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Rafter Cuts Calculator Online

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A Rafter Cuts Calculator is an invaluable tool designed for carpenters, architects, and DIY enthusiasts engaged in roof construction. It simplifies the complex process of calculating the length of rafters needed for building a roof. By inputting the vertical (rise) and horizontal (run) distances of the roof, the calculator provides an accurate measurement of the rafter length required, ensuring that the rafters fit perfectly, thereby enhancing the structural integrity and aesthetic appeal of the roof.

Formula of Rafter Cuts Calculator

The underlying formula for calculating rafter length is:


  • = square root
  • rise = vertical distance from the top of the wall to the peak of the roof
  • run = horizontal distance from the wall to the center of the roof
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This formula is crucial as it ensures accuracy in the calculation, preventing material wastage and structural mishaps.

General Terms and Conversion Table

For those seeking quick references without diving into calculations each time, here’s a handy table of general terms and their meanings, alongside a simple conversion chart:

RafterA beam that supports the roof
RiseVertical distance from the top of the wall to the peak
RunHorizontal distance from the wall to the center of the roof
BirdsmouthA notch cut in the rafter to allow it to sit flush with the wall

Conversion Chart for Common Roof Pitches

Roof Pitch (in 12)Rise (ft)Run (ft)Rafter Length (ft)

This table serves as a quick guide for standard roof pitches, reducing the need for calculations for common scenarios.

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Example of Rafter Cuts Calculator

Consider a roof with a vertical rise of 6 feet and a horizontal run of 8 feet. To find the length of the rafter:

rafter length = √(6² + 8²) = √(36 + 64) = √100 = 10 feet

This means the rafter must be 10 feet long to span the given rise and run, ensuring a perfect fit for the roof structure.

Most Common FAQs

Q1: What if my roof has a non-standard pitch?

A1: For non-standard pitches, use the formula provided, substituting your rise and run measurements to obtain the precise rafter length.

Q3: What about the overhang; does the calculator consider this?

A3: The basic formula calculates the length from the wall to the peak. For overhangs, simply add the length of the overhang to the run before using the formula.

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