Saturday, October 7, 2017

Friesen's Urethane Services

We finally have our urethane equipment on line this year. We started offering the urethane product in the spring of this year and it has been very popular. We especially encourage spray urethane in floors that are on pilings above the ground and in walls and roofs in areas where it is very cold and fuel prices are high. It is also worthwhile in skirtings and between rim joists in crawl spaces and in between floor.
We are set up to go to remote areas with our equipment and we'll be on a travel schedule starting in the spring to different rural towns and villages. If we have three or more projects in one area we can keep the pricing lower than if we travel for only one project.
While it is true that urethane is more expensive than fiberglass insulation, the comfort and energy savings make it well worth the extra cost.
Right now we are scheduled to go to Dillingham and Naknek in the spring of 2018 as well as several Bering Sea Villages. If you are on the road system we can usually include your project in our travel schedule as well.
Please email us at friesenscustomcabins@gmail.com or call 907-746-2082 if you are interested in an estimate.

Some facts about our urethane product.
  • Saves energy operating costs. 30-50% per year
  • Reduces air and moisture infiltration-resulting in a more consistent temperature
  • Reduces dust and pollen infiltration
  • Adds structural strength to the building
  • Reduces the likelihood of mold
  • Reduces ice damages
  • Reduces HVAC capacity requirements
  • R-values remain stable over time
  • It has the highest performance of all insulation
  • It is permanent and will not sag or settle
  • We use a 2 pound polyurethane unlike other products which are .5 pound
  • R value is R7 per inch
  • It acts as it's own vapor retarder
  • It will pay for itself in a shorter time if you live in a rural area with oil heat
“If opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door.” – Milton Berle

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

The 2017 Fall and Winter Season

It has been a while since we have posted a blog. Our summer season has been extremely busy and our fall and winter season is shaping up to be very busy as well. We are still pouring foundations and since we work all winter it isn't too late to build yet this year.
With all the natural disasters in the Lower 48, we do expect an increase in the price of building materials due to the re-building efforts.
The 2018 season is looking to be very busy as well although we still have start dates available.
The September rains have slowed us down a little but we are still charging ahead at full steam. Email or call us with your building needs and we'll do our best to accommodate you.

We are all here on earth to help others; what on earth the others are here for I don't know. W. H. Auden

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Things to know about financing your dream!

One of the biggest hurdles to get over when you are wanting to build a new home or cabin is financing. There are many ways to finance but the most common is the conventional construction loan. I am going to give a brief  description of the steps required. The process can be very frustrating and seemingly impossible at first but we can help you through the pit falls.
  • The first step in acquiring a construction loan is getting pre-qualified for your long term financing. If you call our office we can give you the names of people to call at various institutions for your long term financing. By long tem financing I am referring to your conventional 30 year mortgage.
  • Once you have been pre-qualified for X amount, you can apply for a construction loan. The bank will give you a packet of endless paperwork that we can also help you with.
  • It is important to note that the bank will want you to have some skin in the game when it comes to a construction loan. You will need to have a minimum of 20% down which is a considerable sum if you are considering a 200 or 300K project. Sometimes the bank will take your lot value into consideration providing it has been paid off and you own it free and clear. They may even take into consideration your equity in the lot if it hasn't been paid off.
  • We can help you with your budget, schedule, sub-contractors as well as design decisions. Your project must have an appraisal and it must appraise out higher than the loan amount of course.
  • Once you have finished your project, your long term financing will take over and you will close your construction loan and start paying your mortgage which will be at a much lower interest rate.
  • The process seems daunting at first but we have guided many people through it over the years and it can be very rewarding building your dream.


"Blessed are those who can give without remembering and take without forgetting." ~(Anonymous but sounds like Jesus Christ)

Friday, April 21, 2017

DIY KIT SEMINAR 2017

Our DIY Kit Seminar is going to be on May 20. We have had tremendous response so far and we have a few spots left if you want to attend. We will cover all the steps of building one of our DIY Kits and lunch will be provided as well.
If you are planning on purchasing a kit or have already purchased one, it will be well worth your time.
Please call 746-2082 or email at friesenscustomcabins@gmail.com to get your name on the list. See you there!
“Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms—to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.”
Viktor E. Frankl, Man's Search for Meaning    

Thursday, April 20, 2017

FCC Cabincast #8 FAQ's Part 2

Have a listen to our podcast #8. Today we answer more Frequently asked questions. Please email or message us on facebook your questions. We'll try to answer them all!
Thanks for listening!

http://alaska-cabincast-episode-2.madewithopinion.com/fcc-cabincast-8-faq-s-part-2/#

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

The FAQ Podcast Part 1

Have a listen to our latest Podcast. We are going through some of our favorite FAQ's. This is part 1 in a 3 part series. The podcast is definitely amateur since we are not professional broadcasters but we are trying to improve it a little every week.
Thanks for listening!
http://alaska-cabincast-episode-2.madewithopinion.com/


The pessimist sees difficulty in every opportunity. The optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.” -Winston Churchill

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Fairbanks Office

We are in the early stages of opening an office in the Fairbanks area. Over the past 25 years we have built many projects in the Fairbanks area and we feel it is time to have a local presence.
We have a number of projects scheduled for the Fairbanks area this year and have had many more requests for work as well.
Our office will likely be a small office cabin between Fairbanks and North pole and our search for a suitable spot has begun.
The Fairbanks office will cover work from Cantwell to Fairbanks, and from Fairbanks to Delta Jct. and Tok as well as the Yukon River villages and North Slope.
Any comments and suggestions from those of you in the northern region are welcome and we look forward to being able to serve your area better.

                                            A recent project in Fairbanks

"The essence of all art is to have pleasure in giving pleasure." Dale Carnegie

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

DIY KIT Seminar 2017

Good News, we are planning another Free DIY Kit seminar in May of this year. Last year we had over 50 people attend and another 50 or so on the waiting list. To be effective in the seminar we can only reasonably accept 40 people. We are shooting for May 22 for the seminar. It will start at 10:00 and end no later than 3:00 with a break for lunch on us.
If you have one of our kits or anticipate building one in the future, the DIY Seminar is a valuable tool and will help you tremendously in the building process. Please email us at friesenscustomcabins@gmail.com if you plan on attending since space will be limited.
See you there!!


Saturday, February 18, 2017

Check out our Alaskan Cabincast Episode 5 featuring Paul Holmes "Bushbuilder Extraordinaire"

This is Part one of a  two part podcast.  Paul Holmes worked with us for 23 years until he was forced to retire due to health issues. Paul worked on hundreds of projects with us in all types of weather all over the state of Alaska. He was one of those guys who was always ready to go no questions asked. He still does some consulting work for us from time to time. His stories are great and he has a lot of them. I think you will find the podcast worth your time.



Check out this great Podcast: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/alaska-cabincast/id1202291697?mt=2



This is Paul hauling some windows and materials to a remote jobsite.

Friday, February 10, 2017

The Alaska Cabincast Episode 4

Thanks for the unbelievable response to the podcast! We are now up on iTunes and Google play. Take a listen to Episode 4.
alaska-cabincast-episode-2.madewithopinion.com

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Grip Strut Steps and Snow Grates

We try and introduce new products and options each year as they are requested.
                                     

Grip strut snow steps have always been popular but they were a special order item. We now are offering grip strut steps and snow grates. These are excellent for snow country. They make going up the steps much safer and the snow falls right through. We can also put snow grates in front of the entry door to stomp the snow off your feet before going inside.

Friday, February 3, 2017

Alaska Cabincast Episode 3 Winter building

Check out our podcast! We are only on our third episode and so far the response has been...well....um...underwhelming, but we won't let that stop us haha. It isn't as easy as it looks as I am finding out.
This episode is about winter building. Thanks for listening!
http://alaska-cabincast-episode-2.madewithopinion.com/feeds/alaska-cabincast-episode-2/rss/

Friday, January 27, 2017

New Garage Sizes For 2017

We have been offering two and three car garages and larger for years and we have built smaller garages as well but we never have had them on our site....until now! The following garages have basically the same features as our two car garages except the walls are 9' instead of  10' and the doors are 7' tall instead of 8'. Naturally we can upgrade the doors if desired.  One personnel door and two 3 x 3 windows are also included as well as the concrete slab.

                                      12 x 20 Single car or small SUV: $12,995
 



 
 
 

                                   12 x 24 Single car or full size pickup: $14,400


 
 
 
 

14 x 24 Single car or full size four door pickup: $15,895
 
 
 
 
 
                          16 x 24 Single car or full size four door pickup: $18,495
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

                             20 x 20 Two small cars or two small SUVs: $18,995
 










 "He that hath a garage in Alaska hath a good thing for he can fill it with many things and the cars dwell outside."
(Ancient Alaska proverb)

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Planning your dream!

Many people come to me and ask what size cabin or home do you think is best for me? The only way to answer this is by asking a few questions.
  • What is your budget
  • Do you plan on living there full time?
  • How many are in your family?
  • Do you have frequent visitors?
  • Are you or members of your family able to climb stairs?
  • How are you planning to heat ?
  • How long to you plan to own it, do you plan to sell it within a few years to upgrade?
  • Do you plan to add on in the future?
There are many other considerations as well but you have to start somewhere. Most folks already have a good idea of what they want and what they can afford before they meet with us.
Size is a very important issue when determining what you are going to build. Naturally, every square foot cost money so the larger you build the more it will cost. Modern houses on average are much larger today than they were even in the 1950's and 1960's and there are many more features as well. If you are building a remote cabin, chances are it will be smaller than a home in the city or on the road system.
With the  "tiny home" movement we have seen all the features of a 1500 square foot home compacted into 200 square foot much like motorhomes and campers have done for years.
For planning purposes, if you can give us a basic idea of what you would like to build on a bar napkin sketch, we can start narrowing it down for you. Once we have a basic plan started, we can do the 3D walkthrough in our office, place all your furniture electronically to see if everything will fit, give you a firm cost of everything until we arrive at a final design and cost. We can normally turn drawings around in 24 hours so you have a place to start.
Send us your dreams on a simple sketch and before you know it you'll have a completed home or cabin to enjoy.
"Consult not your fears but your hopes and your dreams. Think not about your frustrations, but about your unfulfilled potential. Concern yourself not with what you tried and failed in, but with what it is still possible for you to do." Pope John XXIII




Wednesday, January 18, 2017

The Alaska Cabincast Episode 2.

Thanks for listening to our first episode of the Alaska Cabincast. We received no bombs in the mail yet so we decided to do episode #2 this week. We'll try and have a new episode every week until people tell us to stop!

“Don't be afraid! We won't make an author of you, while there's an honest trade to be learnt, or brick-making to turn to.”
Charles Dickens, Oliver Twist


Sunday, January 15, 2017

The Alaska Cabincast- Our first Podcast

I have attached our first podcast. Hey, we know we are much better at building  than broadcasting so if it hurts your ears too much at least you can turn it off. We will be bringing new and better contact each week.
Feel free to leave the most negative comments. LOL

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Bush Shipping Part 2B Summer Transportation

In Bush Shipping Part 2A we covered the basics of summer transportation of materials. We will explore a little further in this post.
Many remote recreational lots are in areas where there were state land sales or state land disposals. Others are homesteads, remote parcels, patented mining claims, agricultural plots, manufacturing sites, open to entry sales and many other programs. In the old days you could take a dozer and blaze a trail to the site and this is still a possibility in some areas, however, things are much more regulated today for building trails, crossing streams, and private and government land. In most areas there is usually some sort of ATV trail that is suitable for hauling materials. It is important to take other users into consideration when using these trails in summer since hauling 40 loads of material over a fragile ATV trail can really tear it up and anger other users which is best to avoid if you plan on being a good neighbor. When you start cutting trees to make the trail wider you might meet with some resistance as well.
We have found in many instances if the trail is more than seven or eight miles and not improved it is sometimes more economical to use a helicopter to haul materials if there is a suitable staging area close by.
  • Helicopters are expensive but they are very quick way to handle building materials, often you can get everything hauled to the lot in one day and be ready to build. You also have to consider the ferry time when you use a helicopter. You will be charged  when they leave their base of operations and the clock runs whenever the rotors are turning until they return to their base. Even at the higher cost this is a very efficient way to transport materials to a remote site.
  • Float planes are a good option if you are near a suitable lake or river for landing. Dehaviland Beavers and Otters are the workhorses of the float plane world and you can move a lot of material with either of these aircraft. The important thing is you need to have a suitable spot to offload and people to help when the plane arrives.
  • Boats and barges are a great choice if you are on a waterway suitable. Remember, the difficulty of getting materials and equipment from the landing spot to the site must be considered in figuring costs.
  • Track Vehicles are an excellent means of transporting materials in the right area. They can haul a big load through wet and muddy areas usually right to the site. In some areas they are not practical since the trails are made for ATVs and the track rigs are too large.
There are many methods of  transporting materials to a remote building site, more than we have discussed in this blog. Remember to take into consideration transportation to the staging area, loading and unloading, and transportation from the landing area to the building site. These steps are very important and can take a lot of time and effort.

"In every day, there are 1,440 minutes. That means we have 1,440 daily opportunities to make a positive impact.” 
— Les Brown

Saturday, December 31, 2016

Our new Outhouse Plan for 2017

Anywhere else in the United States an outhouse is a novelty. Here in Alaska in many areas it's a necessity. We have had many requests for outhouses over the years and for some reason we've never had a plan that we could duplicate until now.
An outhouse is a very simple project but it requires the same tools and knowledge as building a house and takes more time and material than most people realize. We now are building outhouses in our shop and delivering them to your site. We are also doing pre-fabricated outhouses that you can assemble yourself on your site which will save a few bucks as well.
All outhouses come with a pressure treated base, T1-11 siding, metal roof (Color your choice), cedar trim, toilet seat and paper holder.
The cost for the outhouse kit is $1,295 and $1,595 for a fully assembled model. If we are building your cabin we will dig the hole and deliver at no extra cost.
If you choose to pick up at our shop, the outhouse will fit on a snowmachine trailer or a standard size pickup.

“As the old year retires and a new one is born, we commit into the hands of our Creator the happenings of the past year and ask for direction and guidance in the new one. May He grant us His grace, His tranquility and His wisdom!”
Peggy Toney Horton   

Friday, December 30, 2016

Winter Building 2017

Winter in Alaska to many signifies the end of all outdoor activity but to us it is the beginning of our Winter building season. After freeze-up we are able to access many areas of the state that are impractical to reach during the summer months.
After many years of experimentation we have developed many techniques for building in cold weather. Naturally, there are times where the temperatures are so severe that it's not practical to keep working outdoors but generally speaking temperatures to -15 degrees or so don't create any major problems as long as there isn't significant wind to deal with.
We have done metal roofs down to -53 degrees but it wasn't very productive. Interestingly, low temperature bituthane and 100% silicone perform well at -50 and even colder without any change in flexibility or viscosity.
Excavation can be a challenge especially if the ground has been cleared of organics and cleared of snow. The organics and snow keep the ground insulated and don't allow the frost to dive deep.
Many sites have no road access but are fairly close to a road, traveling on ice roads on rivers and lakes allows us to access many sites with our regular vehicles which also keeps the cost down.
If you have a project you want done in the winter season so you can enjoy it in the summer give us a call and we'll get it going for you.

                                Happy New Year From Friesen's Custom Cabins!!                      

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Bush Shipping Part 2A Summer Transportation.

  I posted Bush Shipping Part 1 a couple of years ago and I think it is time to expand on it a little. In Part 1 we talked about shipping to villages in Rural Alaska. In this Blog we will talk about hauling to remote sites where there are no villages.
There are many different modes of transportation to remote sites depending on the season. In the summer months we can utilize boats, barges, track vehicles, ATV's and aircraft on wheels or floats.
  Most sites are accessible by trail, river or lake or a combination of both. For example, if you are building on the Yentna River, you might be able to ship an entire cabin package on a river barge to a point close to where you want to build. From the drop off-location you may need to haul overland with ATV or other equipment or possibly shuttle the material in a smaller boat or raft. Some projects will require loading and unloading materials several times which adds significantly to the cost since even a small cabin can weigh 10,000 to 20,000 pounds and larger cabins can weigh over 100,000 pounds. Suffice it to say it will always be a lot more material than you anticipate.
  Many sites are on lakes accessible by float plane which makes transport fairly simple albeit expensive. There are many things to consider when figuring the cost of transporting material by float plane. You need to be certain there is a suitable place to tie up the plane and unload it as well as easy access to the building site. Since most lakes have a 75' setback for building, the cost of hauling the material from the lake or river to the building site needs to be considered as well. Many times people want to build on a bluff above a river or lake which makes transporting even a short distance more challenging.
  In over 25 years of remote building we have encountered almost every situation imaginable. Notice I said 'Almost' because there are always more adventures to cover in" Bush Shipping Part 2B Summer Transportation".

"Don't wait for extraordinary opportunities. Seize common occasions and make them great."Orison Swett Marden


Wednesday, November 30, 2016

The 2017 Season

  It seems like every year we get booked up earlier and earlier. Now is a good time to do your planning and get on the schedule for the 2017 Spring and Summer building season.
  If you need construction financing you should allow two or three months to complete the process so if you wait too long it could push you very late into next season.
  We do build year-round and we still have dates open for this winter season. The lakes and rivers are starting to firm up and we should be able to drive trucks and equipment on the ice soon so we can access many of the places we can't in summer.
   2014, 2015 and 2016 were our busiest years in 25 years and 2017 looks like it will be very strong as well.
   We look forward to hearing from you soon!



"Positive anything is better than negative nothing." Elbert Hubbard

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Lay-a-Way Expanded

  We started our Lay-a-Way program for our DIY Kits in 2012 and it has been extremely popular. We are now expanding the program for our built-on-site projects to give more clients access to the program.
  The plan is very similar to the DIY Kit Lay-a-Way program except it doesn't need to be completely paid for before we start. Since the average project only takes thirty days to construct, the contract will state that the final payment must be made upon completion of the project.
  If you are interested in the new plan, let us know and we can work out a custom plan for you to attain your dream cabin.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Happy Thanksgiving 2016

We want to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving! Over the years we have built over a 1000 projects statewide and we also want to thank all of you that we have worked with over the past 25 years.
We will be posting on the blog more frequently since we have had many requests for more blog posts.
2017 will see new plans and options on our website and we are really excited about the new offerings.

Have a Happy and Safe Thanksgiving!

“He is a wise man who does not grieve for the things which he has not, but rejoices for those which he has.” Epictetus

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Tiny Houses

In recent years we have received many requests for Tiny Houses. We are introducing four sizes of completely finished tiny houses. These are not the typical tiny house that has wheels but they are small enough to be moved down the highway with a special permit. They are super insulated and energy efficient. The smallest is 12 x 20 and comes complete with kitchen, bathroom, appliances, deck and small loft and runs $49,995.
We can build it on your site or deliver for you. We will have other sizes as well up to 16 x 24. We are working on financing options with two local financial institutions. These make great rentals, guest cabins, mother in law apartments etc.
Please give us a call or email for more information.


Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Bush Shippping Part 1

We are frequently asked for shipping rates for our kit packages to rural Alaska. Shipping rates vary widely throughout the state. Barge shipping in the summer is generally the most cost effective if the service is available to your location. Since many towns and villages are on the coast or close to a river or other navigable waterway,  barge shipping is available to much of rural Alaska.
If your town or village is a regular stop for the barge, the cost is much less than if your location is a secondary town or village which means the freight has to be offloaded at another location to be lightered by a smaller barge to your location. These secondary locations may cost as much or more than the freight from Anchorage to the first location so air transportation may be a more feasible option for these areas although the cost for shipping by air is very expensive since it will generally require a charter and the village must have an airstrip suitable in length.
Yukon River villages are more reasonable in cost for shipping from Nenana but there is a substantial cost for trucking the Kit from Palmer to Nenana.
There are two main choices for barges to Western Alaska. Northland Services in Anchorage and Alaska Logistics in Seward. Northland Services is a larger company and services more locations. Alaska Logistics also services many locations and is slightly less expensive. It must be noted however, shipping to Seward by truck is going to be an added cost and needs to be figured into the equation.
Many other options exist for Kodiak and the Eastern side of the Alaska Peninsula and the Aleutians. The Alaska State Ferry is an option for Kodiak, Cordova and many towns in Southeast.
Since there are so many different shipping options for different areas, I can only cover a few in this blog. In Part 2 we will cover some of the more remote locations and methods of handling freight. Once we know what kit you want and the finish options you have selected, we can submit for a quote on the cost of freight to your location.


"Did you ever see an unhappy horse? Did you ever see a bird that had the blues? One reason why birds and horses are not unhappy is because they are not trying to impress other birds and horses."
Dale Carnegie

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Monday, December 8, 2014

2015 Pricing

In the past four years we have had only one price increase and it was last year. Unfortunately, we are going to be forced to raise the price slightly for 2015.  Material pricing has remained fairly stable but the small increase we implemented last summer simply was not enough to cover the increased costs since our last increase in 2011.  The increase will be 7 to 8% and will be effective January 1, 2015. Naturally, all contracts before that time will be honored at the existing prices on the website.  No one likes the price increases, especially us, because it is a hardship on our clients. After spending 35 years in the business I know it is a necessary evil to remain viable and to continue to give quality service to our clients in the future and past clients as well.
"There is more to life than increasing its speed."

Friday, November 28, 2014

New Start Dates for 2015

It is that time of year again! We start getting many requests for work for the next season during the period between Thanksgiving and New Years.  We still have start dates available for the 2015 Summer and Fall season. 2014 was one of our busiest years and 2015 looks like it will be busy as well.
Now is a good time to set up a time to meet to discuss your future project. If you need to apply for your construction financing it is a good idea to start early since it can take months to processs.
If you are interested in a DIY Kit, we usually have a two to three month backlog. If it is to be shipped to rural Alaska by barge it is best to have as much notice as possible for logistics.
We still don't have thick enough ice to drive safely in most places but we will soon. We still have a few start dates available for winter work as well, so don't hesitate to call.
"Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, ambition inspired, and success achieved."

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

A Word about Financing

We always receive many questions about financing options. While we have no in-house financing options outside of our Lay-a-Way program for our DIY kits, we normally refer our clients to First National Bank of Alaska for construction financing.
The process goes something like this.
  1. Meet with a mortgage specialist who will qualify you for your long term financing. They will refer you to a construction loan specialist for your construction financing or give you a 90% letter to give to a construction loan specialist of your own if you have already selected one.
  2. Meet with the construction loan specialist. They will give you a worksheet for your new home project. This worksheet will determine the budget for your new home.
  3. After you have this worksheet and you are pre-qualified, we can help you with the work sheet and drawings. An appraisal will be ordered on the drawings to determine if the home is going to be appraised at or above the amount of the loan.
  4. When the appraisal is finished and is sufficient for the loan, the final papers will be drafted for your construction loan.
The process can take two to six months depending on the variables so it is best to get started now for the spring and summer season. For more information and referrals to local loan specialists please give us a call at 1-888-909-8091

"Not what we say about our blessings, but how we use them, is the true measure of our thanksgiving."     W.T. Purkiser

Friday, November 21, 2014

New Start Dates!

With the warmer temperatures and lack of snow we have been able to open up a couple of new start dates for this season.  We are still able to excavate in many areas which is unusual for this time of year. If you have a project you wanted to start this year but thought it was too late, give us a call and we will see if we can get the ball rolling for you.

Gratitude is one of the sweet shortcuts to finding peace of mind and happiness inside. No matter what is going on outside of us, there's always something we could be grateful for. ~ Barry Neil Kaufman

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

DIY KITS

Our DIY Kits have become very popular.  We are now able to offer building assistance through some of our Sub-Contractors.  For those people who are nervous about tackling a DIY Kit themselves, we can send a crew member or two crew members to help organize and build the project.
This is a good option for remote projects. You can hire a crew member for a day or two or to help with the entire project. The crew member is trained in the construction of the kits so it will speed up the build considerably.
We are taking orders for spring and summer now so we can have them ready for the first barges in June. We are also still doing the lay-away program if you want to pay for it in monthly payments throughout the winter.
A Kit Seminar is being planned for the spring as well and we will post it on the blog and Facebook.
If you are interested in a Kit or a cabin built on your lot in 2015, let us know and we will get the process started for you.


“If you want to know what a man's like, take a good look at how he treats his inferiors, not his equals.”
J.K. Rowling

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

The 2015 Season

2014 was our busiest year yet and 2015 looks to be more of the same. We are booking now for the 2015 season and for the 2016 winter season. We still have a few start dates open for this winter season as well. With the warmer temperatures we are still able to excavate and pour concrete. I am confident we will have ice to drive on for the winter season.
We have seen warm winters before but we were always able to access our off road projects.
If you are looking to build in the next year, give us a call and we can set up a meeting to discuss.

We consume our tomorrows fretting about our yesterdays.

Monday, November 17, 2014

New Email Address

For those of you who have been following our blog over the years, you may notice that it has been silent for a few months. It has been such a busy season that I just haven't had time to post lately.
I will now be trying to do a new blog post every week. We do have a new email address posted on our site. It is friesenscustomcabins@gmail.com
We don't have enough ice yet to do our offroad work but I am confident I will come soon enough.
"You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream" C. S. Lewis

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Season Updates!

The 2014 season has been extremely busy, it may turn out to be one of the busiest ever but that remains to be seen. We have had a lot of work on the Kenai this year as well as Valdez, Fairbanks and Talkeetna. We have sent kits to Galena, Willow, Skwentna, Wasilla, Nome, Dillingham, Dutch Harbor and Bethel so far with many more in line to ship to other areas of the state.
We had our first price increase last month which was the first in three years. The way material prices have been going, we may have another slight increase before the end of the season.
Kit prices have remained stable for a couple years but we will have to increase them as well next month.
We still have start dates available this season and we are scheduling off-road work for the winter season so don't hesitate to give us a holler with whatever construction needs you have.


Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all.
Dale Carnegie

Monday, May 19, 2014

Scheduling for 2014

As it turns out, we were able to start many of our projects early this year which has opened some new start dates in July and August and possibly one in June. The road restrictions are off and the frost is out of the ground in most places. We have also finished some of our kits early this spring which has brought our lead time down so we can meet the barge schedules.
Let us know if you would like to build this year and we'll see what we can do.
"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts."
- Bertrand Russell (1872-1970)

Monday, April 21, 2014

Kit Seminar Cancellation

Due to unforeseen circumstances and scheduling difficulties, our May 3rd. kit seminar has been cancelled and will be rescheduled later in the summer. Our sincere apologies for any inconvenience and appreciate your understanding.
We will be announcing the new schedule in the near future on facebook and the blog.



“Whenever you are asked if you can do a job, tell ‘em, ‘Certainly I can!’ Then get busy and find out how to do it.” –Theodore Roosevelt

Friday, April 4, 2014

Another Free Cabin To a Family in Need!

We got the idea for a Free Cabin to a family in need program in 2011 and announced the first recipient on Thanksgiving Day. We are now offering another free cabin to a “Family in Need” and we’ll announce it at the State Fair in August. We realize the need is great but we can only do our small part. Unfortunately this will create disappointment in those we cannot help so we ask for your understanding. The cabin for this year will be a 16 x 24 Plan 1 with 768 square feet. There will be one bedroom downstairs and a full loft upstairs. We will be building the complete dried-in shell and the new owner will be responsible for doing the finish work to make it liveable ie. Plumbing, electrical, insulation etc. The requirements are as follows: • Please describe your need in 200 words or less and email to us at friesen@alaska.net • The applicant must hold title to a suitable building lot in the Mat-Su valley. • The lot must be accessible by road. • Applicant must show financial ability to complete the cabin and make it liveable. • This cabin is to be used as a full time residence for the owner. "To much is given, much is required." Luke 12:48

DIY KIT SEMINAR SCHEDULE CHANGE

Our spring kit seminar date has been changed to May 3rd due to unexpected scheduling conflicts. Please email us at friesen@alaska.net if you are planning on attending. The seminar is open to everyone and will be most beneficial to those that are planning on building one of our DIY kits in the future. Look forward to meeting you on May 3!

Monday, March 10, 2014

DIY KIT SEMINAR

We are going to be doing at least two KIT seminars this season to familiarize current and future KIT builders with our process. The first one will be on April 22 at 10:00 AM. We will go through foundation, floor, wall and roof framing, window installation, stair building and metal roofing. The seminars typically take around four hours or so and we also have time afterwards for questions. The seminar is free for all. Please email or call us to let us know your coming so we know how many to expect. See you there! The person who says it cannot be done should not interrupt the person who is doing it. –Chinese Proverb

Thursday, January 30, 2014

DIY Kits for this Summer

Our DIY kits have become increasingly popular in Rural Alaska. When ordering your Kit, bear in mind that we need plenty of time to make sure we meet the barge deadlines. We strive to make sure we deliver two weeks prior to the cut-off date to make sure we don't miss anything. We recommend ordering your kit at least three to six months in advance to ensure your kit makes the barge. Some villages only get one barge per season so it is critical to get the order in with plenty of time to spare. "ife is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving.” ― Albert Einstein

Thursday, January 16, 2014

New Duplex DIY KIT Plans

We are now offering two Duplex plans in DIY Kit form. The covered decks can easily be made into arctic entries. The cost for the 24 x 42 DIY Kit Plan runs $35,995 and the 28 x 42 runs $41,995. They are a great investment in the bush; you can live in one side and rent out the other. We will have more duplex and four-plex plans in the near future. A life spent making mistakes is not only more honorable, but more useful than a life spent doing nothing. George Bernard Shaw

Friday, January 10, 2014

2014 in with a roar!

The 2014 season is shaping up to be very busy. Appraisals on homes are getting back up to normal levels and from what we hear, people want to build! Last year was the busiest year ever for our website with 84,000 visitors and our Facebook page has almost 16,000 likes so we are gearing up. We don't anticipate doing much more volume than normal because we are still a small company that can only handle so much. Our Kits have become very popular in Rural Alaska and we expect a lot of growth in that area. We still have a few start dates available for this season and we also have some starts available for winter work as well. If you are interested in building this year or next, now is the time to get the ball rolling. We look forward to hearing from you. "If you want to lift yourself up, lift up someone else." –Booker T. Washington

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Pricing for the New Year

As mentioned back in October, we haven't had any price changes since early 2011. It appears that we will be having an 8% increase at the end of this year. 8% does not get us back to where we were in 2011 but it will help defray some of the increases that we have experienced in the past few years. No one likes to hear about a price hike but alas, we have no choice. We will try to hold the new pricing as long as we can since we know that many folks have already budgeted for 2014 projects. Naturally, all contracts in place before the increase will not be affected. It’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years. –Abraham Lincoln

Friday, November 22, 2013

Chimney Cleaning Tip

If you have a woodstove, it should be cleaned every year or so. You can hire a Chimney Sweep to do it for you which is great if you can afford it and don't want to get up on the roof. You can purchase a chimney brush with the fiberglass extensions and clean it yourself. A more simpler method is to get a long tow chain, remove the chimney top, lower the chain into the pipe as far as you can and make circular motions for a minute or two. You will hear the creosote breaking loose and falling down the pipe. In the older woodstoves, it will fall into the fire box. In the newer stoves, you will need to remove the black pipe closest to the stove and suck the debris out with a shopvac. Good Luck! "You may be disappointed if you fail, but you are doomed if you don’t try." –Beverly Sills

Friday, November 8, 2013

Home Kit Comparisons

We are asked many times a month about how our kits compare to our competitor, a large material supplier here in Alaska. Up until now we have never published the difference, and there is a big difference. Their kits look similar to ours but there are several major differences. 1. Our kits come with bigger floor joist, bigger rafters, and are framed 16" on center instead of 24". The larger rafters and floor joist allow for higher R values in the insulation. 2. Our kits are designed to meet the residential and energy code. 3. We can make any change the customer wants including windows, doors, decks, arctic entries and any other feature requested. Their kits are not changeable. 4. We have a toll-free hotline for customers to call for assistance in building. Since we are a licensed General contractor, we can actually send out a carpenter or two to help out if you get in a bind. 5. We offer training in advance of construction to all of our customers who want to participate. 6. We send an instructional DVD with the kit. (They do as well now that they saw us do it) 7. We carry optional leveling devices for homes and cabins built on unstable soils. We are not saying they don't have a good product, just pointing out some differences. "Never run down your competitor, especially when they are your major supplier." (Anonymous Alaskan General Contractor)

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Extreme Conditions Kit Options

We are in the process of developing three insulation options for your DIY kits to meet the needs of rural Alaskans. Our standard kit consists of the framing shell and includes foundation, framing, windows, doors and metal roof. The standard kits do not include wiring, plumbing, insulation or drywall etc. We have found that many in bush Alaska need more energy efficient options. With oil prices as high as $9.00 per gallon and even more in some areas, it makes good sense to spend the money up front for energy efficiency. On the road system, fuel prices are quite reasonable in comparison so the payback on energy efficient upgrades may not warrant the extra cost for super insulation which is quite costly. Naturally, there are many ways to make a home more energy efficient and we are starting out by offering three options for the DIY kits. We are in the process of building a price list for the super insulated kits right now. If you would like pricing on a particular model you can email or call and we can get the pricing for you very quickly.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

10,000 Likes by Halloween

We originally thought we would hit 10,000 likes on Facebook by Thanksgiving but it looks like we'll hit it before Halloween. This has really taken us by surprise and we would like to thank everyone for their support. Our kits have become increasingly popular and we are now advertising to the bush in the "Bushmailer". "Don’t wait. The time will never be just right." –Napoleon Hill

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Pictures for Facebook

We are encouraging our past clients to send us pictures of your finished project so we can post them on Facebook. The most common question I receive is what they look like on the inside. Naturally we won't post names or locations without approval. It is fun to look at projects a couple of years down the road and see the finished product. We are closing in on 10,000 Facebook 'Likes' this month which is quite amazing since we had less than 800 in February. We're trying to keep the posts fresh by posting three times a week so please join us! Let the refining and improving of your own life keep you so busy that you have little time to criticize others. –H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Custom Designs

We encourage everyone to bring us their plans and ideas. We specialize in efficient onstruction methods but sometimes the most appealing designs are not very efficient. If you have seen a plan somewhere that you really like, send us a picture or a bar napkin sketch and we can usually make it happen for you. Remember, we want to build your dream not what someone else thinks your dream should be. "Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing." –Benjamin Franklin

Monday, October 14, 2013

2014 Prices

We will undoubtedly be forced to have a price increase before the end of the year. Our last increase was in the Spring of 2011 and we have seen things go up dramatically since then. Judging by our bookings for next season, 2014 should be a very strong year. As a small construction company, we are limited as far as how many projects we can take on. We have limited our Western Alaska projects to DIY kits since the expense of sending a crew is cost prohibitive in most instances. The kits are becoming more and more popular each year and we are constructing a new shop this year to keep up with the demand. We are also offering several finish package options which saves our bush customers from coming to town and trying to find everything they need for electrical, plumbing and insulation etc. "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do, so throw off the bowlines, sail away from safe harbor, catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore, Dream, Discover." –Mark Twain

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Warm Weather

Due to our warm fall weather, we are able to take more work than we anticipated. We are still pouring concrete and excavating. If you have interest in building yet this season don't hesitate to let us know. We normally are winding down on our concrete pours this time of year since we have to heat and tent when it starts getting cold. We excavate and install pilings and sono-tubes all winter long however. Even under the best winter conditions, we can't usually start driving on the local lakes until after Thanksgiving which gives us plenty of time to build on the road system. "The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now. –Chinese Proverb"

Monday, October 7, 2013

Update on SIPS

We have been working with the manufacturer on a custom SIPS panel and we think we have arrived at a real winner. We will be introducing our 'FCC Super-Insulated Arctic Home' option in a few weeks. Our first offering will be a 24 x 36 single level with R-44 Floor, R-44 Walls, R-50 Ceiling with Triple Glaze windows. The super insulated shell will run around $75K and will have a Rough-Sawn no-groove T1-11 exterior and a 1/2" fire rated ACX interior. All interior wiring boxes and chases will be ready for wiring. The interior walls will be in but will need sheetrock and paint etc. Heating costs on this package will be 1/3 of what it costs to heat a conventional home of the same size so the increase in cost of the construction will easily be paid back in a few years.
We go on multiplying our conveniences only to multiply our cares. We increase our possessions only to the enlargement of our anxieties. -Anna C.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

SIPS Panels

We are soon going to be offering Structural Insulated Panels or SIPS as an option for all of our kits. We will have super insulated walls, floors and roofs available in all sizes and styles. SIPS are a higher price than conventional frame buildings but offer a superior insulated envelope. We will have more information to follow. Stay Tuned! There are two ways to be rich: One is by acquiring much, and the other is by desiring little. -Jackie French Koller

Saturday, September 21, 2013

2013 State Fair

The 2013 State Fair was a great success this year. It seems that most of the visitors to our booth had already seen us on facebook. We've had numerous calls and visits from folks who came to see us at the fair and we are grateful for all the past clients that came by to say hi. It just so happened that we received three emergency orders to get on the barge for Galena during the fair so we had to have all hands on deck during that time. To those who came by, thank you, and hope to see you again. Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius – and a lot of courage – to move in the opposite direction. -E.F. Schumacker

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Fall and Winter Scheduling

We have somehow managed to stay on schedule this season even with all the rain. We are now scheduling for next summer but we still have start dates available between now and then. Scheduling for off-road work after freeze-up starts early in the summer but we still have space for yours. We even have a few start dates open before freeze-up due to our excellent crews finishing work early. The secret of happiness, you see, is not found in seeking more, but in developing the capacity to enjoy less. -Socrates

Monday, July 29, 2013

Alaska State Fair

We will be at the Alaska State Fair again this year from August 22 to September 2. We will have some small models of our cabins and hundreds of pictures to view as well as knowledgeable staff to answer any of your building questions. Look forward to seeing you there! Character is like a tree and reputation is like its shadow. The shadow is what we think of it; the tree is the real thing. Abraham Lincoln

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

The Power Of Facebook

I never thought Facebook would be a part of our marketing strategy but alas, it certainly is. We started out slowly with a few likes here and there and now we're at 4000 and growing every day. It has really been helpful in determining which cabins grab the most interest. The feedback is instantaneous. We also get a few folks who post negative comments but by and large it has been a positive experience. We are trying to post new material several times a week so everyone can see our work. If you haven't joined us already come on board!

Happiness is not achieved by the conscious pursuit of happiness; it is generally the by-product of other activities.
Aldous Huxley

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Summer Scheduling

Even with the late break-up, we are finally getting back on schedule. I thought we would be lagging behind all summer since we got such a late start. Thanks to efficient crew members and working a little overtime; we are able to open some more start dates in August and September. If you were putting off calling us since we were booked solid, give us a shout and we can probably take care of your building needs this season after all.
There are two ways to be rich: One is by acquiring much, and the other is by desiring little. -Jackie French Koller

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

The First Kit Seminar

We did our first kit seminar this last Saturday and I think it went pretty well. I encourage anyone that is going to be building a kit to attend one our workshop/seminars to get a handle on the process. We can show you many short cuts and time savers and help you avoid some frustration. We will be doing another Kit training day after the State Fair. It will either be on September 7th or the 14th. The training takes about four hours and should be well worth your time if you are building one of our kits. See You There!! The secret of happiness, you see, is not found in seeking more, but in developing the capacity to enjoy less. -Socrates

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

The 'Free Cabin For a Family in Need'

The 'Free Cabin for a Family in Need' is now ready for interior finish. When we started to move forward with this idea of providing a free home for someone in need, we weren't prepared for the enormity of the need and the overwhelming requests for help. We are only a small company with very limited resources but we figured we would try to do a small part. Even though it seems like one grain of sand on the beach, it's still worthwile. When we first announced the Free Cabin idea, we received a check for $20 to help from a lady we had built for. Her and her husband were both on disability and that $20 was a lot to give for them. I was so moved by this that I pinned it to the wall in my office to remind me we were on the right track. To whom much is given is much required. [Luke 12:48]

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Kit Cabins!

Our kit cabins have become very popular and we are constantly looking for new ways to improve and promote our product. Many have told us that they like our kits because they can customize them any way they wish to. Most kit companies have certain plans and it is quite expensive to make changes if you are allowed to at all. Some companies have no proceudure for making design changes. I can certainly understand why; changes do take time and involve re-drawing and engineering but we are small enough to do the changes in-house to prepare the kit for your dream cabin. We still have a four to six week lead time on kits and our Kit Seminar/Workshop is going to be on June 22. If you want to join us, please email and let us know you plan to come so we know how many to expect. I will email directions to where we are going to be having it. Depending on how well it goes, we are planning on another Seminar in September after the State Fair. Don't wait for extraordinary opportunities. Seize common occasions and make them great. Orison Swett Marden

Sunday, May 12, 2013

2013 Scheduling Update!

This has been an interesting spring to say the least. This is my 35th year in Alaska and I don't remember a later break-up. This has slightly altered our schedule and we have been forced to start a few jobs late due to the heavy frost still in the ground but we are also bringing back some past crew members to help us to keep up with the demand. We still have some start dates available for the summer and several in the fall as well. The demand for kits is double what we have experienced in the past which speaks well for our local economy in general. We are holding the kit seminar on June 22 to give kit builders a confidence boost before they start. Don't hesitate to call us about your upcoming project, we'll try to figure a way to accommodate you. I prayed for twenty years but received no answer until I prayed with my legs. Frederick Douglass

Friday, May 3, 2013

A Shout out to Wasim at Google

It may seem that all huge companies are so big that they have no time for us little guys but I can say that Google adwords has been exactly opposite. You would think a company with annual revenues of 50 billion would be all electronic and impersonal but I have learned that they do listen to us small businesses. I was contacted by email many times by a man named Wasim and I never responded because I thought it was junk mail. Finally, I received a phone call from Wasim letting me know that some of the things I was doing on Adwords was costing me much more than it should and that I should change some keywords and budget amounts. Many of the budget amounts that I was using were too high and he helped me several times over the phone to streamline my advertising campaigns. Not only does he return calls promptly; he also keeps an eye on my account to make sure I am getting optimum bang for my buck. All of this with a cheerful and helpful attitude. To say I am impressed is a vast understatement. 'Thanks Wasim!' Hire character. Train skill. – Peter Schutz

Monday, April 29, 2013

Kit Seminar Date

We have finalized the kit seminar for June 22. If you have purchased a kit from us or are considering one, please let us know and we will give you the time and place. We will cover everything from inventory to screwing the roof down and installing windows and doors. We won't be able to teach anyone to be a journeyman carpenter but we will take a lot of the guesswork out of doing one of our kits. Look forward to seeing you there. We will announce on our facebook page a few weeks out as well. You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you. Dale Carnegie

Saturday, April 20, 2013

METAL POLE BUILDING PRICES

We have finally finished the price sheet for our Metal Pole Buildings. We are taking orders now for this coming summer. Please call or email if you have any questions.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Spring Ice!

As the days get warmer and the snow melts, be careful when driving on the ice. This is the time of the year when holes develop in the ice that you may not be able to see. We used to pride ourselves as the first ones on the ice and the last ones off. Happily, we no longer have that attitude and are a lot more conservative when traveling on the ice. We have never lost a vehicle or machine on the ice but that was just dumb luck not a result of forward thinking. If you are the last person driving on the ice, it's only a matter of time and the law of averages will catch up! When life is sweet, say thank you and celebrate. And when life is bitter, say thank you and grow. Shauna Niequist

Monday, April 8, 2013

Is the Blog worthwhile?

When I first started writing the blog in November 2009, I really didn't expect anyone to actually read it. I figured we needed a blog because every other company with a website had some sort of a Blog. I have been amazed by how many folks have told me they read the blog. I've tried to bring up some interesting topics concerning building in Alaska but I sometimes feel that the stuff I post is so much common knowledge that why bother? The blog will continue thanks to the encouragement I have received over the past few years. I do welcome suggestions for future posts. Thanks for reading! Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass...it's learning to dance in the rain. - idk_

Friday, April 5, 2013

New For 2013- POLE BUILDINGS

Over the years we have been asked many times if we can do pole buildings. We have done a few but we normally referred potential customers to our friends at All Purpose Buildings. Since they are no longer doing pole buildings, we are going to be introducing several sizes this year. The pole buildings are great for shops, barns, hangars, warehouses and any other large spaces and are slightly less expensive than conventional frame buildings. If you have need of a pole building in the future contact us for more information. We will be posting sizes and pricing next month. For a large heated space, nothing beats a pole building insulated with urethane. When one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one that has opened for us. - Alexander Graham Bell

Friday, March 22, 2013

Kit Seminar

We have had a pretty good winter for working so far. We've had good ice conditions without severe cold which makes for good building. Summer is very busy but we still have a few start dates available in some areas. We will be spread throughout the state again this year so if you have building needs, let us know and we'll see if we can take care of it. Kits are becoming more and more popular, especially for the remote areas and we are planning a one day seminar in June for those that need some guidance before doing it alone. The date will be around the 22nd or 29th of June so if you have interest in a kit, contact us and we will sign you up for the seminar so you will be more comfortable doing it yourself. “Never put off till tomorrow what may be done day after tomorrow just as well". From: "More Maxims of Mark” ― Mark Twain

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Remote Cabins-The reality show?

The facination with Alaska themes seems to be everywhere on reality TV. From Flying and fishing to Gold mining and Taxidermy, you name it, they're making a show about it. We have been approached at least a half dozen times in the past few years to be involved in a reality show. My response has been that a well run company shouldn't have too much drama. Without conflict and drama, it is pretty boring to watch. We have been striving for over twenty years to build a boring, well-run company. Naturally we don't always succeed, but we certainly don't want a camera hovering over everytime something goes wrong. People watch car racing for the wrecks and hockey for the fights. I have to admit, the most interesting part of a show is when things go bad or people have conflict. Fist fights are a bonus! A remote cabin building TV show?....thanks for asking but no thanks!

Thursday, January 3, 2013

2013 Schedule

Now is the time to get on the schedule for this season. We still have start dates available this summer and fall but they usually go pretty fast. The cabin kits have been very popular and we are constantly improving the system as we get feedback from our kit builders. We are going to add several new plans this year, including two duplex plans. We also build from custom plans so if you have plans you want built, we can certainly build from them. If you have building needs this year; send an email or give us a call and we will start the process with you. The secret of happiness, you see, is not found in seeking more, but in developing the capacity to enjoy less. -Socrates

Monday, December 17, 2012

Spray Foam Insulation

We will be offering polyurethane spray foam insulation as an option for our cabins this coming year. Urethane cannot be beat for R-Value per inch and for insulating a home or cabin. At R-6.9 per inch as opposed to R-3.8 for fiberglass, it will pay for itself in a relatively short time, not to mention the air tight seal it provides. We will even be able to offer urethane on our remote jobs since we are able to break our equipment down to fit in a small plane or even an ATV trailer. Spray foam is significantly higher in price than fiberglass but the value is obvious when the temperature is below zero and you are using much less fuel than you will with conventional insulation. “In the depth of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer.” ― Albert Camus

Friday, November 16, 2012

2013 Pricing

We have always been a little behind the curve on our pricing. We had a very small price increase in 2010 but we have held the pricing since that time even though our operating costs have gone up significantly since that time. Unfortunately we have found it necessary to increase our pricing again effective January 1, 2013. The amount of the increase has not yet been determined but we will publish it on our blog later next month. Naturally, any contracts before January 1 will be kept at the current pricing so if you have plans to build in 2013, let us know so we can schedule you for the upcoming season.
Best Regards
Jay Friesen

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

The Free Cabin for a Family in Need!

Last fall we solicited submittals from folks that were in need of a home. We asked for a short letter describing the need and we had several stipulations. The building lot needed to be free and clear, the candidate must show the ability to finish the cabin and it must be a primary residence. We selected a candidate and started the actual building last week. We hope to do something similar in the future but we will use a different process to select the candidates. We have built free cabins several times in the past and we hope to do so in the future. We believe in helping our neighbor in whatever small way we can and I can say we have received much encouragement from our staff and customers. We will be posting updates on Facebook and on this blog. For unto whomever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more. LUKE 12:48

Sunday, October 21, 2012

It's Here!

Winter is here, I guess we might as well accept it. For over twenty years we have had a very active winter building season. Many of our remote sites are much easier to access in winter so some winters are as busy as summer. If you have a remote cabin to build, let us know and we can start planning for it. Too often I would hear men boast of the miles covered that day, rarely of what they had seen. Louis L'Amour Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/authors/l/louis_lamour.html#EHCKQMpwxQWgXjME.99

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

State Fair

Well, the State Fair was great! We had many past clients and friends stop by on the purple trail. Many interested parties also came by to get started planning for their future cabins. The Fair is a long term investment for us. Most people that meet us at the Fair are a few years away from building but it is never too soon to start planning. “Just when you think it can't get any worse, it can. And just when you think it can't get any better, it can.” ― Nicholas Sparks, At First Sight

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Installing insulation baffles in your rafters

One of the most common questions I get is about insulation in the rafters. In order to keep air flow from the eaves to the ridge or vented attic space, you need to install baffles between your rafters to keep the insulation from lofting and blocking the air flow. We have created a video to get you on the right track. Hope it helps.

Summer at last!

The summer has been a busy one so far. We have projects in Homer, Delta, Fairbanks, Palmer, Trapper Creek, Soldotna and Talkeetna underway as we speak. We have been able to stay ahead of schedule and we're trying to keep that trend going. We still have start dates available later in the summer and fall so don't hesitate to contact us. Thich Nhat Hanh: “Every morning, when we wake up, we have twenty-four brand-new hours to live. What a precious gift! We have the capacity to live in a way that these twenty-four hours will bring peace, joy, and happiness to ourselves and others.”

Monday, April 2, 2012

Break-up


Well, the winter season is almost over. We still have a few projects on local lakes but we will quit driving on them in a couple of weeks.
The ground won't be completely thawed for another month or two but we are starting new work now.
We still have a couple of start dates in April and May which are traditionally slow because of road restrictions and break-up. Meanwhile, we are taking orders for kits to ship in May and June.



It takes but one positive thought when given a chance to survive and thrive to overpower an entire army of negative thoughts.
Robert H. Schuller
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/keywords/positive_2.html#AGkB0A5XIY2H1ZP9.99

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Summer is coming!

We are gearing up for a very busy season this year. We have projects lined up in Fairbanks, Talkeetna, Delta, Homer and all points between so far. We still have some start dates available however, so don't hesitate to contact us.
We are in the process of developing some new plans this year as well and we welcome any suggestions.
We will be building the 'Free cabin for a family in need' in June and will be posting pictures on our Facebook page as we progress.








Happiness is like a butterfly; the more you chase it, the more it will elude you, but if you turn your attention to other things, it will come and sit softly on your shoulder ...


- Henry David Thoreau

Sunday, January 22, 2012

A Real Winter Indeed!

Well, we are having a real winter this year. You hear everyone talk about how much colder it was back in the day but if you look at the actual weather data from the 70's, 80's and 90's, we had some warm winters back then too. When I came here in 1978, I was told that it was much colder in the 50's and 60's and I'm sure it was but this winter has been unusual in that we have a lot of snow and it has been real cold on top of it.
It hasn't slowed our construction down however. We have some of the best off road travel conditions ever.
We will be freighting for another three months or so, so now is the time to have us do your cabin or at least freight the material for a summer build.
See you on the trail!




The major difference between a thing that might go wrong and a thing that cannot possibly go wrong is that when a thing that cannot possibly go wrong goes wrong it usually turns out to be impossible to get at or repair.
Douglas Adams (1952 - 2001), Mostly Harmless

Saturday, January 7, 2012

2012

2011 was a really busy year and 2012 is looking strong as well. Our website traffic has more than doubled since last year at this time so we are gearing up for a busy season. We have become known for our off road projects but most of our projects have some road access. Most of our clients are from Alaska but many are from the lower 48 and are building vacation homes and others are having us build their primary residence.
Now is the time to schedule for summer work. We still have a few start dates available for summer and fall work but they usually go pretty fast this time of year. We have many projects scheduled throughout the state for this year and we are scheduling some for 2013.
Thankfully, Alaska hasn't been hit as hard economically as the rest of the country and we have been able to keep all of our crews working throughout the downturn.
The cabin kits have become more and more popular and we are constantly trying to improve our product to make them easier to build. Most folks have opted for the built-on-site cabins but if you have the time, the kits are a good option.
We look forward to seeing you in 2012!




He has a right to criticize who has a heart to help.
Abraham Lincoln

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Winter Conditions

Well, we have a normal winter on our hands. Traveling conditions are very good. We can access almost any off road site we need right now.
We are driving trucks and equipment on most valley lakes now and even the rivers are in good shape.
We've had enough snow cover to keep the frost from going too deep which makes it easier to do dirt work.
If you are interested in doing a project yet this winter we can most likely do it for you. We have several projects going now and we will be starting some new ones soon but we still have room for a couple more before break up.







Try to make at least one person happy every day, and then in ten years you may have made three thousand, six hundred and fifty persons happy, or brightened a small town by your contribution to the fund of general enjoyment.

- Sydney Smith

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Free cabin winner

FREE CABIN GIVEAWAY WINNER
The “Free Cabin Giveaway” winner has been selected! We’d like to thank all entrants who took the time to explain why they felt qualified to win; and some were very close. However, our decision was based on several factors that made her exceptional. First, for privacy, her identity will remain anonymous.
At fifty-eight years old, she has lived in Alaska for over thirty years. Her husband of nineteen years was a disabled veteran; he died this summer. With one high school child still at home, it’s been very difficult to make ends meet with just a part-time job. It’s inevitable that she’ll lose her home because she no longer has the additional income from her husband’s disability from VA.
Our winner was able to buy an acre of land from some of the insurance funds, but is unable to completely build a cabin. This will not be a vacation cabin, but a primary residence. In addition, she does have the funds to do the finish the cabin.
Again, congratulations to our winner; not only someone in need, but who has suffered a great loss as well.

Jay Friesen,
Friesens Custom Cabins

Monday, November 7, 2011

Free Cabin

Only seventeen days before we make the selection for the free cabin. We have received many requests and we encourage you to write in for yourself,a family member or someone you know who is in need.
We are making plans to do another free cabin selection to anounce at the State Fair.
We haven't only received requests for the cabin, we have had folks write in that they want to help as well. Pretty cool!
Friesenscustomcabins.com/giveaway.HTML









A fanatic is one who can't change his mind and won't change the subject.
Winston Churchill

Monday, October 31, 2011

Winter

Well, it is here. Winter that is. Temperatures are dipping into single digits and lower in some areas. The lakes in south central are mostly still open or very thin but will be ready for travel by the end of November. We have been inundated with requests for off road work and we are gearing up.
Now is the time to give us a shout if you're interested in building this winter.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Winter season

We are now pulling out our winter gear to be ready when winter hits. The first few days of cold weather usually exposes any weak links. The snow machines and sleds all have to be inspected and repaired if they haven't been already. Somehow it is hard to make yourself work on winter gear when the summer season is so busy.
This winter looks like a busy one too and we are ready for it!






The price of anything is the amount of life you exchange for it.
Henry David Thoreau

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Fall Foundations

The warm weather has extended our fall season by a few weeks. We are still able to put in foundations without dealing with frost. We are also able to pour without tenting and heating. We still have our freight boat in the water.
If you want to start a project yet this year let us know and we should be able to get it started.
We install wood, concrete and steel pilings all winter so we never stop building.





A fellow can΄t keep people from having a bad opinion of him, but he can keep them from being right about it.
Unknown

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Family in Need

Our "Free Cabin to a Family in Need program" has generated a lot of interest. If you know of anyone in need, email us a message of their situation in 200 words or less so they can be eligible for selection on Thanksgiving day. A full description is on our October 1 blog and facebook post.







All generalizations are false, including this one.
Mark Twain

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Cabin Giveaway

We introduced our Cabin giveaway to a Needy Family on October 1. We have had great interest in the program. I should have mentioned that since this is our first offering, we want to build this first cabin on the road system in Southcentral or Interior Alaska.
Perhaps we will be able to offer a free cabin to bush Alaska in the future but we want to do this first one in an area where we can drive from our Palmer headquarters to the site.

Thanks everyone for your understanding!



A good conscience is a continual Christmas.
Benjamin Franklin
US author, diplomat, inventor, physicist, politician, & printer (1706 - 1790)

Monday, October 3, 2011

Cabin Giveaway

We introduced our cabin giveaway program yesterday but neglected to mention that all submittals and questions must be sent to us via email. This will greatly expedite the process.
Thanks everyone!