Installing and Restoring the World's Finest Roof
November, 2003, ISBN 09644258-15, 316 pages, 229 drawings,
361 color photos, indexed, Industry Resource Guide.
Winner of the National Roofing Contractors
Association Gold Circle Award for
excellence in the roofing industry! The second edition
is greatly expanded, updated, and revised, in full color,
with new chapters including International Slate,
International Slating Styles, Roof Inscriptions and Designs,
Recycling Slate Roofs, Chimneys, Valleys, and a general
chapter that includes tile roofs, asbestos roofs and
flat-lock copper roofs. Many new step-by-step "how-to" line
drawings have been added to this edition too, including
how to fabricate a lead sewer vent pipe flashing, how
to flash a variety of chimneys, how to replace valleys
on both slate and tile roofs, and a whole lot more!
National Roofing Contractors Association Gold Circle Award
For Excellence in the Roofing Industry.
One such award is given annually within the 4,700 member international trade association, in the "Service to the Industry" category.
Notes Book Award Category Winner! 2004:
Slate Roof Bible was the first book to grab our attention
and hold it. It's more than just a handbook. It's
a great read and a thorough reference volume in one."
Magazine Architecture Book of the Year
Excellence in Independent Publishing"
Publisher Book Awards
Digest International Self-Published Book Awards:
author's obvious love for the subject comes through
in all aspects of the book, from the text's dense
information to the scores of wonderful photos throughout
the book. The craftsmanship of the book itself
is very professional. All in all, a very good read."
What readers are saying:
"I own a Victorian
house, built in 1890, which has a slate roof. Some of the slates
were broken, some had loosened and slipped a quarter turn,
mostly along the eaves, near the bottom of the valleys, some
along the rakes and a few in the middle. I had several roofing
contractors look at the roof. Most wanted to tear off the slate
and replace it with asphalt shingles. Having owned and renovated
several buildings and having purchased and read your book "Slate
Roof Bible," I was certain my roof was repairable. I had
a roofer doing another job replacing asphalt shingles on a
house we have for sale. I asked him several times to look at
the slate roof. He kept telling me he never worked on slate
and didn't know what to do or how to go about it. My being
familiar with your book, I was sure with some instruction he
could do the job. I already owned all the necessary tools including
a ripper, slate hammer, stake, cutter, copper nails, and stainless
steel slate hooks. I also had in storage several pieces of
slate salvaged from another house. I showed the roofer the
illustrations from your book and encouraged him to give it
a try. I assured him I would take responsibility for any errors
He and his helper did most of the work from ladders except for a few places.
I warned him about the potential of bees as you advised, and of the temperature
of the slates on a hot day (August). Sure enough, there were a lot of bees,
but we were prepared for them, and by using a set of binoculars we could
see where most of them were from the ground and were sure to avoid them
during the busy time, and spray for them at dusk. This worked out well
and nobody got stung. The roofer and his helper caught on really fast and
did a wonderful job of replacing about 75 slates. The cost was about 1/20
th the cost of doing a tear off and replacing with asphalt. I am pretty
certain the slate will last maybe another 100 years if they are properly
maintained. Your book was a tremendous asset and reference to have and
I certainly recommend it to anyone who has even a mild interest in building,
construction, restoration, preservation or anything to do with buildings
in general. You have made a tremendous contribution to the preserving of
slate roofs, educating people about all facets of slate roofs, and have
an absolutely beautiful publication. I just can't say enough good about
the book. You have my permission to use my letter any way you wish to share
with others or in promoting you products."
"I want to thank
you for writing a fantastic book. I bought it a couple of years
ago when I was just starting to work for myself. One of my
old bosses had taught me a lot about slates and copper (I didn't
realize how much at the time), but I was nervous once I went
on my own. Your book really helped me in two ways: One, it
made me realize that I knew a lot more than I thought I did,
as nearly everything my old boss taught me was echoed in your
book. Two, it taught me a lot about the history of slates and
slate roofing, which I really found fascinating. Plus, some
of my customers love hearing about it too. Lastly, I make the
section in your book on ladders and safety required reading
for new employees."
"I just bought
your slate book, and I love it. You really know how to explain
"Started out to replace a couple of slates and reflash the chimney. My 110 year old chimney just came apart brick by brick. I had to build a new chimney from the roof up. The book was perfect! Chimney flashing and how to rebuild a chimney. Great book!!"
"I found your
email referenced on a web site called "Ask the Pros." I
purchased The Slate Roof Bible, and I am reading it now. I
like the book; very thorough and enjoyable to read."
"I think I bought
your book just in time because I was beginning to be swayed
by the number of contractors parading through my home telling
me they had to replace my slate roof with nice new asphalt
I purchased your book from Amazon and it has been most helpful
to me in dealing with roofers and insurance adjusters."
"I really enjoyed
your book. I purchased a home two years ago and of course we
have a slate roof in great condition with a few cracked slates
here & there."
"I recently bought
the Slate Roof Bible and I must congratulate you on a book
written out of love of the subject matter! It is an absorbing
book, and an empowering one: I have spent 6 months trying to
find someone to build dormer windows/install skylights into
my roof. I have decided to try it myself [practicing on a shed
"I recently purchased
your "Slate Roof Bible" to learn more about the roof
that covers my own home. Funny thing though, I was reading
the chapter on Peach Bottom slate (and your difficulty in finding
its origin) on a plane flying between New York and my home
of Washington, DC. As I looked out the window, we flew right
over the Peach Bottom nuclear plant (I grew up in Philadelphia
and know where it is). As we passed over, I could almost see
the dark bands on the ground where the hard stuff is still
buried. The book is a heck of a blend of technical and historic
info. I feel compelled to check out everyone's roof now."
your book last year and have about memorized it in preparing
to install a slate roof on our mountain home in southern California.
We have been planning on a staggered application of Vermont
unfading green; however, the person who will install it for
us indicated that he would be able to do an installation of
the "Spanish" type of slate that you have a picture
of on pages 46 and 47 in your book. Thanks for putting the
book together as a resouce."
"Love your book!
I didn't need to be "converted", but I've used it
repeatedly to browbeat my colleagues & clients into attempting
to work with existing slate (& the 1930's psuedo-slate)
roofs instead of demolishing them. It can be a lonely world
in the field of preservation (when I do my best work it's invisible...),
your book brings a little more light and camaraderie into it.
One person advocating is "opinion," somehow when
it's published and referenced it becomes harder to ignore.
So, thank you for your contribution to the field."
you could earn a doctorate in slate roof, this is probably
the only book you'd need."
Boston Sunday Globe: Jenkins
tells his tale with pizazz and rollicking humor, offering anecdote
after anecdote about what people do, and do not do, to their
July 1998: The Slate Roof Bible is a fine book,
filled with fascinating information about slate: its history,
the industry, and the way to work with it properly....Ive
been working with slate for a long time; still, I learned
from this book some valuable hints and techniques that Ive
been able to put into practice."
Record (Philadelphia): Five years of meticulous
research, thousands of miles traveled to slate quarries all
over the world, particularly Wales, has produced The Slate
Roof Bible - and a surprise. This book, potentially tedious
reading, is instead a delight. Full of history, lore, and
useful advice, Jenkins has written a fascinating book, spiced
it with humor and warmed it with his own passion for the
Magazine Information Service (England): "The Slate
Roof Bible gives a concise history of the slate industry
on both sides of the Atlantic, and the types and colours
of slates to be found. Although the author is American, he
is descended from Welsh émigérs who left with
the collapse of the Welsh slate industry around the turn
of the century, and this is reflected in the early chapters.
The later chapters cover in some depth the design, installation,
and maintenance of slate roofs. Also covered are tools, safe
working practices, and important details on chimneys, flashings
and gutters. This is well done, with clear illustrations
and photos - an excellent example of how to produce a practical
RCI (Roof Consultants
Institute) Interface, September, 2001: With over
30 years experience working with slate roofs, Joseph Jenkins
has written a book so comprehensive in both historical and
technical information that it is a definite must-have for
any roof consultants library. Rarely does one read
a book expressing such personal enthusiasm and technical
knowledge as that written by Mr. Jenkins. He masterfully
blends technical and historical information with personal
anecdotes in a style of writing that presents a book that
is simply enjoyable reading. For those with no experience
in slate roofing (or even for those with experience), this
book will develop in the reader an appreciation and understanding
of roofing slate and slate roofs. Jenkins has provided the
roofing community with a definitive, single-source manual
for slate roofing. Should a question arise concerning a slate
roofing project, this book will undoubtedly provide the answer.