A Rainy Roofing Day

Sunday, November 30, 2014

I had kind of a rough day yesterday. I wanted to work on the tiny house, but everything I tried seemed to get impeded in someway. It didn’t help that it was so wet out. That kept me from making any forward progress on the roof, which is what I really wanted to do.

The good thing that happened yesterday was that I finally got my gable trim bent into the shape that I wanted. It cost me $120 to do it, but at least it’s done now. As soon as I saw it, I knew I would have two reshape my gable trim. The dimensions of this trim were so large that the overhanging edge would have completely covered up my beautiful cedar fascia, which I decided was completely unacceptable. At first, I tried to solve the problem myself by going over to the tech shop in San Jose with my property co-owner, Ian. Unfortunately, it turned out that the metal brake they had in the shop was only 4 feet long, not 6 feet long. Ian and I tried everything we could think of to fit the 6 foot piece of trim into the 4 foot metal brake, but it was soon clear it just wasn’t going to happen. So instead, I took my trim over to Steel Werx and let the owner, Paul, perform his metal working magic. It was fun to watch Paul work. He even let me help a little bit. Using very long metal welding table, a bunch of metal bar stock, some great clamps and a little bit of elbow grease, we were able to bend all of the metal into the exact profiles I had imagined. If I had known how much he was going to charge me for the 45 minutes he spent working on my trim, watching him would have been a little less enjoyable. But for that brief period of ignorant bliss when I saw my trim problems evaporating, I was pretty happy. I’m still pretty happy about it; I’m just a little lighter in the pocket (if there’s one thing my tiny house is good at, it’s making me lighter in the pocket).

Gable Trim Before (Way Too Big for my Tiny House)

Gable Trim Before (Way Too Big for my Tiny House)

Gable Trim After (Just Right)

Gable Trim After (Just Right)

While I was gone, Sheila finished cutting up the rest of my panels and then went to work painting the bottom, underside edges of each panel red so that they match the top when you look underneath the eaves. It was a little bit extra work to do this, but I think the final effect will be quite nice.

Sheila Painting the Panel Undersides

Sheila Painting the Panel Undersides

I had hoped to drill the rest of the holes in the panels yesterday, but with wet paint on all of the panels I really couldn’t do that. Instead, I kind of moped around the garage, watching the rain and looking for something I could do to make forward progress on the roof. I really couldn’t find anything. Joy even came over to help at about 2:00 PM and I sent him home because I couldn’t think of anything else to do.

Not being able to make forward progress on the roof was especially frustrating given that I found several leaks inside the tiny house yesterday morning. Friday night was the first heavy rain we have had since I took the tarp off the top of the house and I guess the rain finally found its way in. It took some time to figure it out, but I eventually concluded that the rain came through small holes in the tar paper and then ran down the roof until it found the horizontal seam between the plywood and the roof sheathing. Then, it collected in that seam, soaked into the nailing board underneath and finally ran down the inside rafters until it dripped into the house in various places. I guess I should have caulked the horizontal seam between the plywood. This morning, I find myself trying to think of the easiest way to go back and do that without removing or disturbing too much of the roofing paper that has already been stapled to the roof.

In the meantime, to protect the roof from further leaks, we borrowed a 16 foot tarp from our neighbors (thanks, Tudor and Hang!) and put it on the roof yesterday. That wasn’t quite long enough to span the entire roof with, so we also added a small tarp of our own to the end. This seems to be protecting it from the rain, but it is also giving my tiny house a little bit of a trailer trash look that I am not totally happy with and I’m not sure my neighbors are happy with either. I’m hoping to finish getting all the panels prepped this week and finally put them on the roof next weekend. After that, the tarp can come off and everything should look pretty good.

Yet Another Tarp on My Tiny House

Yet Another Tarp on My Tiny House

Problems we ran into today:

  • Rain. Good for California. Bad for tiny houses without roofs.

Favorite part of the day:

  • Finding this little love note that Sheila painted on the backside of one of my roofing panels.
Russ & Sheila, sitting in a tree... (oh wait, the treehouse I want is another blog)

Russ and Sheila, sitting in a tree … oh wait, the treehouse I want is different blog


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