Thursday, July 11, 2013

Replacing a Simple Metal Roof - Day 3

Ground frame completed and painted. You can see the tarp Costco shed to the right that
we had moved in order to make room for this ground frame. By the shadow you can see
that the sun is overhead and slightly past the zenith because it is now past June 21st.
This day was July 8th.
With the basic ground frame completed, hubby had to give some thought as to how to effectively mount the solar panels. This time around he wanted to set them up so that their position to the sun could be shifted between winter and summer. Being that we are living below the Tropic of Cancer, the angle of the sun crosses over the zenith, making fixed mountings for the solar panels rather inefficient. The fact that most of our sunshine occurs before noon each day also complicates the issue.

When we went to start moving and adjusting the position of the new rack, we quickly realized the it needed to be braced better. So with the aid of a square and level, we got the rack squared and plumb then added bracing. Now the sucker was solid! During this process we set the legs upon the concrete footings, positioning the rack in it's final resting place.

Now came a coat of paint. Luckily we still had almost a full gallon of the house foundation paint that had been leftover. And in no time we had most of the paint on the rack, and not too much of it on my hands, legs, and clothes. A painter I am not! Well I'll correct that.....I can paint, but just about everything gets painted! Paintbrush handle, the ground, me, and eventually whatever it is that I'm intending to paint. Good thing I never had my heart set on being a house painter, ay?

In the midst of this endeavor, the dogs broke lose from their pen (three of them need to be confined when not being actively watched because they will eat chickens, lambs, and cats. Yes, they are throwaway dogs with criminal histories that we adopted because no one else wanted them. For the life of me I don't know why we did, but it must have been in a moment of insanity plus a flash of kind heartedness.) We dropped everything, ran around like idiots catching them. Repaired the spot where they had pulled the fencing, then went back to painting. An hour later, here they come again, running amuck, scaring the daylights out of the cats. Quickly rounded up, hole in fence repaired. Ten minutes later, déjà vu all over again!!! Rounded them up one more time. They thought this was a grand game. Yes, we know that the vog has been killing the fencing and it needs to be replaced, but why today? So out came a roll of 2x4 fencing and hubby lined the kennel pen with it. That's just a security patch, but it will gives time to buy new chainlink and do the job right.

The dog escape interlude gave the paint a chance to dry, so now we started moving the solar panels to the new ground rack. Since I have a task that needs to be done in town, hubby got to finish up. Tomorrow morning we will move the rest of the panels and start reconnecting the solar system. At least, that's how we have it planned.

And we still need to finish the second half of that simple metal roof job!


  1. Wow - you work WAAAAYYY faster than you give yourselves credit for - and that solar panel rack looks really good, easier to maintain, too.
    I looked some information about rust converter paints, which actually need the lightly rusted metal to react with, converting it into an iron oxide, which prevents further rust. I think it is available at Home Depot, but you might have to have them order it (or order online). I know of some folks that make concrete art structures with rebar as the armature, which they treat with the rust converter. I don't find any paint or coating test sites there when I was looking up how to stop rusting, though. I do recall some "red lead" and silver-lead coatings that an oil company used on their tanks and fences, which still ended up having to be laboriously chipped off, then recoated every few years. I remember that they had a test site with row upon row of metal plates on racks, painted various colors, all numbered, but of course, that was decades ago, and all that stuff was torn down long ago. I have heard that stainless screws and bolts will rust badly, though. Maybe epoxy resin coating? Some day, maybe someone will discover something like papaya tree sap mixed with coconut oil stops all corrosion!

  2. Metal roof sheets are probably the most practical among the roofing materials. They are cheap and easy to install; most could even DIY the process like you did and they last up to almost half the century. They are even recyclable so they promote sustainability. [Pleasance]

  3. If you are in a tight budget, metal roof sheets are the best choice! They last long, easy to install and apparently much cheaper. It's main enemy is rust, but you can prevent the corrosion if it's coated with Galvalume or polymer. FRANCISCO @

  4. I agree with Pleasance and Francisco. Metal sheets are indeed cheaper than other types of shingles. It's easy to install them since it's lightweight. However, you have to be careful in nailing them since a single hole can damage the roof's framing. I do hope that you'll schedule constant maintenance for your metal roof. :)

    Noreen Saint @

    1. Yes, we regularly inspect the roof. Since we catch water off our rooves, we need them clean and in good condition. Living downwind from an active volcano, we need to carefully watch for rust. We can't do anything about corrosion on the screw shaft exposed between the metal roof sheet and the purloins, but we diligently treat any rust on the upper surface of roof and screw heads. And regardless of claims and "guarantees", the roofing suffers damage from the volcano, which needs to be taken care of whenever it happens. People around here have to paint their rooves regularly if they want them to last.

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