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A roof is the covering on the uppermost part of a building. A roof

protects the building and its contents from the effects of weather.
Structures that require roofs range from a cathedral to stadium,
dwellings being the most numerous.
In most countries a roof protects primarily against rain.
Depending upon the nature of the building, the roof may also
protect against heat, sunlight, cold, snow and wind. Other types
of structure, for example, a garden conservatory, might use
roofing that protects against cold, wind and rain but admits light.
A verandah may be roofed with material that protects against
sunlight but admits the other elements.
The characteristics of a roof are dependent upon the purpose of
the building that it covers, the available roofing materials and the
local traditions of construction and wider concepts of architectural
design and practice and may also be governed by local or
national legislation.

The elements in the design of a roof are:
the material
the construction
the durability
The material of a roof may ranges from lamininated glass,
aluminium sheeting and precast concrete, AC sheets, mangalore
tiles . In many parts of the world ceramic tiles have been the
predominant roofing material for centuries.

The construction of a roof is determined by its method of

support and how the underneath space is bridged and whether or
not the roof is pitched. The pitch is the angle at which the roof
rises from its lowest to highest point. Most domestic architecture,
except in very dry regions, has roofs that are sloped, or pitched.
The pitch is partly dependent upon stylistic factors, but has more
to do with practicalities. Some types of roofing, for example
thatch, require a steep pitch in order to be waterproof and
durable.Other types of roofing, for example pantiles, are unstable
on a steeply pitched roof but provide excellent weather protection
at a relatively low angle. In regions where there is little rain, an
almost flat roof with a slight run-off provides adequate protection
against an occasional downpour.
The durability of a roof is a matter of concern because the roof is
often the least accessible part of a building for purposes of repair
and renewal, while its damage or destruction can have serious

The shape of roofs differs greatly from region to region. The
main factors which influence the shape of roofs are the climate
and the materials available for roof structure and the outer
The basic shapes of roofs are flat, skillion, gabled, hipped, arched
and domed. There are many variations on these types. Roofs
constructed of flat sections that are sloped are referred to as
pitched roofs (generally if the angle exceeds 10 degrees). [2]
Pitched roofs, including gabled, hipped and skillion roofs, make up
the greatest number of domestic roofs.

EAVES: The lower edge of the inclined roof surface of a pitched

roof is termed as eaves.
RIDGE: It is defined as the apex of the angle formed by the
termination of the inclined surface at the top of a slope.
HIP: It is a ridge formed by the intersections of two sloped surface
having an exterior angle greater than 180o.
GABLED: It is the triangular portion of the end wall of a sloped
roof formed by continuing the end wall up within the roof.
VALLEY: It is the acute angle or a gutter formed by the
intersection of two slopes in a pitched roof.
COMMOM RAFTER: These are inclined wooden members laid from
the ridge to the eaves.
PURLINS: These are horizontal members of wood or steel used to
support common rafters.
BATTEN: Small scantling which are nailed to the rafters for laying
tiles over the sloped roof.

There are two parts to a roof, its supporting structure and its
outer skin, or uppermost weatherproof layer. In a minority of
buildings, the outer layer is also a self-supporting structure.
The roof structure is generally supported upon walls, although
some building styles, for example, geodesic and A-frame, blur the
distinction between wall and roof.
1. Support
Domestic roof construction
The supporting structure of a roof usually comprises beams that
are long and of strong, fairly rigid material such as timber, and
since the mid 19th century, cast iron or steel. In countries that
use bamboo extensively, the flexibility of the material causes a
distinctive curving line to the roof, characteristic of Oriental
Timber lends itself to a great variety of roof shapes. The timber
structure can fulfil an aesthetic as well as practical function, when
left exposed to view.
With continual improvements in steel girders, these became the
major structural support for large roofs, and eventually for
ordinary houses as well. Another form of girder is the reinforced
concrete beam, in which metal rods are encased in concrete,
giving it greater strength under tension.
2. Outer layer
List of commercially available roofing material
This part of the roof shows great variation dependent upon
availability of material.
1.Asbestos, usually in bonded corrugated panels, has been used
widely in the 20th century as an inexpensive, non-flammable
roofing material with excellent insulating properties. Health and
legal issues involved in the mining and handling of asbestos
products means that it is no longer used as a new roofing

material. However, many asbestos roofs continue to exist,

particularly in South America and Asia.
2.Roofs made of cut turf (modern ones known as Green roofs,
traditional ones as sod roofs) have good insulating properties and
are increasingly encouraged as a way of "greening" the Earth.
Adobe roofs are roofs of clay, mixed with binding material such as
straw or animal hair, and plastered on lathes to form a flat or
gently sloped roof, usually in areas of low rainfall.
3.In areas where clay is plentiful, roofs of baked tiles have been
the major form of roof. The casting and firing of roof tiles is an
industry that is often associated with brickworks. While the shape
and colour of tiles was once regionally distinctive, now tiles of
many shapes and colours are produced commercially, to suit the
taste and pocketbook of the purchaser.
4.Sheet metal in the form of copper and lead has also been used
for many hundreds of years. Both are expensive but durable, the
vast copper roof of Chartres Cathedral, oxidised to a pale green
colour, having been in place for hundreds of years. Lead, which is
sometimes used for church roofs, was most commonly used as
flashing in valleys and around chimneys on domestic roofs,
particularly those of slate. Copper was used for the same purpose.
In the 19th century, iron, electroplated with zinc to improve its
resistance to rust, became a light-weight, easily-transported,
waterproofing material. Its low cost and easy application made it
the most accessible commercial roofing, world wide. Since then,
many types of metal roofing have been developed.

1. Insulation
Because the purpose of a roof is to protect people and their
possessions from climatic elements, the insulating properties of a

roof are a consideration in its structure and the choice of roofing

Some roofing materials, particularly those of natural fibrous
material, such as thatch, have excellent insulating properties. For
those that do not, extra insulation is often installed under the
outer layer. In developed countries, the majority of dwellings have
a ceiling installed under the structural members of the roof. The
purpose of a ceiling is to insulate against heat and cold, noise, dirt
and often from the droppings and lice of birds who frequently
choose roofs as nesting places.
Forms of insulation are felt or plastic sheeting, sometimes with a
reflective surface, installed directly below the tiles or other
material; synthetic foam batting laid above the ceiling and
recycled paper products and other such materials that can be
inserted or sprayed into roof cavities. So called Cool roofs are
becoming increasingly popular, and in some cases are mandated
by local codes. Cool roofs are defined as roofs with both high
reflectivity and high emissivity.
Poorly insulated roofing can suffer from problems such as the
formation of ice dams around the overhanging eaves in cold
weather, causing water from melted snow on upper parts of the
roof to penetrate the roofing material.

2. Drainage
The primary job of most roofs is to keep out water. The large area
of a roof repels a lot of water, which must be directed in some
suitable way, so that it does not cause damage or inconvenience.
Flat roof of adobe dwellings generally have a very slight slope. In
a Middle Eastern country, where the roof may be used for
recreation, it is often walled, and drainage holes must be provided
to stop water from pooling and seeping through the porous
roofing material.

Similar problems, although on a very much larger scale, confront

the builders of modern commercial properties which often have
flat roofs. Because of the very large nature of such roofs, it is
essential that the outer skin is of a highly impermeable material.
Most industrial and commercial structures have conventional
roofs of low pitch.
In general, the pitch of the roof is proportional to the amount of
precipitation. Houses in areas of low rainfall frequently have roofs
of low pitch while those in areas of high rainfall and snow, have
steep roofsThe water repelled by the roof during a rainstorm is
potentially damaging to the building that the roof protects. If it
runs down the walls, it may seep into the mortar or through
panels. If it lies around the foundations it may cause seepage to
the interior, rising damp or dry rot. For this reason most buildings
have a system in place to protect the walls of a building from
most of the roof water. Overhanging eaves are commonly
employed for this purpose. Most modern roofs and many old ones
have systems of valleys, gutters, waterspouts, waterheads and
drainpipes to remove the water from the vicinity of the building.
In many parts of the world, roofwater is collected and stored for
domestic use.
Areas prone to heavy snow benefit from a metal roof because
their smooth surfaces shed the weight of snow more easily and
resist the force of wind better than a wood shingle or a concrete
tile roof.

1. Pitched Roof
It is the most common form of roof and is generally regarded as
the cheapest alternative for covering a structure. Pitched roofs
are almost always constructed in wood or steel. Wooden pitched
roof consists of a system of joists, rafters and purlins arranged in

the form of a triangular shaped known as truss. The lower ends of

the rafter rest upon the wall plates and at their upper end they
are connected to a common ridge piece.
In pitched roof a slope of less than 1 in 3 is generally not
satisfactory from drainage point of view. In areas of heavy snow
fall steeper slopes of say 1 to 11/2 or 1:1 are provided to reduce
the incidence of snow load on the roof.

Pitched roof


Pitched roof can be divided into following types:

Coupled roof
Couple-close roof
Collar roof
Scissors roof
King-post roof truss
Queen-post roof truss

1.Lean to Roof: This is the simplest type of pitched roof

consisting of rafters sloping on one side only. At their upper
ends the rafters are nailed to the wooden wall plate, placed on
corbel which may be of stone, brick or steel. At the lower end
the rafter are notched and nailed to the wooden post plate. The

post plate consists of a timber section running parallel to the

wall and supported by posts (which may be of wood, brick or
stone) at intermediate points. Battens spaced at 15 cm centre
to centre are nailed to the inclined rafter and upon this the
covering material is laid. This type of roof is considered suitable
for a maximum span of 2.4 metres.Lean to roof is commonly
used for covering verandahs, out houses, sheds, etc.

Lean-to roof
2.Coupled Roof: Coupled roof is formed by a pair of inclined
rafters with their upper ends nailed to a common ridge piece
and their lower ends, notched and nailed to the wooden wall
plates embedded in masonry on the top of the wall on the
either end. The rafters are spaced at suitable intervals and the
battens are nailed on their top. Upon the frame work thus
prepared. Roof covering is laid. This type of construction is
considered suitable for maximum span of 3.7 metre.

Coupled roof
3.Couple-close Roof: In a coupled roof the notches provided
at the feet of the rafters prevent them from spreading. If the
span of the roof is increased or the loading on the truss is
increased gradually, it will be found that at a certain stage the

notch will be incapable of resisting the truss at the end of

rafters and the roof will collapse. Thus, to prevent this, the feet
of the rafter are jointed by a tie, which by holding them in
position, prevents them from spreading and thrusting out of the
wall. This is called a couple-closed roof. With ordinary loading
conditions this type of roof can be used for spans upto 5m. For
increased span a vertical rod is introduced between the ridge
piece and the centre of the tie. This rod is termed as king rod
and its function is to prevent tie from sagging.

Couple-close roof
4.Collar Roof: With excessive loading conditions or increased
spans the rafter of the couple closed roof tends to bend in the
middle. This tendency is overcome by fixing the tie near the
middle of the rafters. The truss formed is called collar roof.
Thus collar roof is similar to couple, closed roof with only
difference that the tie instead of being placed at feet of the
rafters is raised up. The tie in collar roof is termed as collar
beam. In type of roof a part of the roof space can be utilized, as
the ceiling can be attached to the collar beams and the
exposed faces of the rafters. This type of roof can be used for
spans varying from 4 to 5.5 metres.

Collar roof
5.Scissors Roof: As the name suggests, the roof is shaped so
as to have the appearance of scissors. It is similar in function to
collar roof.

Scissors roof
6.King Post Roof Truss: It is a form of roof truss which is
commonly used for spans varying from 5m to 9m. It consists of
a frame-work, comprising of two principal rafters, one tie-beam,
two struts and a king post. The trusses are spaced not more
than 3m centre to centre.The trusses are connected to each
other through purlins which are placed at right angles to the
sloped rafters and are secured to them through cogged joints
and cleats. The purlins also support the common rafters upon
which roof covering is laid. In order to distribute the
concentrated load due to the truss at its ends, templates or
bed blocks of stone or concrete are provided under the truss on
the supporting walls.

King-post truss
7.Queen Post Truss: For spans greater than 9m and less than
14m, queen post truss is commonly used in timber roof
construction. It may be defined as frame work consisting of two
principal rafters, two queen posts one straining beam, two
inclined struts and a straining sill. It differs from king-post truss

in having two vertical tension members called queen posts. The

heads of the queen posts are strutted apart by a horizontal
member termed as straining beam. The straining beam
receives the thrust from the head of the principal rafters and
keeps the junction stable. The queen posts have single splay
shoulders at their feet to receive the struts. The thrust from the
two struts tend to force the feet of queen posts inwards which
is combinedly resisted by the tension joint between the tie
beam and the queen post feet and the straining sill fixed
between feet of the queen posts.

Queen post truss

2. Flat Roof
A roof laid at angle of less than 10 degree to the horizontal is
known as flat roof . Flat roof may be of reinforced cement
concrete , reinforced brick work. Flat roofs are constructed in a
similar manner as the upper floors, except that the roof surface is
properly treated to protect it from the adverse effect of rain ,
snow , heat etc. Efficient water proofing and roof drainage is an
important requirement of flat roof. In addition a layer of insulating
material is laid over the roof surface to provide adequate thermal
insulation to the space below. This layer is known as terracing or
grading . In case of R.C.C. or R.B.W. roof slab provided with
terracing , a slope of 1 in 40 to 1 in 60 is considered desirable for
proper drainage of rain water in areas of moderate rain fall. The
slope may be increased , in case of flat rooofs in heavy rain fall

The slope to the roof can be given either by varying the thickness
of the terracing material or by constructing roof slab in slope or
by providing part slope in the roof slab and part in the terracing
material. In situations where thermal insulation is not essential ,
the slope for drainage of the roof is provided in d roof slab itself
and the roof surface is given adequate water proofing treatment
by using bitumen felts etc. In places where the terraced roof is to
be used for outdoor living the top surface of the terracing should
be made resistant to wear besides making provisions for efficient
water proofing and drainage for the roof.
Although flat roofs are comparatively expensive yet keeping view
their numerous advantages , they are commonly constructed
these days . The advantages and disadvantages of flat roof are
given below:

Advantages of flat roof :

1. The roof can be conveniently used as terrace for playing,
gardening or sleeping purposes.
2. It is easy to tender flat roof fire resistant.
3. It avoids the enclosure of the triangular space.
4. It has good insulating properties.
5. In this age of steel and reinforced concrete structures, the
construction of flat roof is considered more simpler and
architecturally suitable.
6. In a multi storeyed building, flat roof is considered to be the
best choice.
7. Flat roofs require lesser area of roofing material than sloped

Disadvantages of flat roof :

1. Their span is restricted and as such they cannot be used for
large spans without the introduction of intermediate coloumns
and beams.
2. Self-weight of the flat roof is considerable which makes the
construction more expensive.
3. Flat roofs are exposed to sun and are subjected to voilent
temperature changes , which may lead to cracks in the surface of
the roof.
4. The leak in a flat roof is difficult to trace and rectify.
5. Its initial cost is much more than that of a pitched roof.
6. Progress of construction of flat roof is slow as compared with
that of a pitched roof.


Roof covering is a material covering provided on the formwork of
roof structure to act as a barrier for the rain, sun, wind or other
such elements. The selection of covering material depends upon
various factors such as availability of materials, its cost,
appearance, durability etc. The various type of roof coverings
commonly adopted are :
(1) Tiles
(2) Asbestos-cement sheets
(3) Galvanised corrugated iron sheets
(4) Slates

(1) Tiles :The tiles are named according to their shape

and pattern and are manufactured in somewhat similar manner as
bricks. The commonly used tiles are; Flat pan tiles; Half round

country tiles; Mangalore tiles, Quilon and other similar tiles. Tiles
are one of the old methods of roof covering but with the
introduction of asbestos sheets, its use is declining day by day.
The method of laying of a few types of tiles are given below

(a)Flat or curved pan tiles and Half- round country

tiles : For laying the tiles, the ground work consist of
battens nailed to the common rafters of the pitched
roof. The common rafters are usually spaced 22 to 30
cm. apart and battens are fixed to the rafters at 6 cm.
centre to centre. The tiles are laid with sufficient
overlap. Ridges, hips and valleys are formed with
specially moulded tiles specially made for the purpose.
The last row of tiles formed near hips, eave or valley is
set with lime mortar. In order to avoid water leaking,
lead flashing is normally done.
(b) Mangalore and corrugated Tiles : In ordinary
works, the tiles are laid on battens but for a superior
construction they are laid on boardings, covered with
protective coat of tar or felt. Boarding is directly nailed to
the purlin and tiles are laid on batten nailed on the
boarding. Here also the ridge, the valley and hip tiles are
moulded to special shape.

(2) Asbestos cement sheets :Asbestos cement is

material obtained by the combination of cement with about 15%
of asbestos fibres. The sheets made out of this material are light,
cheap, impervious, durable and fire resisting. It does not require
any protective paint and cannot be eaten away by vermins.
Asbestos sheets are commonly adopted as a roofing material for
factories, workshops, offices, garrages, etc. These sheets are
available in 2 to 3 m. length.

Fixing of A.C. sheets

The following points should b carefully noted while fixing A.C.

Sheet should be laid with smooth side upward and the end
marked Top pointing towards the ridge.
They are usually laid with an end lap of 15cmbut this lap
can be slightly varied to suit the purling space.
The side lap for Big six and Trafford sheets consist of
half corrugation respectively.
The holes for fixing accessories must be drilled and not
punched in the crown of the corrugations.
The diameter of the hole should be 3mm greater than the
diameter of the screw or bolt to be used.
8mm diameter hook bolts, crank bolts or coach screws are
insrerted in 11 mm diameter drilled holes and screwed lightly. A
bitumen washer must be provided under G.I. flat washer with
each bolt or screw. When 10 to 12 sheets have been laid, the nuts
of the screws or bolts are screwed tight. The screws or bolts on
purlin are not screwed very tight.
Ridge capping should preferably be secured to the ridge
purling by the same kind of bolts which are used for fixing
sheeting.J bolts should be used for angle purlin and crank bolts
should be used for purlins made up of timber, rolled steel joist,
channel etc. coach screws may be used for timber purlins.
Mitre (cut) is necessary to avoid gaps where four sheets
meet at lap.
(a) In big six sheets mitre may be defined as a cut formed at the
required corner by cutting the corner of the sheet for a length of
15cm or the length of end lap whichever is more along the
vertical edge and for a width equal to 5cm or length of the side

lap whichever is more along with the horizontal edge of the

(b) In Trafford sheets, mitre may be defined as a cut formed at
the required corner by cutting the corner of the sheet for of 15cm
or the length of the end lap whichever is more along the vertical
edge for a width equal to the width of one corrugation along the
horizontal edge of the sheet.
The unsupported overhang of the sheets at the eves should
not preferably be more than 30 cms.

(3) Galvanised, Corrugated Iron Sheets :Ordinarily 22

gauge sheet are extensively used as roof covering material in
factories, workshop ,generator sheds etc.The sheets are generally
not laid at a slope flatter than one 1 in 4. These sheets are
durable, fire resistant, light in weight and require no maintenance.
The purpose of corrugating is to give the thin sheet additional
strength. Sheets are galvanized to protect them from rusting
action of weather. The sheets are laid with the end lap of not less
than 15 cm. and side lap varying from 1 n half to 2 corrugations.
The holes in the sheet crowns may be drilled or punched.

(4) Slates :The stone used for slates roof covering is

obtained from sedimentary rocks of limestone or sandstone .It is

seldom confused with the slate obtained from metamorphic

rock .Stone slates vary considerably in size, shape and weight.
They form the most durable roof covering material, but in India it
is rarely adopted. The common sizes of slates vary from to 60 cm
by 35cm to 25cm by 12cm. The thickness of the regular size
stone slate varies from 1.6 to 4.8 mm. The slate may be fixed on
the battens fixed on timber rafters, or they may be laid on
wooden boarding fixed on the roof framework. The slates are
secured to the base which may be of battens or boarding, through
nails of zinc, copper or galvanized iron.


1. Mud terrace roofing
This type of roof is extensively used in places where rainfall is
less. This is the cheapest form of roof terracing and is fairly watertight. The terracing is made with white earth mud containing large
percentage of sodium salts. The mud terrace roof commonly
constructed is described below :
The roof in this case consists of T-sections 50 mm x 50 mm x 6
mm spaced at 32 cm centre to centre. The rolled steel joists, span
along the width of the room and are spaced at suitable distance
apart. We burnt tiles measuring 30 cm x 30 cm x 5 cm. or 30 cm x
15 cm x 5 cm. are placed between the flanges of the T-sections,
and ase set in lime mortar. A 15 cm thick layer of stiff mud made
from good white earth containing large percentage of sodium
salts , is then laid over tiles. This layer is continuously beaten till

the surface becomes hard and the beater rebounds when struck
upon it . The surface is then plastered with mud cow-dung plaster
and finally finished with cement cow-dung plaster 1:4.
2. Brick jelly or MadrasTerrace roofing
It consists of a course thoroughly burnt terrace bricks 15 cm x 8
cm x 2 cm laid on edge in lime mortar 1:11/2 diagonally across
the joists of the timber roof. The bricks are immersed in water 24
hours before use and the thickness of joint is kept 10 mm. After
the bricks are completely set, a 10 cm. thick layer of brick
concrete 2:11/2 is laid over brick on edge course and beaten
down to 7.6 cm. thickness by wooden hand beaters. The beating
is continued till the beater makes no impression on the concrete
and gets readily rebound by the surface when struck upon it. The
whole surface is then cured for about a week by sprinkling lime
water. After the concrete has set, 3 courses of Madras flat tiles, 15
cm x 10 cm x 12 mm. are laid in lime mortar . The thickness of
the joints should not be broken. The joints of the top layer are left
open to afford key for the plaster.The top surface is then plastered
with 3 coats of lime mortar and finally rubbed to a polished
surface. The roof is usually laid to as lope of 1 in 36 . The slope of
the roof is given to the joists themselves and not by increasing
the thickness of terracing.

Trusses are triangular frame works, consisting of essentially
axially loaded members which are more efficient in resisting
external loads since the cross section is nearly uniformly stressed.
They are extensively used, especially to span large gaps. Trusses
are used in roofs of single storey industrial buildings, long span
floors and roofs of multistory buildings, to resist gravity loads.
Trusses are also used in walls and horizontal planes of industrial
buildings to resist lateral loads and give lateral stability.

1. Pitched roof trusses
Most common types of roof trusses are pitched roof trusses
wherein the top chord is provided with a slope in order to
facilitate natural drainage of rainwater and clearance of
dust/snow accumulation. These trusses have a greater depth at
the mid-span. Due to this even though the overall bending effect
is larger at mid-span, the chord member and web member
stresses are smaller to the mid-span and larger to the supports.
The typical span to maximum depth ratios of pitched roof trusses
are in the range of 4 to 8, the larger ratio being economical in
longer spans. Pitched roof trusses may have different
In Pratt trusses web members are arranged in such a way that
under gravity load the longer diagonal members are under
tension and the shorter vertical members experience
compression. This allows for efficient since the short members are
under compression. However, the wind uplift may cause reversal
of stresses in these members and nullify this benefit.

The converse of the Pratt is the Howe truss. This is commonly

used in light roofing so that the longer diagonals experience

tension under reversal of stresses due to wind load.

Fink trusses are used for longer spans having high pitch roof,
since the web members in such truss are sub-divided to obtain
shorter members.

Fan trusses are used when the rafter members of the roof
trusses have to be sub-divided into odd number of panels. A
combination of fink and fan can also be used to some advantage
in some specific situations requiring appropriate number of

2. Parallel chord trusses

The parallel chord trusses are used to support North Light roof
trusses in industrial buildings as well as in intermediate span
bridges. Parallel chord trusses are also used as pre-fabricated
floor joists, beams and girders in multi- storey buildings. The
advantage of parallel chord trusses is that they use webs of the
same lengths and thus reduce fabrication costs for very long

spans. Modified Warren is used with additional verticals,

introduced in order to reduce the unsupported length of
compression chord members. The saw tooth north light roofing
systems use parallel chord lattice girders to support the north
light trusses and transfer the load to the end columns.The
economical span to depth ratio of the parallel chord trusses is in
the range of 12 to 24. The total span is subdivided into a number
of panels such that the individual panel lengths are appropriate
(6m to 9 m) for the stringer beams, transferring the carriage way
load to the nodes of the trusses and the inclination of the web
members are around 45 degrees. In the case of very deep and
very shallow trusses it may become necessary to use K and
diamond patterns for web members to achieve appropriate
inclination of the web member.

3. Trapezoidal trusses
In case of very long span length pitched roof, trusses having
trapezoidal configuration, with depth at the ends are used. This
configuration reduces the axial forces in the chord members
adjacent to the supports. The secondary bending effects in these
members are also reduced. The trapezoidal configurations having
the sloping bottom chord can be economical in very long span
trusses (spans > 30 m), since they tend to reduce the web
member length and the chord members tend to have nearly
constant forces over the span length. It has been found that
bottom chord slope equal to nearly half as much as the rafter

slope tends to give close to optimum design

As already discussed trusses consume a lot less material
compared to beams to span the same length and transfer
moderate to heavy loads. However, the labour requirement for
fabrication and erection of trusses is higher and hence the
relative economy is dictated by different factors. In India these
considerations are likely to favour the trusses even more because
of the lower labour cost. In order to fully utilize the economy of
the trusses the designers should ascertain the following:
Method of fabrication and erection to be followed, facility for
shop fabrication available, transportation restrictions, field
assembly facilities.

Preferred practices and past experience.

Availability of materials and sections to be used in fabrication.

Erection technique to be followed and erection stresses.

Method of connection preferred by the contractor and client

(bolting, welding or riveting).

Choice of as rolled or fabricated sections.

Simple design with maximum repetition and minimum

inventory of material.