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    Default Vent: Syracuse v. 4'x4'?

    I appologize if this topic has been covered before. Could I get some feedback on a a Syracuse cut (between the truses ~6' long) v. a standard 4'x4' opening.

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    Quote Originally Posted by shadfly
    I appologize if this topic has been covered before. Could I get some feedback on a a Syracuse cut (between the truses ~6' long) v. a standard 4'x4' opening.
    I've never heard of it. However we usually do what we call a Coffin Cut. About 6 feet long x 3 feet wide, cut in half in the middle (looks like a Coffin) We usually cut the first half (3x3) with one side extending the full 6 foot lenth. Then we pull the 3x3 section (half the total opening) push the ceiling down...then finish the other side of it (3x3) This makes for a quick vent. We do not cut a peaked roof private dwellings. It might be done by a 2nd or 3rd due Tower Ladder if there is fire directly under it.
    When you said the Syracuse cut is between the Trusses. I assume you mean roof beams,and not actual Trusses. If you meant actual Trusses: I wouldnt be up there cutting Truss roofs.

    When cutting a flat roof dwelling (usually only on a top floor fire) Your cut should be directly over the fire room, about 8 to 10 feet from the building walls. Why? Because if its close to the edge, where the windows are, the windows can handle the venting. If you move your cut back 8 to 10 feet, you'll vent where the windows cant, and you'll probably vent the fire room, hallway (where the line is moving in) and possibly the adjoining room.
    Last edited by MattyJ; 10-30-2005 at 04:06 PM.

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    Default Syracuse cut

    Thanks MattyJ for the info. The coffin cut sounds real similar to the syracuse cut. We will make on 6' long cut as close to the roof beam as possible, we make a second 6' cut paralell to the first 6' cut. Sometimes you only need those two cuts. You can open it by hitting the center with an axe. Other times, it takes a third cut perpindicular to two 6' cuts (in the center) to open it up.

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    You guys are talking about a louver cut!

    Louver Vents

    Cutting louver vents is usually the fastest and most efficient way of opening a roof. Unlike large, square openings, in louver vents there is always a rafter in the center of the sheathing being cut so that a constant reference point is maintained with the rafters. Knowing the location and direction of rafters is critical to safe and efficient roof cutting operations.

    Basically, there are two methods that have proven effective for cutting louver vents in roofs. Both methods employ the center‑rafter principle and take advantage of the roofs construction to facilitate opening the roof. In the first and most common method, the longest cuts are made parallel to the rafters; in the other method, the longest cuts are made across the rafters.


    CUTTING PARALLEL TO THE RAFTERS

    The first of these methods involves cutting a long, rectangular center‑rafter or louver vent. This method is sometimes referred to as "cutting with the rafters." With a rafter spacing of 2 feet on center, the hole will be approximately 4 feet wide and 4 or more feet long.

    The following steps outline the procedure for cutting parallel to the rafters:

    Step 1: Make the first cut parallel to rafter "A cutting as close to the rafter as possible without cutting it.

    Step 2: If the roof is sheathed with plywood or if there are multiple layers of roof covering, make the second cut by starting at rafter "A," crossing over rafter "B" without cutting it, and stopping just short of rafter "C." (NOTE: If the roof covering is thin and if the roof is sheathed with plank sheathing, it may not be necessary to make this end cut because the sheathing provides a break at each joint.)

    Step 3: Make the third cut by starting at rafter "A," crossing over rafter "B" without cutting it, and stopping at rafter "C." (NOTE: Again, this end cut may not be necessary if you are dealing with a thin roof covering over plank sheathing.)

    Step 4: Make the fourth and final cut parallel to rafter "C," cutting as close to the rafter as possible without cutting it.

    Step 5: Either push down on the near edge of the louver, pull the far edge to fold back the sheathing, or do both.

    Step 6: if it is necessary to enlarge the hole, repeat either Steps 1, 2, and 4 or Steps 1, 3, and 4 depending on whether the original hole is enlarged to the right or to the left.

    This procedure works equally well on pitched or flat roofs, particularly in newer buildings using 2x 4‑inch trusses that are normally set at 24‑inch centers.

    CUTTING ACROSS THE RAFTERS

    The second method of louver venting, sometimes referred to as "cutting across the rafters," involves making the two longest cuts across the rafter pattern. Subsequent cuts are made parallel to the rafters but in the center between the rafters instead of adjacent to them.

    The following steps outline the procedure for the cutting‑across‑the‑rafters method:

    Step 1: If the roof is sheathed with plywood or if there are multiple layers of roof covering, start the first cut centered between rafters "A" and "B." Cut across rafters "B" and "C" without cutting them, stopping halfway between rafters "C" and "D." (NOTE: If the covering is thin and the roof is over plank sheathing, you may not need to make this cut because the sheathing provides a break at each joint.)

    Step 2: Make the second cut about 4 feet (1.2 m) long, centering it between rafters "A" and "B."

    Step 3: Make the third cut centered between rafters "B" and "C," making it the same length as the second cut.

    Step 4: Make the fourth cut centered between rafters "C" and "D," making it the same length as the second and third cuts.

    Step 5: Make the fifth and final cut in the same manner as the first cut, except make it at the opposite ends of the second, third, and fourth cuts.

    Step 6: Once all of the cuts are completed, tilt the sheathing between the cuts to open the louvers.

    NOTE: Regardless of the cutting tool used, it is generally best to complete as many cuts as possible before pulling or folding back the sheathing. This procedure will help reduce the vent group's exposure to heat and smoke during the cutting operations.

    Step 7: To enlarge the opening, repeat either Steps 1‑4 or Steps 2‑5 to widen it, or repeat Steps 1, 2, 3, and 5 to lengthen it. In either case, repeat Step 6 to tilt the louvers.
    Chris Shields
    Lieutenant / EMT
    Haz-Mat Technician
    East Syracuse Fire Dept
    Onondaga County, NY

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    Thank you for the information. I can now say that I learned something new. Thanks for the new tool in the toolbox.

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    No....I was talking about a Coffin Cut. Never heard of the louver cut. As I said, we generally dont cut peaked roof. If we do its because there is fire directly underneath it,and it is done from a Tower Ladder. It is pretty rare that we do it. As I said with a coffin cut the goal is to get the first half open as quick as possible then expand it. Our goal is to vent the fire as quickly as we can, we dont cut unless fire will be coming out. In other words...we dont cut just to vent smoke.

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    Thanks signal 99com

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    I have heard of a louvered cut, know how to do it, but doubt it will ever happen. We cut to vent fire and allow a more aggresive interior attack. As such, we make big holes, do it fast and directly over the fire room.

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