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Rooftop Cupolas Rules and Guidelines

Cupola Rules for Placement on roof lines:

Rule 1: Normal placement of a cupola on a roof line is 1” of cupola for 1 ½” feet of unbroken roof line. Please remember that this is only a rule – not a law and every customer is different. Using this guideline rule, a 24’ roof line will give you a size of 30” for your new cupola. This look will give you a majestic look for your new cupola.

Rule 2: Second Rule is another guideline which is 1” of cupola per 1’ of roof line which means that on a 26-foot shed the customer will choose a 26” cupola. Please remember that this rule is the smallest you would want to choose from, or the cupola can look a bit tiny on the ridge. Because of this you may not be happy with this guideline since the cupola will blend with the roof line and not be as majestic as rule 1.

Rule 3: The higher up you go, the larger size you will need to add to your cupola. Please think of a hot air balloon. When down on the ground they are huge but as soon as you let them go, they get small quickly. This will apply to cupolas too. For each story that you go up in the air you will want to add one size larger to your cupola. Example. If you have a two story garage that you wish put your cupola on and the rule reads that you will want the 30” cupola – this is when you need to jump to the next larger size of the 36” cupola or the cupola will look too small. If the garage is a three story, then you will add two sizes to the cupola and you will pick the 42” size cupola.

Rule 4: This is a fun rule for multiple cupola placement on a large roof line. On this rule you will be attempting to break up a 120-foot roofline and the width will be 40” wide. Since cupolas are breaking up the roof line you can now go back to rule 2 for a simple plan. On a 120-foot roof line the smallest you would want to go would be two big 60” cupolas or you can do three or even four cupolas across the entire roofline. For example you would do 4 30” cupolas or even change it up with a large 48” cupola in the middle and put a nice 36” cupola on either side of the 48” cupola to give a more majestic look. In this rule you really cannot go wrong – you can do the mix and match for the cupolas. Add so amazing weathervanes and you will be very pleased.

Rule 5: Just want a smallish low-cost cupola to hold my big weathervane. This rule is popular with people on a low budget and they want the weathervane more then the cupola but do not wish to use roof mounting hardware. We always tell the customer that their cupola will look small, but they do not seem to care and end up very pleased with the outcome. Again, these rules for the cupola placement are only guidelines and in the end the customer is always right since they are the ones that get to see the final cupola placement every day.


Please note we are working on new cupola on roof line drawings to add to this section.

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