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T HE ST E EL SQUAR E AND I T S USE S,

I NT R OD UCT ORY R E MAR! S.

D I V I SI ON A .

I w i ll not att e mpt in this s m all treat i se t o ,

giv e an hist orical a ccount of the ori gin grow th ,

a n d de v el op m ent of the s qu are as the su bj ect ,

has been treate d of at length in m y larger


work s as I d o not care t o pad ou t these pages
,

wi th m atter that is not o f a sev erely p ra ct i cal


n ature .

Suf ce i t to say tha t while i ron s qu a res g


, ,

u red ori their f a ces in inches an d fe e t an d s m all ,

er divi si ons hav e been m a de in E nglan d an d


,

B elgiu m f or 2 00 years or m ore the genuine ,

steel s q uare as we n ow k n ow it
, is a p u rely ,

Am eri can product an d i t has n o eq ual as n o


, ,

E uropea n m anu fact urer has as yet been ab le t o


turn ou t a square anything like as good or per
f eet i n nish gra d uat i on or general get u p as
, ,
-
,

Sargent Cc. of N ew H aven Conn .; Ni c holls


, ,

Co. Ot t u m wa I owa ; an d T he P eck Stow 8r


, , ,

Wil cox Cc. South i n gton Conn . Sq ua re s m a de


, ,

by any on e of these rm s name d m ay be relied ,

u pon as be ing as n e ar p e r fect as it i s p ossible t o

3
4
. AB C OF T HE S TEEL SQ U A R E

m a k e the m in e v eryth in g that perta i n s t o ac


curacy durabi l ity a n d general nish . Th e
,

Am eric an wo rkma n sho u ld feel p roud of th e


fact that he p ossesses a S teel S quare of pu rely
H ome p rodu ction which has n o e qu al in th e
wo rld .
Th e re i s n othi n g o f m o re im p ortance to a
youn g m an who i s learnin g the business of
house j oi ne ry a n d ca r pe n try th a n that he
-
,

should m a k e himself tho rou ghly co nv ersa n t


with the c apa bi l iti e s o f the tools he em p loys .

It m a y b e th a t i n some o f the rules shown i n


,

thi s wo rk th e r e sult could be attained much


,

r e adi e r with oth e r aids than the square ; but


th e p ro g res siv e m e chani c will n ot rest s atis ed
with o ne m e thod o f pe rfo rmin g o pe ration s whe n
oth e rs a re w i t li i n his reach .
In th e h an d of th e i n t ell i ge nt mecha n ic the
square becom e s a sim ple calculatin g m achine of
the most wond e rfu l c ap acity and by it he sol ves
,

p robl e ms of th e ki n d s co n ti n ually a ri s i ng in
mecha n ical work which by the o rdinary meth
,

ods a r e mor e di fcult to perfo rm .


The g reat im p r ovement which the a rt s and

ma n ufacture sh ave attai n ed wi thin the la st fty


y ears, renders it essenti al that every person e h

g a ged therein should u s e his utmo st exerti on s


to obtain a pe rfe ct k n owled ge of t he t r ade h e
A B c or T HE ST EEL SQ U AR E 5

p rofess e s t o foll ow It is not e nough now a


. ,

d ays fo r a p erson t o h a ve a ttai n ed the cha ract e r


,

of a g ood wo rkman ; that phrase implies th a t

quantum o f excelle n ce which co n sists in w ork


,

i n g co rrectly a n d n e atly u n d e r the directions o f


,

others . The wo rkman of to day to excel must -


, ,

u n d e rstand the p ri n ci p les o f hi s trade an d b e ,

a bl e to a pp ly them co rr e ctly in practice S uc h .

a one has a decided adva n ta ge o v er his fellow


wo rkman ; and if to his s u p erio r knowled ge h e
p osses ses a st e ady m a nn er a n d i n du str i ou s hab
,

i t s hi s e ff o rt s can n ot fai l o f bei ng r e ward e d


'

, .

It is n o s in not t o k n ow much thou gh it i s ,

a great one not to kn ow a ll w e can an d p ut it ,


'

all to good use Y et how f ew mech a n ics th e r e


. ,

ar e wh o will k n ow all they can hlen app ly f or


!

em p loym en t daily who cl a im to b e n ished m e

cha n i cs a n d p rof e ss to be conv e rsa n t with a ll


,

th e ins a n d outs of thei r craft an d who a re ,

n oways b ackw a rd in demandin g th e hi ghest


wa ges g oi ng who when t e sted a re fou n d wa n t
, , ,
~

i ng in kn owled ge o f th e sim p l e st formul as o f


t hei r t rad e . They m ay p erha p s be abl e to pe r
, ,

f o rm a good j ob of work aft e r it is laid out f o r


them by a mo re com p et en t ha n d ; they m ay hav e
a p a rtial k n owled ge of the u ses and applicatio n
of t heir t ools ; but generally their knowl e d ge
, ,

ends here . Y et some of these me n hav e wo rked


6 ABC or T H E ST EE L SQ U A RE

at t hi s trad e or that f or a third of a century ,

an d are to all appearances sa ti sfi ed with th e ,

l ittle they learned whe n they were a p prentices .

T rue mecha n ic a l kn owledge was not always so


,

ea sily obtained a s at pres e nt for n e arly all ,

w orks on the constructiv e a rts w e re writt e n b v

p rofes sional architects en gineers and desi gners


, , ,

a n d how e ver unexc e ptiona bl e in other respect s ,

t hey were gen e ral l y couched in such la n gu a g e ,

technic a l a n d ma thematical as to be perfect l y ,

u n intelligibl e to t he maj ority o f workmen ; and

. n st ea d of acting as aids t o t h e or d inary

q u i rer th
, e y env e lop e d in mystery the si m pl est
s o l utions o f ev e ry day problems d isc ouraging
-
,

n i n e te n ths o f workm en on th e very thresh ol d of


-

i n quiry a n d causi n g them to a ba ndo n further


,

e ff orts to mast e r th e intricacies o f th e ir respect


iv e trad e s .
Of lat e y ea rs a n umbe r o f books h a v e been
,

p ublished i n which th e authors and compil e rs


,

hav e made comm en dabl e e ff orts to simpli fy m at


t e rs p ertainin g to th e arts o f carpe n try and
j oi ne ry a n d th e mech a nic o f to day has not th e
,
-

difcu lties o f his p re deces sors to cont e nd with .


The w orkman o f ol d cou l d e xcu se his ignorance
o f the hi ghe r b ranches of his trad e by sayin g ,

that h e had no mea n s o f acquiring a knowledge


of th e m B ook s w e r e b eyo n d his rea ch and
.
,
AB c OF THE S T E EL SQ U A RE 7

t rad e secrets we re gua r de d so j ealously t ha t ,

only a limi te d few were all owe d t o kn ow th em ,

a n d u nless he was m a de o f better stu ff than the

m ost of hi s f ell ow work m en h e was forced to


-
,

p l od on in the sa m e gr oov e al
l his da ys .

Not so with the mechanic of t oday ; i f he i s


'

n ot well up in a ll th e m inuti ae of his tra d e he ,

has b ut himsel f t o blame f or although there 1 8


,

royal r oad to k nowle d ge there are hundreds


,

of Open ways to o b t a in it ; and the y ou ng m e

chani e who d oes n ot a v ail himsel f of on e or othe r


o f these ways to enrich his m in d m ust lack ,

e nergy or bealtogether in di ff erent a bout hi s


,

trade and may be put down as one who will


,

nev er mak e a workm an .


I h av e thou g ht tha t it woul d not be out o f

place to p re fa c e this work o n the S t e e l S quar e ,

w ith th e for eg oi n g re m a rks i n th e h op e that


,

they m a y s t imulat e th e you n g mechanic a nd ,

urge him fo rw a rd to conquer what at best are


only ima g i na ry difcu l tie s. A willin g heart an d
a cl e ar hea d will most assur e dly win hon orabl e
distinction i n an y trade i f they are only pr 0 p
,

e rly used . Indeed durin g an ex perience o f ma n y


,

yea rs in the employm en t and superintende nce o f



mechani cs o f every grade fro m the gre e
, n wo od

haggler to the n ished an d accomplished work
man I hav e invariably disco v ere d that the n
,
8 ABC OF T HE S T EE L S QU A RE

i shed w or km an was the result of persis t ent


study and a pplicatio n a n d not as is p op ul arly
, ,

sup p o s ed a natural o r spontane ou s p roduction


, .

It is true that som e men possess gr e at e r n atural


m e cha n ical a bilities than oth e rs and con se ,

quently a greater a p titu d e in gr as p in g th e


p ri n ciples that u nde rlie the const ru ctive a rts
b u t as a rule such men are not re l i a bl e ; they
, ,

may be ex pe rt equal to any mecha n ical emer


,

g en cy , an d quick at masterin g details but th e


,y
are s e ldom tho rou gh an d never reliable where
,

lon g sustained e ff ort s are req u i red .

The mecha n ic who r e aches a fai r d e gree of


p erfection by experie n c e study a n d a p pli ca
,

tio n i s th e man who rises to the surface and ,

whose st e adi n es s an d t rustwort hin e ss forc e


themselv e s on th e notic e o f e m p loy e rs an d su
e ri n t en d en t s. I hav e s a id this i n o rd e r to gi ve
p
en coura gem e nt to thos e you ng mech an i cs who
n d it u p hi l l work to m ast e r th e i n t ricaci es of
-

the various art s th e y are eng a ge d i n fo r the y ,

may r e st assure d that in th e en d wo rk a n d ap


li ca t i on will be sure to wi n ; and I am c e rtai n
p
th a t a thorou gh study o f th e S t ee l S quar e and
its c ap abi lities wi l l do mo re tha n anythi ng els e
to aid th e you ng wo rkma n i n m asteri ng many
of the mecha n ical di fficulties that wi l l co n front
him from ti m e t o t im e i n his d aily o ccu p atio n .
A B c OF T H E S TEE L S Q U AR E 9

I t must not be suppose d that th e w or k h er e


p resented exhausts the subj ect Th e en t erpri s .

ing mecha n ic wi ll n d opp ortunity fo r usi n g th e


sq ua r e in the solution of many p roblems that

will cro p up duri ng his daily w ork an d th e ,

p ri n ci p les her e i n laid down wi ll ai d very m uch


towards corr e ct so l utio n s I n frami ng roofs .
.

b rid ges t restl e wo rk a n d constru ctio n s of t im


,
-
,
e

her th e S t e el S quar e is a ne c e s sity to the A mer


,

ican ca r p e n ter ; but on l y a few o f the m o r e


i nt el li ge n t workm e n ever use it fo r other p ur
pos e s than to m a k e measur e ments l ay off th e ,

m o rti ces a n d te n o n s a n d squ are ov e r th e v ariou s


,

j oints . Now i n framin g bevel work o f any d e


,

sc ri p tion th e squar e m a y be us e d with g r ea t


,

a dva n ta ge a n d p rofit . Posts g irts braces a n d


, , ,

struts o f e very ima gi n ab le ki n d may be l aid out

by this wond e rful i n strume n t if th e o pe rato r


,

w ill o n ly study the p la n s with a view o f maki ng


use of his squar e fo r obtai n i ng th e va rious b e v

els l e n gths a n d cuts requir e d to com p l e te th e


,

work i n ha n d Ta p eri ng structur e s the mo st


.

ff
di icult th e fr a m e r m e ets with do n ot contai n

a si ngle bev el o r lengt h that ca n n ot be fou n d


by the square wh en p ro pe rly app li e d a n d it i s ,

t his fact I wi sh to im p r e s s o n my readers f or ,

it would be im p o ssibl e i n this wo rk to gi ve ev


, ,

ery p ossib le a pp licatio n of th e squar e t o w ork


19 AB c or T H E ST EE L S Q UARE

of this kind . I h a ve there fore only gi v en such


, ,

e xamples as w i ll enabl e any one to apply s ome


one o f them to any work i n han d .
I n the f oregoing s ketch I have gi ven a f ew
hints as to the kin d of qu are to purchas e w he n
J

i t is necessary to buy ; in ma n y cases howe v er , ,

this book will nd its way in to t he han d s of


mechanics and others who wi ll h av e old and
,

f av orite squares in their chests or work sh ops ,


an d who will not care to dis p ose o f a well tri ed -


fri en d for th e purp os e o f ll in g its p lace with
a nothe r sim p ly b e c a use I h a ve r e commen d ed i t .
,

To these workm en I would s a y that I do n ot


a dvis e a ch a n g e prov id e d th e old square is t ru e
, ,

and the i n ch es and sub divisions are pm perly -

an d accurat ely dened I wish it distinctly


.

u n derstood tha t ol d squares i f t ru e and mark ed , ,

with inches and su bd ivisi ons o f i n ches will per ,

form nearly ev e ry s olution pres en ted i n this


book .
The lines and gu res formed on the sq u ares
o f di ff erent mak e sometimes vary both as to
, ,

their p osi tion on the sq uare an d their m ode of ,

app lication b ut a thorou gh u n derst a nd ing of


,

the a p plication o f th e sc a les an d li n es show n o n


a ny rst class tool wi ll en abl e th e stud e nt to
-
,

com p rehend the us e o f th e l in e s a n d g ures


hi bi t ed on other rst cl a ss square s
-
.
AB c or T H E S T EE L S Q U ARE 11

To i nsure go od res ults i t i s nece ssary t o b e


,

ca re f ul in th e selecti on o f the t ool . T he bla d e

of the square shoul d b e 2 4 i nches l ong and ,

two i nches w id e an d the tongue fr om 1 4 t o 1 8


,

inches long an d inches wi d e . The tongu e


shoul d b e e x actly at right angles w i th the b la de ,


or i n other word s the s q uare Sh oul d be per
f ect ly square .

To test this quest i on get a board about 1 2


, ,

or 1 4 inches wi d e an d f our fe et l ong d res s it


, ,

on on e Si d e an d true up one edge as near


,

straight as i t is p ossible to make i t . L ay the


boa rd on the bench with the d res se d si d e up
, ,

an d the trued e dge towards y ou then appl y the ,

s quare with the b la d e t o the le ft an d m ark


, ,

across the prepare d boar d wit h a penk n i f e b la d e ,

pressing cl ose a gainst the e d ge of th e t ongue ;


this pr ocess d one to y ou r satis fa ction re v erse th e
,

square an d m ov e i t u nt i l the t ongu e i s cl ose up


,

to the k ni fe m ark ; if y ou n d that t he e d ge of


th e t ongue an d m ark coi n cid e i t i s pr oof that
,

the tool is correct e nou gh f or y our p u rp oses .


L ater on I wil l s h ow by di agra m how thi s test
,

i s per form ed .
This o f cou rse relates to the ou tside ed ge o f
, ,

the blad e an d th e outsi d e e d ge of t h e t ongu e .


,

If th ese e d ge s shoul d n ot be stra i gh t or sh ould ,

n ot p rov e per fectly t rue th ey shoul d be le d


,
12 A B c or T HE S T EEL S Q UARE

o r g rou n d u n ti l th e y a r e str a i ght an d t rue . Th e


outside ed ge of th e bl ad e should al so be

tru e d u p a n d m ad e e x a ct l y pa r allel with th e
i n sid e ed ge if such i s r e quir e d Th e sam e p roc
,
.

ess shou l d b e g o ne throu gh o n th e to ngue . As

a ru le squ a r e s m ad e by rms of r ep ut e a re p e r
,

f ee t . a n d require n o a dj usti ng ; ne v e rthele ss it ,

i s w el l to m a k e a critic a l e x a mi n a tio n befo re


p urchasi ng .

The ne xt thi ng to b e co n sid e r e d is th e u se of


th e gur e s li ne s an d sc a l e s as e xhibit ed on
, , ,

th e squ ar e It is su pp os e d th a t th e o rdi n ary


.

divisio n s a n d sub divi sio n s of th e i n ch i n to ,

h al v e s quart e rs e i ghth s an d sixt een th s a r e


, , ,

u n d e rstood by th e st ud en t ; a n d th a t h e a l so
u n d e r st an ds how to u se that pa rt of th e squ a r e
th a t i s subdivid e d i n t o tw el fth s o f an i n ch .

Thi s b e i ng c on c e d ed w e n ow p ro c ee d to de
,

s crib e the v a rio u s ru le s a s show n o n a l l good


squ a r e s ; but b e fo re proceedi ng further it may ,

not b e out of pl a c e to stat e th a t on th e squa res


,

r e comm en d e d i n this bo ok o ne e d ge is sub


,

divid e d i n to thirty s e co n ds of a n i n ch
.

Thi s n e sub divisio n wi ll b e fou n d v e ry u se


fu l pa rticu l arl y so wh en us ed a s a scal e to


,

m ea sur e d rawi ng s mad e i n h al f on e qu a rt er on e


,
h
,

e i ghth or o ne si xt een th of an i n ch to th e foot .


-
P RA C TI CAL U S E S OF T H E
S T EE L S QUARE

We n ow tak e up a Squar e void of a n y att a ch


me n ts a n d o n e which has become quite po p u l a r
,

i n the w e st an d th e middle souther n st a t e s I .


refe r to th e Nich o l ls S qu a r e a r ep r e se n ta
,

tio n o f o n e sid e o f which is Show n a t Fi g 1 . .

Thi s squ ar e is a ne w o ne on th e market and ,

p r e se n t s som e adva n ta ge s ov e r ma n y n ow b e in g
S old. Th e m an uf a ctu r e rs dir e ct s pe ci a l a tt en
tion to the f a ct th a t the bo ard m e a su r e has
b e e n r ep lac e d b y a sim p l e rul e fo r frami ng an d
,

that th e r e i s to b e fou n d th e l eng ths a nd gur e s


givi ng th e cuts fo r an en tir e roof also th e cuts
,

fo r co r n ic e of th e sam e The ton gue o n th e


.

squ a r e is 1 % i n ch e s wid e thus m a kin g it co n


,

v en i en t fo r s pa ci ng a s much of the dim en sio n


,

l umb e r is 1 4 i n ch e s thick . Th e gen e ral dirce


3

tio n s fo r u si ng this squar e a co p y o f wh i ch


i s g ive n to ev e ry p u rch a s e r o f a squ are ar e

p res en t e d herewith so that th e reader wi l l b e


,

able hims el f to j ud ge of the merit s o f th e tool .

T h e se squ a r e s a r e number e d o r g raded accord


in g to th e g raduatio n m ar k s a n d qua l ity of
n i sh .
14 AB c or T H E S T EE L SQUARE

The fa ce o f a squ a r e is th e sid e 0 1 !

which we sta mp our n a m e T he rev e rs e


.

i s the bac k . The lon g er arm i s t he


b ody the other is th e tongu e .
,

Frami ng E u la Th e firs t line of


gures g ives the le ng th of co mm on
ra fters for o n e foot run .
Th e sec on d line o f g ure s gi ve s the
lengt h o f h ip or v alley ra fters f or on e
f oot run .
The th i r d l i ne of gure s gi ves the
length of rst j ack ra ft e r a nd th e d i f
f eren ce i n th e len g th o f th e others
space d 1 6 i nches on c e nt e rs .

T h e fou rth lin e o f gu res g i v es the


lengt h of rst j ack rafters a nd th e d i f
fe ren ce in the leng th of th e othe rs
spa ced 2 fe e t on cen te rs .

The fth line o f gures gives th e


si de cut o f j ack rafters against hip or
alley ra fters .
Flg 1 .

The s ixt h li n e of gures gi ves the


si d e cut of h i p or v alley rafter ag ainst rid ge
board or de ck .
AB C or TH E S T E EL SQUARE 15

T he se venth lin e of gures gi v es the cuts of


s heathi ng an d shingles i n v all e y or hi p f or ,

e x ampl e
1 .I f your roo f is raised 8 i n ch e s to th e f oot ,

or as it is called thir d pitch u n d er 8 o n the rs t


, , ,
.

line are the gure s Thi s i s t h e l e ngth of


co mm on ra fters f or one foot run . I f the bui l ding
is 1 6 feet w ide ha l f th e w idt h o f bu i l d ing w oul d
be the run of common ra ft e r . I n th i s case it
would be 8 ; m ulti p ly by 8 you hav e ,

i nches or 9 f e et
, i n ch e s .
2. Too bta in the bott om and t o p cuts o f
common rafter u s e the gure s 1 2 on bod y and 8
on t ongu e ; 1 2 si d e g i ve s bottom cut 8 si d e gi v es
,

top cut ; th e sa me gu res gi ve bott om and to p


cuts f or j ack .
On t h e secon d line under 8 are
-
g ure s
t he
m ulti p ly these gures by 8 wh ich is th e
,

ru n of the commo n ra fte r. This g iv es or


1 2 feet inches . T hi s i s the c orrect le n gth
of hip or v all e y ra fter . To obtain the b ottom

an d top cuts for hip or v alley raf ters use th e ,

gures 1 7 on body a nd 8 on ton g ue ; 1 7 sid e


_

gi ves b o ttom cut 8 Side g ives top cu t .


,

This is all the g urin g neces sa ry t o be done .


The re ason f or gi vi n g the lengths f or on e foot
o f common an d h i p or valley rafters i s that it
6 AB c or T HE S T EEL S Q U A R E

will wo rk in a ll cas e s r ega rd le ss of width of


bui l di ng s .

3 On the thi rd lin e u n d e r 8 ar e the gur e s


.

1 9 A i n ch e s
1 This is th e l en gth of rst j ack
.

r a fter a l so th e di ff e re n c e i n the length of th e


,

others s pa c e d 1 6 i nch e s o n c en t e rs . F o r ex
a m p l e th e r st j a ck bem g
, inches the ,

se co n d j a ck wou l d b e 3 f ee t i n ch e s ; m ak e
ea ch o ne i n ch e s l o nge r tha n th e other .

On th e fou rth li ne u n d e r 8 a r e th e g ur e s 2
f ee t. i n ch e s This i s the l ength o f th e rst
.

j a ck r a ft e r an d the diff e r en c e in the l ength of


,

th e oth e rs s p ac e d 2 fe e t c en t e rs .

On the fth l i n e u n d e r 8 a r e th e gu r e s 1 0
an d 1 2 B y pl a cin g square o n stock to be cut
.

a t th e s e gu res 1 0 o n bo dy 1 2 on t on gu e a n d
, ,

markin g on 1 2 sid e this giv e s sid e cut o f j ack s


ag ai n st hi p o r va l le v raft e r .

On the sixth lin e u n d e r 8 a r e the gu res 9 and


1 0 . B y p laci ng square o n stock to b e cut at
th e s e gur e s 9 o n body a n d 1 0 o n to ng ue a n d
, ,

marki ng o n the 1 0 sid e this giv e s sid e cut of


,

hi p or va lle y raft e r a g ainst rid ge bo a rd o r deck .


On th e s e v en th li ne u n d e r 8 are g ur e s 1 2 and
1 0. B y pla cin g square on sto ck to be cut at
these gur e s 1 2 on body 1 0 on to ngu e a nd , ,

marki ng o n th e 1 0 sid e this giv e s the cut of


she athi ng a n d shi n gl e s in v alley o r hi p .
A B c or T H E S T EEL S Q UARE 17

R em a rk s. To obtai n th e lengths and cuts b e


car e fu l to us e th e gu r e s u n der whatever gur e
your roof rais e s to the foot If your roof .

raises 1 2 inches to the foot o r h alf p itch look


, ,

u n d e r 1 2 a n d so o n i n all c ases . In cuttin g


,

j ack r a fters a ll ow fo r half the thickn e s s o f hi p


o r v alle y raft e rs a s lengths giv e n 0 1 1 squ ar e
a re to c en ter lin e s .

Ne a t Th e gur e s o n the Squa re givi ng sid e


,

cu t s of j a cks will al so give th e correct mi t er


,

cuts fo r mou l di n g i n the va l l e y a t the j u n ctio n


of two g ab l es also mit e r cuts fo r g able m ould
,

i ng s wh e re it i n t e rsects with l e vel mou l din gs at


the e n d o f bui l di ng .

The gu r e s g ivi ng cut s of sh ea thi ng i n valle y


o r hi p also give cuts fo r mit e ri ng le v e l p l a n cee r
wi th g able p l an c ee r a ls o th e mit e r cuts wher e
,

two g able pla n ceers i n t e rs e ct a l so th e cut fo r


,

plan c eer o n g ab le en d .

To obtai n th e bottom a n d to p cuts o f hi p o r


v alle y r a fter us e the gu re 1 7 o n body and ,

wh a t e v e r gur e your roof r a ises to th e foot on


to ngue . This will giv e you the co rr e ct cuts i n
al l cas e s .
To obt a in th e bottom a n d to p cut s of commo n
r a ft e rs a n d j ack raft e rs u se the gu re 1 2 o n
body and what eve r gur e your roof rais e s to
,

t he foot o n ton gu e This gives co rr e ct cuts i n


.
18 A B C or T H E S T EE L SQUA RE

all cases . A lways r em em ber that the cut comes


( i n the ton gue or last name d gure . I t is so
,

arrange d in all cases .



Octagon E i ght squ are Scale. T his s cal e
,
- -

i s al ong the m i dd l e o f the fa ce o f the t ongue ,


an d is use d f or laying of lin es to cut an ei g ht

square or octag on stic k of timber fr om a

s quare .

Supp ose the gures A B C D Fi g . 2 i s th e


, , , , ,

butt of a s q uare stick of timber 6 x 6 inches .

Throu g h the center d raw the lin e s A B an d CD


parallel wit h the sides an d at ri g ht an g les t o
e ach other .
With th e d i v i ders tak e as many sp a ces ( 6 )
from the scale as there are inc hes in th e width
of the stic k an d la y off this s p ace on e ither sid e
,

of the point A as Aa an d A b ; l a y off in the same


way the space from the point B as Bd an d Be ;
also C f and C g an d D b and De . Then d raw th e

li n es a b cd ef a n d gh. C ut off th e solid a n g l e


, ,

E also F G an d H ; there is left an octa g on or


, , ,


e ight squa re stick . This is nea rly e xact .
Brace Mm am a This i s alon g the center of

th e back of the t ongue an d gives the length o f
,

the c omm on b race .


18 1 8
-
in the scale m eans that if th e ru n
i s 1 8 i n ch es on the post an d t he same on the
beam then the b ra ce will be 2 5 45 1 00 i nches.
,
-
20 AB C OF T HE S T EE L S Q UA R E

e v ery e x pert w orkm an the ,

square pu r e a n d simple like ,

this of Nicholls o r simi lar


on e s shou l d never b e absent
,


from th e kit of th e o rdi
na ry wo rkman fo r with it if
, ,

he tho rou ghly u n de rstan d s


it he can accom p lish all that
,

is p ossible e ven with a co m


bi n atio n Squa re If he i s not
.


p osted the w o r km a n sho u ld
p rocur e some o n e or mo re of
th e m any d evi c e s o r hel p s fo r
getti ng bevels a ngle s le n gth s
, ,

and cuts fo r rafters brac e s


, , ,

hi p s a n d j acks as advertised
by R i esma n n W oods an d
, ,

others .

Fi g. 3.
With thes e aids a n d a goo d t ru e an d honest
steel squar e the workm a n ca n accom p lish al
most all that can b e do ne with this to ol o r all ,
AB C or THE S T EEL S Q UAR E 1

t h at h e will be called u pon t o e x e cu te by a id


o f the square .

Th e se squa r e s ar e fu rnished by the man u f a c


t u rers eithe r i n polished Steel nickel p late o r,

oxidi z ed co p per . The latt e r style is quite po p


ula r with som e wo rkmen bec ause o f its not g et
,

tin g so hot when exposed to th e ray s o f th e su n .

The two sides o f the squar e shown at F ig 3, . ,

represent th e c a r p enters p o p ula r squa r e No



, .

1 00. Thi s squ ar e has b een a


special favo rit e with workme n
fo r ne a rly thirty yea rs a n d is ,

still looked u p o n by m a n y as
be i ng the n e plu s u ltra of st e e l
squa res I show both sides of th e
.

square in o rder to en able th e


wo rkma n to see befo r e h e buys
, ,

the kind of tool he w i ll ge t .

L ik e the Nicholls squa re this ,

may b e o b tained in polish e d Fig 4 . .

steel nick e l p lated o r oxidi z ed co pp er a s


, ,

p u rch as e r m a y d e sir e .
2 2 ABC or TH E ST EEL S Q UARE

Ihow the compl ete sq uare reduc e d to page


S ,

size . Som etim es thi s squ are is catal ogued by


'

d ealers as No. 1 000 practically howe v er it is


, , ,

the sa m e sq uare as the No. 1 00. If we ex ami ne


this square we will n d on the t ongue near its
_

j u nction with the b la d e a s eri es o f lines an d


cross lines ( see F ig . m ak in g a gure k n ow n

the d iagonal scale This is dr a w n to
.
.
s cal e

Fi g . 5.

a larger siz e at Fig 5 and is sho wn alon e an d


.

i s u sed for takin g off the hu n dred ths o f a n i n ch .

Th e li n e a b is her e an inch l ong and is divid e d ,

into ten equal parts ; the line cd being also divi


ded into ten equ a l parts a n d d ia gon al lines are
,

then d rawn con necting th e points as shown in


the d iagram . S up p ose we wish to take off
7 6 1 00 o f a n inch we p roceed as fo l lows : Cou n t
-
,
251
Os

A B c or THE S T EEL SQUA RE

of se ven spa ces from c e g which eq uals 7 0


, , ,

1 00 of an inch ; then count up the di ag onal line


unt il the sixth horizontal line 6 is re ached , , ,

when (3 f will equal the req uired distance of


7 6 1 00 of an inch whi ch is a t ri fl e o v er
-
, of an

in ch.

Fig . 6.

Qu otin g from th e tabl e o f di recti ons gi v en in


Sa rgent s circular d escri b ing th i s squar e we

,

have for ra fter cuts the foll owing e x planati on


, ,

Thi s run o f a rafter Set up i n place is the


hori zontal m easure f rom the e xtrem e end o f the
f oot to a plumb lin e fro m the rid ge end fro m A
-

to B Fi g . 6 .
,

q-
o

Fig . 7.

The rise is the distance fr om the t op of the


ri d ge en d of the rafter t o th e lev el o f t h e foot .
From C t o D F ig. 7 .,
ABC OF T H E ST EEL SQ UARE

Th e p i tch i s the pr op ort i on that the r i se


bears to the wh ole width of the buildin g . The
illustrati on F i g 8 shows o n e thi rd p itch ; the
, . ,
-

rise of 8 feet bei ng o n e third o f the W i d th of


-

the bu i l d ing.

Fi g . 8.

The cut s or an gles o f a rafter a re ob tai n ed


b y a pp lyi ng the square so that the 1 2 inc h -

mar k on the body a n d th e m ark on the ton gu e

Fi g . 9.

th at represent the rise shall b oth be at the e dge


of the raft e r . Th e i l lustration Fi g . 9 shows 8
, ,

foot rise the line A the cut fo r the rid g e e nd


,


of th e rafter a n d B the cut fo r foot end .
Th e p o rtion o f square sho wn at F ig . 1 0
exhibits the tool havin g on its face a table o f
A B c or T HE S T EEL S Q U A R E 25

the run , i e an d p i t ch of ra fters b e i ng s pe


r s ,

ci ally gu re d f or this pu rp ose an d shows th e


,

m easure of the rafter f or any one of se v e n


pitches o f r oof b ase d up on the length of th e
h ori z ontal measurement of the b ui ldi ng f rom
t he center to the outsi d e .
The followi n g table which wa s p repare d e s
,

p e ci a l
l y f o r this square sh
, ows the m anner o f
worki ng the squa re :

R AFT E R TA B L E DI R ECT I O NS .

T he ra fter table an d the ou tsi d e e d ge of the


back of th e squar e both on b o d y and t ongu e .
,

a re in tw e lfths . The inch m arks may re p r e s en t

i nches o r fe e t and the twelfth marks m ay re p


,

resent twelfths of an i n ch o r twelfths o f a foo t


( that is i,n ches ) as a s cal e . The rafter table i s

used i n co n nectio n wi th the m arks an d gu r e s


on the outsi de edge of t h e s q uar e
26 ABC or T H E S T EEL SQUARE

At t h e le ft e nd of th e tab l e are gu res repre


senting th e run the ri se a nd th e pi tch
,
.

I n the rst colum n the gures are all 1 2 which ,

may be us e d as 1 2 inches or 1 2 f eet a nd th ey ,

r e pres e nt a run of 1 2 .
Th e s e c on d co l umn o f g ure s is to r ep re sent
v a rious r i ses.
I he third co l u m n o f gur e s i n fr a ctio n s r ep

r

re s en ts th e va rious pi tches.
Th e se three colum n s o f g ure s show t ha t a
r a ft e r
with a ru n of 1 2 a nd a ris e o f 4 has 1 6 p itch -
,

with a ru n o f 1 2 an d a ris e of 6 h a s 1 4 p itch


~
,

with a run o f 1 2 a nd a ri s e of 8 h a s 1 3 p itch -


,

an d so on to th e bottom of the gure s .

T o Fi nd t he L en g th of a R a f ter For a roo f


.

with 1 6 p itch ( or th e rise 1 6 th e width of th e


- -

build i n g ) an d ha vi ng a ru n of 1 2 feet fo ll ow ,

i n th e rafte r table th e upper 1 6 p itch ruli ng -


,

n d under th e gr aduatio n g ur e 1 2 th e r a fte r


leng th required which is 1 2 7 1 0 or 1 2 f ee t
, ,

a nd 7 1 0 1 2 inches
-
.

For 5 p itch ( or th e rise


1 th e width of th e
building ) a nd ru n 1 2 feet t he ra ft e r len gth is
,

1 6 1 1 8 or 1 6 fe e t 1 1 8 1 2 inch e s
,
-
.

I f th e ru n is 2 5 f eet add th e r a ft e r len gt h


,

for ru n o f 2 3 feet to th e raft e r len gt h for run o f


2 f ee t .
28 A B (3 OF T H E S T EEL S Q UAR E

The octa g o n s cal e on this squar e ru n s al ong


the middle of th e f a ce o f th e ton gue and is u sed ,


for l ayi ng off li ne s to cut a n e i ght square o r
octa g on stick of timb e r from a square one.

Fig . 1 1 . Fig . 1 2.

S u pp o se th e gu r e ABCD ( s ee Fi g 2 ) i s
butt of a squ a re stick of timber 6 x 6 i n ches .
AB c or T H E S T EEL S Q UARE 25

Thr ough the center draw the li ne s A B and CD


p a ral l el wi th th e sides and at ri ght a ngles to
e a ch other With a pai r o f compa sses take m
. s

m a ny spa ces ( 6 ) fr om th e scale as there ar e


i n ches in the width of th e stick a n d lay off thi s
,

s p ac e o n e
ith e r sid e of the p oi n t A a s Aa and
,
30

ABc or T H E S T E E L SQ UA RE

Ab ; lay off in th e s a m e way th e same space f rom


t
he point B as Bd B e ; also C f C g an d D b Dc .
, , ,

Then draw lines ab cd ef and gh. C ut off th e


, ,

solid an gl e E also F G a nd H This w i ll l ea v e


, , .

an octa gon or e i ght sided stick which wi ll be


,
-
,

f ound n e arly exact on a ll sid e s .



The board m e asure known as the E ss ex ,


B oard M e asure Fi g . 1 3 is m ad e us e o f i n g
, ,

urin g these squares an d is used as fol low s: F ig


,

ures 1 2 and 1 7 in th e g raduation marks on th e


outer e dge r e present a one i n ch board 1 2 inches -

wide which is the starting p oint for all calcu la


,

tio n s Th e smalle r gure s un d er t he 1 2 repre


.

se nt th e l e ngth .

A board 1 2 i n ch e s wide a n d 8 fe et lon g m ea s


c
lres 8 squa r e feet and so o n down the t a b l e
, .

Th e refore to get th e squ a r e f eet of a board 8


,

f eet lon g a nd 6 i n ch e s wide n d th e g ure 8 in ,

th e scal e und e r th e 1 2 inch g ra duation mark an d


-

pass th e pen cil alo ng to th e l e ft on the same li ne


to a point below th e g raduation mark 6 ( repre
sentin g th e width o f the board a n d you stop
) o n ,

the scale at 4 which is 4 f eet th e board m eas


, ,

ure required I f th e board is the same l e n gth


.

an d 1 0 inch es wid e look under the grad ua


,

t i on mark 1 0 on a line with th e gu re 8 be for e


menti oned and you will n d 6 8 1 2 feet board
,
-

m e asure ; i f 1 8 inch es wid e th en to th e ri ght n u


AB C OF T H E S T EEL SQUA RE 31

d er the graduation mark 1 8 a nd 1 2 feet is foun d


to be the board measur e . I f 1 3 feet l on g an d 7

i n ch es wid e nd 1 3 in th e scale
,

un de r th e 1 2 i n ch g raduation an d on
-

th e s am e lin e und e r th e 7 i n ch g rad -

n ation will b e found 7 7 1 2 feet -

board m e asur e If th e board is


.

half this l en g th take hal f o f thi s


,

result ; i f doub l e this leng th the n ,

d oubl e this result F or stu ff 2


inches thick d oubl e th e g ure .

In thi s way th e scale cov e rs all


l eng ths o f boards th e m ost common ,

from 8 fee t to 1 5 fee t bein g gi v en .


This com pa n y also ma n ufactures

a. s u are that i s
q blu e d or a pp ar ,

ent ly ox idized wi th all the g ures


,

on i t enamel e d i n white Thi s is .

really a hand som e tool and th e ,

whit e g ures o n a d ark b lu e groun d


enabl e th e o p erator to se e what g
Fi g 1 4
. .
ur e s he is l ooki ng for without waste
of tim e and strainin g o f eyesi g ht .
The b ri d ge b uilders steel square which is

,

ast rate in F ig . 1 4 i s als o ma de by this co m


d
z
,
32 A B c or T HE S T EEL S Q UAR E

p any . This squa re has a blade three i n ch e s


wide which i s mad e with a slot down th e ce n t e r
,

o n e i n ch wide Th e ton gue is the s a m e a s i n th e


.

No . 1 00 squa re but has n o gur e s fo r bra c e o r


,

o cta g o n rul e s It is not so h a nd y fo r ge n e ra l


.

p u r p o s e s as
th e r e g u l a r
s q u a r e but ,

for s p e c i a l
p ur p o s e s i n brid ge buildi ng o r fo r ,

la yi ng out very h e avy timb e r st ru e


tur e s it h a s s pe ci al a dvant a ges as 3 ,

i n ch shou l d e rs a n d 33 i n ch teno n s a n d
-

mo rti se s c an b e rea di l y l aid out with


it A n oth e r squar e shown i n F i g . 1 5
. ,


k n ow n a s the machinist s squar e
,

is m a d e by this compa n y . It has a


blad e 6 i n ch e s an d a ton gue 4 in ches
l o ng an d i s ve ry nely n ish e d This
, .

squ a r e i s fou n d v e ry us e ful for p at


t e r n mak e rs p ia n o a n d o r g a n b u il d
,

e rs an d wh e r e other es pe cially c l ose


,

w ork is requir e d A number of oth e r


.

Fig 1 5
. .
squ a res a r e made by this rm but ,

a s t h ey a re not i n t en d e d for wo odworkers use


,

I wil l n ot d e scrib e th e m her e .

I would n ot com pl ete this d e scri p tio n of S ar


gent s make of s quares if I fai l ed to make men

A B c or T H E S T EEL S Q UARE 33


t i on of their b en ch squ are . I giv e t hi s nam e
t o it because of its t n ess fo r bench purpos e s .

The squar e referred to has a blad e 1 2 i n ches


lo ng a n d i n ch e s wid e a n d a to n gue 9 i n ches
,

lo ng a n d 1 i n ch wide The guri ng o n it i s di


.

v i d ed i n to i n ch e s
, half i n ches quart e r i n ch e s
, ,

ei ghths an d sixtee n ths of an i n ch . This i s a very


h a n dy squ a r e fo r b e nch a n d j obbi ng p ur p o ses ,

a nd ca n b e used i n many p laces where the lar ger


tool is u n avai l able a n d may on e m e r g e n cy b e
,

e m p loy e d fo r layi ng out rafters b rac e s a n d ,

simi l a r wo rk . A squar e that was quit e p o p ul a r

some sixt ee n o r e i ght een yea rs a go k n ow n as

Th e Cren ala t ed S quar e a n illust ration of


,

which is show n i n F i g 1 6 is still prefe rred by


. ,

m an y wo rkm en . The pe culia rity o f this squar e


i s that the i nne r e d g e o f the to ng u e i s n otch e d
o r cren a la t ed a s show n i n th e il l ust ration the
, ,

n otch e s bei ng i n t en d e d a s ga u ge p oi n t s wh e re

-
,

a sha r pene d p e n cil may be i n s e rt e d th e n the ,

square m ay b e drawn alo ng the timb e r o r bo ard ,

with th e bl a d e held s n u g a g ai n st the e d ge as ,

show n , and mo rtis e s or t e no n s c an b e l aid out


-

a t will .
B esid e s b e i ng cren alat ed these squares h ave
,

all t he ad v anta ge s of other squares an d a r e w el l ,

made and pleas ant to handle . They ar e mad e


by the manu factu rers The Peck S towe 8: Wil
, ,

cox Co. of S outhin gt on C onn in p olished steel


, , ., ,
34 BC or T H E S T EE L SQUA RE

cop pe r pl at e d blued with en a mel ed


, ,

ures and i n nick el plat e


,
.

Fig . 1 6

I t is the sim ple st o f too l s a n d m ay be de


,

scribed as the mechanical e mbodi ment of a right


angle . I t must n e cessarily ha ve so m e bre a dth
36 AB c or T H E S T EEL S Q U A R E

righ t angle o r t o use common term s if the t ool


, ,


i s ou t o f square that i s if it is in the least
, ,

inaccurate i ts u se fulnes s i s destroye d . When


,

the square is i n accurate i n stead o f solvi ng i n


t ri ca t e geomet ri cal p rob lem scorr e ct l y it becomes
'

a sn are a n d a delusion l e adin g to f a lse results


,

an d mists in g e n eral It i s somewhat r e mark


.

a bl e how fe w wo rkm en t e st th e i r squares . I am


dis p os e d to b e li e vefrom lo ng e xperie n ce that
co m pa rativ el y fe w m e ch a n ics who buy ste l e

squares a r e co gn i zan t o f the po ssible d efe ct s


that the t ool m a y hav e a n d of t he tests which
may be a ppli e d fo r the p u r p os e of d emon st ra t
in g it s a ccuracy Be fore p roc ee di n g furth e r
. ,

therefo r e i n the discussio n of the u se of this


,

i n strum en t le t u s g iv e bri e f atte n tion to s om e


of th e sim p l e m e thods that may b e e m p l oyed
fo r d e termi n i ng th e a ccuracy of the tool B y .

way of m a ki ng p ractic a l a pp licatio n o f th e s e


tests I su gge st th a t at th e n e xt di n ner h our th e
r e ad e r borrow from his fellow car p enters as
ma n y squares as may b e conve n ie n t a n d a p ply ,

to them m ore or less o f th e t e sts which follow


'

m e r e ly fo r the p ur p os e o f practice and at t he ,

sam e tim e to show to what exte n t the squar e s i n


use ar e co rrect .

F i g . 1 7 shows a v e ry commo n method o f test


in g th e exteri or an gl e of a steel square . T wo
AB C OF T HE S T EEL S Q UARE

squ ares are pla ced aga i nst ea ch ot h er an d a


strai ght ed ge o r a g ain st the bladeof a thi rd
-
,

square . If th e ed g es o f the squares e x actly


coi ncide through out th e squares m ay be con

si d ered co rrect .

S upp ose h owe v er that there i s a d iscre p ancy


, ,

show n by this test a n d that as the two squa re s


,

a r e p lac e d in the ge ne ral p ositio n shown i n t he ,

i l lustratio n they p art at th e hee l whil e touch


, ,

i ng at th e e nds of the blad e s o r touch i n g at th e


,

heel that they p art at th e e n ds o f th e blad e s .


38 AB c or T H E S T EE L SQUA RE

Thi s ev i d ently shows that on e o f the squares is


i n accurate or p ossibly th at both a re ina ccurate.
,

H ow is th e inac curacy to be locat e d ! Th e two


s q uares may be pla ce d face to fac e with the ,

blades u p ward from an even surface say the ,

fac e o f the third squar e or th e j oint e d e d ge o f


a board a nd so ,

h el d that th e ir
heels for e xa m
,

ple shall coin


,

cid e Then glan c


. e at the ed g es o f
th e b lad es . If th ey e xactly coi n cid e
i t woul d indi cate that th e e rror is
e v e nly divid ed be tween th e two
squares a very im probabl e occur
,

ren c e . C om pa re th e two squares i n


th e r e v e rs e positio n th a t i s wi th the
, ,

to ng u es e xt en d i n g u p wa rd . Th en
a ppl y th e t e st show n i n Fi g 1 8 and . ,

n ally th a t show n i n Fi g . 1 9 .

By tryi ng th e squar es o ne i n sid e


of th e oth e r ,
as show n i n Fi g 1 8 . ,

Fi g 1 3
, ,
th e e xt e rior a ngl e is com par ed with
the i n terior a ngl e . If the edg es
throu ghout t to gether ti g htly rst usi ng one
,

sq uare insi de and then the other it is a l m ost con


,

e lusive evidence tha t both th e squares a re a c cu


rate .
ABC or T H E S T E EL SQUA RE 39

B y tests of the k in ds j ust des crib e d a m ong


sev eral squares the mecha n i c w i ll soon perce iv e
,

from the sev eral ascerta i ne d results th at one or


the oth er o f the se v eral squares that he is ha nd
l in g is more accurate than all th e others i f n ot ,

accurate T here still re m a i ns the


.

Fig . 1 9.

ne e d of a test however to pr ov e the abs olute


, ,

ac curacy o f the particular squar e which he b e


li ev es to be a bout right . On a d ra fting ta ble ,

or a sm ooth boar d let hi m ne x t per form the f ol


,

low i ng e xperi ment which i s on e of the sev eral


,

that m i g ht b e me ntione d i n th i s conn ect i on


40 AB C or T HE S T EEL S Q U A R E

Draw a stra i ght li ne A B s ay three feet i n , ,

length as shown in F i g 1 9 . This m ay be d o n e


, .

by a strai ght e d ge . U se a h ard pen c i l sharp


-

en e d to a chisel p o int With the compas s es us. , :

i n g A and B as cent e rs a n d with a radiu s long ,

e r than o n e half of A B strik e th e a rcs CD a n d


-

EF . The n with the straight ed ge draw a -

strai ght line GH throu gh th e i n tersectio n of


, ,

the a rcs . If th e wo rk is a ccur a t el y do n e the re


su lt i n g a ng les AOH H OB BOG a n d G , OA wil l , ,

be ri ght a ngl e s L ay th e square to be tested


.

onto o ne of th e s e a ngles as show n i n the illus ,

t ra t i on a n d with a chis e l p oi n t e d p e n ci l sc rib e


,
-

alo ng th e b l ad e a n d a l o ng th e to n gu e I f th e .

l i ne s thu s draw n exactly co i n cid e with those rs t


dra wn it is satisfa cto ry p roof that th e squar e
is a ccurat e and i n the same way th e squar e
,

may be pl ac e d ag ai n st o ne or th e other of th es e
ri ght an gle s i n a w a y to t e st its i n t e rio r a n gl e .

The method shown i n Fi g 1 9 an tici p ates th e .

use o f an oth e r tool b e sid e s th e squar e i n ma ki n g


the test A ri ght a ngle how e v e r may be draw n
.
, ,

for the p ur p os e d e sc rib e d by a m e thod which


us e s o n ly th e squar e a n d which does n ot re
,

quire the serv ices of a n y oth e r too l o r what is ,

th e sam e thi ng co n sid e r the t ool i t self to be th e


,

gure drawn a n d th en m e asu r e fo r th e p u rpos e


,

of d e t e rmi n i ng the a ccu ra cv of th e gu re .


A B c or T HE S T EEL S Q UARE 41

V a r i ous writers ha v e dis cus sed the pr op er


ties of th e ri ght an gled trian gle but we a ll
-
,

know that a square erect e d o n a hy p othenus e


of a ri ght an gled tri angl e i s equal to the sum
-

of th e squ ar e s e r e cted on the b ase a n d p er pon


d i cu la r. This is a w e ll k n ow n mathem
-
atic al
t ruth a n d it may be a pp lied i n th e tests w e
,

a r e maki ng Tho s e car pen ters who ha v e had


.

occ a sio n to l ay out the foundatio n s of hous e s


a re w ell a cquai n t e d with the old rule f requ en t lv

k n own a s th e 6 8 a n d , which de p e n ds u p
o n th e r el a tio n shi p of the squ ar e s of th e perpen
di cu la r a n d th e bas e to th e squa r e o f the hy p oth
en u se Th u s th e squ a r e o f 6 is 3 6 th e squar e o f
. ,

8 is 6 4 Th e sum of 3 6 an d 6 4 is 1 00. A nd t he
.

squar e o f 1 0 i s 1 00 Now l e t us make a p pli c a


.

tio n o f this ru le to test th e s teel square .

Fo r th e s ak e of accuracy w e wa n t to t a k e
gur e s which a r e a s l a r ge a s p o ssibl e so a s t o ,

red uc e th e p os sibl e error in measur e m en t to t he


sm al le st p o ssibl e dim en sio n s Let u s t ake f or
.

dimen sio n s 9 1 2 an d 1 5 i n ch e s That th e s e


, , .

W i ll serv e is easily d e mo n st rat e d Th e squa r e


.

o f 9 is Th e squar e of 1 2 is 1 44 The sum .

of thes e squares i s 2 2 5 a n d th e squar e of 1 5


,

i s 22 5 . Ther e fo re if th e tool th at w e ar e t e st
,

in g shows a dim en sio n of exactly 1 5 i n ches meas


u red from 9 o n th e outside o f the to n gue to 1 2
42 A B c or T H E S T EEL S Q UAR E

on the ou ts id e of the b la d e as sh own i n F i g , .

2 0 it will be p roof that the square i s co rrect


, .

I t m ay be somewhat di fcult to make a mea s


u remen t of this k ind on the inst rum e nt itself ,

w ith su fcie n t accu racy to be beyond dispu t e .

I su ggest therefo re that the squ are be laid at


, ,

up on a n e v en surface like a drawin g tab l e and


, ,

that with a chisel p ointe d p en cil lines he sc ri bed


-

Fi g . 20.

alo ng the tongue a n d alo ng th e bla d e . Ma rk


accurately the di sta n ce of 9 i n ch e s fro m t he
heel u p the tongue a n d 1 2 i n ches from the heel
,

a lo ng the blade . Then m e asu r e dia g on ally a n d

see if the distanc e i s e xactly 1 5 i n ches .

In what has pr e ceded there has be e n a su gges


tio n that the error du e to l ack o f p recision in
measur e m e nt i s dimi n ishe d i f th e gures are i n
44 A B c or T HE S T EEL S Q UAR E

I n F i g . 2 1 there is show n a quarter circle XG , ,

d e scrib e d from th e ce n ter C A lon g the ho ri z o n


.

t al l i ne AB th e blad e of th e squ a r e is l aid with


, ,

1 2 of th e bl a d e ag ai n st the c en t e r C fr om ,

w hich th e quadra n t wa s st ru ck . Now if we di


vid e this quadrant i n to halv e s thu s e stablishi ng
,

th e p oi n t E an d if from E w e dr a w a li ne to
,

th e c en t e r C which i s 1 2 of th e b l ade it wi ll b e
, ,

Fig . 21.

fou n d th a t it cuts al so 1 2 of th e to ngu e If w e .

com ple t e th e g u r e by e recti ng a pe r pe ndicular


l i ne fr om the p oi n t X , a n d i n tersecti ng it with
a ho ri z o n tal l i ne from G thus e stablishin g th e
,

p oi n t 0 it becom e s v e ry e vid en t that CE is the


,

mit e r li n e of a square .

If w e bisect X E thus es tab l ishin g th e poi n t


,
A B C OF T HE S T E EL S Q UARE

D an d by the co n ditio n s existi ng sett in g off i n


,

th e quadra n t a s p ac e e qua l t o o ne quarter of -

its e xt en t a n d if from D w e draw a l i ne to th e


,

c e nt e r C co rres p o n di ng a s alr ea dy m en tio ne d


, , , ,

with 1 2 o n th e b la d e w e sh all n d th a t this l i ne


,

( D C ) cuts the to ng u e o n th e p oi n t 5 ( v e ry
nea r l y th e e x a ct gu r e s b e i ng 4 3 1 3 2 i n ch e s)
,
-

Th e l i n e D C a s a bov e ex p l a i ne d bis e cts th e


, ,

e i ghth o f a circ le I n oth e r words it is th e li ne


. ,

o f a n oct ag o n mit e r an d th e r e fo r e we s a y th a t
, ,

fo r an oct ag o n mit e r w e tak e 1 2 o n t he b la d e


an d 5 o n th e to ngu e .

B y dividi ng th e qu a dr an t i n to thr ee e qual


pa rts as show n b y X G GH a n d H G w e oh
, , ,

t ai n by drawi ng GC th e li n e co rr e s p o n di ng to
th e hexa g o n miter This it will b e obs e rv e d
. , ,

cuts th e to ngue of th e squ a r e a t 7 ( v e ry nea r


ly th e e x a ct g ur e s b e i ng 6 1 5 1 6 i n ch e s ) an d
,
-
, ,

ther e fo r e w e sa v fo r h e x ag o n miters w e t a k e
,

1 2 of th e b la d e an d 7 of the to n gue .

Th e qu e stio n som e tim e s a ris e s ca n th e squar e


,

b e e m p loy e d to d e scrib e a circl e ! Whil e th e


Squar e m a y b e u s ed fo r d e scribi ng a circl e of a n y
di a met e r p rovidi n g th e ca pa city of the squ a r e i s
,

n ot exc ee d e d sti ll thos e who att e m p t to pe rfo rm


,

th e wo rk wil l v ery lik el y conclud e b e fo r e th e y


a re throu gh that oth e r m e a n s a r e m ore sa t i sf a c

t o rv fo r r egu la r u s e The way to pro c ee d i s i n


.
46 ABC OF T H E S T E EL s Q UARE

d i cated in Fig . 22 L et it be require d to d e scribe


.

a c i rcle the diameter of which is equal to ED


,
.

Dri v e pins or nai ls at these p oints an d place th e


s q uare as shown in the sketch. P lace a penci l
in the interi or angle of th e square as shown at ,

F . T hen gra d ual l y shi ft the squar e so that the


p e nci l wi l l m ove in th e direct ion of D ,

Fi g . 22 .

bei n g c a reful to k e e p th e i n side of th e b l ad e a n d


insid e of the tongue in c ontact with th e pins or
n a i ls E D . A fte r ha ving d escri be d the are from
,

F to D re v erse the dire cti on describing the are


from F to E Th e n turn th e squ a r e ov e r and
.

by simi la r m eans com plete the other hal f of th e


circle .
THE S T E E L S QUAR E AND I T S U S E S .

D I V I SI ON B.
I N T R OD U C T OR Y .

Havin g d ealt with th e more sim p l e ma tters


that can be dealt with by ai d o f t he S teel Squar e ,

we n ow take up s om e o f the m ore di cu lt p rob


lems that can b e s ol v e d by a id o f t hi s us ef ul
t ool .
A m ong the proble m s an d solutions off er e d a re ,

those o f lay i ng out b ra ces h aving re gular or


,

i rregu l ar ru ns rafters and r oo ng g e n erall y .


, ,

asce rtainin g the length o f hi ps their bevels cut s, ,


.

pitche s and angles j acks cr i pples ri d ge s pur


; , , ,

lins collar beams and m uch other m atter per


, ,

ta ini ng to hip or cotta g e roofs.


Gabl es or saddl e ro ofs ar e dealt with al so
, ,

m ansard roo fs taper fr am ing odd be v els spla y s


, , ,

a nd ot he r similar work .
I introduce in this divi si on a f ew rem a rks
re gardin g the fence made use o f whe n layin g ou t
rafters stairs or other bevelled work . Th e d e
, ,
~

a rtmen t als o shows h ow to lay ou t stair st rings -


p
by aid o f th e square an d many other th i ngs that
,

wi ll be found use ful to the gen e ral workm an .


47
48 ABc OF T HE S T EEL S Q UARE

A v ery goo d fence f or the square m ay rea d ily


b e mad e from a stick o f h a rdwo od ( Fi g . 2 3 )
a bout two i n ch e s wid e o ne a n d a h al f i n ch e s
,

thick a nd two a n d a ha l f fee t l o ng A saw k crf . ,

i n to which the squa r e wi l l slid e is cut from b oth ,

en ds leavi ng about 8 i n ch e s o f so l id wood nea r

D O U B L E SL O TT E D F E NCE
Fi g . 2 3.

th e m id dle The t ool i s cla m pe d to the sq u are


.

by m e a n s of sc r e ws at co n v e ni en t p oints as
show n . A n oth e r style o f f e nce which i s mad e o f ,

a p i e c e o f hardwood h as a si ngl e s l ot o nl y a s
,

show n i n Fi g . 2 4 Th e square is sli p ped i n a n d


.

f a st ene d i n pla c e b v s cr e ws simi l a r to the rst .

Fig . 24.

An a pp licatio n of the fence a n d squar e com b i ne d


is show n at Fi g 2 5 wh e r e the combi n ation is
. ,

u sed a s a p itch board fo r l ayi ng out stair


-

stri ng s . In this e xam p l e th e blade is s e t off at


1 0 i n ches which m ak e s th e t read a n d the to ngu e
, ,

shows th e riser which is s e t off a t 7 inch e s Th e


, .
A B c or T HE S T EEL S Q UAR E 49

dotte d l i ne cc sh ows the e dge of the plank from


, ,

which the st rin g i s cut and i t shows the fe n c e


, ,

a shows the bottom tread a n d ris e r I n th i s e x .

am ple the ri ser shows the sam e hei ght a s the ris e r
a bove it namely 7 i n ch e s This is wro ng as th e
, , . ,

rst riser shou l d always be cut th e t hi ckn ess of

Fig . 2 5.

t he t read than th ose ab ove i t a s sh own by


less ,

the dotted lines on th e bottom of the st ri ng ,

then whe n the t r e ad i s i n p lac e it will be th e

Fig . 26 .

same height fr om the t op of the o or to the to p


of the rst tread that th e to p o f rst tread is
,

t o to p o f seco n d o n e a n d so o n .

S up p ose we wish to lay out a rafter h avi ng


e i ght i nches ri se an d twelv e i n ches ru n Se t th e .
0 AB C or rH E S T E EL SQU A RE

fence at the 8 m ark on the blad e Fig . 2 6 and


'

, ,

at th e 1 2 mark on the tongue cla m ping it t o ,


th e sq uare with 1 14 screws . A pply i ng the
s quare an d fence at the upper en d of the ra fter
we get the plum b cut P at once By ap p lying
-
. -

th e sq ua re as sho wn twelve t im es su ccessi v ely the


req uire d len gth o f the rafter an d f oot cut B i s -

obta i ned . I n this case the twel v e applications of

the s q uare are ma d e b etween the points P an d B .

R un and ri se m ust also be measured be


tween these points I f run is measured from .

the point B which will be the oute r e dg e o f the


,
.

wall plate it wi ll be necessa ry t o run a g auge


,

l i ne throu gh B pa rallel to the edge o f the rafter ,

an d su btract a d istan ce f rom the height o f the


ri d ge to gi ve us the correct ri se . The square
m ust then be app li ed to the line L A rafter of .

any desired rise an d ru n m y be lai d off in th is


m anner by selecti ng p roporti onal p art s of the
iri se an d ru n for t he bla de and ton g ue o f the

square F or a half p i tch roo f use 1 2 in . on b oth


.
-

tongu e and blade for a quarter pitch u se 6 in


,
-
.

and 1 2 i n . for a third p itch use 8 in . and 1 2


,
-

i n . etc
, Th e t e rms hal f pit ch quarter pitch
.
-
,
-
,

etc refer to th e hei g ht o f the ri d g e e x pressed


,

as a f raction of th e span .

T he line L is supposed t o represent the pat h


of the f e n ce as it i s sli d al ong the edge o f the
52 A B c or T H E S T E E L S Q UA RE

th e twel v e i n ch m ar k o n b oth s id es of the


-

square carefully o n the backi ng line and ,

ma rki ng off th e rafter on the outside ed ges of


th e squa r e R epeat this until you h ave ftee n
.

sp ac e s marked off th e n set back from you r last


,

mark h al f the thick n es s o f the rid ge board a n d -


,

with the square as be fore m ark of the rafte r.


This will b e th e ex a ct le n gth an d also th e
p lumb cut to t th e rid ge boa rd Or if we tak e
- -
.

th e dia g o n a l o f 1 2 by 1 2 which is 1 7 and ma rk


, ,

of 1 5 s p ac e s of 1 7 i n . makin g the nec e ss a ry


,

all owa n ce fo r the ha l f thick n es s o f th e rid ge .

ho a rd it wi l l amou n t to the sam e thi ng e v ery


, ,

1 7 i n o n the r a ft e r bei ng n ea rly equal to one


.

foo t o n th e l e v el .
S hould th e buildin g m e asu r e 3 0 f t 9 in . i n .,

width th e h a lf of which i s 5 f t .
1 ih,
we .

tak e the ft ee n s p ac e s o f 1 2 by 1 2 a n d then t he


i n . o n both sid e s o f th e squa re on the back
i ng li ne as be for e This will giv e u s th e extra
.

leng th requi r e d Th e s a m e rul e wi l l a pp ly to


.

an y p ortio n o f a foot th e re may be .


A fen c e som e tim e s c al led a Stai r g au ge is
, ,

ma n ufactu red o f metal by th e C h en ey Towe r


C om p a n y A tho l Mas s which I show at F i g
, , , .

2 8 a n d is c on sid e red a bout the be st th i n g of


,

the kind It c onsists o f a piece of polish ed


.

angl e m e ta l e ach sid e bei ng


, i n ch wi d e . On e
A B 0 OF T H E S T EEL S Q UA R E 53

side 1 8 sl otted t o acc om m od ate t h e hea d s of th e


set sc rews an d t o all ow the sli d es to be fastened
-

a t the d esi red p oi n t s The gau ge i s fastened to


.

Fi g . 28 .

any s quare and is useful for layi ng out stai rs ,

cuttin g in rafters cuttin g be v els o r other an gles


, .

I n m arkin g of stairs with a n 8 inch ris e an d a n


-

1 1 % inch tread the g auge w ould b e fastene d at


-

8 i n ches o n o ne end o f th e square and 1 1 %


54 ABc or T H E S T EE L SQ UA RE

at th e other end . The s q uare w oul d then be lai d


on t h e plan k wi t h t h e f ace o f t h e gau ge aga in st

i ts ed ge and th e ma rk m a de aroun d th e poi n t


of the sq uare . Thi s w ould be repeate d unt i l t h e

re q uire d n u mb er of st e ps were m ark e d . T he


gauges are m ade in two s i zes 1 8 an d 2 8 i n ch es
,

l ong I t i s stated that mechanics who hav e use d


.

i t n d i t on e of the han diest tools i n t he i r kits.


A n ot h er style of fence i s sh own at F ig . 2 9 in
conj un ction w i th a sl otted square T his per .
,

haps i s the han d iest o f all t he dev i ces for a


,

fence but i t i s e x pen s iv e an d as c onstructed re


, ,

quires a sq ua re w i th a sl ot i n each arm an d as ,

a rule w ork men do n ot ta k e k in dl t o squ ares


y
w i th sl ots in the m . A sh ows the s q ua re B the ,

fence 8 8 set screws to h ol d the fen ce in posit i on


, ,

and if the p oints of the s quare .


The appli cat i on of t he squa re and f e nce com
bi n ed f or l ay i ng out a h ous ed strin g for stairs is
shown at F ig . I n this e x am p le the fence is
a single slotted one an d three screws are e m
,

p loye d t o h ol d the s q uare in p osit i on . The ri se

i s se v en i nch e s an d the tre a d is laid off n i n e


inches on t h e b la de . T he s quare at the f oot o f
the strin g shows how the latter s h o u ld be n
i shed to m a k e th e oor an d th e b se b oar d . I n
a

thi s case n o p it ch b oa rd is req uired as the sq uare


-
,
AB C OF THE S TEE L S Q UAR E 55
56 AB c or T HE S T EEL S Q UAR E

wh en adj usted w i th fe n ce a s sho wn do e s th e


, ,

work of the p itch bo ard -


.

Ther e ar e many oth e r a pp licatio n s of th e


fe nce in co nne ction with th e squ a r e that I may
have cause to r e fe r to as I p roc ee d as it is my ,

d e sir e to p re s en t i n this wo rk e ve rythi ng I ca n


co l l e ct re g a rdi ng th e squ a r e that I thi n k wi l l b e
of s e rvic e to th e wo rkm a n Doubt le s s th e r e wi ll
.

be ma n y d e s cri p tio n s an d i ll ustr a tio n s some o f


my r e ad e rs wi l l hav e m e t with before o r which ,

th e y have be en acquai n t e d with fo r a lo ng tim e .

The g re a t bu l k o f r e ader s how e v e r wil l b e n ew


, ,

h an d s a n d u n acqu a i n t e d with th e u se of th e
squ ar e b exon d it s sim ple appl ic a tio n a s a s u a r

q
in g tool an d wh a t may a ppea r to be a us ele s s
,

rul e to the ex pe rt o r o l d h a nd w ill p rove a choic e


tidbit to th e b eg i nne r an d wi ll wh e t hi s appe tit e
fo r furth e r k n owled ge o n the subj e ct Indeed .

this book i s p re p ared mor e pa rticu l arly fo r th e


you nge r memb e rs of the c raft althou gh a m a ,

j t y of the o l d e r work e rs wi ll n d much i n it


o r i
that will i n t e rest amus e a n d i n st ruct .
,

It will be see n that the fen c e or guid e u s e d i n


con ne ction with th e square is a ft e r a ll a v erv
, ,

sim p le m atter a n d wou l d n o doubt su ggest i t


, , ,

self t o a n y cl e v e r workma n who was l ayi ng off


raft e rs with th e squ a r e .
f
A B c or T HE S T EEL S Q UARE 51

B R A C E R U L E S.
I t w i ll now be i n o rder to sho w how the squa re
can be used fo r gett i n g the le n gths and b e vel s
fo r b races o f re gula r an d irregul a r run s . I f w e

wish to lay out a brac e havi ng a three foot ru n -

on both p ost a n d beam the matter i s quit e


,

sn n le fo r we c an tak e 1 2 i nch e s o n the ton gu e


p ,

an d 1 2 i nches on the blade a n d tra n sfe r this dis


t a n c e three tim e s on a st rai g ht li n e and we h a v e
AB C OF THE S T EE L S QU AR E

the e xtr e me len g th of t he


brace from p oi n t to poi nt.
and by ma rki ng alon g t he
blade at one e n d o f this
length a n d al on g the ton gue
at the other e n d we al s o get
the bevel s This is easy and
.

sim pl e e n ou gh a n d with out


,

further re ne m e nt will giv e


the le n gth s a nd bevels ex
a ct ly fo r a fl a t foot ed bra ce
- .

Whe n the ru n i s d i ff e rent


than the ri s e a s i n the ex
,

so am pl e shown at Fi g 3 1 the
. ,

squa r e i s a ppl ied i n a so me


'

what di ff er en t m a n ner . H er e
we have a ru n of thr ee feet .

a n d a ris e of four feet . To


get the p ro p er len gth and
bevels fo r a brace to t in
this Situation we m ust u se
1 2 inches o n the tongue and
1 6 inches on the blade the n ,

the bevel of the u pp er e n d


of the b race will be fou nd
alo ng the line of the tongue ,

a n d the line o f the bl ad e wi ll


i v e the be v e l fo r the foot of the b ra ce . In this
g
60 AB c or T HE S T EEL S Q UARE

t e r n dress u p a p i e c e o f wood to 4 inch e s wid e


,

i f the brac e s a r e to b e mad e of 4 x 4 i n ch stuff ; 4-

if fo r la r ger o r sma lle r stu ff th en m a ke th e p at


t e r n th e width of b r a c e to suit H a v e the p a t
.

t e r n of sufci e n t l eng th ; if fo r a 4 foot ru n a nd


-

ri s e i t wi ll requir e to b e n ot l e ss th an 6 fee t lo ng .
R u n a g au ge li ne thr ee e i ghths of an inch from
-

th e st r a i ght o r fro n t ed ge as shown at 0000


, ,

an d set th e two 1 2 i n ch marks o n this li ne th en


-
,

scr e w the f en c e ti ght o n th e squ a r e with its slid


.

i ng ed ge a g ai n st th e ed ge o f th e p att e rn a n d ,

th en slid e a n d ma rk a s show n fou r times whe n ,

th e length a n d bev e ls o f th e brac e will be oh


t a i n ed P rovid e fo r th e te n o n s b e yo n d the li ne s
.
'


show n by th e squ a r e o r fo r a, a t foot brac e
-
,

s a w th e timb e r off o n th e l i ne s show n o n the ed ge

of th e squ a r e A ft e r th e p att e r n is m a d e th e
.

fen c e an d squ a re m a y b e l aid a sid e a s th e pa t ,

t e r n can b e u s e d fo r an y n umber o f b rac e s a n d ,

wh en n ish e d with o n on e j ob may be safel y ,

pl ac e d away to u se ag a in for th e s a m e run a n d



ris e wh en occ asio n a rises The p att e rn m ay b e
.

an y thick ne s s from half a n i n ch to o n e in ch .


Th e s a m e ru le s ma y b e obs e rv e d i n makin g p at
t e r n s fo r an y r egu l a r or irr egu la r ru n s a n d
ris e s
.

With r ega rd to th e b ra ce ru le as g iv en o n ste el


u a res I ma v sa v th a t th e r e i s som e s l i ght dif
q ,
AB c or T HE S T EEL S Q UARE 61

fe r en ce i n th e lengt hs giv en by di ff e r en t m akers


thou gh ne arly a l l mod e r n mak e s gu r e u p
a lik e but this di ff er en c e i s so sma l l th a t in soft
wood frami ng it h a s n o e ff e ct I n h a rdwo od .

fr a mi ng th e framer ne v e r a ppl i e s th e s e rul e s ,

but ge ts his l engths with th e squar e a n d fe nc e .

Th e l eng th o f a u v b r a ce sim p ly r ep r e s en ts th e
hy p oth en us e of a ri ght a n gl e d t ri angle
-
To .

n d the hy p oth en us e e xt r a ct th e squar e root of


,

th e sum of th e squ a r e o f the p er p e n dicul a r an d


ho ri z o n ta l ru n s Fo r i n st a n c e if 6 fee t i s th e
. ,

hori z o n t al ru n an d 8 fee t th e pe r pen dicul a r 6 ,

squ a r e d equ al s 3 6 8 squ a r e d e qu al s 6 4 3 6 p lu s


, ,

6 4 e qu a l s 1 00 th e squar e root of which i s 1 0 .


,

Th e se a r e th e g ur e s gen era llv us e d fo r squ a r


i ng th e fr a m e o f a bui l di ng o r fou n d a tio n w all .

If th e ru n i s 4 2 i n ch e s 4 2 squ ar e d i s 1 7 6 4
, ,

double that a mou n t both sid e s b e i ng equal


, ,

giv e s 3 5 2 8 th e squar e ro ot of which is i n fee t


, ,

an d i n ches 4 fee t
, , i n ch e s .

I n cutti ng b r a ces al w a y s all ow i n leng th from


a sixtee n th t o a n e i ghth of a n i n ch m or e tha n
the exact m e asur e m e nt ca l ls fo r .

Dir e ctly u n der th e h a lf i n ch m arks o n th e


-

outer ed ge of the back of the to n gue will b e


n otic e d two gures o ne abov e the other Th e s e
, .

r ep r e s en t the run of th e b race o r the l ength ,

of two sides of a ri ght angle d t ria ngl e ; th e


-
62 AB c or T H E S T EEL SQUARE

gures i mm ediately t o th e right r ep res e nt the


l en gth o f the b race or the hypoth en use For "

instan ce the gur e s 3 6 3 6 59 9 1 show tha t th e


,
- -

ru n on th e p ost and beam is 3 6 inches a nd th e ,

len gth of the brace is inch e s .

Upon s ome sq ua res will be found brac e m eas


u remen ts giv en wher e the run is not equ a l as ,

1 8 2 4 30
-
. I t will be n otic e d that th e last se t of
gure s are e a ch j ust three times thos e mentio ned
in the s et that are usually us e d i n squarin g a
bui l din g S o i f the student or m echa nic will x
.

in hi s mind the measure m e nts o f a few runs .


with th e length of braces he can readi l y work ,

almost a ny len gth req uired .

Tak e a run for instanc e of 9 i n ch e s o n th e


, ,

beam and 1 2 inches on th e p ost Th e le n gth o f .

b rac e is 1 5 inches A run the re for e of 2 3 2 0


.
, , , , ,

or a n y oth e r number of tim es th e a bo ve g ure s ,

the l en gth of the bra ce will bear the sam e p ro


portion to t he ru n as th e multipl e used . Thus .
i f you m u lti p ly all the gure s b y 4 you will hav e
3 6 and 4 8 inches for the ru n an d 6 0 inches for ,

the brac e or to re m emb e r still more easily 3 4


, , ,

and 5 fee t or 6 Sand 1 0 feet


, , .

There are other ru n s that a re j ust as easilv


x e d in the mind 5 1 i n ch run b rac e 6 f eet .
.
-
,

1 2 hun d red ths o f an inch ; 8 f e et 3 inch run ,


-

brac e 1 1 f eet 8 inches e tc


, , .
ABC OF THE S T EEL SQU A RE 63

T he followin g e x a m p les an d e xp l an ati ons o n


roof frami n g are simple and easily un d ers t ood ,

and can n ot fail o f b ein g valuable to the y oun g


mechanic who a spires to b ecom e an expert r oo f
fra me r These e xamples will serv e a s starter s
.
,

and i n th e foll owing volum e which wil l be issued


,

Short ly more a d vanc e d e x a m pl es will be pre


,

sen ted

R OOF F RA MIN G .

R oo f fr a mi n g can be do ne a bout as many


diff e ren t ways a s th e re are me chanics B ut .

u n doubted l y th e ea sie st most rap id an d most


,


pra ctical is framin g with th e squ ar e Th e
.

fol lowin g cuts will illust rat e s e v era l appl ic ations


o f the squ a re a s appli e d to roo f frami ng and a ll ,

who a re i n terest ed i n th e subj e ct ca n by g ivin g


,

it a careful study be able to fram e any ordi n ary


,

roo f th e mecha n ic c ome s i n contact with .

F i g 3 3 is a n illustration that cou l d wel l be


given much thought and stu d y . It not on l y
g ives th e most comm on pitch e s but a lso gives th e
,

de g rees.

Most carp e nte rs k now th a t h al f pitch is 4 5


-

de grees yet few know third p itch is ne arly 3 4


, ,

and q ua rter pitch a bout 2 7 d eg r ee s


-
.

A b u i ld in g 2 4 feet wide ( a s th e ra fters com e


64 ABC or T H E S T EEL SQUARE

to th e cent e r ) has a 1 2 f oot run an d half pitch


- -

the rise wo u ld also be 1 2 feet and the len gth of


,

the ra f ter w ould be 1 7 f eet ( th e dia g onal of


L en gth cuts etc could all be gured from the
, ,
.
,

on e illustratio n .

Fi g 3 .

Fig . 3 4.

Fi g 3 4 il l ustrat e s a way to cut ra fters with


the squa re .
A r oof 1 4 feet wid e would have a run of
7 feet third p itch would rise 8 inches to every
,
-
ABC or THE S T EEL SQUARE 65

feot run Therefore place the square on 8 a n d


. ,

1 2 sev en ti me s an d y ou ha v e le ngth an d cuts


, .

F i g . 3 5 F or the oct agon ra fter p roc e ed


. ,

s ame as c ommon rafter o n ly u se 1 3 f or ru n ( i n


,

pla ce of 1 2 for co m m on rafter ) .

Fig . 35.

Fi g . 36 , hip or valley rafter . A s thes e


run d ia g onal with the comm on ra fter
th e di a gonal o f 1 f oot is practically 1 7
i n ches u se 1 7 for ru n and pr oceed sa m e as
, ,

common rafter .

Fi g . 86 .

L engt h o f j acks . I f ther e are to be v e ,

div ide the common rafter into six equal parts ,

use that for a p att e rn and it gives th e length


,

very n i c ely . B ut that will n ot always work To .

get all the d i ff erent lengt h s m i g ht a t rst look


difcult even t o many g ood m e ch an ics but it is ,
36 ABC OF THE S TE E L SQ U A RE

very sim p l e a s i ll ustrate d i n F i g 3 7 I f the rst


. .

j ack w a s on e foot from corner apply the s quare


sam e as for commo n raft e r and it giv e s length
,

and cut ( mark the len gth f or sta rtin g poi nt on


n ext ) and i f it is 1 7 inch e s from the oth e r m ove
,

th e square up to 1 7 i f the next is 1 5 move up t o


,

1 5 and so on .

Fig 37.

Fig . 38 . Th e side cut of j a ck to t hip i f ,

laid down lev e l would of course be square mi ter .


, ,

but th e more the hip rises the shar p er the angle .

loe
Q T

era, ws
a

Fig 88 .

Measure across the sq uare fro m 8 to 1 2 and it ,

n early which is the len gth o f ra fter to


one foot o f ru n L en gth and run cut on length
. , ,

g iv e s th e cut .
68 ABC or THE S T EEL SQUARE

Fi g 42 is another p ractical way w hich i s


. ,

sim p ly to lay th e square o n h eel or hi p T he .

illust ration e x plai n s its el f .

Fi g . 42 .

Perha ps t he m ost practica l way of a ll to fr a me


a roo f th e sim p lest t o u n d e rstand ea siest to
, ,

r e mem ber an d m ost r a pid to a pply is sim p ly to


,

a lways tak e the ri se an d ru n m ea sure a cross th e


,

squ are which g ives le n gth an d ru n giv e


.

cuts so you hav e it all


, .

Fig . 4

Fi g 43 i ll ustr a te s a roo f 2 5 f ee t wid e an d a


.

ris e 1 0 f eet 9 i n ches ru n 1 2 f eet 6 i n ches


, , ,
.

Blea su ri n g a cross th e squ a r e from 1 O% to I 2 V;


g iv e s or 1 6 f eet 6 i n ch e s is th e length o f
,

ra ft e r.
ABC or THE S T EEL SQUARE 69

Fi g . 4 4 I f th e ru n o f comm on raft e r i s
.

th e run o f the hi p wi ll b e di ag o n a l o f
which is 1 7 8 1 6 as is pla i n lv i ll ustr ated
-
,
.

Fig . 4i -
.

Fi g 45 A s th e rise is
. . 1 034 a n d ru n 1 7 8 -1 2
th e len gt h wi ll be 2 0 feet , 2 i n ch e s
.

Fi g . 45.

Fi g 46 When a roo f must g o to a c e rt a in


. .

h e i g ht to st rik e an oth er bui l di n g at a g iv en


p oint a s i n additio n s p orches e tc do n t for ge t
, , ,
.,

i n g etti n g the ris e fr om p lat e to g iv en p oi n t to


70 ABC or THE S T EEL S Q UARE

all ow t h e squ a ri n g u p of heel as i l lustr ate d


and also r e m embe r to all ow for rid ge wh ene v e r
on e is used .

Fig 46 .

Flg . 7i ll ustra t e s th e cut of to p of qu a rt e r


p itch ra ft e r to la y o n to p o f roof j u st m en
t i on ed
. To a pplv th e squ a r e rst l a v it o n 1

Fi g . 47.

an d 6 whi ch is qu a rte r p itch and gives p lumb


,
-

cu t . F rom plu mbcut lay of pi t ch of m ai n


r oof 1 034 and which giv es cut .
AB C OF THE S T EEL SQUARE 7}

A n yo ne th a t ha s stud i e d thi s with d et e rmi n a


ti o n wi ll h a v e n o troub le i n fr a mi n g a n y or

d i na ry roo f a s th e ge ner al p ri n ci ple s appl y to


,

i ll r oofs
, pitch es e tc So I w i ll n ot t ak e u p an y
, .

mor e s pa c e with roo f fra mi n g at this tim e but ,

r eme mb e r al l sh ea thi n g studdi n g corn ic e etc


, , , .,

a re m a d e o n th e s a m e cuts . I n fa ct a ho pper
is al so e x a ct l y o n th e s a m e p ri n ci ple .
D I V I SI ON B .

S OM E P OI NT E R S ON R OOF F RA M I N G
.

No m a tt e r w ha t pe o ple m a y say to th e con


tra ry ther e i s no m ethod or methods t hat ha s
,

e ve r be en devis e d th a t is so e ffective i n roo f


fra min g or r esu lt s so rap id l y a chi e v e d a s th ose
, ,

which a r e obta i ne d by th e use o f th e stee l square .


I h av e show n i n som e o f th e ea r l i e r pa g es of t his
work how ra p id l y t he leng th an d bev el s o f an v,

c o mmon raft e r m a y b e obt a i ne d by th e sim ple


appli catio n of th e squ a r e an y d e t e r min e d n um
,

ber o f tim e s Thus for a bui l di ng o f sa y 3 0


.
, ,

ft . i n width whi ch is to h a v e a roof of an v


,

giv en pitch w e a rr an ge th e p itch a s I hav e


,

shown with so ma n y i n ch e s o n th e bl ade for t he


,

a n d so ma n y on th e to n u e for th e rise
ru n, g .

This s e tt le d w e appl y the squ a re fte en ti me s


,

t o t he r aft e r 1 5 bei n g hal f o f th e width of


,

th e bui l din g This the n g iv e s th e le n gth o f the


.

r a fte r a n d a li ne drawn a l ong th e e d ge of th e


,

ton g u e of the square wi ll g i v e th e p roper bev el


for the to p or pl umb cut I f ther e is to be a .

ri dge board o n th e roof th en ha l f th e thi cknes s


,

of such board must be mea sured back on th e


l i ne draw n an d th e ra fter must be cut at t hat
,

72
AB c or T H E S T EE L SQUA RE 7 31

point thi s p rovides for the ridg e boar d being


,

nai l ed on the face of the ou t w i thout i n t h e least


cha nging the pitch.
A line along t h e ed ge of t h e b la d e gives the
,

p roper be vel fo r the le v el or h oriz ontal cut. If


the bottom en d of the ra fter is t o ha v e a cr ow ~

foot cut on it to t the pl ate t h e w ork man wi ll


,

ha ve no di f culty whatev er i n cutt i ng the f oot of


the rafter to suit as all the lines will b e at ri ght
,

an g les to each other an d a se cti on of the plate


,

may be ma de on t h e l i ne of th e be v el an d the
,


cuts laid off to suit th e con d it i ons .
In rev iewing an article of mi ne on th i s m et hod
of laying ou t a ra fter an E nglish carpent er
,

took excepti ons t o i t on th e groun d s th at i t


would tak e t oo m uch time to lay ou t t he ra fters

f or a wh ole b uil di ng by th i s tire som e process ,

as he called it . Now th e E nglish m an was ri gh t


fr om his poi nt of v iew b ut n o A m eri can w ork
,

ma n would ever thi n k of lay i n g ou t the ra ft ers


for a whole buildi n g by the process. H e w oul d
s i mply m ak e one rafter as I h a ve shown f or a ,

pattern an d use thi s patt ern f or lay i ng ou t all


,

the other rafters f or tha t p articular pitch amd


ri se on the same roof . M ost w orkm e n h ow ev er , ,

make a patt ern from th i n stu ff of some sort, as


it i s lighter an d eas i er han d led . T he re vi ewer

sug ge st e d as a b etter w a y that the pi tch be
4 AB c or T H E S T EEL SQ U A RE

a rranged on the iron square the n measure acros s


,

the angle f rom the p oints of ru n an d pitch an d ,

multi ply t hi s meas u rement by h al f th e widt h of



t he roof to be c ov ere d . Now thi s i s all ri gh t ,

bu t, a s a ma tter of fact e ntails more labor o f


'


a ti resome s ort an d w oul d use m uch m ore t ime
than the meth od I hav e taught n ow f or nearly
forty years. T he A mer i can w orkm a n h ow e ver , ,

does not even req uire a suggesti on as to the


quick er m ethod . H e wi ll see an d a d opt it at
once wi thout a rgum e n t .

Fi g 48.

m eth od the E nglis h manw ou ld ad opt is


shown 48 where the points of pi tch
,

a n d ru n are sh own at 1 2 an d 8 whic h m ak es t h e


,

di agona l line 1 4 % i n ches . T o get the len gth


of the ra fter for our supposed bui ld ing th en ,

we must mult i ply this 1 41 A ; i n ch es f teen


th en we must us e the square at the h p a n
76 AB C or T H E S T EEL SQUARE

bui l di ng by t he deci m al .5 6 , or

as ne ar as can be w ork ed by the square1 3 f eet , ,

5 inch es .
L et us try t h e sa me ru le f or a greater w idth
say 6 0 feet . B y n d ing th e hy pothenuse we n d
as near as can be u se d by the s q uare 3 3 feet , ,

6 Ainches . By m y m eth od i t w oul d be G


1)
,
OX.5 6 ,

or equal to 33 feet 7 inches f ull . B y thi s


,

met hod the ra fters i n wi d e bu i l di ngs are a little


long . Thus i f the b u i l ding is 52 f eet wi de b y
, ,

the hyp othenus e i t w oul d be 2 9 feet 1 in ch ; my ,

way it w oul d b e 2 9 f eet in ches . I consi d er


,

t hi s an a dv antage as i t leaves th e p oi nt of the


,

ra fter v ery slightly open.


For on e thir d I foll ow t h e same p lan only
-
,

u sing t he d e ci m al .6 . U nlike the deci m al used


for a q ua rter pitch th e len gths are a v ery s m all
f ra cti on sh ort ; as f or i nstan ce ; a ra fter f or a
,

buil ding 6 0 f eet wide by nding the hypothe


,

n u se wo u l d be 3 6 f eet 1 1 6 o f a n inch . B y m y
, ,
-

way 6 0 X.6 =3 6 feet . A s li ght di ff eren ce


, ,

truly . I f buildi ng is 48 f eet wi de th en b y ,

the rst meth od we n d 2 8 feet 1 0 inches fu ll ; ,

by my way 2 8 feet
, ,inch es . A li ttle prac
t i ce w i ll enab le the me chanic to all ow j ust en ough
to m ak e up for the sl i gh t d i ff eren ce so that ,

w he n rafters are put t ogether t he t w ill bl


perfect.
AB 0 OF T H E S T EE L SQU AR E W

The one hal f pitch can be foun d in t h e sam e


-

ma nner by usin g the deci m al .7 1 . Taki ng the


2 4 foot b uil d ing len gth of ra fters by the hy

,

oth en u se, we n d 1 6 f eet 1 1 2 3 i nch es ; m y


-
p ,

way t hey woul d be 1 7 feet full. A ga i n b uil d ,

i n g 6 0 f eet W i de rafters b y t he first m eth od


,

wo uld be 42 f eet , i nches ; by m y way 6ox


f eet 6 i nches . B y using thi sd eci m al
, ,

the len gt h i s so near pract i cally corre ct that ,

it m ay b e u sed in all cases .


F or a f ull pitch u se the d ecimal an d as
i n th e prece d ing m entioned pitch an d it will be
,

found so near correct t h at i t can b e practically


u se d i n all case s.

I t w ill be n ot i ced that I h a v e not m ad e au v


all owan ce f or proj ecti on of ra fters ov er the
plate. I n thi s case gauge from the crown i n g
si de of your ra fter t h e thickness of your pro j cc

tion ; allow enou g h f or the latter an d n d the ,

lower be v el according t o the way you d e scri be d


i n your last ; measur e the length o f y ou r raf te '

from wher e this be vel cross es the gauge l i ne .


A little p ra ctice will e nable the m echan i c to la 1
off a rafter i n a v ery short time . I h a v e us d

the abo v e mysel f and ha v e no troub le wha tever


, .

W hile I ha v e no fa ult to nd in y our meth od s ,

as I know them to b e corre ct yet i t i s j ust as


,

we ll tha t w orkmen should know other meth od s ,


8 AB C OF T H E S T EEL SQUARE '


a s th ere a r e many occasi ons when the nly o

metho d he p ossesses cannot be appli ed . H ence
I su bmi t th e fore going at your request .
,


W. H.
A ll t hi s i s v ery tr u e an d ri ght as far as it
,
'

g oes but it so happens tha t many w ork men do


,

not h av e the n ecessa rv learnin g to w ork ou t the se


p ro blems i n fo oting on the lin e s l a i d down by W .

H . b ut i n ord er to meet c onditio n s of thi s k ind


, ,

I have pre p ar ed a se ri e s of ta bles wh i ch is i a ~

sert cd i n the lar ger vo l umes givin g th e lengt h of


,

ra fters f or any bu ildi n g ha v in g a width of from


v e to si x ty feet an d a rise of roof of f rom
on e t o eighteen f eet to ridge . T h i s will cov e r

the wh ole ground an d form a rea dy table f or


,

the e sti m ator to take his q uantiti es f rom .

I may b e pard one d f or a ga in sh ow in g the


comm on an d s i mplest m ethod o f l aying out an
'

ordi n a ry ra fter f or notwithstandin g a ll I ha ve


,

s a id an d d escri bed an d e x plain ed on this subj ect ,

there w ill always be som e p ersons who will n ot


be able to grasp the method u n less it is put to ,

them in s ome other li ght I a m sure o f t his.

from the l ong experience I have ha d i n the


an swe ri ng of q uestions of this kind throu g h the
c olu m ns of di ff erent b uildin g j ournals . Thi s is
n o d oub t ow i ng t o som e con stitutional peculiar

ities of both the person who m akes the inq u i ry


AB c OF THE S T EEL SQU AR E 79

an d the p e rso n who att e m p ts to answ e r it . This


i s on e of t he main re a sons why I hav e a dmitt e d
into this work various m ethods a n d d escriptions
of oth e rs t ha n m y se l f so th at r ead e rs will have
,

th e s am e method s d e scrib ed a n d e x p lained to


th em in s ev e ral diff er e nt ways by s e vera l writers .
L et us t ak e th e di agr a ms s hown at Fi g . 49 ,

which shows a portio n o f a r oo f ha vi n g a quar ~

ter p itch C E B showi n g th e h e i ght and A B thc


. ,

lengt h and incli n atio n o f ra fter . D show s the



f oot of the rafter o n th e pl a te cu t at foot
,

a nd th e lin e E C the p lumb cut This i squit e


.

p lain . The b uildin g m a y be an y wi dth l e t u :


,

say in thi s case th a t it is 3 0 f eet wide from A


,

to 0 . That wi ll mak e the di stance from A to C


1 5 feet .
A m eth od o f obtaining the be v els f or this
ra fter is giv e n in F i g 50 wher e t he st e el squa re
.
80 AB c or T H E S T EEL SQ UARE

is shown l a id o n the patt e rn wi t h the points 1 6


inch es o n th e bla d e a n d 8 i n ch es on th e t on g u e
ap p l i e d to th e e dge o f the stu ff T he li n e H O
.

o n the bla de gi v es the bev el for the foot of th e


rafte r A C . Th e line OP Fi g 50 gives t he
, .

bevel for the t op of the raft e r or the p l umb


cut as most w ork men cal l it
, Now th e re i s
. ,

n othing in this di a gr a m which from Bel l s


,

C a rpentry , an e xc ellen t work from which th e


workma n c an g et th e le ngth o f his r a ft e r with ,

out com pl ic a ti ng matt e rs H a d th e gu res 1 2


.

i n ch e s an d 6 i n ch e s o n th e squ a re b een e mploy ed


i n st ead o f 1 6 a n d 8 th en th e dist an ce across th e
,

d ia gona l from these two points wou l d ha ve


equa ll ed o n th e r a ft er o ne f oot o n th e base li ne
,

or seat o f th e raft e r so that 1 5 tim es th a t length


,

wou l d h a v e been th e tot al length of th e ra fte r .


AB C or T H E S T EEL SQUARE 81

Bet ter stil l howev e r wou l d hav e been th e appli


, ,

cation of th e s q uar e 1 5 tim e s on th e ed ge of th e


raft e r p atter n with th e poi n ts 1 2 an d 6 o n
ga u ge poi n ts th en both l ength an d bev els would
,

ha v e bee n obta i ne d a t o ne op e r a tion .

Of course th e e x pert workm an wi l l often i n


,

v en t or discov e r m e thods o f using the squar e


, ,

i n c e rta in pha ses o f roof framing tha t can n ot ,

b efou n d i n book s or th a t cannot b e tau g ht


,

because of th e peculiar circu m stances of the p a r


ti cu la r c a s e H aving a fair k n owl e d ge of the
.

us e s of the steel th e workm an will seldom be


,

ov e rta ke n by di fculties h e can n ot ov e r come i f


.

h e studi es t he problems be fore him a nd th en


e m p loys his knowle d ge of the square to th e ir
solution ,as a little appl icati on o n this line will
re move a l l os sib le troub le s
p .

E very car pent e r k n ows or ou g ht t o k now , ,

th a t the ru n a nd rise of th e ra ft e r t aken on the


squ a re will giv e the seat an d plumb cuts but ,

i na smuch a s buildi n g s a re not all of the sam e


widt h it require s a di ff e ren t set o f gures f or
,

e ach ru n a n d as it r e qui res a n extra cal cu la


,

tio n to rst fin d th e ru n o f the hip or v al l ey i t


.
,

is bett e r to use th e full scale f or a on efoot ru n


of t he comm on ra fter which answers f or any run :
.

R ef e rri n g to Fig 5 1 w e show a squar e


. ,

bou n de d b y A B C D the s ides o f which are


, , , ,
82 AB c OF T H E S T E EL SQUA RE

1 2 in ches . E i s at a point 5 inc hes from B ,

a n d C 1 2 i nches from B . B A represents the -

run o f the common raf ter E A represe nts the


.
-

F ig . 52 .

run of oc ta gon hi p or v alley an d C A the ,


-

same f or the c ommon h i p or v alley th e ir lengths


, ,

being 1 2 1 3 an d 1 7 respecti v ely . Now sin ce


, ,

1 2 1 3 an d 1 7 are x ed n umbers we tak e them


, , ,

on the t on gue o f the square as shown i n Fi g . 52


, .
A B C OF T HE S T EE L SQ U ARE

The mea su rem en t l i ne o f hi p s a n d valleys is


a t a l ine alo ng the ce n t e r of its back a n d j ust ,

wh e r e to p lac e the square o n th e side of th e


raft e r so a s t o mak e the cuts and le ngth com e
ri ght at that point i s a questio n that t axes th e
skill of most car p enters es p ecia l ly so wh en t he
,

raft e rs a re so backed I n Fi g 5 4 I h a v e t ried


. .

to mak e th e a bove p oi n ts cl e ar .

R UN

I7 1

PL AN

Fig . 54 .

First I Show th e p la n of the raft e r Th e


,
.

c ros s li n es o n sam e r ep res en t a n e xt e r n al corner


fo r the hi p a n d va lle y r e s pe ctively A bov e t he .

pla n is Shown th e e l e v a tio n Th e s ections .

1 42 3 4
-
r ep res en t th e p o sit i o n of th e r a fters
A B c or TH E S T EEL S Q UARE 85

un d er the f ollowmg con di t i on s : No. 1 hi p when


n ot b acked No . 2 h ip whe n backed No .3 valley
, ,

whe n not back ed No. 4 v alley whe n backed


,
.

No . 1 is outli ne d by h e avy li ne s an d sets lower


,

tha n th e oth e rs B y t raci ng the bott om li n e o f


.

th e sectio n s dow n to the seat of No . 1 thenc e u p ,

to th e s e co n d e levation will show j u st h ow dee p


th e n otchi ng should be fo r each rafter . No 1 .

cut s i n to th e ri ght ha n d v e rtical l i ne from th e


p la n which would m ake it st an d at th e ri ght
,

hei ght abo ve th e p late but in ord e r to make th e


,

seat cut cl e a r the co r ne r o f p late it i s n e cessary


,

to cut i n to th e c en t e r l i ne above th e p l a n No . .

2 cut s into the s a m e p oi n ts as No . 1 but owi ng ,

to i t s bei ng ba cked the seat cut dro p s acco rd


,

i n gly N o 3 cut s i n to th e c en ter v ertical lin e


. . ,

an d i n o rd e r to c le a r the ed ge s o f th e p late must


cut ou t a t the sid e s to the left v e rtic a l lin e No . .

4 cut s in the s a m e as the latt e r but as much ,

low e r tha n No 3 a s No 2 i s b e low No 1


. . . .

Th e out e r v e rti cal li ne s from th e pl a n repre


s en t th e width of th e raft e r Th e r e fo re i f th e
.

r a ft e r b e two i n ches thick would be on e i n ch


,

apa rt a n d thi s a mount set off alo ng th e seat li ne


,

( o r a li n e p a rallel with it ) will g iv e the g aug e


p oi n t on the side of th e raft e r To m ake thi s .

clear e r refe r to F ig .5 3 1 7 a n d 9 gi ve s the cuts .

Now lea vi ng the squar e r e st a s it is m e asu r e ,


86 A B C or T H E S T E EL SQ UA RE

ba ck from 1 7 one half the thi ckness of the ra fter


-
,

an d this wi ll b e the gauge line point f rom w hi ch

to rem o v e the wood b ack to th e center l i ne of


hi p an d the measurement from the edge of the
,

ra fter tak en vertica lly d own t o th e gauge p oi nt


set off on the plumb cut regulates how far apa rt
the parallel l i nes of the seat cuts will be unde r
th e abov e con di ti ons . Th i s rule ap plies to an y
roof lon g as th e pitch e s are re gular .

Proceed in li k e m anner f or the hi p .


t he variati on how ev er is pract i cally on e hal f o f
, ,
-

the abov e res ults f or the square cornere d


bui l di ng .
F i g . 5 5 illu strates side cut of the j ack 1 2 o n
,

t he tongue an d 1 5 ( len gth of the comm on


,

rafter ) on the blade .


AB c or T H E S T EEL SQUA R E 87

56 ill ust rates si d e cut of the octagon


5 on the tongu e an d 1 5 on the bla de .

F ig . 57.

57 i llustrates th e side cut o f the hi p or


valley, 1 7 on ton gue 1 9 14 ( length of the hip )
,

on the blad e giv i ng the cut in each case .

Th e latter h owe v er is for the u nb acke d


, ,

ra fter
. I f it has been previously back e d then ,
88 AB c OF T HE S T EEL S Q UARE

appl y the s quare with the ab ove figures on t he


l ow e r ed ge at bottom o f th e p lumb cut o r ap ,

p lv th e squa re as fo r th e j ack Fi g . 56 to th,e ,

b a ckin g line which will g ive th e s ame r e su l t a s


,

1 7 an d
It is quit e c le a r th a t whe n a wo rkm an cuts a
co mmo n r a ft e r h e i s al so cutti ng a timb e r th a t
,

w ould a n sw e r fo r a hi p fo r a buildi ng of le s s
s p a n havi ng th e s a m e ris e o nl y t a ki ng some ,

a dj ustm e nt o f th e to p be v el to fit ag ai n st a rid ge .

This is quite pl a i n a n d if w e r e fe r to Fi g 5 8
, . ,

w e fi n d that th e commo n r a ft e r fo r a 1 foot ru n -

b e comes a hi p fo r an i n ch ru n a n d that a
-
,

hi p fo r a 1 foot ru n o f th e bui l di ng b e com e s a


-

commo n r a ft e r fo r a 1 7 i n ch ru n Th e r e fore
-
. ,

th e ru l e th a t a ppl i e s t o th e commo n r a ft e r al so
a ppl i e s to th e hi p r a ft e r i e th e ru n a n d ris e
, .

tak e n o n th e squa r e wi ll g i v e th e sea t an d pl umb


cuts Th e run a n d length o f th e r a ft e r tak en o n
.

th e squa re wi l l g iv e th e sid e cuts o r t a ki ng th e ,

sca le fo r a 1 foot ru n
-
Fi g 5 8 it is 1 2 o n th e
, . ,

to ng ue a n d th e rise o n th e b l a d e fo r th e com
mo n raft e r a n d 1 7 o n th e t on gu e an d ri se o n
,

th e blad e fo r th e hi p Th e to ngu e g ivi ng th e


.

sea t cut a n d th e b l ad e th e pl umb cut Fo r th e .

sid e cuts w e tak e 1 2 o n th e to ngu e an d

in ch e s o n th e b l ad e and th e b la d e wi ll giv e th e
,

sid e cut of th e j a ck T a k e 1 7 o n th e to ngu e


.
A B c or T H E S T EEL S Q U A R E 89

an d t h e len gth of the hip 1 4 inches on th e 9 3


, ,

bla d e an d the blad e will give the side cut of the


i . I t w ould also b e th e side cut o f the cor
hp
respon d i ng j ack i f it be a c omm on ra fter .
S e v enteen is used f or a foot ru n of the hi p
rafter because the diagon al of a 1 2 in ch squar e -

is p ractically 1 7 i n ches .

l O


h
c
Q .
0 0 s I
l
:
i
p

i s A
I
1
:1 i
a s

i
9 ,

l
s

s
. '

s 5 I I
,
a

i
1 3

O
s

s
s J
a 1 g
I 0
,

Q

o
s
I s 0

i
\

l
s
90 AB C or TH E S T EEL SQUA RE

If we w e re to u se 1 2 on the tongu e f or a f oot


run o f the hi p the ri s e to th e foot w oul d n eces
sa rily be less than 1 0 inches In Fi g 5 9 I show
. .

what th e di ff e re n ce is in ri se to th e foot .

Fi g . 5 9 .

F rom 1 2 t o 1 2 is th e le ngth o f th e run o f t he


hip w oul d on l y ha v e 1 0 1 7 of a n inch to one
-

ru n o f th e common rafter and a n equal ri se of


,

the common ra fter set off as at A an d a l i ne


, ,

from this t o 1 2 on the ton g u e pass e s at 7 1 1 7 -


92 AB c or T HE S T EEL S Q UAR E

foll ows : The ru n o f the long way of the build


i n g is 1 4 and 9 fo r the na rrow way which w e
, ,

take o n the blade a n d to n gue res p ectiv e ly as ,

sh own o n square No . 1 a n d to this a pp ly squa r e


,

No. 2 as s h own . AD equals the run of the hip .


,

Fi g. 6 0.

equals th e rise and E D equals the lengt h of


the h i p . The reader w i ll notice that the le tters
A B C D form a para ll elo g ram with sid e and
, , , ,

en ds equal to th e ru n s of the c o mmo n raft e rs .


AB c or THE S T E E L SQU A RE 93

The refore by t akin g th e ru n s o n the tongu e


, ,

a s show n by th e squa re s Nos 8 an d 1 wi ll g i ve


. ,

th e ir len gths s e at a nd p lumb cuts


,
.

I n Fi g 6 1 is Show n th e i nt e rse ctio n of th e


.

r a ft e rs at t he pea k a n d as th e l en gths o f a l l

ra ft e rs a r e sc ale d to ru n to a commo n center it


is n ecessa rv th at the commo n r a fters must cut

so a s to t i n th e an gle form e d by th e hi p s .

Fig 61 .

T he p ro pe r de ductio n for this is show n i n Fi g .

1 5 0 by pl aci n g two squ a r e s o n th e b a ck o f th e

r a f te r with th e h ee l or corne r o f the squares


,

r e sti ng o n th e Cen t e r li ne Th e dista nc e from


.

the co rn e r o f the squar e to B m ea sured squar e


ba ck ( a t ri g ht a n g les ) from th e pl umb bev el a s ,
94 A B c or T H E S T EEL SQ U A RE
AB c or T H E S T EE L SQUA RE 95

sh own in F ig 6 1 will l oca te the point of the


. ,

long common rafter at B in F ig 6 1 . P ro ce ed .

in like ma nn e r for the sh ort com m on rafter ,

t ak i n g th e di stanc e fro m the corner at C and ,

f or the sid e cuts take 1 45 on the ton gue an d the


,

l ength o f th e short co mm on ra fter CE on the


bla de th e b la de will giv e th e cut at A C in F ig .

6 1 . The r ea d e r will observe that this angle


is the sam e as that for the side cut of the j ac k .

P roc eed in like m anner f or the l ong com m on


ra fte r side using 9 on the tongu e an d BE on
,

the blad e These same gures will gi v e the si d e


.

cuts o f th e hip provided hip has been previously


,
)

back e d . Taking the last fo r e xample t he r ea d e r


will obs e rve that 9 on the to ngue an d B E o n
the bl ad e the square w oul d lay on the plan e o f
the b acking and the b lad e giving the ou t alo n g
'

th e li n e B B in Fig . 6 1 or th e se cuts m ay b e
,

foun d by measuri n g s q uare ba ck fro m a plumb


be v el at points A a n d A F ig 6 2 th e distan ce
, . ,

AC a n d A B which will g ive the pr eper plumb


,

cut a t th e si des a nd i nt e rs e cti n g th e line A A at


th e c en t e r Th e se same distanc e s AC and A B
. , ,

bu t tra ns f e rred to op p osite sides set off on the


,

seat cut or a li n e pa rall e l with it wi l l g ive th e,

g aug e poi n ts o n th e side o f th e hi p for th e


back ing .
The lengths o f th e j ack s m ay be found by
96 ABC or T H E S T E EL SQUA RE

di v idi n g the length of the com mon rafter by


the nu mber of the spa ci ngs f or the j acks ; th e
qu ot ient wi l l be the comm on d i ff erence .

END O F D I V ISI ON B.

Fig . 6 3.

L AY -
"
OU T OF HIP -
R OO F W IT H DE C! .
T HE S T EEL S QU AR E AND I T S U S E S .
I
D VIS IO N C

I n trod u ctory .

Duri ng my l o ng e xperience a s E d it or o f
severa l o f t he lea din g buildi n g j ournals in. th e
U n it e d S ta te s a n d C anada I ha ve been asked
,

a n d ha ve answered thousan d s of q u e stions re


garding matters co n c e r n ing building c onstru e
tion b uilders materials tools a nd pr ocesses an d
,

, ,


p art i cu larly reg a rding the Steel Sq uare and

its U ses and I have c oncluded that the publi ca
,

ti on o f a few o f these questions an d an swer s ,

along with ot her matter in thi s divi sion w ill b e


,

ap p reciate d by my readers an d to this en d I


,

i nsert a numb er o f the most us e ful ite m s i n thi s


manual .

B esi des th ese q uesti ons an d answers I also ,

pu bl i sh other up to date matter all o f whi ch ,

wi ll make this v olume one o f t he most usefu l


l ittle works to the A merica n carpenter a n d w ood
worker ever published .

I open thi s d ivisio n with a fe w hi n ts regard


ing the con struct io n rather the laying out of
a H ip-R oof wh e re th e d e si gn has be e n fu rnished
by an a rchi tect a n d which of course shows
, , ,

th e p itch a n d the l ay o f th e timb ers W e su z . v

97
98 A B c or T H E S T EEL SQUARE

Fi g . 6 4.

711 70

F ig . 6 5.

p o se t he roof to hav e a s pan of 1 8 feet an d a


rise o f 6 feet thus g iv in g the r oof a on e third
,
-

pitch. The fence i s use d i n this e x am ple to its


full e xtent an d when placed on the sq uare an d
,

fasten e d t h e line of fenc e shows the mpe or


,
1 00 AB C or T H E S T E EL S Q U A R E

a voi d ma k in g a p la n we t ak e 1 3 p itch . Th i s
,
-

p itch is 1 3 th e width of th e buildin g t o po int


-
,

o f raft e r from wa l l p lat e o r bas e Fo r an .

e x am p l e always u s e 8 which i s 1 3 of 2 4 on
, ,
-
,

to ng ues fo r altitud e ; 1 2 th e width o f 2 4


, ,

o n blade fo r base . This cuts common rafter.


N e xt is the hi p rafter . It must b e u n d e rst ood
-

th a t th e dia g o n al of 1 2 a n d 1 2 is a pp roximate
ly 1 7 i n frami ng wo rk and the hi p i s th e dia g
,

o n al o f a square added to the ris e o f r oof ;


th e r e fo re w e take 8 on th e to ngue an d 1 7 on
th e blade ; ru n th e sam e n umb e r o f tim e s as
common ra ft e r which giv e s th e l en gth o f h i p
an d p lumb a n d l e v e l b e vels .
To cut j a ck r a ft e rs divid e th e number of

,

openi ngs fo r commo n ra ft e rs . S u pp os e w e hav e

ve j acks with six o p e n i ng s ou r commo n raft er


, ,

1 2 f ee t lo ng each j ack wou l d b e 2 f ee t sho rter .


,

The rst n ext th e hi p 1 0 fee t th e s e cond 8


, , ,

feet third 6 fee t and so o n The to p down


, , .

cut s am e a s down cut fo r commo n raft e r Fo r .

th e b e v el ou t aga i n st hi p Tak e h al f th e width


, .

of buildi ng o n to ngu e an d l ength o f common


r a ft e r o n b l ad e an d b l ad e giv e s th e b e v el Now
,
.

n d dia g o n a l of 8 an d 1 2 which i s 1 4 7 1 6 in . ,
-

Take this length o n b la d e an d 1 2 o n ton gu e ,

b l ad e g iv e s b e v el s If th e hi p rafter i s beve l ed
.
-


o r back e d to suit j acks th en t a k e h e i ght of ,
A B C or T HE S T EEL S Q UARE 1 01

hip o n tongue len gth of hi p on blad e a nd


, ,

t ong ue gives bevel . Thes e figu res will cover al l


be v e ls fo r cutti ng cornice and sh e athi n g. F o r
,

b e d moulds fo r g ab le to fit under c or n ice t a ke ,

h alf width of b uildi ng o n ton gu e le n gth of ,

commo n r a ft e r o n blad e ; blade g ives cut To .

c ut planc ee r to run u p vall e y take hei ght of ,

ra fter o n ton gu e len gth o f rafter o n bla d e


,
'

t ongu e gi v es be v el . F o r p lumb cut t ak e h eight ,

o f hi p o n to ng ue le n gth of hi p o n bl a d e ;
,

t o n gue gives bevel .


These gu res were s p ecially p r ep ared fo r a .

hi p roof havi ng a one thi rd p itch but will suit


-
,

other pitch e s equally we l l if th e diff e r en c e i n


hei ght o f rid ge i s co n sidered .
Fo r a ho pp er the mitr e is cut on the s am e
p ri n ci p le . To m ak e a butt j oi n t tak e th e width ,

o f sid e o n blade a n d h a lf the are on to ng u e


,
!

th e l a tt e r g iv e s th e cut Y ou W ill ob s e rv e tha t


.

a.hi p roof is th e s a m e a s a ho ppe r in v e rt e d Th e


-
.

cuts fo r th e e d ge s o f th e p ieces o f a hexa g o n a l


hopper a r e fou n d this w a y S ubtract th e width
.

o f on e p i e c e a t th e bot tom from the width of


sam e at to p , t a ke r e mai n d e r o n to n gu e d ep th ,

o f sid e o n b l ade ; to ngu e giv e s th e cut The cut .

o n fac e o f sid e s : T a k e 7 1 2 o f the rise o n


-

to n gu e a n d the d ep th of side o n blade ; to ngu e


giv e s cut The b e vel of to p a n d bottom : Tak e
.

ri se o n bl a d e ru n o n to ngu e ; ton gue giv e s cut


, .
S OM E QU E S T I ON S A N D A NS W E R S
F R OM V AR I OU S C ORR E S P OND E N T S .

T he fol lowi ng questio n s an d answers from


p r a ctical workme n ar e c onsid e r e d am ong t he
v e ry b e st thi ng s reg ardin g t he u s e o f the S teel

S quar e a s th e y are from men who kn e w of what


,

th ey w e re talkin g a bout Th e y are gathered


.

from ma n y source s but chiey from the col


,

u mu s of T e chnic a l Jou rnal s w ith which I h av e


be e n connected either a s Ed itor or contributor
,
.


Jas Wi ll is R o chester N . Y . as k s : H ow ca n
. , , ,

I ge t th e p rop er bevel for a b utt j oint on a n


obtus e or acut e an gle by the us e of t he square
,

"
o n ly !

Fi g . 66 .

A n swer : S uppose F ig . 6 6 repr e sents an oh


tu se angle formed by two paral lel b oards or
timb ers To obtain the j oint A spa ce off equa l
. , ,

distan ces from the point 1 to 3 3 th e n squar e , ,

1 02
1 04 AB c or T HE S T EEL S Q UARE


P . McV i t y Milwaukee as k s : H ow can I
, ,


d raw a circle with th e S t e el S quare !

An sw e r : A circl e o f a n y r e quired di ameter


m a y be drawn by m e a n s o f th e squar e by usi ng
i t as indicated in th e accomp an yi ng Sketch .

Drive two p i n s o r nails A a n d B F i g . 6 8 at


, , ,

whatever dista n ce a pa rt th e circl e is to hav e a s


i t s diam e ter . B ri ng the squa r e ag ai n st th e m ,

shown and us e a pe n ci l i n th e angl e as i n di


,

Fig . 6 8.

ca t ed i n th e dr a wi ng This ru le i s v e ry co n
.

v
en i en t i n m an y i n st an c e s S u pp ose A a n d B
.

a re two p oi n ts throu gh which a circ l e is re


quir e d to be draw n . B y bri ng i ng the squ a r e
a g ai n st p i n s o r n a i l s pl ac e d i n th e p oi n ts it
,

m a y be d e sc rib e d a s i n dic a t e d i n th e sk e t ch
.
A B c or T H E S T E EL S Q U A R E 1 05


A Mecha n ic , Tam pa F l a a sk s : C an th e
, .,

steel squar e be u s e d i n layi ng out a w r e ath fo r



a handrail a n d if so please des c ribe how !
, ,

An swer : S om e adva n ce i n this dir e ction ha s


b een m ade but no t m uch but th e outlook i s quit e
, ,

en c ou ragi ng a s ma n y ex pe rt s are tryi ng to ob


t ain a l l the lines requir e d fo r fo rmi ng ci rcula r
han d rails . I t will be a ccom p li shed sooner o r

M m
z
o OQ O O

F ig . 6 9.

l ater A f e w p robl e ms and solutio n s are gi v en


.

her e with : I n g etti ng out face molds it h a s gen


-

era lly b e e n co n sid e r e d necessa ry first to unfold

the ta ngen ts a n d ge t the h e i ghts a n d by co n ,

st ru ctio n ge t the b e vels . The m e thod show n i s


s omewhat di ff er en t thou gh results a re the sam e
, ,

but ar e p roduced mo r e r ap idly Take fo r illus .

t ra t i on a sid e wr ea th mit e r e d i n to a new el ca p .


1 06 ABc or T H E S T EEL SQUARE

This meth od wi ll a p ply n o matt e r where t he


ne w el i s plac e d or wh eth e r th e easem en t is less
,
'

or mor e tha n th e on e s tep o f th e e xam ple illus ~

t ra t ed Wha t is m e ant by on e step is that the


. ,

tange nt o f th e strai ght rail co n tinu e s to the


p oint 2 Fi g . 6 9 . Th e tan gen t 2 1 is level .
,
-

Fi g . 7 0.

To p roduce th e f a ce mou l d lay the stee l ,

squ a r e i n th e p os iti on i n dic a t e d b v th e l ines 1 2 . ,

3 4 not th e fi gure o n th e squ a re a t th e points


, ,

n umbere d an d tran sf e r them to a p i e c e o f thi n


,

stu Fi g 7 0. L i ne 3 4 in Fi g . 7 0 is i ndefini te
ff , .
.

Now tak e th e le n gth of the lo n g e d ge o f the


p itch board i n the compasse s and with 2 F ig , ,
.

7 0 as a c e nter cut th e l in e 3 4 in 4 a n d draw


, ,
-

2 4
-
Now 1 2 is th e l evel an d 2 4 is t he p itch
.
-
,
-

t angent on th e f a ce mo l d .

To get th e bev el s an d width of th e fac e mold


a t both en ds t a k e th e dist an c e 3 4 o n th e bl a d e
,
-

of th e square a n d th e h e i g ht o f a riser on the


,

to n gu e o f th e squ a r e . appl y to th e e d ge o f a
1 08 ABC or THE S T EEL SQUA RE

len gth o f a l i ne fro m th e corner of t he pitch


,

board squ a re d from its to p ed ge This beve l .

wi l l b e u n d e rs tood bett e r by p la ci n g t he pi tc h
boa rd o n the lin e 2 4 an d appl yin g th e sm al l
-

tri an g le to it with its ba s e on th e li ne 4 x a n d -


,

its p oint ev e n with t he t ap e d ge o f th e p itch


boa rd It wi ll the n b e at right a ngl es to t he
.

top e d ge of th e p itch boa rd .


In p racti ce a pa r alle l mol d is gene ral ly u sed
, ,

an d th e wre at h pi e c e is cut out ; both thick n es s


of p l an k an d width o f mo l din g b e i n g e qua l to

th e di a meter o f a circ le th a t wi ll co n t a i n a s e c
tio n o f fi n i sh e d r a i l.

J a cqu e s D emou x W i nn i peg Ma m w an ts to


'

, , ,

k n ow how to l a y out br a c e s reg u la r a n d irr eg


,

u la r b v th e us e o f th e S t eel S qu a re .

A nsw e r'
B ra c e s an d truss e s a re som e t hi ng
lik e rafte rs an d wh en th e ru n i s k n ow n th e r e ,

sh ou l d be no di fficu l ty i n getti n g th e length s an d


p rop e r bevel s .

In th e rst p la ce it is al w a ys be st to m a k e a
pa tt e r n an d th en mark out th e timber work
f rom t he pa tt e r n . S u p pos e w e w an t br a ces h a v
!

i ng a four foot run
-
th a t is th e brac e i s to
-
,

form a di ag on al from p oi n ts four feet from t he


post and four feet from th e g irt T ak e a p i e ce .

of st u already pr e pared si x f eet l on g four



, :
AB c or T H E S T EEL SQUA R E 1 09

inch es wide and h al f i nch thick gauge it three


-
,

e ighths from j oin ted e d ge .

Tak e the square as a rr ange d a t Fi g . 7 1 and ,

p l a ce it on th e prepa red stuff as shown at F i g .

72 . A dj u st the square so tha t the twel v e inch -

l i ne coinci de e x actly with t he gauge line 0 o , ,

o 0
,
. H old th e squ a r e rm ly in th e p osition

Fig . 71 .

n ow obtain e d an d s l ide th e f en c e u p the Q a gu e


,

a nd bla d e until it ts snugly agai n st the j ointed

e dge of the prepare d St u ff screw the fence tight


,

o n the square a n d be sur e that the 1 2 inch marks


,
-

on both th e bla de an d th e to n g u e ar e i n e x a ct
positi on ov e r th e gau ge l i n e -
.

Fi g . 72

W e are n ow ready to l a y out the patte r n .

S li d e the square to the extreme left as show n ,

on the dot ted l ines a t x m ark with a k ni f e on


,
110 AB c or THE S T EEL SQUARE

the outside e d ge s of t he squar e cutting the ,

g a u ge l i ne R epeat this process four ti m es


. ,

markin g the e nds a nd you hav e th e le ngth and


,

b e v e ls Square over at each end from th e gau ge


.

lin e a nd you hav e th e t oe o f th e brace Th e .

l in e s ss F i g 7 2 show th e t e no n s l e ft o n th e
, . ,

e nd o f the braces .

Th e cut at Fi g 7 3 sh ows th e brace in p o si


. ,

tion o n a r e du ced scal e The princip le o n which


, .

the squ a r e works in the formation of a bra c e


ca n ea sily be understood f rom this cut a s th e ,

dotted l in e s show th e position th e squar e was i n


wh en the pa ttern was laid out .

I t may be nec e ssary to state that the square ,

a s n ow arr ange d wi ll la y out a bra ce p att e rn


,
1 12 ABC or T HE S T EEL S Q UARE

be v e ls at th e e xtr e m e en ds Th e dotted l i ne s
.

show th e p ositio n o f th e squ a r e a s th e pa tt e r n


,

i s bei ng laid out .


Fi g 7 5 shows th e brac e in p ositio n th e dott e d
. ,

l i ne s Show wh e r e th e squ ar e w a s pl a c e d o n t he
p att e r n It is w ell to tho rou ghly u n d rst an d
.
e

th e m e thod o f obtai n i ng th e l e n gths a nd bevel s


of i rregu la r br a c e s . A littl e study will s oo n
ena bl e any pe rso n to m a k e a ll ki n ds of brac e s .

If we want a brace with a two-foot ru n a n d ,

a four foot ru n it must be e vident that as t wo


-
,

is th e half of four so on the square take 1 2


,

i n ch e s on the to ngu e and 6 in ches o n the bl ade


, ,

appl y four tim e s a n d we hav e th e l eng th a n d


, ,

th e bevel s of a brac e fo r this ru n .


A B c or T H E S T EEL S Q U A R E 113

For a t h ree by fou r foot run t ak e 1 2 i n che s


,

on the to ngue a n d 9 inch e s on the blade and ,

a pp ly fou r tim e s because a s three feet i s A of


, ,
3

fou r fe e t so 9 i n ch e s is 4 of 1 2 in ches
,
3 .

A you ng ca rpen t e r , To ronto , wants t o kn ow


how t o n d the c e nter of a circle by a id of th e
Squa re.

Fig . 76 .

A n sw e r I n Fi g 7 6 is shown how th e c en t e r
: .

of a circ le m ay be d e t e rmi n ed without the us e


of com p as ses this i s bas e d o n the p rinci p le th a t
a circl e ca n b e draw n throu gh any three p oint s
tha t a r e n ot actua l ly i n a strai ght l ine S u p .

po s e w e take A B , C D , fo,r four g iv e n poi n ts .

th en draw a l i ne from A to D a n d from B to C,


114 ABc or T H E S T EEL SQUARE

g et the ce nter of t hese lin e s an d square from


,

these center s as shown and when th e square


,

cros ses the line or where th e line s inters e ct as at


, ,

x there will be th e center o f the circle . This


,

i s a v e ry usefu l ru le .


Ed .McD on a ld C i n cinn ati Ohio says :
, , ,
I
want to know how m uch ca n be done with the
square towards set ti n g out stair raili n g !
A n sw er : I n a p revious pa ge a few r e marks
on this subj ect will be found a n d th e followin g

is further submitte d

Fi g . 7 7 a pla n of a stair w ell havin g


three winders . The r a il in thi s case will hav e
two di ff e re n t pitches . Th ese rai l s are a little
more complica ted than those ha ving equal
pitches a s in the latter the m aj or a x is i s parallel
,

off the d i a gon al lin e B D ( F ig . When


1 16 AB C or T HE S T EE L S Q U A RE

b e e n d one i s th at the plane i n wh i ch t h e rail l i es


has been proj ect e d to i n t ers ect th e ho rizonta l
p la n e which co n tai n s the p lan of th e w reath .

The n ame by which this li n e is genera l ly known


i s the ho rizo n tal t race ( show n at C Fi gs . 7 8 ,

an d Th e mi n o r axi s ( Fi gs 7 8 an d 7 9 ) i s
.

F ig . 79 .

a l w a ys p ara llel of this a nd al ways touch e s A


,

a s i n Fi g . 7 7 Th e m a j o r a xi s ( Fi g s 7 8 and
. .

7 9 ) a l so touch e s thi s p oi n t A a n d i s al ways


,

square off the mi n o r a xis a n d off th e hori z onta l

t rac e It wi ll be s een by this th a t th e rail i s


.

p itch ed e qual l y both w a ys ; th e r e fo r e th e fac e


m o l d will b e o f eq u al width a t th e en ds .
AB C or T HE S T EEL S Q UAR E 1 17

W hen r a i ls a re cut b y ban d s aw on be d bl oc k s ,

bevel s are n ot nec e s s ary as they ca n always be


,

obtai n ed by app lyi ng a bevel a s shown at F i g .

8 0 The stock shou l d lie solid o n th e b l ock and


.

squa r e off th e sid e s Whe n the blo ck is thin it


.

is b e st to app ly the bev e l n ear th e co rn e r wh en ,

a gr e at e r su rfa c e is obtain ed These bevels ar e


.

app lied aft e r the j oi n t i s squar e d off th e ta ngen t


l i ne s
. To demo n st rat e a rail with unequal
p itch e s cut an oth e r p i e c e of stu ff 2 x 2 i n ch e s
, ,

a s show n m Fi g 7 9 r epeat the p roc e s s with th e


. ,

c a rd b oard a s befo r e It will b e fou n d th at th e


.

ho ri z o n tal t r a c e h a s d ep art e d from the a ngle of


4 5 d eg re e s ( s ee Fi g 7 9 ) an d ha s ap p ro a ch ed
. ,

nea rer o ne co rn e r a n d gon e f a rther away on th e


other . Th e m aj or axis B will hav e do n e lik e
wi s e a s i t i s a lw a y s squar e off the ho ri z ont al
,

t r a c e C Th e wreath h a v i ng two p itch e s th e


.
,

f a c e mold will obviou sly be wid e r at o ne en d


tha n a t th e oth e r ; a nd i f bev el s are requir e d ,

they mu st b e set off o n the face o f each sid e of


the blo ck The width o f the fac e m old i s to b e
.

app lied o n th e tan g ent li ne ; this m a k e s it


sl i ght l y i n excess o n th e j oi n t but it is b e tt e r
,

to have a l ittl e ma r gin i n thick ne ss fo r wo rkin g .

Wher e thicknes s of stuff is a s e co n dary con si d


crati on it is p refer a ble to t a k e th e r a il out of
,

stuff which is a s th i ck as th e di a met e r of a circl e


118 ABC or T H E S T EEL SQUA R E

that will encl ose the section of ra i l ; the corners


wi ll then be l e ft comp lete .
The followin g meth od shows the least thick
ness t he rail can be cu t ou t of an d also giv es
,

w idth of fa ce m olds on the j oint S et the b eve l


.

to the bed bl ock as show n at Fig . 8 0 and apply ,

at th e s ide of the block . Draw a section o f rai l


lev el ; apply the beve l a gain touchin g the bot
,

tom corner o f th e sectio n .Th e dista n ce betwe en

F ig 8 0. Fi g . 81 .

th e marks is th e thick n ess a plumb l ine ma rked


,

on shows the width of t he fac e mo l d on the be v e l


line. Where the p itches are di ffer e nt the f ore
goi ng m ethod ha s to b e ap p lie d t o each s id e of

The be v els m ay b e also obta i ned by th e steel


squa re Tak e the wi dth of pr i s m face ( sh own
.
1 20 A B C or T H E S T EE L S Q U A R E

This i n di cates the center of the rail . Ru n l i n es


radi al from A as shown these a re the riser l i n e s .

Dr a w th e lines B C a nd C D which a r e the


,

tan gen ts D raw the di a g onal B D . To m ake


.

th e bed blocks p ro cu re a piec e o f one inch stu ff


,

t a k e i t to the width sh own at B C ; squa re on a

m ark ab out 3 i n ch e s from th e en d ( thi s is to


a llow fo r the sha n k to clear th e saw table ; th e
block i s show n a t Fi g 8 3 without th e 3 i n ch
.
-

all owa n ce ) . Tak e o n th e steel square the rise o n


ton gue a n d g oi ng on b la d e o f the strai ght i ght
of stai rs ; m ark on the inch board at to ngue ;
this is p itch of the rst ta ngent . Take th e
h e i ght at D which is o ne and a h alf ri s e rs
,
AB C or T HE S T EEL S Q U A R E 1 21

Ainches ;
1 01 , d ed u ct th e height o f the r st t an
ge n t from inches ; take the di ff e ren ce o n
the to ngu e a n d width from C to D on the blade ;
the to n gu e g ives the cut fo r th e s e co n d tan g e n t
.

Mark th e p itch o f th e rst tan ge n t o n the edge


of the s e co n d a n d cut t o this ; th e p itch o f th e
second ta nge n t giv e s th e edge cut o f the rst .

Cut a n d x to gether with str e tcher a s p re vi ous


ly d e sc rib e d .

Fig. 84 .

To get out th e f a ce mold p ro cur e a p iec e of


,

thi n stu ff . Three ply wood is exc e ll en t as thou gh


-
,

it i s liable to wa r p it does n ot sh rink pe rceptibly .

S hoot o n ed g e a n d g au ge on a ce n t e r line ; tak e


the distanc e fr om B to D ( F ig. 8 4 ) ( the hy
o t h en u se o f 6 an d 6 ) on th e b lade and the r i s e
p
at D o n th e ton gu e ; lay on th e ed ge
1 22 ABC or THE S T E EL SQ UARE

o f the board to t his . L a y off this l ength on t he


three ply at B D ( Fi g . 8 2 ) ta ke the wi dth B C

( Fig . 84
) o n the blad e rise at C on
, the tongu e ;

nd the hypothenus e a nd apply with a pair of


,

compass e s at F ig 82 with B as a center cutt i ng


.

at C Then apply at D as a center cutting


. ,

a t A Now nd the hypoth e nuse C to D ( Fig


. .

a nd apply the compa ss e s a s bef ore w i th ,

D a n d B as centers cuttin g at A and C Con


,
.

n ect up th e poi n ts where t he arcs intersect to


B a n d D ; thi s is the fac e o f th e inclined p ri s m ,

and contai n s the true sha pe o f rail . C ontinue


the tan gent line C B 3 inches or wha te v er i s
,

required for the shank and square the j oi nts of


,

the lines B and D . I n ord er to l ocate th e m aj or


axis th e horizontal trace is now required . St and
the be d block on the plan ( see Fi g Ru n .

the bla de o f th e square down until it touches the


board ; mark this and rem ove the bl ock . It will
,

be seen that the b ed block has n ot got the 3


i n ches allowed at t he b ottom but the hori z onta l

trace is as easily f ou n d wi th as without the


all owance ; a ll that is requ i re d in the form er case

b ein g to turn the blad e to B ( still keeping th e


heel at the top o f the bed bl ock ) mak e a m ark ,

where the square touches an d lay on the square


as shown at F ig . 8 3 Mark at the bla d e and
'

.
,

slid e bac k the squa r e until the tong ue t ou ches


1 24 ABC or T HE S T EEL S Q UA R E

Now run parallel l i n es off the tangent B f or


the sha n k ; this com p letes th e face mold wh i ch ,

is n ow ready fo r th e f a c e of the p la n k . Wreaths


fo r stairs with i ghts which stand at either
a cute o r obtuse an gles to each o ther m ay be set
out by the methods that have b ee n here de
scribed . The o n ly di ff e re nc e p ractic a lly i s that
, ,

th e bed bl ock is m a d e a cut e o r o b tu s e to suit

' . 8 5.
g

pl an of tangents . Th e device sh own at F ig . 85


has bee n fou n d to an sw e r e xc e lle n t l y for strik
in g out elli p ses . To mak e this p ro cur e two
,

sc rews 4 inches lo ng als o a p iece of bras s tu be


3
,

that will j ust sli p on the p lain p a rt o f th e


sc rew without shaki n g . Counter sink out the

en ds unti l the screw h e ads are ush ; cut two


p i e c e s off the tu be three sixteenths a n d le u p
-


t ru e th e s e p i e ces are best h eld by s inki ng
them with a bit i n a piece o f hardwo od . Now .

when about to strike an ellipse driv e these ,

sc rews i n wi th the collars on t o h al f m aj o r an d


AB C or T HE S T EEL S Q UAR E 1 25

min or m easured fr om the p oint of the tra m me l


,

to the i n side o f th e co l lar fo r the maj o r a n d


m
,

to the out side of the col l a r fo r the ino r . It


W lll be fou n d that if the colla r has been mad e

t ru e the trammel will sli p around the curv e


,

without c au sin g the square to slip ab out th e ,

col l a rs a cti ng as rollers .

W . T . J o n es B ois e C ity Idah o woul d li k e


, , ,
.

to k n ow o f a ready way t o frame hi p roofs and


roo fs o f irr eg ul ar o r diff e r e nt p itches with th e
s t ee l squa re i n cludin g l e n g ths and be v el s o f
,

all rafters .
A n swer : These p roblem s alo n g with ma n y
others are discus sed a n d e x p lai ne d at l e ngth i n
my l ar ge r wo r ks o n the S teel S qu are but th e ,

fo llowi ng which i s som e what co n de n s e d does to


, ,

som e ext en t cov e r M r . Jones i n qui ri e s

S u pp os e A B C D F i g . 8 6 to re p r e sent o ne
, , , , ,

en d of a hip roo f with a s p a n of 2 4 feet a n d a


1 0 foot rise
Th e sid e raft e r I D shown in t op
.

sk e tch wi ll h av e a run o f 1 2 fe et . Th e commo n


ra ft e r at th e en d o f bui l di ng I L has a run of , ,

1 6 feet with the same ris e so that the en ds and


, ,

sid e s of th e roofs hav e di ff e r en t pitches . Th e


le ngths an d cuts o f the commo n rafters are ob ~

t a i n ed a s s how n i n Fi g 8 7 b y t a ki ng 1 2 on t he
. ,
'
1 26 ABC or T H E S T EEL SQU A RE

b l ad e and 1 0 on th e ton g ue of the square a n d


me asuri ng across gi v in g the le ngth of th e Sld(
,

rafter f rom which one hal f the thickness of tin


,
-

ri d ge measure d square back fro m the plu ml


,

cut mu st be d e du cte d . The blade giv e s the f oo!


,

g. 8 6 .

cu t an d the tongue th e plumb cut . The length


o f the end ra fter i s obtained b y tak ing 1 6 on
the blade and 1 0 on the ton gue w hi ch will of
,

c ourse giv e the respe ct i ve cuts also. Th e sam e


results may be obta i n ed by appl y i n g the square
1 28 AB C OF T HE S T EEL S Q UARE

rid g e has b een deduct e d from th e side cu t Th e .


side cut is fou n d i n a s l i ght l y di ff e r en t way from
that of a r egular hi p o r v al l e y o n an o rdi n a ry
roof The co mmo n m e thod is to t a k e th e length
.

of th e hi p o n th e b la d e a nd ru n on th e to ngu e ,

but this wi l l not wo rk i n this cas e a s th e ru n


,

of th e hi p does n ot be a t an angle of 4 5 d eg ree s


a s i n o rdi n a ry roofs . The lin e B J i n Fi g 8 6 . ,

must rst be obtai n ed as shown i n F ig. 8 9


, .

Joi n t o ne edge of a board a n d squa r e u p the


l i ne B L Measu r e o ne ha l f th e width o f build
.
-

i ng i n i n ch e s ou t his li n e 1 2 i n thi s cas e and



, ,

with t he h ee l of th e square at th e p oi n t B ,

move th e squ a r e until 20 on the blade touches


th e e d ge of th e board at E . The t ongu e wi l l
th en giv e the p oint J 1 5 inch e s ; which is the
0
length 0 ac l i n e required . The n tak e thi s li ne
1
A B c or T HE S T EEL S Q U AR E 1 29

on the t ongu e an d the len gt h of the hi p on th e


bl a de F i g . 9 0 and the blade wi ll gi v e the be v e l
, ,

o f th e hi p to lie a g ai n st the rid ge . A s a ge n era l


rule hi p rafters ar e not backed b ut i f such is
, ,

desired the lines fo r backin g can be found by


s e tti ng it to the foot cut of the hi p ra fter . Make

DlAGW Ac .

Fig . 90.

0 R s quar e with S O and gau g e b ack as show n


i n th e dia g ram A . Do th e s am e on the oth e r
side usi ng th e distance T R i n st e ad o f P S
, .

Th e p oi n t 0 i s o f cou rs e at the ce n t e r of th e li ne
T P Fo r le n gths a n d b ev els o f j acks p ro
. ,

oeed as foll ows : F o r e n d of r oof and s e t 2 fe et


,

on centers t ake a b oa r d an d ap p ly th e squar e


,
1 30 AB c or THE S T EE L SQU A RE

to it as shown in F ig . 9 1 with the len gth of the


, ,

e n d rafter on the b la de and the run o f t he s i de


ra fter on the tongue . S pa ce off 2 4 6 8 and
, , ,

1 0 i n . on the tongue after m arki ng along both


bl ade an d ton gu e . The lines AA BB C C
, , , ,

DD , E E , will g i v e the length of the j ack s as ,

well as the side cut to si d e of the h ip ,

the square b eing m ov ed d own along t ongu e li ne ,

while the run o f the en d rafter on bl ad e and


i ts rise on tongu e w i ll give the seat an d plu mb
cuts . For the s ide j ack s Fi g . 9 2 giv es the
,

sa me method onl t ha t the len gth of the si de


, y
rafter i s taken on th e blad e an d the run of the
end rafter on th e t ongu e . If i t i s so des ired ,

the l e ngth of the j ac k ra fter A 1


A may be
I
1 32 A n c or T HE S T EEL S Q U AR E

The ru les an d di agrams giv en herewi th will,

ap ply to v alley as well as hi p raft e rs and may ,

be relied up on as being ac curate if cl osely


followed .

RULE S ee Fi g . 87 .

B lade .

"
1 6 gi v es run of hip .
12 gives l eng th of side
1 6 gi ve s le ngth o f en d
20 giv es length of hi p

RU LE S ee Fi g . 91

B lade .

C ommon E n d R aft er 1 9
Lo st Jack 1 5
25; 12
3d 9
2d 6
S h o rtest 3

B lad e giv e s S id e C ut of Jacks .


A B C OF T HE S T EEL S Q UAR E 1 33

RUL E See Fi g . 92.

B lade .
Commo n S id e
'
R aft e r 1 5
'
L on ge st Jack 13 8

6 th 1 1
'
5 th 9 9

4th 7
'
3d 5 10
'
2d 3
' "
l st 1 1 1
B l a d e g iv e s C ut o f Ja cks also Sh e athi ng
, .

These m atters have been discus sed at len gth .


i n trade j ou r n als a n d al so i n my lar g er vo l

umes on The Practical U s e s of the S t ee l S quar e ,

but th e fo r eg oi ng t r e atm en t o f th e subj e ct is


o n somewh a t diff er en t li ne s a n d wi l l p rove i n

t erest i n g.

Joh n Wi l b e rfo rc e To ro n to On t wa n ts to
, , ,

k n ow if a wr e ath p iec e for a sin gle p itch rai l -

w ith l e v el lan din g c a n b e s e t out with the S tee l


Squar e .

An sw e r : Y es th e p rob le m ca n b e solved a s
,

fo l lows
Se t out o n a bo a rd th e p la n of the wr ea th A
( Fi g
. Draw th e outsid e circ le an d th e
1 34 AB c or T H E S T EEL SQUARE

i n sid e an d c ente r l ine o f s a me showi ng a l so th e


,

j oints S et out the pitch off th e shank ; square


.

up the center outsid e and i n sid e li nes from the


plan on t o the pitch The thick n ess of the
wreath piece is found by drawi n g a sectio n of
rai l und e r the pitch lin e B Se ou t a gain t he
t .

half width o f t he w ell ; squar e off the p itch l i ne s


-

t o the hal f width ; t his give s m j or an d m i n or

Fi g . 94

ax es of th e ellipse a s sho wn in th e devel o p m en t


,

( Fi g . L a y th e Square o n the a xis G e.t

a l i g ht p i ece of la th drive i n a na i l a t th e h al f
,

maj or a n d o n e at the ha l f mi nor ; d e scrib e the


,

in ner ellips e line on th e pi ece of timb e r from


which th e wreath is to be formed ; p ul l out th e
n ails and re peat th e p roc ess for the center and
,

outside lines Draw th e shank an d a l so t he ot


.
p
1 36 AB c or T HE S T EEL S Q UAR E

ha nd unt i l it is d own le v el at the shank end .


Th e to p is cut rst a n d the s a w should sk i m
,

lo ng th e outsid e to p a rris givi ng a


,

swee p th a t c a nn ot be e x c elle d i n g r a d

na tio n of cu rv e Th en s e t a g au ge
.

to th e thickn e ss o f th e rai l ma rk a,

l i ne on th e i n side of the wr e ath an d ,

cut a s b e fo r e With a l itt l e p ractic e


:

a wr e ath ca n be turn e d off the b an d


sa w ready fo r moldin g . Wh en th e
sha n k is too lon g it is al ways better
,

to n ail th e b e d block on to p o f t he
wr ea th a n d cut it u p side down thu s
, ,

ge tti ng th e cu rve po rtion near th e


table Th e n th e sha n k ca n be ru n i n
.

wi t h th e b a nd saw whe n th e block i s


k n o cked off . T he fo r ego i ng i s fo r a
sin gl e p itch
-

w rea th as
used for
t a i rs with le v el l a n di ng s a n d n a rrow w e lls .

W here the rails ar e p itch e d both ways the bed ,

b lock has to b e cut a t th e doub le incl i nati on .

( S ee precedi ng a n sw e rs
.
)
I ND EX

A. B . C.

S T EE L S QUAR E T H E S T E E L S QUAR E
AND I T S U S E S .

D I V I SI ON A .
P re fa c e
I n trodu cto ry r e marks
S om e u s e fu l a dvice
Frami ng p osts g irts a n d br a c e s
, .

T e sti ng a st e e l squar e
Practic al u se s o f th e st ee l squ a r e .

S om e rul e s for roof


Oct a g o n ru l e s
L i ne s o n St eel squ a r e e x p l a i ne d .

V a ri e ti e s of squar e s
B rid ge bui l d e r s squar e
-

C r ene l a t e d squ a r e
Test di ag ram s
Deg r ee s o n th e square .

D I V I SI ON B.
In troducto ry
Slott e d fen c e
L ayi ng out stairs
ii I NDEX

Laying ou t ra fters
Meta l fen ces
F en ce a dj ust e d f or sta i r stri ngs
B race r ules and d iagra m s
R e gular an d irregular runs
R oof framing
Cuttin g rafters
Octag on raf ter bevels
H ip an d v alley rafters
Jack rafters
B ev els for h i ps v alley s an d j ack rafte rs .
,

Measuring raft
D i ff ere nt p i tches f or roofs
Some pointers i n r oof f ra m ing
Roof d iagra ms
R ise an d run of ra f ters hips an d j ac k s .
,

Cuts an d be v els f or ra fte rs


Un eq u al pitches
H i p roof with d eck
-

D I V I SI ON C .

I ntrodu c tory
D ia g ram of hip roo f-
98
To cu t j ack rafters 1 00
H opp er m i t ers 1 01

Qu e stions an d answers f or co rrespon dents . 1 02


Joints for obtuse or a cu te angles 1 02
Draw i n g circl e with sq u are . 1 00

Interese conexe