This was a neat carpentry project we completed in the spring of 2020. The client recently had to replace the roof of their home with new shingles, and the old cupola was removed and stored until this work was completed. Cupolas were originally installed on barn roofs many years ago, as a means of clearing the hot air at the top of a barn, thereby promoting better air circulation throughout the building. When properly constructed, of proper scale and materials, they are an exceptionally beautiful finial to a home of the correct vintage and neighbourhood.

The Challenge:

The original cupola had some significant deterioration on the south side due to moisture accumulation from snow buildup. Below is a picture of the cupola before we started:

original cupola standing up

Half of the shingles were missing, and the lower portion (in front) was significantly rotted due to excess moisture and overall age.

original cupola

Construction Steps:

It was necessary to sand down and remove the flaking paint, as well as rebuild the one (1) side with the water damage. The unit was then primed and painted with an exterior paint:

cupola painted

Next, the unit was taken to a Coppersmith to have a copper roof installed to match the existing weathervane:

copper roof on cupola

The final step was to lift the unit into place, using an aerial lift:

cupola aerial lifted

The finished job with the cupola installed on the garage peak. The weathervane was originally manufactured in Maine, USA, and was a gift to this client from a family friend. The new copper roof will gradually weather to the same colouration as the weathervane over time.

cupola from the ground

Special thanks to all those individuals who contributed their abundant skills and experience to this successful project, including Mel Radake, Darryl Smith, AJ, and Al.