Illustrated Architecture Dictionary

(Wood) Roof Framing

See also: Roof styles  ..........   (Masonry) Vaulting

Roof framing: The act, process or manner of constructing the structural frame of a roof


Arch brace: a curved brace, usually used in pairs, to support a roof frame and give the effect of an arch


Collar beam / collar tie: A horizontal timber uniting two opposite common rafters at a point below the ridge, usually in the upper half of the rafter length

Eaves: That part of a sloping roof that overhangs the wall

Collar-braced roof


Hammer-beam roof


King post


Purlin(e): A piece of timber laid horizontally on the principal rafters of a roof to support the common rafters on which the roof covering is laid.


Queen post


Rafter: One of a series of inclined members to which a roof covering is fixed; any of a series of small, parallel beams for supporting the sheathing and covering of a pitched roof.

Exposed rafter tails are a distinguishing feature of Arts & Crafts/ Craftman style buildings.  Rafter tails AKA scroll-sawn rafter tails.


Ridge: A horizontal line at the top between two sloping roof surfaces


Ridge beam: A beam for supporting the upper ends of rafters below the ridge of a roof. Thicker than a ridge board. 


Ridge board / ridgepole / ridgepiece: A horizontal timber at the ridge of a roof, to which the upper ends of the rafters are fastened


Ridge cap / ridge capping / ridge covering:  Any covering (such as wood, metal, shingle, etc) used to cover the ridge of a roof

Ridge crest: The ornamentation of the ridge of a roof


Ridge tile / crown tile: A tile which is curved in section, often decorative, used to cover the ridge of a roof


Tie beam: In roof framing, a horizontal timber connecting two opposite rafters at their lowest ends to prevent them from spreading

A hammer beam is used in place of a tie beam in a hammer beam ceiling


Tie rod: An iron or steel rod serving as a structural tie, esp. one keeping the lower ends of an arch or frame from spreading.

An anchor is is a metal clamp, often of a fanciful design, fastened on the outside of a wall to the end of a tie rod connecting it with an opposite wall to prevent bulging.


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