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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    off the coast of new england
    Posts
    482

    Default Rafter tools app

    For those of you doing complex roof framing give Sim Ayers APP "Rafter Tools " a go He has it for andriod and iphone ,I showed one of my guys the app yesterday and he loved it . He has a unequal roof to do next week and he was able to imput the different pitches and get plan angle ,and all the info to cut his upcoming roof. The guy has all the understanding to cut the roof without Sims APP but it makes it much faster and easy . The APP costs $7.95 a bit less that what most guys spend on coffee each week . Do you self a favor and buy it

    Billy

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Branford, CT 06405
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    3,614

    Default Re: Rafter tools app

    Any idea how this compares to BuildCalc in ease of use, etc.
    Take Care

    Jim

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
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    off the coast of new england
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    482

    Default Re: Rafter tools app

    If I had Build calc i could tell u

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Port Orchard, WA
    Posts
    2,635

    Default Re: Rafter tools app

    Quote Originally Posted by James Eggert View Post
    Any idea how this compares to BuildCalc in ease of use, etc.
    I have both apps. Sim's app has way more features.

    My feeling? They are cheaper than a Construction Master, so I bought both (and have the CM app and the Construction Master Pro Trig)

    I'm a nerd.

    Sim,

    Since I bought your app, I've had easy stuff to frame go figure :-) I need an octagon or something to build, preferably with 4x or 6x hips

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Discovery Bay CA
    Posts
    1,223

    Default Re: Rafter tools app

    After Tim mentioned framing an Octagon, it got me to thinking about framing an Octagon with my RafterTools+ iPhone app. There's a big difference between the RafterTools for Android and RafterTools+ for iPhone. RafterTools for Android has 40 different calculators, but some of the calculators display too much information on one screen. So I programmed the RafterTools+ iPhone to have different displays for the different framing angles and lengths. I think RafterTools+ for iPhone
    is easier to use than the Android version, but the Android version has a lot more roof framing information that is sometimes needed to frame a roof like an Octagon.

    Anyway, here's a link to an example of using the RafterTools+ iPhone app for framing an Octagon roof.

    http://sbebuilders.blogspot.com/2014...th-iphone.html

    and here's a link to the built in Octagon 4 Butt method in RafterTools for Android.

    http://www.raftertools.com/help/octagon_butt.htm

    Sim
    photo-A.jpgoctagon_4_butt.jpg

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Sterling Heights, MI
    Posts
    4,574

    Default Re: Rafter tools app

    Sim, I followed the link to the octogon tables. That's a very nice free offering. Thanks. I'll keep it in my tool box in case I ever need to do some timber framing or put up frieze blocks.

    I typically also start with my hips, as your program does. However, after installing the hips, I don't try to jam a sharply beveled common rafter into the clusterfkk. So, after installing Hips #1, 2 and 3, I cut jack rafters and bear them on the installed hips. I leave a 22.5" space in the middle of the octogon bay and layout 24" oc from there.

    There are several reasons why I frame it that way. The first reason is that there is really no good way to properly nail the severely beveled common if it is jammed into the middle. At most, I can get one good toenail at the top. If I try to do more, it just splits the member. There really isn't a good angle to get a decent toenail on the side.

    The next reason is laziness. I don't like to install more parts than I have too. On most octagons that I do, I usually end up with two jack rafters. If I put a common in the center, I'd still end up installing two jack rafters. So, by installing the common in the center, I'm effectively increasing the amount of seat cuts and rafter work by 50%.

    I like the four butt method. I've done that for several decades but I'd suggest that you give the "no commons" method a try.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Discovery Bay CA
    Posts
    1,223

    Default Re: Rafter tools app

    Jim,

    I use a purlin structural ring to eliminate the clusterfkk of rafters meeting at the ridge. I gave that example because it was easy to explain. Just like you, someone that's been there and doon that on the Octagon roof framing, the first thing I always think about is nailing up the rafters at the peak. Nothing worse than only being able to put 1 nail in the top of the rafter.

    Octagon Roof Framing 4 Butt Hip Rafter Method with Purlin Structural Ring

    http://www.raftertools.com/help/octagon_butt_purlin.htm

    Sim

    octagon_4_butt-purlin-2.jpg

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Port Orchard, WA
    Posts
    2,635

    Default Re: Rafter tools app

    Quote Originally Posted by jimAKAblue View Post
    Sim, I followed the link to the octogon tables. That's a very nice free offering. Thanks. I'll keep it in my tool box in case I ever need to do some timber framing or put up frieze blocks.

    I typically also start with my hips, as your program does. However, after installing the hips, I don't try to jam a sharply beveled common rafter into the clusterfkk. So, after installing Hips #1, 2 and 3, I cut jack rafters and bear them on the installed hips. I leave a 22.5" space in the middle of the octogon bay and layout 24" oc from there.

    There are several reasons why I frame it that way. The first reason is that there is really no good way to properly nail the severely beveled common if it is jammed into the middle. At most, I can get one good toenail at the top. If I try to do more, it just splits the member. There really isn't a good angle to get a decent toenail on the side.

    The next reason is laziness. I don't like to install more parts than I have too. On most octagons that I do, I usually end up with two jack rafters. If I put a common in the center, I'd still end up installing two jack rafters. So, by installing the common in the center, I'm effectively increasing the amount of seat cuts and rafter work by 50%.

    I like the four butt method. I've done that for several decades but I'd suggest that you give the "no commons" method a try.
    Good post Jim! I just wish we'd get a job where we got to frame an octagon all exposed members. I'd frame it like you describe. I like that idea a lot.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    San Antonio, Texas
    Posts
    741

    Default Re: Rafter tools app

    Quote Originally Posted by Tim Uhler View Post
    Good post Jim! I just wish we'd get a job where we got to frame an octagon all exposed members. I'd frame it like you describe. I like that idea a lot.
    I also learned to use the centered bay layout on polygons. As Sim points out, the Ring eliminates the cluster joint at the peak. It also provides a nice base shape for a cupola vent. The method you choose can vary with design scenarios. I think standard o.c. spacing for divisions of 8' materials is mostly a modern phenomenon.

    One thing I think about with polygon shapes is that getting hung up on standard o.c. layouts is not really necessary, unless the ceilings is sloped and being insulated with bats. Even then, perfect common layouts are not a big deal. Rarely will an attached polygon be extremely large and open enough to hold more than one splice in the sheathing plane row, (for Residential construction). And for typical 2" framing that is not seen, I don't think the sharp cheek cut miters on the jacks are necessary. For exposed framing, of course they are, and well executed too.

    With exposed framing, equally spacing the jacks at the fascia line is visually nice. I use the same basic spacing concepts that is used for calculating Balustrade Spacing or Stair Rises. If the polygon spacing can be worked out for an odd number of spaces, then the cluster peak is not an issue. I even prefer it for diamond hips on four sided polygons, Regular or Irregular alike, although the standard o.c. layouts are more warranted with them, hips first, and centering a bay is still easier for them as well.
    One Length Method© by Richard Birch

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Sterling Heights, MI
    Posts
    4,574

    Default Re: Rafter tools app

    I know this sounds utterly ridiculous but I'm going to say it anyways: nowadays, I'd be afraid to put a "purlin structural ring" on because the building inspector would probably knock us down unless we also installed joist hangers! I'd guess that there's a 30% chance that we get knocked down without them. It's just a guess based on other stupid things that the inspectors have made us do.

    I've done solid octagonal posts and structural purlins in my formative years. I liked the look of them but I don't like putting in extra parts. Even without the joist hangers, the purlins add 8 extra parts and one extra rafter per bay. That ain't gonna happen if I'm framing it LOL.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Sterling Heights, MI
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    4,574

    Default Re: Rafter tools app

    Richard, If I was doing exposed framing, my first priority would be the aesthetics. Like you, I'd ignore the 16, 19 or 24 oc spacing and lay the rafters out to create the most pleasant view of the rafters and tail.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Discovery Bay CA
    Posts
    1,223

    Default Re: Rafter tools app

    Sometimes you don't need any jack rafters in an Octagon.Like the exposed ceiling in my wife's sewing room in our loft that I built 30 years ago.

    Sim

    Oct-3.jpgOct-1.jpgOct-2.jpg

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Discovery Bay CA
    Posts
    1,223

    Default Re: Rafter tools app

    Sometimes you need a **** load jack rafters in an Octagon with a purlin structural ring. Like this commercial building with Octagon Hip Rafters on a circular tower. The circular tower plates are circumscribe around the Octagon roof plan.

    And yes, you need a ton of hangers as well.

    Any rafter without a hanger is like a man without his ****

    Sim

    Purlin-Structural-Ring-2.jpgPurlin-Structural-Ring-1.jpg

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