Roger Bisby: On the Verge of Greatness with Marley Eternit

Roger Bisby: On the Verge of Greatness with Marley Eternit

Roger Bisby has a go at installing Marley Eternit’s Universal Dry Verge System.

The days of bedding single lap roof tiles on sand and cement as the sole means of fixing are over. You heard it here first, or at least you would have if you had been reading Professional Builder 30 years ago because let’s be honest, the prediction is not new. So what has changed that now makes this a reality?

You can take your pick of reasons: Insurance companies fed up with paying out for the damage caused by falling roof tiles; the occasional injury or fatality; and the NHBC fed up with call backs and last but not least the need to align our standards with Europe.

The difference now is that we have gone from recommendation to a requirement under BS5534. The change in the standard, which came in over a year ago now calls for a mechanical fixing on the roof tiles and two fixings on the perimeter.

This includes the ridge, the hip and the verge. Various manufacturers have been developing ways of making it easier to comply with the new standard and to that end Marley Eternit has now come up with a new Universal dry verge to complement their dry ridge and hip systems.

I went up to the Marley Eternit training school in Burton-on-Trent to try out their new dry verge. I was expecting to do a day’s work but it took me no time at all to run the verge in on their training rig.

With nothing more than a few ring shanks and a screwdriver I securely fixed and weathered in the verge on both sides. It went together like a dream and held the verge tiles very securely.

The Universal verge is suitable for large and medium format tiles and even works with thin leading edge tiles as well as the more common thicker tiles. It doesn’t, however, work with pantiles. For that you need a different product.

The first step is to place a clip on top of the fascia board. This has three screws to secure it and the clip then swivels and taps into the end of the first verge section to secure the bottom edge. Before you put this on you should place a bird guard in the open hollow end.

From then on it is simply a matter of sliding each section over the tile and sliding it up so the dovetails slide in to the channels on the inside of the section. For some reason I was expecting a fight but it was very easy. Undoubtedly getting the 50mm oversail on the battens right was the key to a nice snug fit.

Each section is nailed into the end of the batten but as it is anticipated that the practice of fixing into end grain may be outlawed soon, Marley has now come up with a nifty end clip for holding the nail into the batten so that the batten can’t split under the wind load.

We know that, what we used to think of as freak weather is now becoming more commonplace, even to the point of tornadoes in the UK, so it makes sense to have roofs that will withstand the worst that nature can throw at them.

For more information on Marley’s training days click here.

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