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3 Tools you should invest in when installing and maintaining a slate roof

Posted By On 8 Feb 2018

When it comes to installing a slate roof or maintaining one, regular tools won’t do the job.  The three tools you will need are; slate hammer, slate cutter and slate ripper.  Just like slate has been around for a very long time, these tools have remained unchanged over the years.

The slate hammer is a multi-functional tool with a pointed punch end, nail pulling claw, cutting edge on the beveled handle neck in addition to hitting nails and installing slate repair hooks.  With proper care, the slate hammer will last a lifetime. Note, best not to punch slates thicker than ½” as it will dull the point.  Made of 20 oz forged tool steel with leather handle, is a heavier hammer which is needed for hitting the ripper when removing slate.

Slate Hammer specially designed to punch slate, cut slate and hammer in copper nails and repair hooks

Slate Hammer 

The slate cutter which is similar to a paper cutter crushes the slate leaving a chamfered edge.  The slate is always cut from the back and the slate cutter can make convex, concave and straight cuts.  There is a nail hole punch on the handle which is also punched from the back of the slate to create a countersunk hole on the face of the slate.  Weighing 5 Lbs with hardened steel blade and punch the overall length is 25” and the cutting blade length is 4”.

Heavy Duty Slate Trimmer
Heavy Duty Slate Trimmer

The slate ripper made of 3 Lb carbon steel construction with 24” taper ground blade has a reinforced handle to withstand the strikes of a harder hammer.  The slate ripper, used for repairs, slides up under a damaged or broken slate and the sharp curved end is designed to hook onto the nail shaft to remove the nail.

Slate tool to remove roofing slate and replace with new slates

In addition to these three tools most slate roofers will have tape measures, chalk lines, leather gloves, repair hooks, copper nails in their tool belt.

For more information on our slate tools and accessories please visit our website.


Sheena Owen

Sheena Owen began working for North Country Slate on October 12, 1999. As the Sales Coordinator, Sheena’s day to day duties include providing customer service, new business development, inside sales, handling all cross-border customs issues/documentation, arranging shipments, health and safety representation and social media marketing.

Sheena graduated from the University of Guelph in 1992 with a BA in English and Drama and in 1995 graduated with a Diploma in Radio and Television Broadcasting from Centennial College. Sheena’s first job was the Producer’s Assistant for TV shows including Robocop, F/X The Series and Nikita. She went on to becoming an Assistant Manager at Eddie Bauer. In her spare time, Sheena enjoys traveling, gardening, volunteering at her local soccer club and cheering on her kids at their sporting events.

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