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Old 06-29-2008, 03:43 PM   #1
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tearing off cedar shakes


i am tearing off myroof and have two layers plus cedar shakes on it. What is the best way to rip the shakes off. Go from the side or start at the top or bottom? Thanks for any advice on this
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Old 06-29-2008, 04:48 PM   #2
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tearing off cedar shakes


experiment. Sometimes it's easier to go up, sometimes down, sometimes side to side.
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Old 06-30-2008, 08:58 AM   #3
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tearing off cedar shakes


Use a flat shovel, get under the shakes and pop the shakes by pushing the shovel handel downward. They should pop off.
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Old 06-30-2008, 05:32 PM   #4
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tearing off cedar shakes


actually, flat, d-handled pitchforks (potato forks) work best.
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Old 06-30-2008, 10:35 PM   #5
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tearing off cedar shakes


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actually, flat, d-handled pitchforks (potato forks) work best.
I'd definitely agree on the pitchforks.

Also - it's the CLEAN UP that will kill you.

I take it you're going to be DIYing ... so some ideas:
  • if your roof is so steep you need to use a hand to steady yourself when you walk on it, it's too step to DIY.
  • get a bunch of 50gal garbage buckets to throw debris into as you go along
  • don't overload the garbage bucket - the more it weighs, the better your chance of either having it pull you off the roof or when you're pulling it, you may put your foot through the skipped sheathing
  • if you live in a bad weather area... be prepared for it. Synthetic felt is the best. Make sure you have nails to nail it down.
  • start early
  • drink water until you're done for the day
  • have more people than you think you'll need
  • if it's your first time - have some people walking garbage buckets while others work ...
  • start on the FARTHEST section from the dumpster / dumptruck, and work towards the dumpster.
  • have everyone work on ONE section at a time until they have a clue. Watching does help. As does a speed competition
  • NEVER EVER step on anything that is not nailed down - even a flat bar can become a ski.
  • When your sliding, PLAN your fall - TRY to hit the chimney. If none, then a tree. If there's no tree, try to land on a bush. Grab at EVERYTHING (never at anyONE - as they'll fall on top of you) and your last resort is the gutter.
  • after you've done your tear off - get a blower on the roof & blow off all of the dust - it's slippery
  • drink a lot of water
  • never throw debris to the ground - it's tons of work. figure out how you can get it straight from the roof to the dumptruck with ONE throw.
  • put plastic on the ground between the house & the dumpster
  • if it's got a little bit of dry rot - cut it out and replace it. That section wont be expose for another 30 years. do it right.

Good luck.

Oh, and take a lot of pictures that you can post when your done - it makes us feel good.
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Old 06-30-2008, 11:14 PM   #6
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tearing off cedar shakes


Don't forget to tell em to drink lots of water! lol

One of the worst things on a tearoff is having to handle it more than once. Like he said, try any way you can to get it from the roof straight into the truck/dumpster. The tearoff will seem like gravy compared to cleaning it all up from the ground when you're done. It may not look like a lot of material when it's laying on that roof, but once it's piled on the ground...your opinion of that changes quick
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Old 07-01-2008, 12:48 AM   #7
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tearing off cedar shakes


Hey ... cover the driveway with OSB if you're worried about where they drop the dumpster.

If you can't get the dumpster close, you're not trying hard enough.

Who's doing the shingling? Rent a nail gun ... and figure out the APPLICATION.

Always replace your metal ... including the chimney saddle.

What's a saddle you say? Maybe you should go to the roofing supply and troll for a roofer.
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Old 07-01-2008, 08:10 AM   #8
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tearing off cedar shakes


Pay the extra cash and have the new shingles delivered to the roof. Lot of good advice in this thread. I did one of my houses which had a steep pitch and I handled all the debri twice. The 15 year roof lasted 16 years and I just paid to have it done 2 years ago. Hardest I have ever worked in my life.
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Old 07-01-2008, 01:17 PM   #9
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tearing off cedar shakes


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Pay the extra cash and have the new shingles delivered to the roof. Lot of good advice in this thread. I did one of my houses which had a steep pitch and I handled all the debri twice. The 15 year roof lasted 16 years and I just paid to have it done 2 years ago. Hardest I have ever worked in my life.
OMG. Great point. Those of us that roof for a living take roof top delivery for granted.
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