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making my own drip edges

ckorto's picture

I always use drip edge on my roofs both eaves and rakes but I'm getting so tired of fitting store bought drip edge on the eaves.  There's always something!  Angle's too steep for it to look right, gap between the fascia and start of the sheathing, etc.  I think I'm just going to bend my own drip edge for the eaves from now on and then use store bought for the rakes. 

My question is this.  I've seen drip edges before that don't have that 1/4" extension at the top where the shingle lays on, just sort of a L bend with a kick out at the bottom.  How important is the extension?  Or should I take the extra time to bend the hem. What's the farthest you'd extend dimensional shingles past the drip edge without worrying about sagging.  How about the ribs at the top of store bought drip edge, important?  I always put my I&W under the drip edge and over the fascia. 

Any opinions are appreciated.  I wish I could count the number of times I've been up at 3 a.m. thinking about the finished details of tommorows roof:)

Edited 9/24/2009 2:40 am ET by ckorto

Edited 9/24/2009 2:42 am ET by ckorto

(post #108931, reply #1 of 33)

The ribs on pre made edge is because it is very lightweight metal, so that gives some lateral strength so you can handle it without it flopping over like a wet noodle.

You say only 1/4" return to support shingles?

Add an inch to that and I am happy. Do it with no support at all and I have to ask why bother using drip edge at all?



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We did the best we could...

(post #108931, reply #2 of 33)

Piffin, thanks for your reply.  You've replied to some of my posts in the past and have always been helpful.

I'll try and rephrase my question.  Doing further research, the techinal name for standard drip edge is a "T" style drip edge.  Where the hemmed portion comes out then returns back with a 1/4" overhand comes down 90 degrees and then  has that little kick out.  The other style is just a L shape with the kickout.  I normally run my shingles about an inch past the end of the drip edge.

My real question was do you ever run into a problem installing 90 degree drip edge on roofs who's pitch is never 90 degrees on the eaves.  What is your solution.  Often times by the time we extend the drip edge out and the bottom of it touches the fascia there is very little  of the top that actually sits on the roof.  My thought was to start making my own so I can put the roofs pitch in the bend and it can hug the contour of the roof.

As far as no drip edge at all, the L shaped drip edge would still protect the fascia, it just wouldn't have that additional support.

Thanks again, Chuck

Edited 9/24/2009 7:18 am ET by ckorto

(post #108931, reply #6 of 33)

The L shaped drip, is properly called rake metal.  Not meant to be used on the flat portion of the roof.

(post #108931, reply #7 of 33)

 Not meant to be used on the flat portion of the roof.

ques que se?

What's the "flat portion" of the roof?

(post #108931, reply #8 of 33)

"What's the "flat portion" of the roof?"

The part that ain't pointy I guess.

Pics coming soon, charging the camera batts.

Spheramid Enterprises Architectural Woodworks

Repairs, Remodeling, Restorations  

(post #108931, reply #9 of 33)


(post #108931, reply #10 of 33)

Is that the part formed from Adam's Ridge Board?

'Man who say it cannot be done should not interrupt man doing it' ~ Chinese proverb

'Man who say it cannot be done should not interrupt man doing it' ~ Chinese proverb

(post #108931, reply #13 of 33)

Oh, that flat portion! Silly me.

There's a gutter apron drip edge that we sometimes use with small gutter so the protrusion is less at the flat portion of the roof:


(post #108931, reply #11 of 33)

sounds like you are describing some very cheap drip. What I get is D style and has about 5" back on the roof, one inch overhang and a face about an inch including the kick out 1/4"

I overhang the drip edge up to 1/4" Any more and I think it looks like h3ll



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Taunton University of
Knowledge FHB Campus at Breaktime.
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Excellence is its own reward!



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We did the best we could...

(post #108931, reply #14 of 33)

You can say "hell".

Funny, I think any less than an inch looks like hell when the water is running down the fascia.  But, 90% of our fascias here have gutter on them, so one seldom sees the protrusion anyway. But an inch is SOP, hereabouts.

(post #108931, reply #15 of 33)

It is when it is unsupported and starts urling down and gewtting broken by tree limbs and ladders etc that I hate it.

I think we are doing the same thing, but not in the same way, keeping the water off the facia



Welcome to the
Taunton University of
Knowledge FHB Campus at Breaktime.
 where ...
Excellence is its own reward!



Oh Well,

We did the best we could...

(post #108931, reply #26 of 33)

Piffin, I run into this problem when I'm doing tear offs.  When I build my addition's I bevel the top of the fascia.  I guess that's what happens when a framer/roofer is also a trim carpenter.  I don't pretend to be a big outfit, just one quality job at a time.  As far as the drip edge, it's not cheap stuff.  I get it from  my roofing supply house, they and all other supply houses only sell two sizes, 1" and 1 1/2" (face size).  Both of them only have a 2 1/2" - 3" top and are around $4 apiece.  I would love to find a drip edge with a 5" top, that would solve my problems.  Maybe I'll try a aluminum shop.  Thanks for the info all, glad to hear I'm not the only one running into this.


(post #108931, reply #28 of 33)

 I guess that's what happens when a framer/roofer is also a trim carpenter

Exactly!  Most homes that are framed this way are framed by someone who doesn't have to deal with the problems it creates.  They are competing with other framers in a cut throat market and trying to cut costs anywhere they can.

I just stopped at a home last week where the owner was doing a shingle job himself.  He had face nailed the dripedge because there wasn't anything on top to nail it to.  That was a sweet looking mess!

Lesson to be learned:  Dropped subfascia is a bad practice in many situations!!!!!!!!

(post #108931, reply #3 of 33)

Just reading between the lines, it sounds like you drop your subfascia so that the outer edge is on the same plane as the roof sheeting.  In my opinion, that's a very bad practice and a shortcut that will save you a little time, but in the long run causes all kinds of problems (like you just mentioned)

We always cut the top of the subfascia on the same angle as the roof .  When you do this and use a wider dripedge, such as Rollex ODE, you won't have any of the problems you are experiencing.

You will have to start with a wider subfascia board or trim your fascia material so it is narrower than the rakes but it does a much better job.

(post #108931, reply #4 of 33)

Your attention to this detail might make sense if you only build one house a year. There are many ways to skin a cat and this is not one that I'd recommend. Your "solution" doesn't address chortles concern. To address his concern with the level of detail that you are suggesting, you'd have to add a small cant strip at the top of your beveled fascia on the face of it. That would fill the small void that a 90 degree drip edge creates.

Chorto needs a longer leg on the top leg of his drip edge to solve his problem.

Is anybody out there? 

(post #108931, reply #20 of 33)

You don't leave the dripedge bent at 90*.   It is sprung differently for different roof angles.

ODE is a much wider dripedge than the common stuff that he is having problems with.

How long does it take to bevel cut a fascia board???? 

(post #108931, reply #24 of 33)

"How long does it take to bevel cut a fascia board???"

Not long. If you have a stack of 30, it'll take you 30 times longer than one.

It takes me five minutes to nail up a fascia. It will take you 6 minutes if you are going to rip/bevel it. That represents about 20% more time. If you insist on spending 20% more time on every element of the house you build, you will build 20% fewer houses in your lifetime than I.

If you translate that into years, that represents about 1/5 of your lifelong production. If I work 50 years and retire at age 70, you'll have to continue working until age 80 to earn the same income as I.

My conclusion: you are giving away your retirement because you haven't investigated enough other techniques.

Edited 9/24/2009 8:56 pm ET by jimAKAblue

Is anybody out there? 

(post #108931, reply #25 of 33)

dang man, somehow that makes sense!



(post #108931, reply #12 of 33)

I can't imagine how the subfascia has anything to do with how a drip edge works



Welcome to the
Taunton University of
Knowledge FHB Campus at Breaktime.
 where ...
Excellence is its own reward!



Oh Well,

We did the best we could...

(post #108931, reply #16 of 33)

You probably haven't seen as much shoddy construction as I have!  Everyone around here uses roof trusses.  I've been in this business for 33 years now and I have never, ever seen a house built with anything but roof trusses.  Almost every roof truss top chord is made from 2x4s.

It is common practice to drop the subfascia down without beveling the top edge of it.  This is easier than taking the time to bevel the top edge and you may have to use a larger size subfascia.  When you do this on a 2x4 truss tail, you will have basically nothing left of the tail to nail to if the roof sheeting extends past the the tail of the truss. avoid that they stop the sheeting at the end of the tail and raise the subfascia up to the plane on the sheeting.  This cause a void over the top of the subfascia so that a narrow dripedge has no place to nail it to.  This causes the problem the OP was referring to.

Ask sounds like he does it the same way!


(post #108931, reply #17 of 33)

Prbably opening a can of worms here, but in my framing days, we trussed. We set the sub fascia ( 2x6) so it planed with the top chord..lay a straight edge on the chord and bump up to it..I used my carp pencil or a speed sq.

Anyway, then the line was snapped at 47 1/2" from face of sub ( still sq. edged) for the sheathing. This allows the fin. fascia to abut the underside of the sheathing and minimizing that void. No problem nailing standard F4 dripedge.

The sub was a 2x6 and fin. Fascia was 1x6 which when wrapped w/alum, would make a recess for the soffit built in due to the drop of the sheathing plane and the lip on the fascia wrap.

Spheramid Enterprises Architectural Woodworks

Repairs, Remodeling, Restorations  

(post #108931, reply #18 of 33)

Yup, you are right on all points.   But the most common type of construction in this region is to use aluminum fascia over the subfascia and then you run into the problem with nailing the dripedge.

(post #108931, reply #19 of 33)

Oh, I see what ya mean. Yeah, thats wrong. I mean, thats why its a SUB fascia, and not THE fascia. where I was raised.

Spheramid Enterprises Architectural Woodworks

Repairs, Remodeling, Restorations  

(post #108931, reply #23 of 33)

Nope...But I never beveled a fascia on a level soffit system.

You don't have to bevel the fascia to produce a quality product. You're folks there are doing something else wrong.

Is anybody out there? 

(post #108931, reply #27 of 33)

I notice in your photos that you use what appears to be a pine fascia and soffit assembly on your homes.

Over on the other side of the state, you rarely ever find anyone building that way.  All I see on the west side is a 2x subfascia covered with aluminum fascia.  That's also the way it's done in 95% of the homes in Wisconsin and Minnesota.

In your case, it wouldn't make such a difference , but if you build it the other way it causes problems.

(post #108931, reply #30 of 33)

I don't see why it would make any difference. We've done plenty of "maintenance free" home. When we do those, we do it the same way. The edge of the plywood nails down to the edge of the fascia. We put nails every 4-6". If the mechanic is sloppy, you might get 1/2" gap but that is not the norm. Nomally, the plywood edge is close enough so that a very small drip edge leg will lay nicely.

This doesn't take any special skill. I NEVER snap a line at 47 1/2" as some have suggested. Instead, I put a spike sticking out at the corner of the fascia at the center of each truss/rafter. I then slide the plywood down and bump the nail. It's idiot proof and fast. I never miss the framing member when I nail either because of the visual nail.

No, I do not need to bevel any fascia to provide a quality nailing substrate for a drip edge.

Is anybody out there? 

(post #108931, reply #31 of 33)

I don't frame often any more, but I'll say, I like your nail bump better than a snapped line.  Esp. because I mostly work alone, and line snapping is always a hassel what with wind, no one to center hold, and getting tangled up in stuff at the last minute.

Of course this means the subfascia has been sighted and has no dips, waves or bumps. I'm shocked how many carps. never use the most accurate measurer, their eyeballs. I mean, I've seen a lot of stuff measure dead on, but still LOOK outta whack.

Thanks for the tip.

Spheramid Enterprises Architectural Woodworks

Repairs, Remodeling, Restorations  

(post #108931, reply #32 of 33)

You are correct. The fascia has to be level and straight before the plywood is installed. Is there any other way?

Yes..I know there are other ways...I just wouldn't indulge in them unless it's absolutely necessary.

And I agree...the eye is far my accurate than strings and measurements. Strings are good for getting stuff close but the eye tells the real story. Even my 20/200 eye, corrected of course, can see the dips and doodles of a stringlined straighten job.

Is anybody out there? 

(post #108931, reply #33 of 33)

One other tip. I used to sheath roofs that were often 40' or more long. I REQUIRED all roofs to be started with the nails sticking out at each roof member. This eliminated all the missed nails.

Anyways, most of the guys would lay a sheet right next to the pile and work away from it. I found that it made a lot more sense working the bottom row from the farthest point from the pile. It was very easy to drag the sheet along the fascia as it rode against the nails. I could easily walk the walls and hold the sheet one handed and drag it. When I got to it's final resting position, I was in the perfect position to step back into the trusses to lay it down and nail it while standing in the the trusses. I'd also immediately put an "L shaped" kicker on each bottom sheet.

Overall, this was a very efficient and safe arrangement. I never "lost a sheet" trying to position it and hold it and nail it at the same time. To this day, I'd bet my time against against any other method known to man.

Is anybody out there? 

(post #108931, reply #5 of 33)

How important is the extension


If the roof dumps into a small gutter, then the extension plus the 1" of shingle overhange I like to use could be protruding too far into the gutter. In this case, I'd use the "ell" style drip edge.

If there were no gutters or large gutters, I'd definitely want the extension on the drip edge.

One size does not fit all.