Sunday, May 18, 2008

The West Roof

Friday evening was a complete downpour. Hours and hours of steady rain. Saturday, on the other hand, turned out absolutely beautiful. Sunny, low 70's, low humidity, and that perfect crystal clear air that you only see right after a storm. A great day for building.

We worked on three main things on Saturday; installing the roof, installing more insulation, and cleaning out the house. Andy and Chris were there first, then a local friend came by to help for a few hours. Mindy and the boys showed up a couple hours before lunch, and Karen came by just after lunch, when she got out of work. Eventually we were all there, and all busy.

We had never installed a metal roof before, so there was a bit of fiddling as we learned what to do with it all. Chris spoke with John at FirstDay during the week about overhang, cutting the metal, how to carry it, and a few other things.

A few things to note: our Canadian model has nearly 1,600 sq. ft. of roofing area. Each roof piece is 3' wide and 24' long. They are heavy, awkward, and in the sun they get hot. Seriously hot. Too hot to touch, in fact, and we learned to move our hands quickly. Even so, we both ended up with sore spots on our left hands where we braced against the roof. John recommends a cordless drill for this job. We agree that it would be slightly easier without cords, but we chose to spend $4 on gas rather than $100 for two inexpensive cordless drills.

This is how we began:

1) Measure the roof to see if it's square. It was pretty close, and the roof peak was about 1/4" longer than the bottom edge of the roof.

2) Carry a roof piece to the corner of the house that will be seen first. This was a tip from John, and since that corner happens to be on the right hand side of the roof, it worked out well.

3) Place the roof piece with the correct amount of overhang, as measured from the roof peak.

4) Punch a hole in the roof with a 20d nail, then screw the roof piece in place in that one spot only.

5) Measure the bottom of the roof piece to ensure it is aligned with the same amount of overhang as the top.

6) Punch a hole and screw the bottom in place.

7) Andy then worked from the top, and punched a hole at each lathing strip location in the middle of the metal roof's valleys.

8) Chris worked from the top with a drill, and screwed the roof in place, working each row from right to left.

9) When Andy had punched every hole, he began from the bottom of the roof piece with his own drill and screws.

In this picture, you can also see a bit more insulation put up on the South wall. We dropped quite a few screws off the roof as we were working, and we were impressed with how far away from the house they landed. More than six feet!

This view will change soon... Karen and Mindy want to move one of the kitchen windows. Andy and Chris don't. So we've all agreed on a compromise: Andy and Chris will move the window.

Remember way back to a few months ago, when I used to post a shot from this location at the end of every day? That seems like a long time ago... in a galaxy far, far away. Anyway, here's the roof from that spot against the cherry tree. The roof comes to within about 2" of the peak of insulation. The ridge peak will overlap several inches on both sides of the roof.

The roof droops a bit on the North side. We'll correct that when we finish the exterior siding and frame the lip under the metal eaves. Until then, maybe we'll put up something so it doesn't look like it's going to flop over.

Saturday's work ended with darkening clouds and the sound of thunder. The West roof is nearly done, and two strips are up on the East roof, too. The rest of it is tarped until we get back up there next weekend.

Mindy and the boys cleaned the house out beautifully - every wood scrap and every bit of sawdust is out of the house, and boy does it look good. They also cleaned out a bird's nest. Yes, another one... this one was in Chris and Karen's bedroom, and had a couple eggs in it. Too bad for the birds, and we're sorry we didn't see it sooner.

Karen helped Benson moving wood around outside and on insulation. We'll all be happy when the insulation is finished. It's stinky, noisy to cut, and tastes bad. Yeah. Don't ask.


Jenn said...

Wow! The house looks great. I like the window compromise...sounds like girl power to me!

Chad and Oléa Gough Family said...

I love your posts! Who is writing this? You make me laugh!!
Loved the window compromise and sorry, but I have to ask... who tasted the insulation?
I love watching the progress!!!

The Wests. said...

:) Thank you both.

Chris handles the blog and tastes the insulation. When the wind blows it into your face, it's like a bitter, full-bodied pixie stick. Nasty.

Andy likes to munch on hardened tree sap (he calls them lemon drops), so it's not as though Chris is the only one with dietary challenges.