The verandah rafters have been going on to the building this week. They are made of coppiced sweet chestnut from Ridden Corner.
They span the gap between the wall plate of the building and the outer edge of the verandah, you will see them if you stand on the verandah and look up.
Their round profile fits nicely visually, but they need to have a flat face on the top so that the line of the roof doesn’t end up wonky. To achieve this we put them on the sawmill, choose the flatest side and mill a flat on the top of the round pole.
On top of this flat section will sit sarking boards, a membrane, counter battens, battens and then our shingles. We need to start getting all of that on the roof as soon as possible, we have a busy few weeks ahead of us.
The rafters also needed to have their bark peeled off. This is the only surface working any of the roundwood in the building has had. When the wood is green the bark peels off like a banana skin, these were cut a few months ago so weren’t quite as easy, but, in the hands of our volunteers the peeling spades still make pretty short work of it.
Then they went up onto the roof to be attached to the frame. A line was run across the building to show the height they needed to be fixed at, and then dishes were cut out of the wallplate for the rafters to sit down into.
Where the verandah turns a corner round the end of the building a bit of complicated joinery was required.
Before long they were all slotting into place. With them fitted the outline of the building has taken another step forwards, what was really nice was getting an idea of what the verandah space will feel like.
I remember last year Ben, Val (our architect) and I having a lengthy discussion about the size of the verandah, the problem was every time you tried to alter its dimensions it meant one of the other peramiters of the building (height, roof pitch etc) changed, it was a bit of a balancing act. I think we got it about right though, it is going to be a nice sized space, with plenty of room for our volunteers to sit and relax in the sunshine after a hard days work in the woods.