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Old 03-11-2009, 09:20 PM   #1
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Pergola - Attaching rafters to beams?


I am just planning my pergola. While looking at photos of pergolas I see many in which I cannot ascertain how the rafters are attached to the beams.

They are not notched and there are no joist hangers evident.

Here is a link to one example of what I am talking about - how is the rafter attached? It looks like it's just sitting up there.

http://www.hgtv.com/designers-portfo...311/index.html
[IMG]file:///C:/DOCUME%7E1/DEFAUL%7E1.DEF/LOCALS%7E1/Temp/moz-screenshot.jpg[/IMG]

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Old 03-11-2009, 09:42 PM   #2
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Pergola - Attaching rafters to beams?


It looks like they are bolted from the top. I may be wrong but they are definitely not just sitting there.

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Old 03-11-2009, 11:30 PM   #3
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Pergola - Attaching rafters to beams?


Lag bolts or drilled all the way though and use threaded rod - counter sink to hide.

Here's how I did my overhead - the beams that support the rafters are above rather than below the rafter - this was my solution to keep the beams out of the line of sight with a low "ceiling" height situation.

http://www.webjeepers.com/homestead.html
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Old 03-11-2009, 11:59 PM   #4
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Pergola - Attaching rafters to beams?


I framed a couple pergolas, when our framer was behind and we used 6" SDS screws from the top, countersunk and then filled with caulking and painted to protect from collecting water.
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Old 03-12-2009, 08:28 AM   #5
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Pergola - Attaching rafters to beams?


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I framed a couple pergolas, when our framer was behind and we used 6" SDS screws from the top, countersunk and then filled with caulking and painted to protect from collecting water.
That's what I'd do. SDS (or similar) screws can be bought from McFeeley's online and are also made by Simpson. You probably won't find them at the average hardware store. Fastenal would probably have them if they have a store in your city.
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Old 03-12-2009, 08:48 AM   #6
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Pergola - Attaching rafters to beams?


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That's what I'd do. SDS (or similar) screws can be bought from McFeeley's online and are also made by Simpson. You probably won't find them at the average hardware store. Fastenal would probably have them if they have a store in your city.
My preference would be Fastenmaster Timberlock or Headlock; stonger and thiner. I'm impressed with all the Fastenmaster products.
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Old 03-12-2009, 09:07 PM   #7
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Pergola - Attaching rafters to beams?


This design has the beams toe screwed into the top of the posts they are sitting on. The curved knee braces are critical in this design.
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Pergola - Attaching rafters to beams?-pergola-1-web.jpg   Pergola - Attaching rafters to beams?-pergola-2-web.jpg  
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Old 03-13-2009, 07:10 AM   #8
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Pergola - Attaching rafters to beams?


If you don't want to drill lag through, you could toenail using pocket holes - with a kreg jig. I would toenail from both sides. And, you would need to fill the holes so you wouldn't see them - wouldn't be a problem with a painted thing as in the linked picture but would be more of an issue with teh one immediately before this reply...
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Old 03-13-2009, 06:35 PM   #9
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Pergola - Attaching rafters to beams?


With a pergola you always want to drill or countersink so that the water drains out. Screwing from the top or drilling from the top is not recommended unless you plug and seal with an epoxy. Always let the water escape so you don't get rot. Holes drilled from underneath the beam and then lags or timberloks work great. Plugs then conceal the holes.
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Old 03-13-2009, 07:33 PM   #10
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Pergola - Attaching rafters to beams?


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With a pergola you always want to drill or countersink so that the water drains out. Screwing from the top or drilling from the top is not recommended unless you plug and seal with an epoxy. Always let the water escape so you don't get rot. Holes drilled from underneath the beam and then lags or timberloks work great. Plugs then conceal the holes.

All the screw heads were plugged in the pics of the pergola I posted.

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