# Question for someone who knows more than I do about building sheds...

Been a long time since I was from around here, following several system crashes and having to rebuild my hard drive from scratch, but I am again in need of experience I don't have. Am building the Gambrel Shed/Garage out of the Black & Decker Complete Guide to Sheds (second edition) and have hit a speed-bump. P. 161 of that volume shows the template for the rafters, both upper and lower, for that project, and I just don't understand the "lingo" if you will, or the diagram by which the information for cutting these rafters is given.
Somehow, I thought that I would be able to set my adjustable triangle to one angle and be able to cut all the angles for said rafters. I realize I am ignorant in this matter, but without actual notations as to what the different angles are, and with the appearance that they are quite similar, that just seemed natural. There is what appears to be a 30/60/90 triangle for each of the upper and lower rafters, with different numbers on the opposite and adjacent sides of each triangle, describing the roof slope for each set of rafters. For the lower rafters, the triangle shows 24 inches for the opposite side (I *think* I have this right) and 12 inches for the adjacent side, indicating a steep slope. The reverse is true for the upper rafters. It *looks* like I would set my triagle for something like 30 degrees and mark the seat and plumb cuts to make the upper angle, the Bird's Mouth and the lower angle. 30 degrees won't give me the numbers shown in the diagram for the length and depth of the Bird's Mouth, or the lowest angle, however. 28 degrees will work for the Bird's Mouth, and 20 degrees will work for the lower angle, but no one number will do both. Is this normal, and the way things are done in this type of work? If someone will tell me where to post the jpeg so I can list the link to it here, I will gladly do this. I have't kept up very well with how things are done on the Internet, and I have no idea as to where I could post the jpeg so those reading this message may observe it.
Sorry to be so verbose, but I really need some help with this and am trying to provide information on the problem as I see it. If there is a simple answer to all of this, I do hope someone will take the time to enlighten me.
Thanks for reading this long post. Take it easy...
Dave
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Get a rafter square and learn how to use it. This will become very easy then.

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wrote:

Okay, the instrumet I am using to draw the angles for cutting apparently *is* a rafter square, it just doesn't have those words printed on it like the one I bought from Home Depot (which came with an instruction manual.) So I will use the instruction manual and try to figure all this out. The one question I still have bothers me though. Is it normal to have to use three different angles to get the rafter in question to fit where you want it? Maybe so, I don't know. I just don't see any other way (yet.) And how am I supposed to know what angle to cut the top of the upper rafters at? I guess I should be able to calculate that, I just have to think about it for a minute.
Either way, thanks for the reply. It kept me moving and that's how I found the square with the instruction manual. I really would like to talk about some of this with someone, but maybe my questions are too stupid to warrant a real response. If that is the case I apologize. I am just igorant on the matter, and am trying to change that.
Take it easy...
Dave
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On 5/19/2014 11:01 AM, Dave wrote:

Dave, never think that any of your questions are stupid. Ignorance and stupidity are not the same thing. Ignorance means that you don't know but you can learn, stupid means no way. ^_^
TDD
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Thank you, Dufas (LOVE that handle.) Made me grin, which is a nice way to start the day.
Take it easy...
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