Question for Tinner

Are you going to be around this weekend?

I’d like to show you some photos of a slate job that has some issues, and wondered if you knew a better way to address an issue than what I know. I’ll have to download the photos and send them to you, but I’m going to be working on the report this weekend so I can send it out on Monday.

You see guys; as a consultant, I’m not afraid to ask questions when I believe someone knows more than I do about a system, detail, etc. Just like I turn to Aaron when I have foam questions.

why not put the pictures here so we can all see them ? who knows maybee there are some other roofing profesionals on here that may also help you.

Here or E-mail is fine. I’m at WhiteTail but have unlimited access and I think better bare anyway. :smiley:

Alright, you, RooferJ, or whomever. Here is my question, and I’m not asking what will work or if it is good enough, etc., I’m wanting to know what is correct:

I’m looking at a slate roof with copper flashings on this nice little house.

And along the edge, you can see the roofer has laid the first few starter slate with chamfered edge down; unfortunately, the I&WS stop short.

However, the problem is there is no cant strip (or in tile speak, anti-ponding strip) behind the trim board along fascia, and it causes the slate to bridge the height change between the trim board and roof deck.

And, of course, there is this problem.

So, here is what I need to know. I’ve seen drip edge with a raised edge for slate, and I’ve seen a manufacturer show the cant strip behind the trim board. How is the edge actually supposed to be done with regard to the wood? Should top of trim board be even with roof deck? Can the GC just remove and lower the trim board? Should they just install the required cant strip?

Next question. Do you have a full-proof easy way to fix the edge without pulling a bunch of slate? And I don’t want a bunch of bibs or a flashing strip.

As for the rest of it, I saw the chimney in the valley and a slew of other issues, but I was wondering what you happen to know about the proper way to start slate and wood along fascia. Ideally, I’d think you’d want your trim board chamfered so the copper flashing extends from roof deck over trim board, and the starter slate would provide the proper angle on the first row of slate.

The void concerns me because the slate isn’t fully supported, but other than the ponding you can see in the last photo, I don’t know if it should. Your thoughts?

They used to hang a piece of 1/4" wood lath on copper wire about 2" up from the facia. The starters or “undereaves” as some slaters call them will have chamfered edge down with proper overhang. many times they are also set in red slaters cement as is the first course. some jobs instead of the lath you can either make a metal piece up or do my favorite and install a double starter. By the picture I think your carpenters screwed up, you may need a layer of wood shingles to act as shims or change the facia.

This is why I don’t care for “roof consultants”.


Here’s a quick link, slateandcopperroofrestoratio … uards.html and I think I have some detail drawings.

gonna be hard to fix without pulling all the slate.

Why is that? Because we don’t know 100% about every single roof system?

I walked on a job for the first time on Friday, and that is what I found. I know with clay tile what you have to do, and being from the east coast I am fairly familiar with slate, but generally speaking my area of expertise is low-sloped roofing.

As for not liking roof consultants, I’m always leery of those that don’t like my presence as it typically means their work is not up to standards. In other words, contractors that don’t care for roof consultants are generally contractors that have the most to fear from a consultant. If you do good work, a consultant is actually to your benefit. So again, I have to wonder why you don’t like consultants.

And just so you know, this is part of my research with regard to finding a solution to a perceived problem. How much roof research do you do on a daily basis? And you do realize that I was a commercial roofer for about 10 years first, right?


Here’s a quick link, slateandcopperroofrestoratio … uards.html, and I think I have some detail drawings.

gonna be hard to fix without pulling all the slate.[/quote]

Thanks for the link, I’ll take a look.

Yeah, I’ve already told the GC I don’t see anyway around removing the slate already installed. I figured if anyone knew, it might be tinner or someone else on this board that lives from Va on up to Maine along the east coast.

BTW, Dennis, I didn’t see any detail drawings in your link. Of course that won’t help the roofer anyway, because he shows a shim and cant strip along the perimeter on his submittal drawings. For now, I’m just trying to find an acceptable solution to a problem if I can, before telling the roofer they need to start all over again. Afterall, the real issue here is the fact the roofing contractor should never have started the slate installation if there was a problem along the roof perimeter; by doing so, he accepted the roof deck construction as suitable to receive his roof.

Nothg wrong with consultants, unless there head gets to big,the ones i’ve dealt with (except one whos head got to big)have actually been a benifit for me and my co.and a couple of them i know use to roof because i use to roof with them 25-30yrs ago.

Somtimes its just a roofer who got a bad back, and does somthing that still makes use of his roofing knowledge.

From what I see, you need to get a new roofer, then start all over.

Otherwise, a heavy drip edge (6-8"wide) pushed up under the slate from the eave and secured to the fascia would be a simple solution. (For that area. :smiley: )

[quote=“dennis”]From what I see, you need to get a new roofer, then start all over.

Otherwise, a heavy drip edge (6-8"wide) pushed up under the slate from the eave and secured to the fascia would be a simple solution. (For that area. :smiley: )[/quote]

The contractor wants to install a new piece of drip edge with a wider flange to help bridge the height change, but the owner doesn’t want any band-aids and such on his new, expensive, slate roof. Can’t say I blame the guy, considering how much coin he must be dropping on his house.

Other issues.THe starters ‘appear’ to be slate turned sideways. If so, it’s wrong.
Chamfered edge does go down.

THe hip should have about a 3/8" by 3" nailer along both sides, as should the ridge. The field slates terminte there, then you have something to nail the cap and soakers into.

On the eves, I prefer the old way. Roof deck extending 1/2" to 3/4" past the fascia, wrapped in I&W. Then, a metal cant/drip edge combo. EIther a single piece, or two pieces.

What’s the headlap? 3" is minimum on that and I’d personally go with 4". ( Might be why I don’t get some bids).

Tinner, if the starters have enough headlap and the butt joints are staggered far enough from the first course is it still wrong? If so why?

Shangle, the L and W never match up for butt and headlap, AND nailhole location. You’re just always juggling to get things equal. And seldom does a slates width give you a proper headlap.
Your two correct and easiest to implement choices are to either cut wht you want, or order a specic size to use for starters when placing your slate order.

They are the narrower hip and ridge cap slate that are turned sideways, and like I stated, they did put the chamfered side down.

Do you agree the slate needs to be supported along the eaves with the cant?

To me, the answer seems to be to remove the slate that were already installed. Lower the trim board as needed so outer edge of trim board matches the roof deck plane. Install copper flashing, strip in with I&WS, and then properly reinstall slate. Do you see another way, and does that seem like the only proper solution to you as well?

It does seem like the proper solution. And have the starters replaced with starter slate; ie, cut regular ones down for proper headlap, depending on slte size, with the chamfered edge down. No real waste because the cut off bottoms can be used at the ridge, ‘depending’ on how they get laid out.
I know they’re supposed to be suppored with the ‘cant’. I have seen them supported with a raised fascia on ocassion. I can’t say it’s right, but the unprotected fascia will rot in places. Just from what I’ve seen around here.

Start over before it gets far.

How were they going to attach hip and ridge without making any allowance along the hips for it? The pix you have indicate they ran the field flush.

We were discussing that as well. Who knows? I’ve only been to the site once, spoke to the GC and the homeowner, but haven’t seen the roofer as yet. When I do, I suspect he is going to hate me. Oh well, people do this to themselves.

Anyway, thanks tinner and everyone. Basically, what I’m hearing is that I was correct in believing the best thing to do is re-address the perimeter. Can’t say I didn’t try to find an easy solution to the roofer’s problem.

FWIW, in the end the roofing contractor agreed to remove the slate and start again, especially after I showed him where using a regular slate turned sideways as your starter causes you to lose your sidelap ever so-many slate. So, we’ll be starting all over again, but this time they are going to install the cant strip and wood furring strips along hip and ridges first; along with other changes . . . I hated being the one to tell them the bad news, and he didn’t like it, but finally agreed to it.

I think they were most offended when told they could not run “racks” in slate like you do shingles. The foreman showed me how he pops another hole in to the one side and gets two nails in the slate. I asked him if he would do an entire house that way and he said no, and I told him it was because he knew it was wrong. :mrgreen: Now granted, the slate wouldn’t go anywhere, but he ends up with nails too close to the side laps among other things. It’s just wrong.

Of course, the main question I asked was “why would you do that?” Forget about being able to pop a second nail hole into the slate, why run slate wrong to begin with? :roll: