How to Install a Gambrel Roof Truss

What You'll Need

Installing a gambrel roof truss is a little different than a normal roof. If you have never encountered some of these projects before, here are a few materials that you will need and steps to help guide you along the way.

Step 1 - Determine Size

The first thing that you will need to do when it comes to installing a gambrel roof truss is to decide how big you want it to be. This will help to tell you how many of the trusses you are going to need for the project so you can plan for the material to buy. Keep in mind that the center of the roof will need to have some sort of angle. Typically the angle is about 30 degrees. Many times, people choose to buy the trusses already made however you can make them on your own. If this is your first time working on a project like this, it is advisable that you purchase them pre-made.

Step 2 - Lay Out Your Design

Once you have decided on the size of the gambrel roof truss, you will be able to purchase your lumber. Lay everything out and use stakes so that you can build your first layer. Then you can begin to cut and use the pieces you are working on as an outline for the rest of your work from here on out. Make sure that you trace out the angles using a thick material like cardboard or poster board so that you know how to create the brackets from plywood. One of the brackets that you cut out should be in a triangle shape.

Step 3 - Assemble and Raise Up the Trusses

Now that you have laid everything out you can build on your base and continue to assemble the trusses from the ground up. Make sure that as you work, you are using stakes to help drive in the trusses and keep them secure. you want to watch out for the security at each level that you build because as you keep going you will want them to be sturdy. Use a hammer to keep the stakes in. Use nails and a hammer to attach each of the braces and brackets to help secure them together. You will want the nails to drive in all of the way while you are working. Make sure that you don't have any loose nails or some that stick out to the side. Now you can raise up your roof onto the posts that are in place. You will be able to place them into the brackets and keep them secure.

You can choose to shingle or add some sort of topping to your roof if you like after you are finished. You may want to do this step though before you raise it up if you don't have access to a ladder. Some choose to put straw or shingles on.