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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm reroofing a garden shed. The shingle manufacturer (owens corning) says to install the shingles with a 3/8" overhang at the rake and then trim the shingles even with the rake edge. My question is: how do I trim them? From the top? From below? And what's the best tool and method to use?
 
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AllanB
I use a regular utility knife with a "HOOK" blade which you can get at your local hardware store. I cut my shingles at the rake as I lay them, reach up underneath the shingle at the rake and put your hook blade against the drip edge and pull towards you but be very careful not to cut yourself and use the drip edge to help guide your blade to make a clean cut. I usually leave a little on the rake edge. Or if you already shingled the shed have someone help you chalk a line from the top of the rake to the bottom of the rake and you can cut a nice clean edge that way too.
Good luck!
 

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You will always have to trim shingles, at least on one side of the roof, because they never line up 100%. If you have to trim them simply use tin snips. They work the best for the novice. A professional roofer uses the hook bladed utility like Paul said. The hook blade takes some getting used to.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks all for your responses. I was hoping that there was some handy-dandy tool that would easily run up the metal drip edge and leave a nice (i.e., not ragged) cut line. I am a novice who is only doing this task to prove to myself that I can do something with my hands that I can be proud of. The only waY I can save money is to do everything perfect the first time AND only value my time at less than 25 cents an hour (which is probably what it is worth at my skill level).

I stumbled on this website while looking for the mysteriously missing "how to trim the shingle at the rake" instructions in every set of installations instructions I found. As Grumpy noted, the shingles have to be trimmed at one side at least. In my case, where the roof is not square (the roof ridge is 2" longer than the eaves, and the distance to the roof ridge is longer at one end of the eaves than the other), I figured that "post installation" trimming was going to be easier than trying to precut shingles. I figured out (in my mind anyway) how to make the first row parrallel to the eaves and the top row parallel to the ridge and still make it look allright from the ground, and I figured out how much I need to overlap the rake when I start the first row so that I can keep true to the shingle pattern and still have enough to reach the rake edge when I get to the top. (Of course this plan has not been put into action yet which I'm sure will involve many explitives - some of which might not have ben invented yet).

But that being said, the last problem I had was how to trim the shingles at the rake. Grumpy's tin snips sound doable, and I'll try those after I finish one row. The hook blades (and I actually do have some that I've used for regriping golf clubs) sound more efficient (who needs all ten fingers anyway?) and I might use that method if the snips produce a butcher job.

Thanks all for your time and response.
 

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I use snips when it is cold and the blade on my AJC the rest of the time. I trim as I lay the shingles. I hate hook blades and can't afford them either.
Jim
 

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I always snap lines both vertically and horizontally. I also make sure I have a over hang on the rake edge at least 2 inches and then I snap a line and cut the shingles to 1/2 inch at all edges. Not having a overhang on the rake and cutting the shingles even with the drip edge promotes capillary action and allows water to get under the shingles at the rake edge.
 

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I have trimmed shingles using a circular saw with the blade turned backwards. Here in minnesota when it gets cold this is about the only way to do it with laminated shingles. It is also wise to leave 1/2 inch overhang minimum at the rake and eave edges here in minnesota it is actually code to do so. I also run starter shingles up all rake and eave edges. I have also trimmed valleys with the circular saw you need to set the depth correctly so you only score the shingles you will still have to cut every other shingle. When the shingles are warm the best method is the hook blade. Use a used blade if you use the circular saw after you cut shingles it will no longer cut wood efficiently. As always be carefull with power tools on the roof.
 

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Next time you roof, set the the shingle where it goes, flip it right to left, cut at the edge of the last shingle, flip it back, then nail it.

Quick and perfect, can't beat it.

Bob
 

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You can also lay the back of the shingle against your chaulked line and cut them with your hook blade!!! It's really not that hard, just common sense and doing what's easiest for you!!!!!

As for leaving overhang, that's what we do down here in Fla.(at least the good ones do)! I also run tar up the rake as I'm laying it!!! Just alittle extra help for when the canes stop by( by the way, didn't lose one shingle in four canes)!!!!

Hope this Helps

Dave
 

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Two nights ago I was laying in bed trying to get to sleep over the incessant TAP, TAP, TAP, TAP, TAP sound that rain makes because the roofer cut the shingles too close to the rake. When conditions are just right (light rain, little or no wind) rain will DRIP, DRIP, DRIP, DRIP, DRIP over the edge of the shingle and strike the top of the aluminum clad window casing. It's literally inches from my head and it drives me insane. What can I do myself to fix this? I've been living with it for nine go__amn years.
Come to think of it, this brings up something else... My shingles have developed black streaks (like dirt ). Should I be concerned or is it just mold or something. I really don't care what it looks like, just don't want it leaking.

The roof is probably close to 15 years old. About two years ago nearly everyone in the neighborhood got a new roof and new siding after a major hail storm came through. Roofers started showing up on every doorstep with insurance claims forms. The first guy that came to my house swore, without inspecting it, that my aluminum siding was so messed up that it would require full replacement. After letting him look unsuccesfully for damage, for over five minutes, I pointed out that the siding was vinyl. He got in his truck and left without another word. Three more "roofers" looked at my roof and said it would not merit an insurance claim.
 

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Pipe, are you saying that you have 0 overhang? I have a myriad of solutions, not all asthetically pleasing but throw in a few more details. Are we working with siding? What type? Fascia?
 

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Teetorbilt said:
Pipe, are you saying that you have 0 overhang? I have a myriad of solutions, not all asthetically pleasing but throw in a few more details. Are we working with siding? What type? Fascia?
Having only inspected it from the ground, looking up 3 stories, with both the naked eye as well as binoculars, it appears that there is approximately 1/4" overhang.

Directly under the shingle is a piece of 1/2" x 1" (?) flat trim that runs along the rake. The trim is mounted over a 1 x 4 facia board. Both the trim and and facia are clad in aluminum. White vinyl siding covers the house from the facia down to the second floor. The top of the window in question, upon which water noisily drips, is anywhere from about 16" on one side to about 30" on the other below the rake. The casing for the window protrudes about 2" beyond the surface of the surrounding siding.
 

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minnesotaroofin said:
I have trimmed shingles using a circular saw with the blade turned backwards. Here in minnesota when it gets cold this is about the only way to do it with laminated shingles. It is also wise to leave 1/2 inch overhang minimum at the rake and eave edges here in minnesota it is actually code to do so. I also run starter shingles up all rake and eave edges. I have also trimmed valleys with the circular saw you need to set the depth correctly so you only score the shingles you will still have to cut every other shingle. When the shingles are warm the best method is the hook blade. Use a used blade if you use the circular saw after you cut shingles it will no longer cut wood efficiently. As always be carefull with power tools on the roof.

i have never heard of any body using a circular saw on shingles that sounds dangerous i have shingled houses for 15 years i use a straight blade or hook blade hook blades work good when the shingles are cool not warm or hot the shingles just want to tear if its too hot i cut the shingles in the vallys and rake in the mornings or late evenings when its cooler

another minnesota shingler
gorty
 

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I May be the only one as far as i know that has done it. I am probably getting in a bit deep here but when your roofing in weather below 10 degrees or colder cutting a 30 year Timberline rake edge that is 50 feet long. The best way is the circular saw. And i do understand shingleing when it is this cold out is not manufactures specification Anything unnder 40 is uneceptable as far as that goes. If we are below 10 degrees we also hand nail the roofs. guns blow through or you will leave high nails and have to pound every other nail regardless unless your like some of them roofers who like to nail 3 inches high and not hit the double layer. If you try to trim a timberline below 10 with a hook blade you will need a new blade every 10 to 15 shingles And is is very difficult to trim a strait edge without having the shingle crack or pull away from the nail. shingles are very brittle when cold. I Try very hard not to shingle under 20 degrees but when were on a 4 - 500sq new construction it is not always an option We still need to eat. I am sure you know what i am saying if you have been roofing here in MN for 15 years. there are times it does not get above 0 for weeks at a time
 

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In Park City we have to roof when it is real cold. I use big, 45 degree angle tin snips. All of our jobs are heavy, laminated shingles. I agree that using your coil nailer doesn't work when real cold. We will roof later on this am with starting temps of about 0-5 degrees today. We try to "follow the sun" by working on south exposures first and then moving to others later in the day.
Jim
 

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gorty said:
i have never heard of any body using a circular saw on shingles that sounds dangerous i have shingled houses for 15 years i use a straight blade or hook blade hook blades work good when the shingles are cool not warm or hot the shingles just want to tear if its too hot i cut the shingles in the vallys and rake in the mornings or late evenings when its cooler

another minnesota shingler
gorty
There is such a thing as the shingle saw. It is a pneumatic 5" bladed circular saw.
 

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You guys really make me appreciate FL! 0-5 degs.? I'm hibernating until spring. LOL It's currently 72 deg. and a mite chilly.
 
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