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Building the Woodshop: Part VIII - Roofing


 Ah, the hard work was done...  Or was it?  I got the roof framed, and it was time now to get it shingled.   Before I get to that, the last little bit of framing needed to happen - the cupola.  Here you can see the base I had constructed while framing up the roof:


You can also see the roofing materials nowhere near I wanted them to be - I wanted them on the roof, but there they are on the ground...  Of course, they are the heavy ones - architectural layered shingles, which basically means each bundle weighs twice as much as a regular bundle...  but I digress... 

Here's a rear view of the building, showing the cupola framing and the rear overhang I neglected to include in the last installment of this unending adventure:


It was much easier to frame up the cupola on the ground, as there were several angled cuts to make and it's easier to make any adjustments where the saw is closer than a run down the ladder...  besides, that 8/12 pitch is hard enough to stand on.  That - and I wanted to make sure I got the weather vane installed properly.  I purchased it from The Weathervane Factory located in Bar Harbor Maine.  I had considered something more whimsical, but in the end I am happy with this purchase - it fits the finished design of the building quite well.  Here is the framed cupola, complete with vane, on the floor of the shop:


And - of course - in it's final resting place on the top center of the shop:


The cupola is a functioning roof vent, along with gable vents at each end - there should be plenty of air traveling through the attic space with this setup.   I used pre-made louvers just to save on time and keep them a bit more maintenance free...   In retrospect, I think if I were to build it now, I would use a larger roof on it - something with a little Asian influence - but, I'm not going to tear the thing down for it!

Anyhow - I had the roof sheathed now, the cupola framed and in place, and all that was left was to heft all the shingles up onto the roof.  By my calculations, it was going to take about 18-1/2 square or so, or 56 bundles.  That's 56 trips up the ladder carrying some god-awful heavy material.  Of course - it was mid August, the hottest part of the year... You can't shingle a roof unless it either the hottest or coldest part of the year, you know.


I have mentioned that one of the reasons I was able to build my own shop was because I had become my dad's caregiver after mom passed away.   Dad had come to live with us right at  New Year's, and did quite well at first.  But it was about at this time that his condition (Alzheimer's) became quite severe.  It made working on the shop during the day difficult at best...  Dad had taken to wandering off on me, wouldn't come out to the shop to "help" me any longer, and I couldn't leave him by himself for more than about 10 to 15 minutes, even if he was sleeping.  Usually I would have to wait for my wife to get home from her work to "take over" for me so I could work on the roofing in the evening.  The nights were long, and the weather cooler in the evening, so it wasn't all bad, I guess...  

We took him in to see a doctor and she suggested we contact Hospice of North Idaho - that they might be able to help us out.  What a godsend those people were...  They came out three times a week, giving dad care and me some time to run errands and get some work done.  I cannot thank them enough for their exemplary service, they were truly wonderful.

As a result, I don't have any photos of progress on the roof so here it is magically complete, about a week after Labor Day:


It took me about a month to get it from the picture before to that one.  First to go up was the class A chimney for the wood stove, the mast for the electrical service, then the fascia board followed by the shingle underlayment   Here you can see the mast for the electrical service, and my temporary scaffolding re-erected after being torn down when the roof framing was completed:


It was no fun doing this side of the roof - an 8:12 pitch gets hard to stand on after a while, and I'm no fan of heights...  It took all of my courage at some points.  I did use roof jacks for this side, which made it easier. 

It ended up taking about 19 squares of shingles to complete, I used the heaviest kind (of course!), an architectural "layered" shingle that has a 35 year warranty.  What I really remember is how exhausted I was by this time...  When I did work on the shop, it was at a frantic pace.  The shingles were heavy, of course - and I can still feel the pain in my shoulder from lifting them into place.  I had to wear tape over my fingertips, as rubbing the stone on the shingles had worn my fingernails down to where they were bloody.  Worst of all was that Dad was a 24 hour a day job, as he had no sense of day or night anymore. 

Dad was rapidly getting worse, and I stopped work on the shop to spend time with him.  He passed away on the 21st of September.


The next month was spent bringing him back to his home to be buried next to mom, and to get together with family to decide what to do with their estate. 

Getting back, it was well into October.  Life was about to change for me - no longer tied to the house, I needed to get back out into the workforce.  My focus now was on updating my resume and on storing what I had received as an inheritance from the estate.  When I started the shop, we had no idea how long dad was going to be with us, and there was a finite amount of money to work with.  We had it worked out where once the shop was complete, dad and I could start working out of it, making money out of it, hopefully enough to allow me to remain as his caregiver.  It turned out that wasn't to be, the time with him was too short, and the shop was incomplete.  I wasn't far enough along with it for it to work for its income, so it would have to take the back burner while I once again joined the 9 to 5'ers.

When everything was settled, I did spend some time on the shop buttoning it up for the coming winter.  First was to put some siding on the cupola so the flashing would keep out the rains:


Next was to get the windows and doors installed so the building would be enclosed:


It was finally starting to look like a building!  The overhead door is a 10' x 10' "residential" door from Overhead Door... I'm quite disappointed in it, it's not a very tough door and the panel with the windows is too high to look out of - the only other option would have been to have them be too low... 

I also got the electrical panel hooked up so there was power, but that was about it for the winter.  The next thing I knew, I was reporting daily to a new job and my time for working on the shop was drastically cut back to a few hours a week.  With the cold weather and darkness of winter approaching, not much would happen until spring could shake off the icy grip of what seemed to be the longest, coldest winter...  But there were a few things I could do...

Coming up next - knee braces and some other miscellaneous structural work, and hooking up the electrical...