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Glossary of Terminology

Abutment
Where the roof tiles meet a structure rising above the roof.

Accessory

A concrete or terracotta product used to finish the roof; includes apex, ridge and barge tiles.

Anti-ponding board

A sarking or underlay-support of various materials, (galvanised iron, fibrous cement etc), installed along the eaves lines from the top of the fascia back to the rafter with a clearance of 10 mm below the first batten. This prevents water "ponding" behind the fascia. Anti-ponding boards should be installed on all low pitched roofs or roofs with no overhang.

Apex
The intersection of all ascending hips where they meet either a ridge or another ascending hip. Note: Also the name of a three or four-way fitting used to cover this point.

Apron flashing
A one-piece flashing, such as is used at the lower side of a chimney that penetrates a sloping roof.

Barge board/verge board/gable board

A sloping board installed to the pitched edges of a gable, covering the ends of roof timbers.

Barge course/Verge course

The tiles next to the gable.

Bastard valley or hip

A valley or hip formed in an abnormal or non-parallel line on which tiles are fixed.

Battens

A specifically sized timber or steel section installed parallel to the eave line on which tiles are fixed.

Bedding

A composition of brick layers' sand and cement for fixing ridge capping on hips and ridges. The edges are finished off with a pointing material.

Bellcast batten (Tilting batten)

A batten installed on the toe of the rafters in a vertical line with the plum cut, to keep the eaves course of tiles on the same rake as the other courses. (The fascia board usually serves this purpose).

Bond

The system of aligning tiles on the roof in relationship to each other. With a straight bond, the sides of tiles form straight lines from bottom to top course. With a staggered, broken or cross bond, tiles in each alternate course overlap, by half, the tiles above and below them.

Box gutter

An internal roof gutter between the slopes of a roof or a roof and a wall that discharges water internally through a sump.

Capillary break
A groove or space left between two surfaces, large enough to prevent capillary movement of water into a building.

Ceiling joists

The joists that carry the ceiling and also form a tie between the feet of the common rafters.

Cleat

A small piece of wood that reinforces another, or is used to locate positively another timber.

Clipping batten

A batten installed to the rafters directly behind the fascia. The clipping batten is used for installing the bottom course of tiles when sarking is not specified. Generally it is only used on homes with metal fascias, and only in high wind areas.

Collar tie

The timber used to connect two rafters at or near their centres.

Common rafter
The main support rafter of the slope between eaves, wall plate and ridge.

Concealed gable flashing
Subject to regional specification in the use of the galvanised metal flashing, a concealed gable flashing is a fibre cement verge strip running to the gutter line.

Counter battens
A batten normally installed on top of and parallel to the rafters over the ceiling lining, where the ceiling lining is fixed on top of the rafters (exposed beams). Tiling battens are then installed to the counter battens, creating an air space that allows sarking to dish between the rafters.

Cripple Creeper rafter
The rafter connecting a hip and valley.

Crippled jack or Broken Hip rafter

A rafter connecting the end of a ridge to a valley.

Dormer cheek

The upright side to a dormer.

Dormer or dormer window
A vertical window or opening, coming through a sloping roof, usually provided with its own-pitched roof.

Dutch gable

A roof that has a gable near the ridge, with the lower part hipped.

Eaves
The lowest overhanging part of a sloping roof that projects beyond the external wall.

Eaves fascia
A board on edge installed along the feet of the rafters. It often carries the eaves gutter along the eaves.

Eaves overhang
The inclined distance (line of rafter) from the outside of the external wall to the inner face of the fascia.

Eaves width
The horizontal distance from the inner face of the fascia board to the outside of the external wall.

Edge of roof

The area of a roof bounded by the eaves, ridge and barge, extending towards the centre of the roof for a distance equal to 0.1 multiplied by the minimum plan dimension of the building, measured from eaves to eaves, or barge to barge.
To view the Glossary, please select an alphabet grouping from the menu.

Fašade
The face or front of a building.

Fall
The slope or pitch of a roof or gutter.

Fascia board

A wide board set vertically on edge and fixed to the rafter ends or wall, which caries the gutter.

Flexible pointing

A highly pliable yet durable compound which, once cured, forms an incredibly strong bond between the tile and ridge capping.

Head or End lap

The distance by which one course of tiles overlaps the course below.

Hip creeper rafter

A rafter connecting a wall top plate and hip.

Hip end Tile

A sloping triangular roof fitting designed to cover the end of a hipped roof.

Hip rafter

A rafter following the line of the intersection of two roof planes.

Hipped roof (End)

A gable roof which has two additional sloping planes at either end of the roof.

Jack or Crown End rafter

A rafter installed at the end of a ridge and the meeting point of two hips.

Lifts
Roofing trade term for stacks of tiles around the roofs.

Loading
The installing requirements and materials for sarking, battens, tiles and accessories etc, specified by the tiling manufacturer as sufficient to withstand the loading requirements of AS 1170.0 and AS 1170.0 Suppl 1:2000.

Mansard Roof
A roof structure with two pitches. The steep pitch commences at the eaves, and intersects with the lower pitch, which finishes at the ridge. Tiles on the lower pitch overhang the steeper pitch by a slight margin.
Mitred hips/valleys
Cut tiles on hips or valleys that form a true and straight line where the cut tiles join on each slope.

Mortar
See "Bedding".

Mottle
Used to describe the laying of various coloured tiles at a consistent percentage throughout the roof.

Nogging

Short pieces of timber nailed between studs in a wall to brace the structure.

Parapet wall

Usually a brick or timber structure that rises above the roof line.

Picking up
The term used when the tiler is trowelling off any excess mortar that may overhang the ridge capping after bedding.

Pitch
The angle or slope of the roof surface to the horizontal expressed either in degrees or as a ratio, eg 15░ or 1:3.75.

Principal rafter

An upper member in a truss that has the same inclination as the common rafters.

Profile

The shape and design of the tile.

Rafter

A sloping member that extends from the eaves to the ridge of a roof to support roofing material.

Rake
The roof's angle of inclination from the horizontal.

Ridge
The horizontal line where two planes of a roof meet together.

Ridge board

The horizontal board, set on edge, at which the rafters meet.

Ridge capping

A roof fitting used to cover the ridge-line that can be either 'V' shaped or arched (rounded). This generally consists of a specifically made tile used for both the ridge and hips of a roof.

Rigid pointing

A mixture of clean sand, cement and oxide colouring or pre-mixed flexible material, used for the completion of joints between ridge or hips and with roof tiles or tiles at gable ends.

Roof

A covering to protect a building from the elements.

Roof tile
A concrete or terracotta product used to cover the field of the roof.

Sarking or underlay

A reflective, pliable membrane that is installed under the tile battens and conforms to AS/NZS 4200.1. (Underlay is not reflective in New Zealand).

Sawtooth roof
A roof structure that is vertical on one side with a slope down from the ridge line on the other.

Scribe board
A type of bargeboard shaped to match the overhanging profile formed by the under surface of roof tiles that overhang a gable end. The tiles are pointed up on the interlocking joints.

Secret gutter
A gutter usually fixed against a wall adjoining the roof slopes, concealed by the roof covering and vertical wall flashing, then spilling into an eaves gutter.

Sheathing

A close boarding or other material nailed to the framework of a wall or roof. Sometimes referred to as sheeting.

Side lap
The distance by which one tile interlocks with the tile beside it.

Skillion
The term for a pitched roof with one plane.

Skylight
A glazed window or translucent roof section fitted parallel to the roof slope to admit light.

Soaker
Refer 8b.

Soffit
The lining installed under the eaves between the fascia board and external wall.

Soffit bearer
Timber or metal used to support the soffit.

Staggered bond
The method of laying tiles where the vertical joint of every tile is laid to overlap with a half bond of the tiles in the course below.

Starter/Shell end
The first hip cap at the lowest point of the hip line.

Steel battens

Steel battens must be designed in accordance with, AS 2050.2, 2.2 and manufactured from metallic coated steel with a minimum coating class of Z275 or AS 150 in accordance with AS 1397. In corrosive areas, advice should be sought from the manufacturer.

Stormseal
A bitumen impregnated foam strip used to weatherproof areas of roof to prevent water penetration during storms, can be flexible pointed.

Straight bond

Where tiles are not staggered but are laid directly on top of the tile in the course below, so that the vertical joints form one straight line up the slope of the roof.

Stud
A vertical wall support.

Tile clip
A specially formed metal fastening used to secure tiles to supporting members.

Tilting batten
Serves the same purpose as a bellcast batten.

Top plate
The horizontal member above a wall on which the truss or rafter sits.

Truss roofs
A roof supported by self-supporting, triangulated structural framework which is, usually prefabricated and delivered to the job site. This type of construction is commonly used for all types of roofs.

Under purlin
A horizontal member in a roof at right angles to the principal rafters or trusses. It carries the common rafters.

Upright work
Tiling carried out on a roof pitched close to vertical, normally on a fašade or a mansard roof.

Valley
The internal angle formed by the meeting of two sloping surfaces of a roof; the opposite of a hip. A valley tray is installed in this area to direct water to the gutter.

Valley creeper rafter
A rafter connecting ridge and valley.

Valley iron/Valley tray
A "V" shaped sheet lipped on each outside edge and formed to fit into the angle of a valley.

Valley rafter
A rafter following the line of the internal intersection of two roof surfaces.