Straightening your ridge best way i know of


Figured I’d share this since so many guys that have worked with me love this trick. When I get say 2 rows of felt from the top I check my ridge and if its an inch or more I straighten it by marking 3" down from the ridge strike that line than I put the tang (tip) of my tape on the line. Next ti turn the tape till it meets the top of the last row I’ve shingled till it reaches an increment of 5.5 (for metric) whatever your exposure is than I mark the rest if my increments and chalk them all. Yea: I know on ranches and walkables you don’t really need this but its great trick for coming up a cut up roof or say you wanna match perfect over a long run where a you need to meet over a reverse gable etc I hate short courses. Hope this makes sense I pretty much use the tape to make my adjustments by putting it on an angle


wouldn’t have had to do that if you
had a roll of gtape… 8)


[quote=“thebaycompany”]wouldn’t have had to do that if you
had a roll of gtape… 8)[/quote]

Snapping a tie-in line before you start laying shingles works wonders.


Gtape doesn’t work for what I’m talking about and neither wood chalking if its crooked its crooked and I guess you climb up 25’ rakes set all your toe boards etc work your way down etc… Most of the roofs I do are steep and big and most can only be chalked where you can reach a lot of the old houses are really crooked I’d say at least 90 percent and what I do works and its easier than doing the math in your head


It would also work with gtape.

He is running the tape, and or gtape, at an angle to the horizontal lines. Not perpendicular/right angle.

Mark the course/exposure increments along the angle.
This shortens the courses evenly without calculations.


Your right on. the triangulation trick by angling your tape is an old timers trick and it works on all kinds of situations. I also do not allow short ridiculous courses. everything has to line up the same reveal.


thanks guys i use this religiously every day like say me an another guy are coming up the sides of a dormer and we have to match i straighten all my roofs it also works when you have offsets like on contemporary roofs where you have a bump out say 20’ and lower you have a 6’ wide offset you can do it the same way its all imagination…thanks though and yeah i learned it off an old timer and i’ve taught it to many ppl i’m amazed at how many roofers never heard of it and manage to never fix it


Thats the difference between a journeymen Roofer and a Shingle nailer.


Snap a tie-in line that is straight relative to the peak/ridge, measure down from there, put your error (out of square) at the bottom (eave) of the roof.
It is called “set up”…

It works every time.
Life is only as hard as you make it.

Or do you just start shingling then worry about it when you reach the top…


Some will need to do both.


axiom if you do it my way you’d never know and yeah like the roof i’m on now has 27’ rakes with to reverse gables on each side of the hip and their isn’t anyway to know if its not straight till you get up their coming out of the whole its only about 12’ wide and the top is about 43 or so feet… nobody hits lines on a 12/12 pitch from the bottom to the top before they set planks i’ve never seen it ever hits as far as you can reach off your jacks and than shingle set jacks again etc… so alot of the time its not perfect so i straighten it… and almost every roof isn’t straight like say with trusses usually one side of the roof usually the back isn’t perfect… another example i did these 8 garages that made almost a circle ok… the backs of the were straight than the skewed the fronts so that they were only almost an 11 degree angle to the rakes because this was a governor’s driveway you know the round kind of driveways with the fountains… so i chalked the first course and 3" from the ridge turned my tape and straightened the whole roof and looking at it you’d never know it and mind you this roof would have went from 12" to nothing almost trust me its the only thing that works and i’m never stuck ever! and you can’t tell me you never shingled in the rain when the lines disappear i make the guys shingle 2 wide just to make sure their straight and i back shingle we never rack’m because you can lose an easy 1/4" doing that i do this trick on the GAF golden pledge roofs too mind you where they do inspect the roofs… and i do everything i normally do except GAF doesn’t allow for open valleys only closed and with the natural shadows you only have a 1/2" nailing area its kinda brutal ( shoot low alot on them) and i find myself ripping shingles off often its just a bad habit and with the shadows you pretty much have to hit the line every time or your off (5 3/4" to 6 1/4") is a little obsurd they should give you at least another half inch


i learned this trick about 3 years ago we call it swinging the tape. but dont ussaly tell any body about WAS a good kept secret till now.


Damn, I have been doing it wrong all these years.
Thanks for setting me straight.


Not sure but you make it sound as cut and dry as just popping lines and that sounds like walkable ranch roofs to me just thought I’d share something and person I learned it off of had 30 yrs experience I don’t get the gtape I know how it works but what do you do on long rakes with it ? Climb up to the top? Marking lines isn’t that hard to me not sure


Steep, walker, I don’t see how it makes a difference.
A roof is a roof, it is simple.

I don’t need G-tape, I know how to read a tape measure.
So do my men.


you dont need a G-tape. just to read a tape and a good chalk line. Should of kept that one a secret :wink: . There are many more though.


I use the gtape because it’s flourescent, i run it up the edge of the roof, sometimes i get going so fast, if I didn’t see that edge line, i swear I’d shingle right off the side of the roof. it’s a safety thing.

Boy, someone would be in serious trouble if they were installing 3 tab shingles this way…


I backshingle with 3-tabs and I run a full set of 6" leads all the way to the last 6" tab then I hit every other 5" increment going up but before I do that I’ll 3, 4, 5 my first course to straighten the roof than I measure over an arbitrary measurement say 12’ hit another lead or vertical line this forms a box. I measure diagonals see if I get the same measurement than I know I’m square. If I’m going short say running a valley with a hip along side, I use a framing sq to check my weeps and every other I use the small ticks at the top if you use the ticks alternating you usually will end upcrooked if the rake is long


I agree w/Axiom… on steeps I set kickers from bottom to top,and start ripping from top to bottom. I paper from top to bottom, back slipping paper and popping point of reference lines as I go .
I also sheet if needed ,and re-nail every roof in this manner. It helps if you have another guy that can read a tape… I have done plenty of roofs alone and found this method to be best for me…it allows you to work in threatening weather,and cover up as you go…I have also set up a tarp this way on days I know it is gonna rain…
When I get to the bottom I check with reference lines and correct if needed,and away I go…


I paper on the way down but I don’t chalk as I go. Seems crazy to me I’ve never seen anyone chalk on the way down