Parapet coping

It is time to finish our never ending roof project with the crowning of the parapet. This coronation did not involve gemstones or precious metals, just a simple steel coping.

I had the coping manufactured by a local roofing supply company to fit the dimensions of our parapet. The one thing I had not manufactured were the turns or corners. Those I fit myself on-site.

I slipped each piece of coping over the cleats on the outside of the parapet while placing it, and made sure that the ends of each coping butt up against each other. On the inside of the parapet, I fastened the coping to the nailer about every 24 inches.

That was the easy part. The tedious part was to cover the seams between each coping section.

The roofing supply company supplied me with connectors that have the same profile as the coping itself, but are just a fraction larger. That way I could fit the connector over each seam. I first cleaned the coping and connector with rubbing alcohol. I then laid down a layer of high end silicone sealant around the seam, placed the connector on top, and carefully caulked it in on both ends.

Taking a look at the whole parapet assembly, we have the coping cleats on the outside, which hold the steel coping. On the inside we have the coping nailer, to which we fastened the coping, and the insulation and the cladding, to protect the roofing system.

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About Marcus de la fleur

Marcus is a Registered Landscape Architect with a horticultural degree from the School of Horticulture at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, and a Masters in Landscape Architecture from the University of Sheffield, UK. He developed a landscape based sustainable pilot project at 168 Elm Ave. in 2002, and has expanded his skill set to building science. Starting in 2009, Marcus applied the newly acquired expertise to the deep energy retrofit of his 100+ year old home in Chicago.

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