Building The Perfect Cabin Roof Part 4 of 5

How to install the perfect front deck rafter every time!

How about a Johnny Cash quote to top off this roof build.

I like to sit on the front porch of an old cabin I built in the woods and just listen to the birds; I like to fish in the pond and I always throw the fish back.” – Johnny Cash

It’s day #13 of the cabin build and today we’re finally finishing up those front deck rafters.

We’ll also complete the remaining exterior framing by closing in the small gable area of the living room cathedral ceiling.

The roof is a integral part of your build and requires some extra attention. Be sure to review our Ultimate Roof and Rafter Guide prior to starting your roof build. You can also quickly go back and review the entire roof build for our cabin using the following links…

If you’re brand new to our site and just landed here then you’re welcome to head back to the beginning of the cabin build here or better yet subscribe and we’ll send you a personal update every time we hit a building milestone. Plus, we’ll take you back to day #1 of our cabin project and give you the entire building process.

Front Deck Rafters

The front deck rafters are built using 14 foot 2x4s 24 inches apart. The bottoms of the rafter have a birds-mouth and are secured to the deck header beam with galvanized hurricane tires.


The upper end of the deck rafter sits on top of a purlin, which also serves as the point where the roof’s pitch changes from 45 degrees over the main cabin area to 23 degrees over the front deck.

Deck Rafters Resting on Purlin

Below, the first rafter is in place and you can begin to see the angles of the roof better.

TIP: We waited until after the roof was framed (including the ladders) to order our steel roof. The reason, because you can always order the roofing material to fit your framing, but not the other way around after you’ve built it. This also guarantees we order the proper sized steel roof widths and lengths.


Below we’ve finished putting up the OSB floor on the deck ceiling joist. This will serve as a storage/crawl space that is accessed from the loft.

NOTICE: We intentionally left one OSB piece out so that we could still hand up tools, lumber and beer without having to climb through all the rafters up top and not have to squeeze lumber through the front door opening.