I want to start out with this simple drawing of a standard roof truss. All the important parts are labeled so you can follow along on some of the more difficult drawing that we will need to explore. They are only difficult because I have no way to draw 3D pictures. Make note of where the top and bottom cords are located.
This drawing shows the topside of the bottom cord of the trusses. The rest is cut away so you can see the detail and placement of the various parts. The ridge line of this home would run left to right half way down the drawing.
This drawing shows the top surface of the top cord of the trusses. The bracing is nailed or screwed to the bottom surface of the top cord. This drawing is very similar to the one just above it. The nailing pattern will be the same.
This drawing shows what most web sites call "gable end bracing". While this type of bracing will help the gable end, it is of greater benefit to the roof truss system as a whole. During high winds this kind of bracing will keep all the trusses from swaying.
This drawing shows lateral truss bracing ( in red ) attached to the underside of the top cord. It also shows lateral truss bracing ( in green ) attached to the top side of the bottom cord. Also displayed is gable end / truss bracing ( in blue ). In gabled roofed homes, lateral truss bracing usually consists of 2"x4"s running the length of the roof. If you don't have them they should be installed. You should be able to do this yourself. The drawing can't show it but do this to both sides. Also this drawing only shows one end with this modification, you need to do this on all ends of your home. Nails can be used but with the heat and the limited space use screws and a good screw-gun. You'll find that a good screw-gun will be of great assistance in all the projects I'll describe.
Below is a photo of a partially constructed home. This view is looking up and out of the future garage. Please note the steel straps forming a X. These are used to strengthen the trusses and to keep them aligned during construction. Also it is during this phase of construction that there is a real danger of the roof trusses falling over during a wind storm, the strapping helps prevent this. Also note the latterial bracing and where its installed on the truss. This is also a great time to spot the hurricane anchors.
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