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Heavy 2×6 fascia too heavy for square-cut truss tails?

etting | Posted in General Questions on

My trusses have 2×4 top chords on a 4:12 pitch with 2′ overhangs and square-cut tails. I plan to use two 3-1/2″ #10 deck screws (with pilot holes) to attach 2×6 fascia boards to each truss tail. I live in central Arizona, so I’m not worried too much about rot, and I plan to just paint the fascia boards thoroughly and not cover them with anything else. The extra height of the fascia boards will support the ends of my steel roofing, which will rest on 2×4 strapping higher up. My local lumber yard didn’t have any kiln-dried 2x6s at 12′ or longer, so they ordered some for me. What I got were bigger than the typical modern 2×6; instead of the usual 1-1/2″ by 5-3/8″, they’re roughly 1-3/4″ x 5-5/8″. “Rough” is doubly apt, because they’re not nearly as smooth as the usual lumber, and the 5-5/8″ varies to 5-3/4″. They have a nice look and interesting texture, but I’m guessing they’re 30-40% heavier per foot than the usual kiln-dried 2×6.

My main question is whether these might be too heavy to hold onto my truss tails with two screws.

Secondarily, if I shouldn’t use them as fascia, would they be suitable for the deck of a 4×4 landing 3′ off the ground outside my front door, or would those boards need to be pressure-treated?

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  1. GBA Editor
    Martin Holladay | | #1

    You ordered rough-cut 2x6s from a sawmill. The boards are probably green (meaning they are denser than they will be once they are dry). They also haven't been planed.

    Here's what most of us do with rough-cut green lumber: We sticker it and cover it with metal roofing. (Look up "air drying lumber" on the web to find out what I mean by stickering.) After 6 months, it's much dryer and less dense.

    Then we run it through a jointer and a planer, so that the 2x6 ends up as a 1 1/2 inch x 5 1/2 inch piece of lumber.

    So you can take those steps if you want. Or, if you are in a hurry, you can find a couple of buddies to help you lift them in place, and you can secure them with long screws. That way, they'll dry in place. I imagine that the screws will work, as long as you pre-drill and use long enough screws. If I were you, I'd order some 4 1/2 inch or 5 inch long screws, though.

    The boards for your deck need to be pressure-treated (or a rot-resistant species like cedar).

  2. etting | | #2

    Many thanks, Martin. I told the guy who ordered them for me, but never saw them, that I thought they were rough-cut, but he didn't think it was possible. I'll return them, as I need fascia now, don't want it shrinking, don't want to spend extra on long screws, and can't use the boards for my landing.

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