advice on my new wood finishing shop

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Forum topic by Carol posted 07-19-2018 09:17 PM 715 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Carol's profile


87 posts in 1287 days

07-19-2018 09:17 PM

Topic tags/keywords: shed roof truss

should prob add i’m in southeastern coastal va, very little snow, 5/12 roof slope.

decided to start finishing my pieces in a new shed; 12×20 gable pre-fab.

the shed roof (made by graceland sheds) was made using simple trusses, 16oc, which get in my way and i’d like to open up the ceiling.

my plan is to sister 2×4s or 6s with the bottom chord of every 3rd truss to make a beam, then remove the bottom chord of the remaining trusses. i’d end up with 4 “beams” 48” oc, and a couple extra 2bys to shore up each gable end.

talked to a handyman/carpenter but he just looked confused (he’s kinda of a young guy)

i know this isn’t directly related to woodworking, but i’m hoping somebody out there has some experience or advice for me. i’ve tried to find a structural engineer but no luck. started with the folks who actually make the sheds; they must have hired an eng for the initial truss design, but don’t have access to one anymore.

the next thing i tried was calling a local engineering firm. for $2,500 they’ll do a site survey…for a shed… :/

-- Carol

5 replies so far

View JCamp's profile


1182 posts in 1325 days

#1 posted 07-19-2018 09:27 PM

Well it would depend on roof pitch and what weight you’ll have on it if you can get by with it. I will say when I built the building at my last house I did 3ft on center and it was just fine but I did have a center beam running down it. The building was 16ft wide and the beam was set up at the 8ft mark running the full length of the building.
My buddy is great and crazy at stretching a dollar and he built a very large barn and did actual rafters 4 ft on center. To me that’s to far apart but the barn is about 5 years old and looks fine.
Both buildings mentioned had metal roofs… I’d say you could do it. I’m sure there’s a engineer on here somewhere that might chime in with the math that’s well above my head though. If I was you I’d give it a go. Might remove just a couple to see how it handles itself. I think from what u described those boards r more to keep the walls from leaning. Also keep in mind they likely delivered that building on the back of a truck that went +50mph so it should b tough. Lol

-- Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with all thy might

View WyattCo's profile


93 posts in 879 days

#2 posted 07-19-2018 09:54 PM

Thickness of roofing sheathing?

View Rich's profile


5619 posts in 1364 days

#3 posted 07-19-2018 10:51 PM

If you remove the lower member from those trusses, then the load on them will be pushing the walls outward. Might not be what you want. You could have used different truss configurations that formed a pitched ceiling.

Given the solid structure you have, and the marginal load you anticipate (no snow, etc), one thing you could consider is moving the horizontal members half way up on all of the trusses. That would give you extra headroom and still maintain the integrity of the trusses. It would also give you that extra headroom down the full length of the space. You could do the change one-by-one so you’d never have a weakened structure.

-- Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

View Carol's profile


87 posts in 1287 days

#4 posted 07-22-2018 03:56 PM

i like the idea of moving the bottom members up; way more headroom. i’ve been trying to read up on how engineers plan this stuff but i really need engineering for dummies…can’t find :)

think i’m going to add 2×4 support just below the ridge before i do anything else; that’ll give me a little flat ceiling for a fan and light.

i’d plan on adding all structural members before removing anything

i didn’t know when i bought this one, but a different shed builder in town already does something like this. :/

-- Carol

View bondogaposis's profile


5790 posts in 3126 days

#5 posted 07-22-2018 06:03 PM

I wouldn’t do it, if it was mine. It is not just snow load that you have to worry about. How about wind? If your building starts to wrack in a wind storm it will be weakened, and maybe the next wind storm will take it out. Do you get hurricanes in your area? I would not make any modifications without consulting a structural engineer.

-- Bondo Gaposis

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