Summer Kitchen Roof

After years of preparation (mostly waiting for the time to arrive) work on erecting the roof over the Summer Kitchen began August 30, 2016.

You may have seen steps of the masonry work in earlier posts, here and here. With the cooking to dining area stairs and the first truss assembled in the shop shown at the bottom of this link.

The cooking facilities at an earlier stage are pictured below.

It took four seasons from when the area revealed itself as a good meeting / eating place. The area evolved from a circle of chairs, to a picnic table and chairs, to leveled ground with masonry footings ready for roof supporting posts. Once the beams and truss members were fashionned the roof was finally ready for assembly.

First we had to get the posts to stand up.

Then the beams on each side that will support the roof.

Note the "scarf joint" above the post. Clamped together top to bottom with two washers and tightened nuts on threaded rods, the joints turn the four piece beams into a 38 ft. timber.

Now for the first truss.

With all three trusses in place, the long ridge board

had to be raised. I wish we had video of getting it up to where it needed to be. It was all that the crew could do to raise it up through the centre of the trusses and lift it into place. It almost snapped at one point.

I was told after that it would normally have been made in two parts to be joined after it was up in the air.

The posts, beams and trusses are all stabilized with corner braces bolted into place.

After the ridge board was secured, the rafters were relatively simple to fix in place.

Three days after the first post was raised, The frame was practically complete.

We are grateful to Ed, John, Greg, Max, Peter, Kai, Hussein, my brother Steve, John, Jim, Jim*, Tim* and Ryan* for helping at various stages of the bee. Emma, Claire*, Michelle*, Sue and Christina helped with the construction from time to time & provided the hungry crew with wonderful food. (* = LEV Residents.)

Its looking like the Summer Kitchen, with its roof, will fit into the landscape .

Greg came back and we added collar ties for reinforcement.

However, we are not yet done.

Roofing boards and the steel roofing are yet to be lifted into place and attached.


At another work party September 24th & 25th we had help from another Jim, Nino and several people from the original roof raising bee. Lots of boards got cut,

and air-nailed into place.

By the time we were all tired on the second day, one half was entrely done and only about a third remained to be done on the second side.

Note the cleats on the roof that stick through the spaces between the boards. They are to help the folk on the roof to get around and to help hold tools up when not in use.

It took Tim, Jim & I three hours to finish off the boards.

Next and last step will be the steal roofing. The roof boards that extend past the rafters will be cut off just shy of the edge of the metal, once it is clear exactly where that roofing will be attached.

The final roofing-bee came together on October 30th after considerable anxiety about calling in help on a day with a possibility of rain. (One doesn't want to work on a wet roof.) Max, Stuart, Jordan and Nino all arived that morning to meet the challenge. Renate joined Claire to provide us with awesome food.

To our amazement, before the light faded, all the steel sheets were on the roof. Supper was a celebration.

All that remains now is a cap over the smoke hole. It is a small job for which most of the parts are already made. It will only take short periods of dry weather to put it together.

The fireproof frame is now in place awaiting a nimble roof-walker to help attach the three 5 ft. sheets of roofing. Note that there is one horizontal rafter missing. It can be quickly attached once the roofing pieces have been passed up through the smoke hole. With the materials on the roof, the last support in place, the final pieces of roofing can screwed into place.

And finally, thanks to Nino's new found talent for roof walking, the cover for the smoke hole is complete.

That's it. The roof is done & we can move into setting the space up to serve its purpose.

After a final rearrangement of the diagonal braces under the roof, I had to capture its geometry when the light bounced up from our first substantial snow of the season.

"Purpose" is the mortar from which civilizations are built. Witness the subtle differences between Canada with Harper at the helm compared to Trudeau. Or, how things seem to be changing with Trump assuming leadership down South. These are relatively minor variations of growth based purpose.

Lanark Eco-Village seeks to project a considerably different purpose. This purpose is identified in the Summer Kitchen's dedication.

We are thankful to Lionel & Ellen Enright for their financial contribution toward the roofing materials and the educational work that will take place under and around the structure. If you would like to make a contribution, please get in touch.