Hip Roof Framing Basics

Hip Roof Framing Basics

Just like any other type of roof, hip roof
framing starts by figuring the length and cutting a common rafter. The
common rafter will determine the height and length of the ridge board
which will establish where the hip rafters are located.


  • A simple hip roof slopes down on all four sides, tying the exterior walls together making for a sturdier building than a gable roof. Especially useful in high wind prone areas.
  • Increases overall value and appearance of the home.
  • No tall gable walls which saves on sheathing, siding, or brick.


  • More difficult to construct than a gable roof.
  • More expensive than a gable roof.

Parts of a Hip Roof

  • Common rafters are used to center the ridge board in the
    building, set the height, and locate the ends of the ridge. Commons run
    from the ridge and down to the tops of the exterior walls.
  • Ridge board is the uppermost part of the hip roof and is used to nail the common and hip rafters in place.
  • Hip rafters are nailed at a 45 degree angle to the ridge board down to the four outside corners of the building. Also used to nail the top of the jack rafters.
  • Jack rafters are nailed to the hip and slope down to the exterior walls. They have the same seat and tail cut as a common. The top plumb cut is a special cut called a compound miter.
  • Location of Hip Roof Framing Parts

    Some of your more expensive custom homes have what I call an interchange roof.

    This is the type of hip roof where the main span is one pitch and the ends of the hips are a steeper pitch.

    This makes the ridge board longer, making the building appear larger, and the roof steeper than they really are. This adds even more value to the home.

    Links to Related Carpentry Pro Framer Pages

    Hip Roof Framing to Home

    Framing a Hip Roof

    Ridge Board Length

    Basic Roof Framing

    Hip Rafter Length

    Pyramid Roof

    Dropping Hip Rafters

    Cutting Hip Rafters


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