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Author Topic: Shingle Roofs & Walls
Chilterns
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Posts: 169
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Post Shingle Roofs & Walls
on: June 12, 2013, 09:33
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Shingles can be made from many different types of durable hardwoods including oak and sweet chestnut however durable softwoods such as larch and western red cedar can also be used. Even some hardwoods that are usually considered to be perishable such as aspen are used in cold weather climates such as Russia and Scandinavia however these are given a liberal soaking with pine tar prior to fixing same onto the roof.

The shingles are first split out from a short section of tree trunk using a froe.

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These can be further split in the break to provide thinner shingles as demonstrated by Ruth Goodfellow.

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The finished product needs to be "dead" knot free and ideally "live" knot free to help ensure a long leak proof service.

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TV 's "Grand Designs" presenter Kevin McLeod used oak wood shingles to cover the roof and walls of his woodland shelter.

Ruth Goodfellow fixed the shingles to the roof and walls of the building.

Watch Ruth making shingles at Westonbirt Arboretum.

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The building was completely covered with shingles on the roof and long wall along one side of the building.

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Brian Williamson & Ruth Goodfellow will fix oak wood shingles to the roof of the Harcourt Arboretum woodland shelter roof starting 29th July thru August 2013

Chilterns

Ken Hume
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Posts: 624
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Post Re: Shingle Roofs & Walls
on: April 22, 2015, 17:54
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I thought that I would have a go at making larch shingles using an 16" long section of nominal 12" diameter (38" girth) larch log cut from the base of a recently felled larch tree to make a long sill for our woodland cruck project.

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The butt log was first quartered through the heart of the log using a large 14" froe and the sides cleaned using a Wetterlings broad axe.

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The shingles were split out from the quarters and the sapy edges removed to ensure heartwood only shingles with the sapwood being recovered to make kindling

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This resulted in the production of 28 shingles approx 0.75 - 1" thick x :-

6.25" wide x 4 off
5" wide x 4 off
4.5" wide x 10 off
4" wide x 4 off
3.5" wide x 3 off
2.75" wide x 3 off

i.e. a grand total of 13.55 sq ft [ 1.259 sq m]

or 0.903 cu ft from a 1.047 cu ft log resulting in a conversion efficiency of 86% shingles & 14% kindling.

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After draw knifing and trimming the shingles were butted up tight on a flat floor resulting in a string of shingles 112" long x 16" high equivalent to 12.44 sq ft or 0.829 cu ft from a 1.047 log resulting in an actual conversion efficiency of 79.2% with 20.76% waste in the form of kindling and trimmings. A more accurate measure of conversion efficiency could be obtained by weighing the log before and the shingles after conversion.

The volume of timber needed to cover a 30 ft long x 16 ft high (slope) roof in shingles with 3 shingle overlap on 4" lath spacing is about 8640 shingles with a cumulative volume of 300 cu ft [9 cu m] i.e. as much and maybe a little bit more than is needed to make a 30 x 16.5 ft cruck timber frame.

Ken Hume

Ken Hume
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Posts: 624
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Post Re: Shingle Roofs & Walls
on: April 29, 2015, 08:55
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Following splitting out and flatening of the larch shingles the two shingles highlighted above were inspected and the following observations made :-

The front or top face of the shingles is deliberately left in an as split condition so that the grooves created by the annual growth rings can duct rainwater straight down the length of the shingle rather than allow this to spread out across the shingle.

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The rear face of the shingle has been draw knifed to flatten and smooth same so that it lies flat but not to the extent that air flow under the shingle is eliminated thereby helping to encourage air flow under the shingles to promote rapid drying to reduce the propensity for rot to become established.

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Inspection of the underside face identified that what appeared to be a tight pin knot on the top surface was in fact an empty dead knot which might allow rainwater to leak through the shingle and hence it is prudent to split off the affected section. In this case the since the knot is near the centre of the tree and edge of the shingle it is easy to simply split this off and trim the edge of the shingle to make a slightly narrower shingle and piece of kindling.

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Because the shingles will be triple laid it is not really necessary to remove all pin or loose pin knots where these will be covered by layer two or three however it must be recognised that any top surface leak water that manages to drip through the gaps between the shingles may run down to top surface of the under layers and hence tracking of rainwater leaks and replacing of defective shingles might proove to be quite difficult.

Ken Hume - OWG Trustee

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