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My New Shop: Modern Materials

Since I began work on my new home and shop, I’ve been learning a lot about new materials. I didn’t want to do this job on my own—I can’t even begin to keep track of all the new instructions and methods to ensure proper installs. Even if it came out in the last five or ten years, it’s still brand new to the way our industry works. One of the most important things to me when looking for a general contractor was to find someone who stays up-to-date on modern materials.

A Note from the Publisher:


Many people have asked about my new home and shop, so we’re publishing a new series of From the Road articles. You’ll notice I’m using a lot of Katz Roadshow-sponsored materials. We choose our sponsors carefully, from among the best manufacturers in the industry, and that’s why I chose to use their products on my own home, too, some of which were donated.


In this video, Scott and I discuss windswept siding, protected and infused WindsorONE pine, ZIP System roofing, and more….


11 Responses to “My New Shop: Modern Materials”

  1. Mike Gandy

    Looking forward to future videos.. I always have enjoyed continuing education in our field. Thanks Gary keep up the good work

  2. Sonny Wiehe

    Since the goal of this blog seems to be to teach folks the proper use of new building materials and dispel some of the myths from marketing, I’m surprised to see “best practice” advice so difficult to discern from product bias in this video.

    For example, Scott Wells mentions in it that you’ve “got” to run the Typar Surround underlayment all the way up the zip roof since it’s begun over the exposed pine sheathing at the overhang. For me, this comment generates more questions than answers:

    1. Why do you have to run it all the way to the ridge of the roof?
    2.Doesn’t that unnecessarily increase the cost and defeat one of the main selling points of using Zip roof panels?
    3. Isn’t one of the main advantages of using zip roof panels that you don’t have the additional cost of material and labor (and not coincidentally, risk*) of installing a paper or synthetic underlayment before shingling?** .
    4. Why can’t you just run enough to cover the pine overhang and then Zip tape the underlayment to the Zip sheathing?
    5. Does that somehow void the zip panel warranty if the taped joint is not zip-to-zip material?
    6. Does running just one course of underlayment , perhaps, not promote enough use of the typar material when used in conjunction with zip panels in this project?

    Either way, since these materials are relatively new, it would be nice to have explained how a zip-to-typar tape condition is inherently different (particularly from a shingling or water shedding perspective) than a zip-to-zip condition? That way we would generate (at the very least) one less myth on the job site.


    *Felt or synthetic shingle underlayment takes time to install. All additional time on a roof necessarily increases a builders risk of injury. Further, when that underlayment is installed by a carpenter with limited roofing experience trying to “dry in” a roof rather than a professional roofer, that risk can only go up.

    **or is that a myth too?

    • Gary Katz

      Thanks for another one of your multi-point questions. I think. If you respond in under 1,000 words, we will all be relieved.

      The answer to all of your six questions, plus the ones in your intro and closing paragraph is simple and Scott mentioned it in the video: Zip Roof is meant to be installed on roofs with pitches that are 4/12 and over. Even though my roof is a 4/12, we felt that having to use the Surround on the overhangs AND THE EAVES (right?), we may as well do the whole roof and capture another layer of insurance. I didn’t pay for the Surround, so it was extremely inexpensive insurance.

      • Sonny Wiehe


        As usual, your implied simplicity dance around my points.

        Your overhangs (gable ends* and soffet) make up, what,—maybe 20% (+-) of the entire roof surface? Given that fact… and the fact that zip tape seems to be approved for use parallel to the roof pitch just as well as perpendicular (after all, that’s what’s entailed in full taping each zip panel seam), then it seems shorter, perpendicular runs of underlayment down the rakes would take care of all of your overhangs with a minimal amount of extra material and labor- whether it’s done with zip taped Typar** or, for that matter, Grace Industries Ice &Water shield.

        Gary, I don’t have an issue with your using extra material to capture an “extra layer of insurance” on your project if you so choose; more power to you with that luxury! However, my issue with your video (and your answer) is that your video goes out of the way to generate a myth when Scott conclusively says:

        “.. but I tell you what, we’ve got to go the whole way up the roof with it”

        That statement doesn’t imply even the slightest notion of choice—whether it involves free material or not. It clearly implies the idea that since one starts with Typar roof underlayment protection at the eave, one must continue with using it right on up to the ridge—lest it result in one knowing that if not done, as Scott says, “that [the roof] will eventually fail”. That’s baloney. In my opinion, it’s also a clearly misleading inference…and the genesis for myth. Myth building is is not a good tool for any builder whose goal is “learning a lot”. Finally, since you’ve also gone out of your way to point out you’re big on limiting words, I don’t mind recommending you consider limiting some of your own.


        * Actually, that may be right…but while you may consider yourself a mind reader, I’m not. Your gable end details are not addressed in the video–nor is your above point included in the video as you seem to think it is; right?
        ** I’m assuming this works for the manufacturer endorsed in your video because you chose not to address this as a concern in your “simple” reply.

          • Dovetail Group


            I have to agree with Sonny on the specifics of his comments though it does feel like his tone is a bit overbearing. I have recently used the ZIP panels myself in a renovation project where I had both 4/12 and 3/12 roof pitches. As I too read their installation instructions, I was somewhat uncertain of my responsibilities regarding any additional water shield protection. So I called the Tech Guys at ZIP and they told me to use Ice&Water Shield along the eves due to the the 15″ projection I had….similar to what you have. This would cover the freeze/thaw zone plus an additional 15″ to 20″ up the roof. By using Ice&Water Shield I didn’t incur the additional ZIP taping of the top edge of the Typar product which you would have needed to do if you had only done the eves yourself. Since you went all the way to the ridge, I assume you didn’t tape any of the edges you just overlapped them.

            I can’t comment on the costs of one vs the other but I can tell you ZIP tape is NOT cheap. By using an Ice&Water Shield type of product, you could in fact just do the eves and the gable overhangs and save yourself some time and money…and still had a lifetime of protection.

            I think one of things that Sonny was most frustrated by was your obvious use of a specific product….which you obviously believe in….but who is also a sponsor of this blog and your Road Shows…and this is causing you to make choices about product selection and how things are installed which may not be in the best interest of those of us who make decisions based on Best Practice AND cost. Therefore, your Teaching Videos are not always as helpful as they could be if you stuck to a more “generic” review and discussion of a given situation…..”how to deal with waterproofing gable and eve overhangs” …which would allow us to understand what the issues are and how best to cope with them. I think we can all agree there are usually multiple solutions to a given problem and we would like to hear from Gary Katz what a couple of those options might be and why you chose the option you did. Am I explaining myself clearly here? We read this blog because we think you bring good advice to us in a clear manner….but we don’t want the solutions you show to us limited by using only products which are available from your sponsors.

            Case in point is your use of WindsorOne materials. I wanted to use some of their products on this same project I mentioned but I could not get it through my local dealers as it comes from the West Coast. I would have needed to bring in too large a quantity to make it interesting to my dealer….which would not have worked for me cost wise. My point is, that if you are a bit more generic in your “issues to be aware of and how to solve them” then we can be a little more flexible on selecting products which are both available and cost effective for our projects. If you also add in “here is the product I would use….blah, blah, blah…” than I am happy to be aware of that product and might use it if it fits my needs.

            For full disclosure, I have been to one of your Road Shows and I fully agree with your practice of implementing products which you find to be “market leaders”….Typar, Festool, Stabila, etc…I use them too….but I don’t use EVERY Festool product as I just can’t justify their cost sometimes. You need companies that will support your efforts with real $$ so I understand that you will use their products whenever appropriate. But I need to be informed about problems and solution OPTIONS so I can make the final decision.

            Thanks for your effort to improve our industry. Keep up the great work!

            Jonathan Scholl
            Dovetail Group LLC

  3. Gary Katz

    I wish I had the time to write such a comprehensive article and shoot a long video program on different approaches and alternatives to weatherproofing roofs and walls when using multiple materials. Believe me, I know there are many many different approaches and alternatives; covering them all would require several articles.

    But I’m too busy to even contemplate such an exhaustive project. And that wasn’t the purpose of the article.

    I’ve been asked by a lot of carpenters at Roadshows to continue documenting what I’m doing on my home and shop. That was the purpose of the article. Using Surround was the easiest and least expensive alternative for me on my home. And it provided one more full layer of insurance without any tape.

    I had no intention of writing the type of article you and Sonny suggest. Perhaps one of you could do that. I’m sure the readers of TiC would appreciate that, too, as much as the fellows who have asked for news about my new home.


  4. Norm Yeager

    Thanks for the good information. I don’t expect a dissertation every time you introduce a new product. The basic info you give is a good introduction. Any further questions I have I can research myself. Most companies have a technical dept. for those who feel it necessary to research all the possible uses and possible scenarios. Keep up the good work.
    Norm Yeager

    • Gary Katz

      Thank you, Norm. I’m glad you appreciate the stories. Most readers know that I’m in an unusual position with manufactures, some of them are Roadshow sponsors, some are not. I’m constantly trying out new products, sometimes paying for them–like the siding on my home and the Thermory decking I’ve recently installed, and sometimes not paying for them, like the material from Huber and Typar. That certainly has an impact on how and where I use materials. I’m in a very very fortunate position and can try out almost any material I want. And I’m attempting to do just that.

  5. Paul Valerio

    Dear Gary,
    Are some of these guy’s for real? I think that they like busting your stones a little too much. I get what you’re driving at. This particular design (of your overhangs) requires the beadboard to be applied face down on the rafters for that old fashioned look from underneath. So, the dilemma is…how to protect it from the top. If you put ANY type of paper over it, the top edge of it can catch any moisture that is coming down the sheathing (for whatever reason) and end up being useless unless you either A) go all the way to the ridge or B) seal the top edge with Zip Tape. If it were my shop, I would do exactly as you did… GO TO THE TOP! Added insurance! After 30 yrs. in this business I’ve learned that it is better to overkill than not do enough. If you don’t… then shame on you.
    As to the Windsor One products: I live in the northeast and have used this product for 10 years (at least). Great for interior work or VERY protected exterior. I did everything according to spec’s (priming all cuts, no miters,etc.) and beware! This does NOT hold up to the rigors of exposed exterior use! Have to replace all of it on my own home with Boral. Have had multiple callbacks due to failure of glue joints, rot, and general failure of grain. 50% within 2 years of installation. Don’t use on fascia/rakes, window/door casing, frieze board, or water table. Soffit application or in a protected area seem to hold up. In all instances, priming was done and paint maintenance was observed. Just passing along my experiences. I suspect it has a lot to do with the South American pine that they use. Junk!
    Keep up the good work!
    Paul L. Valerio

  6. Dave


    Your videos are awesome and educational. Keep them coming. As long as you disclose your sponsors, we’re thrilled to see their products in action.


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