More progress was made

Illustration for article titled More progress was made

This being a holiday weekend, I had a whole day and a half to work uninterrupted! Saturday morning was rained out, so I couldn’t get out there until early afternoon. I started by finishing the front wall.

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Illustration for article titled More progress was made

After that, the rest of the daylight was spent making gussets for the rafters.

Illustration for article titled More progress was made
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After making one to spec, I used it as the template for all the rest. This would have been a lot easier if I could have located the miter fence for my table saw, but I couldn’t, so I cut the parts with my skill saw. All of the gussets were ripped from a 4 x 8 sheet of OSB, the remainder which became a makeshift workbench. The completed gussets are sitting on the left side of the bench.

Sunday arrived with clear skies, bright sun, and a slight chill in the air! It was time to make some rafters! But first, I had to add one piece of siding to square up the wall and provide support. The cross-bracing on that wall was one of the boards destined to become a rafter.

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Illustration for article titled More progress was made

To start making the rafters, I began by marking the center of one of the uncut rafters. After aligning the center with the one of the floor joists and marking the sill plate, I drove a nail into the floor at one end to use as a stop. That made it easy to mark the other rafters - just slide it to the stop and mark it. Once marked, it could be cut. Then I marked two 27° angles and cut those. I only did a couple that way before I realized I could just mark the centerline, use it to mark the angles, then just cut the angles. That saved me a cut and was a little easier than trying to cut off such a small triangle.

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Illustration for article titled More progress was made

After cutting the top angles, it was time to add a bird’s mouth to each end so the rafter would sit securely on top of the wall. To make that as easy and consistent as possible, I made a template out of cardboard, marked each board, then cut them with a jig saw.

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Illustration for article titled More progress was made

Template applied.

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Bird’s mouth cut

Illustration for article titled More progress was made
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Then it was back to the floor where I could align the halves and add the gusset. I used the same center mark along with a couple of nails in the floor to set the correct angle.

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This one already has one gusset in place and a second one awaiting proper alignment and screws.

Illustration for article titled More progress was made
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After that, it was just repeat the steps until I had them all made. My son and I worked together to get them on top of the walls and locked into place. I bought hurricane ties to attach them. The drill battery died before the first one went up, so each of them started with two nails. I added temporary supports so I could make the rafters plumb, then we went back and added screws once the battery was charged.

Illustration for article titled More progress was made
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After that, we were running out of daylight, so we put away the tools and supplies. Next week... the roof!

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