Roof FAQs

How do I change the roof framing spacing from 16″ to 24″?

Select File > Drawing Options > Material Dimensions > Roof Options > and change the Framing Spacing accordingly.

In Roof Mode my exterior walls are being displayed, but so are my interior walls. How do I correct this?

You have defined your interior walls as bearing walls, and bearing walls are shown in Roof Mode. You should redefine your interior walls so that they do not have any bearing properties.

Is it possible to generate a “splay” on the roof edge?

Yes. Once the roof has been added, select Edit > Edit Item and pick Profile for the Roof Plane. From Roof Name, choose the desired profile. Enter in the Profile Height and Width. Repeat Edit any additional roof edges that will have the same splay.

How can I balloon frame a gable end?

Once the roof has been placed and all pitches, overhangs, etc. have been adjusted, change modes from Roof to Drawing. Edit the wall beneath the gable end of the roof and choose the "Fit Top of Wall to Roof" button. This will Rake the top of the wall in accordance with the Gable End above and automatically disable the "Roof Provides Gable End Material" selection.

How do I create a flat roof?

Edit the roof and click the item Horizontal in the Roof menu. If required, edit the Top to Fascia distance to set the roof above the top plate.

How do I create a gambrel roof?

Use Edit Item to select one of the roof edges that is to have the multiple pitches, and change its style from Hip to Double Hip. This will enable you to now modify the Pitch, Upper Pitch and the Style Distance. Style Distance is the run of the lower of the two segments of that roof edge. Once this information has been applied, select Edit> Repeat Edit and apply the same changes to the opposite parallel roof edge. Finally, use Edit Item to select the two perpendicular roof edges and change their style to Gable.

How do I draw a mansard roof?

Edit each of the roof edges, and modify the Style from Hip to Double Hip. This will enable a field for Pitch Top, thereby allowing for two pitches to be entered for that roof plane. To control the run of each pitch, edit the Distance that controls the run of the lower pitch.

How do I draw a reverse gable?

The command under Draw > Add False Gable can be used to create a Reverse gable on an existing roof. Increase the overhang by editing the two reference circles that run parallel to the main roof edge.

How do I draw the vent in a gable end?

Gable vents can be applied to roof edges in Roof mode. With the roof in place, select Edit > Edit Item and click on the Gable roof edge. Choose the desired vent from Library – Name. Enter the Vent offset which is measured from the top of the gable end wall to the top of the vent.

How do I generate a Bird’s Eye drawing?

From within Roof mode, select Draw > Bird's Eye. SoftPlan will then generate a bird's eye from the roof layout currently on the drawing. Once generated, select File > Save As to save as a SoftPlan drawing.

How do I place a gable end window?

In order to place a window in a gable end, you must first balloon frame the gable end. (See FAQ "how to balloon frame gable ends".) On a raked wall, the window offset is the measurement from the lowest of the wall's multiple plate heights, to the top of the window. (Example: If on an edit of the wall multi height there is a measurement of 8'-0" and 14'-0", the offset is from the 8' height). The direction indicator should be set to UP, which tells the window to move above the plate height rather than the usual default of going below.

If my roof reference circle is referenced to the wrong wall, can I move it?

Yes. Select Move > Adjust Item; click on the reference circle and drag it to the correct wall to reference. Click to set the reference circle down.

How do I stop the walls from protruding through the roof?

Depending on your roof pitch and overhang, you need to modify either the heel height (measurement from top of wall vertically to top of rafter) or the TOP to fascia (measurement from top of wall to bottom of fascia).

The ridge of my roof is not displaying in the proper location. How do I correct this?

Be sure that the wall heights / offsets that the reference circles are located to are correctly placed. For quick reference, change modes to Profile, which will layout all walls around the building relative to that plan's 0 baseline.

How do I show exposed rafter tails in 3D?

Exposed Rafter Tails involves several steps once the roof has been added.

1) Auto Stick frame the roof. Go to Draw, Framing Auto Stick Frame and click inside your roof. Framing will be added to the roof.
2) Erase the sub-fascia. This is board that is added and follows the perimeter of the roof. Do a Cleanup, Ctrl + C. This will extend the rafters to the edge of the roof and eliminate the gap that was left when the sub-fascia was removed.
3) Edit the roof edge and uncheck Soffit. This will show a fascia but no soffit, thereby exposing the underside of the rafter but not the end. To expose the ends as well, uncheck Fascia.
4) When you generate the 3D, select Roof Framing from the Extraction Options menu.

What are the settings for a Shed Roof?

Once the roof has been added, you will need to edit the two return sides and modify their styles to be Gable. The front of the shed remains as a Hip and it is from here that any pitch changes would be made. Finally the opposite edge to the Hip, would be classified as an Intersecting edge with a Pitch of Vertical.

What is the best way to draw a Cape Cod / Salt Box roof?

Why doesn’t my plan show up in Roof mode?

In Roof mode, only items essential to designing roofs will show up. Bearing walls and beams appear as dashed lines. Windows take the form of solid lines. You won't see non-bearing walls, because the roof doesn't reference them for support. To view these walls, you must redefine them as bearing walls in the System or Drawing Options.

After changing the heights of my walls and regenerating the elevation or 3D, the roof is no longer referencing the walls correctly. How do I fix this?

If the roof was correct prior to changing the wall heights, go to the Roof Mode and do a Cleanup (Ctrl+C). Performing a cleanup in Roof mode will regenerate the correct placement for the roof relative to the new wall heights. 

Which do I draw first, the roof or the roof framing?

You should first add the roof and modify the appropriate attributes such as pitch, heel height and overhang. Once this is set, draw the framing that will conform to the planes of the roof.