8x12 Shed Spring 2011 #4: Laying out the rafters

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Blog entry by JonH posted 03-28-2011 10:20 PM 4510 reads 0 times favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 3: Day 3, Wall framing finished up and siding begins Part 4 of 8x12 Shed Spring 2011 series Part 5: Day 5, We sheet the roof! »

Lets just once again thank Mr. Albert J. Swanson for his wonderful invention of the Speed Square. I do not remember my Dad ever having these, he always used the traditional framing square. I have both in my woodshop, and both are great. The little book that comes with the Swanson speed square is awesome. Here is some info about the speed square. I have to give it some love, it makes laying out rafters so easy!

Once we laid out and stood up our walls, we began working on the rafters on Day 4. Using the speed square and the little blue book, we knocked them right out. One thing we messed up on was the actual thickness of the shed. In order to lay out the bird’s mouth for the rafters, we had to account for the thickness of the siding in addition to the 8’ width of the wall framing. Once we had that figured out, they went up fine.

Tools of the trade

Laying out a rafter

Finished product

3 comments so far

View Ritty's profile


63 posts in 3307 days

#1 posted 03-29-2011 12:41 AM

it doesnt look like there is any ridge beam, or maybe i cant see it, and its coming out great

View Howie's profile


2656 posts in 3434 days

#2 posted 03-29-2011 12:46 AM

Respectable looking project. Good job!

-- Life is good.

View sblg43's profile


44 posts in 3575 days

#3 posted 04-24-2011 07:05 AM

After I read this, I went looking for the Swanson Speed Square and the little blue book. I do work at a True Value hardware store and guess what I found! Yep, I got myself a genuine Swanson Speed Square! The Square itself is of much better quality than the two cheap ones that I had already. Thanks for the Swanson info.

I am building a nearly identical shed. Thanks for the info. Keep it coming!

-- If you want perfection, buy plastic, if you want character, buy wood!

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