It doesn’t happen often, but what do you do if a bottle brick (bottle end) breaks?  It’s a matter of chipping out the broken glass.  Establishing a relatively clean line, and then infilling with another piece of bottle end (cut with a tile saw or using the hot and cold water technique), or a log end piece that is the correct diameter.

Here are some pictures of how we have handled broken glass.

First, you put on safety equipment and chip the broken bottle with a screwdriver or a chisel. 

If you are doing the replacement in a heated house, it is important to maintain the thermal integrity of the wall.  You can stuff it with just about anything, but the foam will grab the nails/screws in the log end and hold on. 

This could also be a bottle end that has been cleanly cut on a tile saw or using the hot and cold water scoring technique. 

These were cut with a tile saw and are ready for making 8″ bottle bricks, but a 4″ section could be used for bottle repair.

If you choose to replace the bottle end with wood, you can taper it so it makes a tight fit.  Then you can use a mortar slurry or some form of Permachink to smoothly tuck-point the bottle or wood to blend into the wall.  

Above is a wall with two broken bottles that have been replaced (blue and green round bottles).

This article (below) shows how to make bottle bricks.

Should you wish to learn how to build a cordwood cottage, cabin or home, please visit   While you are there, click on the pictures, read the brief articles, check out the latest workshops and newsletter and if you are interested click on the Online Bookstore to see all the cordwood literature available in print and ebook format.

If you have questions that aren’t answered on the website you can email me at  

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Readers have requested a brief bio, so here goes:

“Richard & Becky Flatau built their mortgage-free cordwood home in 1979 in Merrill, Wisconsin. Since then, they have written books, conducted workshops, facilitated the 2005,  2011 and 2015 Cordwood Conferences and provided consultation for cordwood builders.  Cordwood Construction: Best Practices DVD,  Cordwood Construction Best Practices (print) and Cordwood Conference Papers 2015 are the newest publications available from their online cordwood bookstore.”