In my last video installment of building a new garden shed on my farm, I wrapped my new outbuilding in sheeting material. The new siding really pulled together the progress this project has undergone. Now it’s time to get to work on the rafters so I can get a roof on this building.
First, when I grab a board for a rafter, I’m going to look down the edge of it for the natural crown, which I want to put up or to the outside. Then I’ll take the board inside my farm garden shed and lay it on the top plates. This first rafter board is especially important, because it will serve as the template I’ll use to determine the cut length for all the others. So I need to make sure I get this cut right!
If you, like me, are no seasoned carpenter, plan on taking your time with these cuts. Also, I should note, I’m choosing to make cuts in my frame for the rafters to sit in rather than use hurricane straps, simply because I think it’ll make for stronger joints.
In the video you’ll see how I determine and mark my cuts on the rafter boards.
Determining Roof Pitch
Because I’m not building my farm garden shed using plans, I need to take a few minutes to determine the pitch of the roof. This requires some simple math. First I measure the height of the front wall, followed by getting the height of the back wall.
Then I’ll use the Pythagorean theory to determine the roof’s pitch or, if I want to keep things simple, find an online calculator to get that number.
Making the Cuts
As I don’t cut wood all day for a living, I need to take some extra steps to ensure I get my cuts right. For that, I created a simple “cheater board” to help me repeat accurate cuts.
Check out the video to see how I created this template board and the rest of the steps for cutting and installing rafters on my new farm garden shed.