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Tkarl 09-07-2009 05:09 PM

Lookout Rafter Replacement
Gable end overhang is sagging due to rotting or termite damage of the lookout rafters (which are notched into the first two trusses) How can this repaired without ripping off the roof and replacing the lookout rafters?

roofboy 09-08-2009 11:48 PM


It can't. You will need to take off at least the first row if not 2 rows of the decking. Then scab(sister) a new 2 by(whatever you have) for the rotted trusses.


Tkarl 09-10-2009 07:04 PM

:thumbsup:Thanks Roofboy, I guess we should never use wood lookout rafters is Southern CA. Another thought is to flush cut the rafter and replace with a craftsman style gable brace - it may look OK but not sure about the structural strength. Thanks again

Gary in WA 09-10-2009 09:36 PM

Yes they can be replaced. From inside the attic, drill 2 holes - 1/2" at the new location for a lookout. When you drill, angle the holes upwards 45* to come out the exterior side at 1-3/4" down from the roof deck. Use reciprocating saw to square off for the 2x4, about 1/4" wider and 1/4" thicker. This is to simplify inserting the 2x4 from the attic side, out, and still clearing the second truss' (1st common) top chord member. Shorten the new lookout by 1/4" in length. Nail a support 2x4 block under the new lookout in the attic as you removed most of the bearing wood under it to install. Cut out the old rotten one after installing new. Off a ladder, nail the barge rafter through with hot-dipped galvanized nails into the new lookout, and caulk around it.

Or add knee braces, as on my house for the last 100 years, and still holding the 24" of roofing, sheathing, barge rafter (2x8) and rake trim. Go to my link in my answer here:

Be safe, Gary

roofboy 09-10-2009 11:38 PM


Wow. I totally missread the post. Sorry. Do as GBR said and you will be fine. I was thinking at the eave for some weird reason.


Tkarl 09-11-2009 09:41 PM

Lookout rafter problem
Thanks GBR and Roofboy, great ideas but just not enough room in the attic to cut-in a new lookout rafter (unless I want my face in the insulation a day). Anyways a craftsman style knee brace sounds like the best alternative. Thanks again:thumbup:

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