How to Remove Wood Shakes Without Damaging Them

Our log home bedroom has many wood shakes at the peaks of the walls. Here's how we removed them carefully without damaging them.

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Welcome to Week 2 of our Fall 2022 One Room Challenge®, our log home primary bedroom. We are on track to finish this huge project in just eight weeks. And we're renovating literally from the top to the bottom. 

I'll post our progress each week to keep y'all up to date on what's happening. You can also see all of the other projects that are happening for the challenge by clicking that link above.

Keep Up With All of the Updates for This Project

Week 1 |  Week 2  |  Week 3  |  Week 4  |  Week 5 | Week 6 | Week 7 | Week 8

(links will be added weekly)

During this second week our main focus has been on removing all of the wood shakes that are on the upper walls of our bedroom. 

We've removed quite a few shakes from the interior of our log home over the years. Here's the method that we've refined.

How To Remove Wood Shakes Without Damaging Them

Tools Needed:

flat pry bar
flat narrow shovel
crow bar
personal protection equipment

Start with the very top row. We have found that using the small flat shovel gives great reach for the top rows. 

Wedge the flat edge of the shovel under the bottom of the shake and gently lift the handle up. The nails should pop out as you lift.

You may need to lift gently from the side if its a long shake.

Once you are no longer working over your head, it is easier to use a flat pry bar.

Instead of prying straight up the middle, which tends to split the shake, pry gently from the bottom sides. First on one side, then the other, until it loosens.

This way the shakes don't split and can be repurposed for other projects!

Further Renovation Updates

We had known for a while that the seal on this window to the right of the fireplace was blown. It gets moisture in between the panes.

Once Mike was able to see from closer up, he realized the pane was actually cracked. So we ended up removing that window completely.

Thankfully he found a local glass shop that can build the new window by early next week! Until then, we have a cardboard window lol.

I've also been working to narrow down my design choices for the finishes of the room. This is not easy because I love so many different styles and aesthetics. 

I keep going between dark and moody and lighter and serene. Hopefully I can figure it all out soon, because I'm a little concerned about lead times on furniture.

Our Project Work List

I know this list will grow longer and more specific, but for now here are the main jobs that need to be done:

Remove shakes from upper walls
Remove popcorn finish from upper wall
Install drywall
Remove & replace window
Install wide plank pine floors
Install door trim
Install wall trim
Install chandelier
Install a reclaimed beam mantel
Install fireplace trim
Install doors for bathroom and closet
Decorate (this is open-ended lol)

As always, thanks for stopping by and following along with our renovation projects!