'The true Soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because He loves what is behind him.' -G. K. Chesterton

03 October 2011


We have three buildings to re-roof. I decided to start with the smallest just to get warmed up and back in the groove. Of course it's also the most steeply sloped so my chances of falling off and getting hurt just added to the joy. Did I mention it's been in the high 90's? Bah, enough whining. Let's get some work done.

Tools and my assistant. Isn't he cute? And such a help. He hated me being on the roof and ladder and insisted that if I really loved him I'd let him up there with me.

The old roof has been stripped and trimmed. I had to cut four inches off the soffets and five off the gables. The old wood was weathered where it was unpainted so off it came. I put up 30 pound felt. Here's half of the first side shingled. It doesn't look it but that roof was too steep to walk on so I was reduced to shingling as far as I could from the ladder and then lying/kneeling on the roof while grabbing the peak and shingling one handed. Lu was at work so luckily there's no pictures of that particular feat of stupidity.

The North side is done. By this time I was pretty much finished so I left off here. You're not supposed to leave felt open to the elements longer than one day so we were up early on Sunday to finish. That roof is exactly four inches longer than three full shingles. Sigh. The old soffets were enclosed and rotting. I found wasp nests, spider webs and all manner of nastiness in there. I decided heck with it. I tore it all off and am going with open beam soffets. Hey, it's a country home.

I had Lu for my helper on Sunday and managed to get the South side done in no time. Unfortunately we were in such a hurry we failed to get any pictures so you'll have to let your imagination fill in. I was alternating between the ladder, standing atop the chain link fence that runs below the south side and that same kneeling/lying/one handed shingling technique. It was classic white trash "Hey y'all, watch this!"

On Monday it was time for the roof caps. They're charcoal, just a shade darker that the shingles but close enough. Think that building needs to be painted?

And not a moment too soon. As I write this it's raining. It's funny but roof caps are spotty here. Most of the time they just trim a shingle and lap it over the peak. I think that's a bad idea so spent the extra for actual caps. Did I mention I got those shingles gratis? I was perusing craigslist free stuff and found a mention of these shingles sitting out in the open high desert. About 10 bundles worth. Lu and I went out, found them and scooped them up. Many were cracked and torn but I had plenty for this project. The rest will be trimmed and used as a starter course for the house and gym/washroom building. Those projects are still a month or so away, depending on weather.

I love free stuff, especially when good shingles start at about 30 bucks a bundle. Car Guy loaned me his pneumatic nailer and 4 cases of nails (thanks brother!) so the installation went much faster than hand nailing. Seriously, I've roofed both ways. Spend the money to rent or buy a nailer. Your hands and back will thank you.

All in all this was a three day job plus a little. Day 1 was spent taking off the old roof, trimming the wood and priming the raw surfaces. Day 2 was prep and North side. Day 3 was the South side. The plus was about 45 minutes putting on the roof caps.

Next up on the roofing front is the main house and the back building which currently houses the wash room and my gym. Both are much larger and the wash room building is going to need some sheathing work (just wait until you see that abortion). They'll take longer, especially as the main house has seven, count 'em 7, layers of shingles on it. I'm renting a dumpster just to haul off those several tons of old shingles. Still, I'm back in the roofing groove and have everything set up and ready to go. Bubba gots mad skillz.

Roofing, electrical, sheetrock, paint, plumbing, landscaping. Sigh. No rest for the wicked.



God, Gals, Guns, Grub said...

We went from the three-tab to dimensional shingles when we re-roofed a couple of years ago... very pleased so far...

Dann in Ohio

Six said...

Good to know Dann. They're so much easier to put up I'll never go back to three tab.

Sarge said...

Good Job, it looks great now but just wait until you get the paint on.
Well done!!

Six said...

Thanks Sarge. Gotta keep the neighbors happy :)