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Fall/ Winter 2007/2008: Issue #6 - [Download Entire Issue #6 as a PDF]

[Download this article as a PDF]

Generation-X Slaters

generation X slaters

Slate roofing is considered to be a tradition passed on from father to son, generation to generation. For this reason, commodity roofers (as a whole) usually don't even consider slate roofing as a source of revenue or income. Also, slate has been labeled as too specialized, too expensive, too difficult, not as popular, time consuming, etc. It's just not mainstream enough for your average roofer.

Recent storms and natural disasters have forced this stereotype of slaters to change. Instead, companies are now starting to break into a market that was relatively dominated by the seniors and traditionalists. One company that has taken the market by storm is midwest based company CMR Construction & Roofing (CMR). Through hurricane Katrina and a big late spring hail storm in Indianapolis, CMR has become a premier slate installer in the midwest. According to one of the most productive slate roofing quarries in the nation, CMR was considered its major purchaser. No longer is slate roofing only for the families that have been doing this for generations, but for a new cross-over commodity breed.

A new Generation-X of slaters is emerging. Slate has helped catapult CMR into a growth explosion of about 3,000% in the last 3 years. CMR has been labeled as the 30th fastest growing company in the nation,* 3rd in the "construction" field,* and the 27th largest roofing contractor in America.** Slate has played an integral part to their success.

CMR has gained the experience to understand the properties of slate, assess its complexities, and properly execute its application. CMR believes that slate is such a beautiful and timeless material, that its coexisting partners should play the same role. Meaning that the other materials such as the valleys, flashings, underlayments, stucco, etc. (essentially the other parts of the roof) need to be just as elegant and properly installed.

CMR has gained great experience over the last few years, having been called upon to play the role of leaky slate roof problem solvers. They have had to trouble-shoot and undo the poor craftsmanship of those contractors who are less than credible and reputable. They find that most roof leaks are due to improper flashing practices and failure to replace old flashings (when doing repairs or new roofs due to degree of difficulty or lack of knowledge). CMR Construction & Roofing LLC recommends a few of the following tips:

• Replace all old flashings during installation regardless of location or difficulty.

• All copper joints should be soldered (i.e. crickets, opposing valleys, dormer shelves, and pans) instead of silicon only.

• Hang slate around copper flashings with copper wire instead of nailing through the copper and jeopardizing the integrity of the flashings.

The implementation of these slate roofing standards has allowed this Generation-X company to become a leader in an industry once dominated by the generations of traditional roofers. Slate's beauty affects everything around it. It makes the roof more elegant, the property more beautiful, and the neighborhood timeless. For CMR Construction & Roofing LLC, slate has helped them grow, thrive, and shine.


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*Inc. Magazine 2007 **RSI Magazine 2007

Top: Dyllon Marsolf of CMR Construction

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