Thatching

Materials

Water Reed

Imported from reliable trusted sources across Europe, including Turkey, Hungary, Poland and Austria to name a few and now also Chinese reed is available and is a very good material.

 

I individually select the bales of reed to ensure it is of the quality and size required for your roof and has the properties I need to be able to overcome any features on your project.

Combed Wheat Reed (Devon Reed)

Locally grown in Devon and Somerset using old traditional varieties like N59, Maris Widgeon, Red Standard, Victor and Huntsmen. Hybrids like Triticale which is a cross between wheat and rye.

Fixings

Spars

These are made from hazel and are either twisted into a peg to fix the main body of the roof on or hold the ridge down, or straight, which form the pattern work on the ridge.

Screw Fixings

These are a torque head screw with two stainless steel wires connected which are screwed into the timber work and then tightened around a horizontal fixing.

Crooks

These are hammered into the rafters and again fixing around a horizontal bar on top of the reed.

Ridging

The ridge is the very top part of the roof, which is probably the most important. Although normally highly decorated its job is to protect the last layer of thatch and fixings of the roof. When the ridge wears out the fixings below get damaged so it is important to re-ridge before it gets to this stage.

Types of ridge

Block ridge – This type of ridge stands proud of the roof with either a ‘V’, a scallop, both, a straight edge cut into the ridge or whichever pattern design you choose, topped with the elaborate stick work of crosses in between the horizontal ledges.

 

Wrap over ridge – Sits flush with the main roof and has two layers of reed wrapping directly over the top of the apex of the roof, thus capping it off. Finishing with horizontal ledges and cross sticks (This in my opinion is the best type of ridge).

 

Butt up ridge – This is two layers of reed butted tightly against each other at the top, sealing the ridge and topped with the same ledgers and cross sticks.

 

Rope ridge – this is generally an extra onto the wheat flush ridge, an elaborate twist of wheat along the apex looking like a twisted rope.

All ridges are wired as standard with a good width and gauge of wire to cover all stick work. Ridges tend to last 8-10 years with a block or wrap, tending to be better than a butt up.