Post Number: 1152
|Posted on Monday, November 23, 2015 - 09:13 pm: ||
Samson, Just take a hammer or piece of metal and tap the slate. The sharper the tone or ring, the denser and harder the slate. If it "thuds" it is rotten or has a crack in it.
Post Number: 2
|Posted on Monday, November 23, 2015 - 12:42 pm: ||
Here are some pictures that include the salvaged slate to be used and some broken samples of my slate. The slates are 10x20 and roughly 1/4" thick. The salvaged slate pictured is a peach bottom and seems to be a great match. I wasn't sure how to "ring" the slates to test them that way. Any thing else I should check for? The last picture is part of the roof, the dark ones were replaced years ago and are bucks I believe.
(Message edited by samson on November 23, 2015)
Post Number: 167
|Posted on Sunday, November 22, 2015 - 11:39 am: ||
Life span for a salvaged slate depends a bit on the age of the salvaged slate. It's going to be virtually impossible to find enough Cathedral Gray to re-slate an entire house unless you just get really, really lucky, because Cathedral Gray is quite uncommon. Salvaged Peach Bottoms can have quite a long life, 30 years for lower grade to over 100 years. Buckinghams should last in excess of 100 years. I've seen Buckingham that was over 100 years old that rang like it was brand new.
If you want new slate, you'd have to decide if you want it to look black or gray. If you want a good economical black slate, you can go with Del Carmen or Rathscheck (both Spanish). If you want a nicer black slate, you can go with North Country (Canadian) or Grayson (US-Virginia). For grays, you'll have to go with Vermonts, and any of the gray's that they are getting out of the ground right now will weather, so it won't keep it's gray color.
You have a variety of choices and price points. Salvaged Buckinghams are probably your best bet.
Try calling Pat Fisher at Durable Slate Cincinnati. 513-621-3455 or email email@example.com. He'll be able to point you in the right direction.
Post Number: 36
|Posted on Sunday, November 22, 2015 - 09:37 am: ||
From my own experience with using exclusively salvaged slate on my own home projects I suggest that you actually see and put your own hands on any salvaged slate you may buy. In my area (NW PA) salvaged slate seems to come up quite often although the quality varies. I have found vermont fading and unfading slate of all about the same time period with some being very soft /crumbly and unusable with others batches looking like it just came out of the quarry, besides some discoloration from the environment. I would expect that the "like new" stuff too last at least another 100 years. I would imagine that the middle of the road stuff (some light surface flaking but still nice and hard) should give at least 50-100 years but probably more if not tampered with once laid.
Some of the slate I wasted my time with looked good on its original structures but once you tried to take it off the roof it fell apart and was unusable (I believe alot of this was soft PA slate). The salvaged samples I have seen of Buckingham and peach bottom that you mentioned also looked like new slate and would be expected to last at least another generation or two but again i would want to see it in person.
As a side note the reason i like to use salvaged as opposed to new slate (besides availability and price) is that to me there are not as many of suprises for me to contend with. I dont have to worry about an unwanted changes in weathering color. Also any faults (cracks, weakspots, etc) most likely have shown themselves in the last 100 years so the "weak" slates have been weeded out. Also, I have found some other wise good slates that must have had unseen or hidden pyrite occlusions in their faces when first use. Overtime they corroded and left holes which could allow for leaks. Again, I get to caul these slates out.
Here is a blog of a homeowner who used salvaged Buckingham slate for his roof and from what I see they look almost new and should provide another century of service: http://foursquarerestoration.blogspot.com/
This is all I have to offer. The Pros on here will most likely be able to provide more.
Post Number: 1
|Posted on Saturday, November 21, 2015 - 06:14 pm: ||
This is a rather vague question, but what kind of life would salvaged catherdral grey, peach bottom, or buckingham be expected to have?
I have a house in Cincinnati with slate that was built in 1887, so the slate is coming up on 130 years. I sent Joe a sample of the slate over a year ago and he identified it as likely being a PA slate like Cathedral Grey(?). The main roof has a 12/12 pitch and the slate looks pretty good, however it has a small porch where the pitch is 6/12, this slate is showing some delamination and is usually where the main roof is accessed from. Additionally, the box gutters are removed but use to have another row of slate that created a point and hid the gutters, like a pseudo yankee gutter I think. The back porch renovation and adding back the slate detail on box gutters leaves me in a position of needing to acquire slates, new or salvaged is the question.
The reason I asked about the life of salvaged slate is because I would like to match the slate as best as I can. However, I would also like to put up slate that will last another 100+ years. I'm worried that if the main roof needs to be replaced in 20 years, I'll end up needing to replace any slate I put up now.
I'd greatly appreciate any input and will put up pictures of the roof and close up of the slate as soon I as get back to them.
Would you start using new slate or continue with a quality salvaged?