A “salt box house” is a standard New England house with a long pitched roof that wraps around the back, usually with a wooden frame. The salt box has one story at the back and two stories at the outside. The flat front gable and the chimney in the middle are prominent features, although the asymmetry of the uneven sides and the long, low rear roofline are the most distinctive features of the salt box, which gets its name from its resemblance to the lid of the wooden box in which salt was kept.
The saltbox takes its name from the popular wooden box used in colonial times to store salt; both the house and the wooden box have the same gable roof shape. The first saltbox houses were built as simple additions to the back of the original house.
It is interesting to note that the idea of building salt shaker houses seems to have been a way to avoid paying higher property taxes. When Queen Anne increased taxes on two-story houses, many people created these houses that were half two-story and half two-story. That way they could claim ownership of a one-story house without technically lying.
Saltbox models have naturally fallen into disuse over the years, although if you look closely, you can see saltbox houses almost everywhere. Discover them here.
Advantages of the salt roof
The angle of the salt pit roof makes it a great slide for rain and snow. If you live in an area where it rains a lot, like the northeastern United States, this type of roof makes sense. You don’t want the snow to stay on your roof, and this type of pitched roof allows the weight of the snow to slide off before it gets too heavy.
You can also use a salt roof if your house is built on a slope. Many houses built on slopes have a basement. The driveway runs down the hill, and the garage is built into the natural slope of the landscape. Adding a saltbox roof to this style of home can add a very distinct visual appeal and make it seem like building a home that takes advantage of the landscape is more useful. In this case, the front of the house will often have one story and the back two stories.
Disadvantages of a Saltbox roof
As for living in a saltbox, the only drawback is that the steep roof limits attic space. You may only be able to store stuff in half the space.
The main disadvantage is the construction of the roof. It is more complicated than a gable roof, which means it will be more expensive. When you hire a contractor, make sure they have experience working on salt chamber roofs.
Many old saltboxes, like many other types of colonial homes in New England, had a wooden frame. The outside of the saltbox was often covered with a wooden boarding or other woodwork.
Modern roofing materials for the saltbox roof
Choosing a roofing material for your salt pit roof is more of an individual decision. Nevertheless, consider the product’s durability, content, estimated life span, attractiveness and, of course, your cost plan.
Asphalt shingles and wood shingles are among the most popular products used for a salt box roof. If you are installing a saltbox roof on a commercial building, such as a stylish storefront or repair shop, consider a metal roof to give your business a clean and simple look.
How to build your own salt roof.
Everything you need:
- Nails, metal fasteners, bolts, screws.
- Tools for woodworking
- Shopping cart
- Plastic tarps or sheets
- Work equipment – work helmet, gloves, boots, tool belt, knee pads.
- Shingles or other roofing materials
- Equipment at low cost
If you want a saltbox roof system for your home, you can do it yourself if you have a minimum of technical skills. Installing a saltbox roof system or converting an existing traditional roof system to meet additional needs is a great way to contribute to the design of your home. Although saltbox roofs are a compromise in terms of attic space, they are perfect for waterproofing your structure and increasing insulation.
#N°1: Planning and decision-making
This is an essential first step. It includes all your pre-construction ideas and activities to ensure that the roofing system under construction is well designed and structured, complies with your local building codes, is technically practical, and is visually appealing. This includes communicating with regional authorities, working with contractors, choosing appropriate plans, obtaining specifications for materials and booking labor costs, and purchasing insurance.
No. 2: Preparatory work
This includes preparing for the beginning of the installation process. Usually there are green areas such as a garden, flower beds or potted plants near the house that need to be removed or protected. A litter box will be needed as the work progresses, so be sure to rent one.
No. 3: Cutting and measuring
Cut the ridge board according to the length of the roof. The normal rafters that will be cut next time should be made for both the short and long sides. (For more information on framing, see the next section).
#4: Place the beams and nail them to the joists.
The rafters must then be nailed together on the first side. Then the ridge pieces must be lifted up so that two more rafters can be attached on the other side. Since the roof trusses of the salt cellar extend outside the walls, it is very important to place them accurately.
No. 5: Position and attach the rafters to the roof.
Each rafter should be mounted on both sides of the roof system by connecting it to the wall posts. This ensures the stability of the roof.
No. 6 : The kitchen
Take the blanket of your choice and place it on the rafters. Once the siding is in place, nail or screw it in place.
How to make the roof of a saltbox ….
In this section, we will go into detail and build the roof structure of your saltworks.
#N°1: Slope measurement
Determine the basic values of the rafters. This includes the angle of the two opposite rafters and the span of each rafter, which is the length that each rafter must support.
No. 2: Sawing the long trusses
Start with the trusses for the long side. Lay a 2″ by 4″ board on a completely flat surface. The 4″ side profile should point upward. Then place the top of the frame square directly on one end. The thin tongue should be on the board. Mark the board.
No. 3: Measure the remaining rafters.
Determine the “length of a typical rafter” on your knife and then check to see if there is a difference below the stitch mark. Using a tape measure, go along the bottom of the card and draw a one-inch line.
No. 4: Sawing through the rafters
Think of it as plumbing, except that you have put a square dot on top of the board. Use a circle to make the corner cuts. Make all the rafters you need for the length of the roof, with the rafters 24 inches apart.
No. 5: Cut the short side trusses
Now take the board with short trusses and repeat the calculations for the trusses on the short side. Use a 2-inch marking pen to cut it perpendicular. Then place the mouth of the bird at exactly 26 inches and install the hood. It can be long or short, and it can be shorter or longer.
No. 6: Placing the transverse joints
Place a 2-by-4-inch plank horizontally between the rafters, 12 inches from the short side from the top of the roof. Mark the corners of the rafters on the plank to add a cross member to connect the rafters.
No. 7: Chair Bellows
Use rectangular corners for each side connection; make the right front corners down to connect the two rafters, but with an upward angle for the roof ridge. Attach angle plates on either side of each joist.
No. 8: Highlighting the outdoor space
Make a mark 23 1/4 inches from your end wall and mark the outside of the second truss; mark the inside line of the second truss with a square. Repeat this step until you reach the end of the canopy; the last section may be less than 24 inches.
No. 9: Putting the crossbar in place
Lift the first joist to place it at the end. Using a level to make sure it is plumb, nail the birdcages into the wall ceilings with three 16d nails. Hammer them in at an angle with a hammer. Two on one side of the end of the beam and one on the other side. Lift the remaining rafters, making sure they are straight, and shorten them with sheets 1 by 4 nailed between the joists.
No. 10: Cover farm
Cover each joist with a straight 5/8-inch oriented (OSB) board. Nail it to the sides of the rafters with 8d galvanized nails. Allow the short side panel to overlap the top edge of the corresponding long side panel.
Opinions on the position:
Frequently asked questions
How do you build a saltbox roof?
How to Build a Salt Canopy | Specialist – How to build a salt canopy …
When was the first salt shaker built?
The simplicity and durability of this design, which first appeared around 1650, continue to make saltbox houses popular today. Below are representative images of saltbox houses from the Historic American Buildings Survey collection.
Where does the salt house come from?
The saltbox originated in New England and is an example of American colonial architecture. According to popular myth, the saltbox shape became popular when Queen Anne’s houses were taxed for more than one story. Since the back of the roof ran down to the height of a one-story building, this structure was exempt from taxation.
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