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DIY1 10-02-2012 04:05 PM

ridge board material
I need to get a 24' ridge board for some rafter framing. The rafters are 2x6's and the roof is a standard gable.

Please note that I'm talking about a ridge "board" and not a ridge "beam". In other words, the board is just something for the rafters to be nailed to and it won't be load bearing.

Should I get the longest 1x8's that I can and stitch them together? My architect said I could use a 1-by-something but I would think that if it can sit pretty well horizontally while being only supported on the ends it will help me with my rafter framing. So what material would typically be used for this ridge board?

woodworkbykirk 10-02-2012 04:30 PM

2x8 conventional lumber if not lvl which you can get in one continous length

GBrackins 10-03-2012 09:52 AM


per the 2009 International Residential Code, basis for most local and state building codes it requires:

R802.3 Framing details. Rafters shall be framed to ridge board or to each other with a gusset plate as a tie. Ridge board shall be at least 1-inch (25 mm) nominal thickness and not less in depth than the cut end of the rafter. At all valleys and hips there shall be a valley or hip rafter not less than 2-inch (51 mm) nominal thickness and not less in depth than the cut end of the rafter. Hip and valley rafters shall be supported at the ridge by a brace to a bearing partition or be designed to carry and distribute the specific load at that point. Where the roof pitch is less than three units vertical in 12 units horizontal (25-percent slope), structural members that support rafters and ceiling joists, such as ridge beams, hips and valleys, shall be designed as beams.

now with that said I prefer Wood's suggestion of a 2x, or even LVL.

also note:
R802.3.1 Ceiling joist and rafter connections. Ceiling joists and rafters shall be nailed to each other in accordance with Table R802.5.1(9), and the rafter shall be nailed to the top wall plate in accordance with Table R602.3(1). Ceiling joists shall be continuous or securely joined in accordance with Table R802.5.1(9) where they meet over interior partitions and are nailed to adjacent rafters to provide a continuous tie across the building when such joists are parallel to the rafters.

Where ceiling joists are not connected to the rafters at the top wall plate, joists connected higher in the
attic shall be installed as rafter ties, or rafter ties shall be installed to provide a continuous tie. Where ceiling joists are not parallel to rafters, rafter ties shall be installed. Rafter ties shall be a minimum of 2-inch by 4-inch (51 mm by 102 mm) (nominal), installed in accordance with the connection requirements in Table R802.5.1(9), or connections of equivalent capacities shall be provided. Where ceiling joists or rafter ties are not provided, the ridge formed by these rafters shall be supported by a wall or girder designed in accordance with accepted engineering practice.

Collar ties or ridge straps to resist wind uplift shall be connected in the upper third of the
attic space in accordance with Table R602.3(1). Collar ties shall be a minimum of 1-inch by 4-inch (25 mm by 102 mm) (nominal), spaced not more than 4 feet (1219 mm) on center.

R802.3.2 Ceiling joists lapped.
Ends of ceiling joists shall be lapped a minimum of 3 inches (76 mm) or butted over bearing partitions or beams and toenailed to the bearing member. When ceiling joists are used to provide resistance to rafter thrust, lapped joists shall be nailed together in accordance with Table R802.5.1(9) and butted joists shall be tied together in a manner to resist such thrust.

Good luck! :thumbsup:

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