An operation that has control over its material is far more likely to ensure timber quality and cut less corner when it comes to choosing boards with the proper grain orientation.
So… knowing that TigerSheds mills their own material, rather than using what they can order, immediately instills confidence in their product.
NOTE:Grain orientation is complex subject, and whole books are written about that alone. But to be brief, grain orientation is important in the log cabin style because all wood warps, expands, and shifts with the seasons. – If the proper grain orientation is achieved, the boards will move predictably and in harmony with each other… and your cabin will stay airtight and square throughout its life. – If not… You’ll eventually have problems, and you may experience gaps between the boards in drier months.
Walls & Frame
When it comes to walls, the Shere does not give you options. (I usually like this, actually)
The walls are 44mm thick and are joined together in double tongue and groove fashion (as clearly shown in the picture) to give you wall cladding that’s both structural and aesthetic. The thickness is sufficient, and I like when a company gives you the right option from the get-go, without letting you take an “economical” route when it comes to important structural features like this. When we inspected the Shere at the showsite we felt no give or bend when leaning against the walls and the whole thing just felt very solid.
Too often, a company will use thinner wall timbers as a way to advertise a lower price, and then offer the right thickness of wall as an upgrade. The Shere doesn’t. You get walls that are thick enough right from the get go.
Floor & Bearers
The Shere includes pressure treated bearers and a floor, at the listed price. Although… it’s difficult to understand that the bearers are included when browsing through their sales page. The floor is a standard 19mm thick, and easily pops together using tongue and groove construction. I find that an adequate offering.
No customisation options are offered when it come to the floors… and that could be a good thing.
In the past, I’ve evaluated what claim to be log cabins that offer floor-boards as thin a 11mm (too thin for any kind of heavy use or play). TigerSheds will not let you make that mistake.
I have confidence in a 19mm floor for most applications. Again we found that when we inspected the Shere at the showsite the floor felt very solid with little to no bending when walking over it. However consider an upgrade if you intend to have a heavy-use workshop or other high-impact space. Children also tend to wreak havoc on floors, and while 19mm is acceptable… it’s still likely to see some wear and tear if you don’t take further action to finish it.
Though TigerSheds don’t offer it as an option, they do offer the ability to customise the building so if you contact them directly they can quote you on this. … It’s always good advice to think about properly treating and sealing your floor. There are contractors everywhere who can get this done for you, or it could be a nice weekend project when you’re feeling up to the task.
Roof (construction) & Roof (covering)
The Shere roof is constructed of 19mm tongue and groove roof boards, a decent thickness. There are no options to upgrade the timber width. They also include “Heavy Duty Green Mineral Felt” That’s enough to finish the roof and get in sealed in.
They do offer the ability to upgrade to Shingles at an additional cost. While normally we would advise on such an upgrade to get a more “finished look” as the Shere is a Pent design unless you are positioning this in a way where you will be looking at the roof you unlikely to see the aesthetic benefits of upgrading. The example at the showsite follows this train of thought and just sticks to the standard Green Mineral Felt.
Windows & Doors
The Shere offers a window configuration which allows for plenty of natural light and good views along the front wall and the side panels.
Their sales page lays out a few key technical features about the included windows themselves. –
They claim to use “Toughened Glass” window panes on “Professionally Joined” door and window frames. They also make a direct comparison between their product and other manufacturers, claiming that others tend to use cheaper windows that aren’t properly sealed, or hung on cheap hardware.
From my experience, this is an area where manufacturers tend to cut corners, and many customers feel a bit slighted when they learn that their inexpensive windows may need an upgrade. I give TigeSheds a nod of appreciation for confronting the issue.
As an option (at an additional cost), you can upgrade the Shere’s windows to double glazing. – That’s a huge plus when it comes to insulative value! If you intend to use your cabin in the winter months, the double glazing is more of a necessity than a choice, since single glazed windows will offer almost no insulative value compared to double glazed.
The version we inspected at the showsite has the upgraded double glazing. Overall we found the windows and doors to be very professionally manufactured with no obvious cost cutting measures implemented. A very good sign.
Overall, I like what the Shere offers in terms of windows.
One criticism I have is that many of their pictures seem to have an additional window along the back wall. But when browsing through their sales module, I had a very difficult time figuring out how I could add this as an option, and what that cost could look like. I imagine that many people are interested in that additional window. It was only after a closer inspection that we actually figured out that this is NOT an additional window and istead a rendering of a flat screen TV. We personally found this a little confusing so thought it best to mention it to help others fall for the same trap.
When it comes to the technical features of the door (glazing and construction) it’s basically the same as the windows.
The Shere’s included double doors feature full-length glass that provides an open and modern feel, and they claim that their doors come ready to be properly sealed and hung, as you’d expect on any house. – I like that they’ve made specific mention of this.
As I’ve already said, many of these manufacturers tend to cut corners when it comes to doors and windows so that they can offer a cheaper price. It’s nice to know that this brand addresses that problem forthrightly, and seems to offer a good-quality door.
Also, their hardware is clearly advertised in a large, high-definition picture. I find it agreeable looking, and it includes a genuine brass 3-lever lock.
Other things to consider
Although the advertised price includes VAT and delivery… Set up and installation carries and extra cost.
The installation rates charged are about the market average… so short of paying a kid to do it, or doing it yourself, I think you’re looking at a decent price.
Keep in mind… if you’re an able-bodied person, with an eye for detail, it’s very likely that you’ll be able to competently handle setup yourself. The joinery on these cabins simply pops together, and though I haven’t personally seen either cabin’s installation instructions, I would bet that they’re very straight-forward.
NOTE: You’ll need to factor in the cost of building or purchasing some kind of base or underlayment to set your cabin on. The options range from having a contractor lay a concrete pad, to building a deck, to figuring out some kind of “creative’ solution yourself.
However, it’s often surprising to learn that your cabin will need an additional bit of work to get it set up properly. Factor this in now, and don’t be surprised on delivery day!
Here’s a quick run-down of the add-ons that are available for the Shere:
Shingles: Four Color Choices.
Exterior Treatments: You’ll have to apply this yourself, but they offer you 10 color options, all of which are sold for a reasonable amount.
Glazing Upgrade: You can get double glazed windows and doors for a reasonable additional cost (absolutely worth it for the insulation value, you’ll save that in heating costs quickly)
Planning Regulations Height Adjustment: Click this, and they’ll make sure your cabin is under 2.5m to stay legal in some areas.
Guttering: They provide guttering for an extra cost.
Decks: You can add a 10 or 16ft Additional Deck, I think this is a great option, and an all-around good price.
Flower Planters: They offer four sizes of Planters for a reasonable additional cost.
Altogether… I enjoy the way that they’ve laid out their information, and I think that’s a big plus when shopping.
As I browse the module, I can click on “learn more” tabs, and I’m greeted by impressively visual and informative content. – So overall, I like the way they’ve chosen to present the product, and that gets points… Especially for customers who feel overwhelmed by options and confused about details.
Good Job with that TigerSheds!
Overall a solidly built building that offers good value for money. I’d Choose the Shere if I wanted a log cabin with lots of light inside, Full-Length Windows and with a general modern-look. I also, personally, like that they’ve chamfered the end of the wall cladding, giving it a finished and classic look.
The Shere also gets points for milling their own timber, offering an additional deck option, and a security system, along with several other features.
My gut-feeling and initial impression is that this is a superior product to other comparable models from other manufacturers, and their sales module is easy-to-use and comprehensive in its presentation. I don’t feel like they have much to hide, and I’m happy with the general level of transparency compared to some cabins I’ve seen.
If you are near Leeds then we would highly recommend a visit to the show sites. Although not the largest of show sites they have a very good selection of buildings from almost all of the ranges they offer.
My recommendation for you:
Run through the sales module yourself, select every feature that you want (without thinking about the price for a moment), and then compare the results. – I think you’ll be pleased either way.
And whatever you choose…
From all of us here at WhatShed,
Enjoy your new cabin!
So, How Does It All Stack Up?
This is high quality all the way through with no corners cut anywhere.
LONGEVITY OF MATERIALS8/10
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 INSTALLATION8/10
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: 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: £3099 to £4199
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