This project covers installing siding shingles.
Cedar shingles take more time to install than most other types of siding, but they create a richly textured look. Shingles can be installed only if the sheathing is boards, plywood, or OSB.
Shingles should be installed to provide triple coverage, with three layers of shingles covering the wall. To achieve this, the exposures should be slightly less than one-third the length of the shingle. For example, in these pages 16-inch-long shingles are installed with 5-inch exposures.
You could first install outside corner trim made of 1X boards and then butt the shingles up to the trim, but a woven corner is more attractive. A woven inside corner is much more difficult to achieve, so the usual practice is to install inside corner trim prior to shingling.
Because shingles can swell slightly, it is sometimes recommended that you provide 1/8-inch gaps between the shingles. However, as long as the shingles are not completely dried out, they will shrink slightly after installation, so gapping is usually not needed. Check with your supplier to be sure.
With a helper, a day for 400 square feet
Staple gun or hammer, circular saw, tape measure, Surform tool, block plane, chalk line, drill, flat pry bar, level, story pole, caulking gun, utility knife, T-bevel, tin snips, ladders and/or scaffolding
Basic carpentry skills
Cover sheathing with building wrap; install trim boards and flashings.
Wood shingles, cedar wood trim, stainless-steel or galvanized nails or staples, caulk, primer and paint or sealer
Install inside corner trim pieces. These should not be too visible but must be wide enough to provide room for caulking after the shingles are installed. A 1X1 board ripped from 5/4 cedar decking is often the ideal size. Hold up several layers of shingles to make sure the trim is thick enough.
Build up the corners. The bottom course (which is on top of the starter course) may be anywhere from 1 to 4 inches above the starter course, depending on your layout. To maintain correct exposures use a homemade exposure guide. Drive nails or staples about 1 inch above the exposure so they will be covered. Also check your layout marks every few courses. Trim and plane a corner board before you install the next course.
Once you have built up the corners by about 10 courses, snap a chalk line to mark the bottom of the next course. Attach vertical pieces to a long, straight guide and attach to the wall as shown. Place shingles on the guide board and fasten them, offsetting joints by at least 1-1/2 inches.
Turn off the water and remove a hose spigot. Use a drill and a hole saw to cut a neat hole in the shingle. The hole should be large enough that there is at least a 1/4-inch gap between the pipe and the shingle to avoid damage from condensation. Caulk the gap before replacing the spigot.