Jericho Warming Hut - Week 8 Progress Report

August 30, 2011

Pictures by John Higgins and Larry Gomes
Story by Larry Gomes

With Hurricane Irene bearing down on New England, we had just one day to get the new metal roof onto the warming hut or risk having water damage to the inside of the structure.  Luckily the core crew of Roger Richard, Eric Johnson, John Higgins and Larry Gomes showed up to got the job done.

Other than time constraints, the biggest problem facing the crew was that no one on the crew had ever installed a standing seam metal roof before.  The company that built the roof, Everlast Roofing, did supply some instructions, but they were not very detailed.  After making a few calls to the factory, we had a pretty good idea of how the process went.

Here are some pictures from last Friday and Saturday:

 On Friday, Larry worked with Matt Godbout to get stone installed around the foundation
of the warming hut.  This stone will keep the dirt from splashing up on the lattice work
and the lower logs hopefully keeping the warming hut clean.  Over 20 wheel barrow loads
of dirt were dug by hand and removed to create a slope away from the foundation.

 On Saturday, the first step was removing the blue tarp that had been keeping the warming hut dry
since the end of June.  The tarp lasted longer than any of us expected, but none of us thought it
would survive the tropical storm force winds forecast up at the 2,500 foot elevation.  Note the
plywood on the windows in preparation for Irene.

Roger and John made quick work of rolling out and stapling down the new Roof Guard material that
is recommended under metal roof installations.  The material is a similar ice and water shield except it
does not have a peel-off adhesive back.  This material will keep any condensation that builds up under
the metal roof from getting into the roof sheathing.

Since the metal was 22 gauge, every screw location had to marked and pre-drilled.
Here Eric drills holes in the drip edge.

After the drip edge was screwed down, the crew got to work installing the J-starter along
the rake of the roof.  Larry provided some ladder hooks that clamped onto two 12' ladders
which provided "moveable" roof jacks for each side of the roof.  Here Roger installs
the J-starter strip while John holds the lower end of the strip in place.

As you can see from the above diagram, the rake edge involved the installation of 3 different
roof parts  The J-starter was put down first, then a roof panel was slid into the J-starter and
finally a rake trim was installed over the roof panel to lock it into place.

The bottom of each roof panel had to be cut and bent over as shown in the above diagram.
It was a time consuming process, but with two guys on the roof and two guys on the ground,
the time for the prep and install was about the same so no one was being held up.

Here the bottom of a roof panel has been cut and bent and is ready to be installed.
The top of each panel also had to be pre-drilled to accommodate a vent strip.

Finally the first panel is installed, but there is still 31 panels left to go and its already noon time! 
The panel is installed by sliding the bent edge at the bottom over the drip edge which locks the bottom in place. 
At the top, a vent strip is installed.  The screws from the vent strip go through the panel to keep
it from sliding down the roof.  Finally a set of clips is installed along the flat edge of the panel. 
The next panel snaps into these clips and the process is repeated. Each panel ends
up being held in place on all 4 sides providing a very solid attachment to the roof.

The crew alternated installing panels on one side of the roof and then the other to allow
maximum use of the ladder staging and to avoid scratching the new roof panels. Any
scratches may cause exposed metal which can lead to rust.


The last two panels had to be cut down.  Larry used a Malco turbo shear that fit into his drill
to cut the panel down to size.  The shear cut through the metal like it was butter.  The hard
part was putting a 1" bend into the edge of the panel.  Here Roger holds down the panel
while Larry installs clamps before using the bending tool to bend the edge.

The last two end panels had to be installed from ladders.  Here Roger fits gets ready to install
the vent strip while John holds the panel in place to keep it from sliding down.


The last step was installing the ridge cap.  Roger came up with the idea of using a 32' ladder
as a ramp.  The crew tied rags along the edges of the ladder and then placed it up on the roof.  Eric dug
in a steel bar and used it to hold the ladder in place while Roger climbed up to install the ridge cap. 
John was able to hand up the ridge cap and put in the end screws from a ladder in front of the hut.


The sky suddenly turned pink as the sun set.  The old saying, "Red sky at night, sailors delight", certainly
was dead wrong given the imminent arrival of Irene.  The crew turned their car lights on and
finished the ridge cap install by headlight and then headed for home after a long 12-hour day.

This was a great job done by this crew and their extra effort prevented the warming hut from getting any water damage from Irene.  Many thanks to them and to all of the other volunteers who have given selflessly of their time over the summer.

We plan on working on the warming hut for at least two weekends after Labor Day weekend.  If you want to help with the completion  of the warming hut, please send email to

You will be recognized along with other volunteers on a workers plaque that will be mounted in the hut forever.

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