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How To Calculate Roof Truss & Roof Joist Sizes

As a housebuilder in Scotland, you’re no doubt often faced with the challenge of how to calculate roof joist sizes. While established house builders and construction companies normally have their own method, trades people who are relatively new to the house build market often need a helping hand to achieve the peace of mind they want.

Tools to calculate roof truss & joist sizes

Not so very long ago, the only way to calculate roof truss & joist sizes was by taking an old-fashioned measurement, a pencil and a piece of paper and then adding a whole lot of brain power. Today there are various online tools and calculators that you can use to help you calculate roof truss and joist sizes. Many people call on such tools as their initial indicator; when estimating the price of a job for example. But it’s always a good idea to double check any machine-generated estimations with a human eye.

Seek expert advice

At Ochil, we’ve been manufacturing and supplying roof joists since 1973, so we’ve helped many a house builder check, check and re-check their figures. The great thing about dealing with Ochil is that we have extensive design and manufacturing experience, which means that we can come up with solutions for even the most challenging of roof constructions.

Just take a look at these curved roofs in Tiree. This project was led by Cornerstone Construction Scotland Limited. Ochil supplied prefabricated roof trusses for these challenging roof shapes and saved several man hours on each job by doing so.

Some of the things you need to take into account

There are many factors that need to be taken into account before you can establish exactly how to calculate the sizes you need. At a very basic level, things that will impact on truss and joist sizes include (but are not limited to):

  • • Whether the roof will be pitched or flat

  • • The angle of pitch on a pitched roof

  • • The insulation solution you are planning for

  • • The climate (in particular, snow fall expectations)

  • • The design

  • Better safe than sorry

So, as you can see, while in some instances the calculation involved to ascertain the right roof joist sizes may be simple enough, in other cases it can be extremely complex. An ideal ‘belt and braces’ approach is to use technology and have the outcome checked by an expert. You are more than likely that expert. But if you’re feeling in any way nervous or uncertain about your calculations, we’re here to help.

At Ochil we pride ourselves not only on our knowledge of timber, but on our general construction knowledge. We’re more than happy to share that knowledge with you. All you have to do is ask. Call us today on 01324 825503 or get in touch. It costs nothing to benefit from our advice.

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