Title:
TOOL FOR REMOVING SHINGLES FROM A SKIP SHEET ROOF
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A tool for removing shingles from a roof having skip sheeting comprises one or more lifting blades attached to a shaft or alternatively to a blade plate attached to the shaft. A fulcrum bar attached to the back of the shaft, or optionally to the back of the blade plate, provides a bearing surface for rotating the tool to remove shingles and for sliding the tool along a sheeting board without lifting the tool. Some embodiments have two separate fulcrum bars for sliding the tool over fasteners protruding from a sheet board. Other embodiments have a fulcrum bar with a central slot. In some embodiments, a fulcrum bar has a length dimension selected to contact at least two adjacent sheeting boards.



Inventors:
Haight, David (Oakland, CA, US)
Application Number:
12/372667
Publication Date:
06/18/2009
Filing Date:
02/17/2009
Primary Class:
International Classes:
E04D15/00
View Patent Images:
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20070295173Fastener Holding DeviceDecember, 2007Swartz



Primary Examiner:
MEISLIN, DEBRA S
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
GREGORY SMITH & ASSOCIATES (3900 NEWPARK MALL ROAD, 3RD FLOOR, NEWARK, CA, 94560, US)
Claims:
What is claimed is:

1. A tool for removing a shingle from a roof having skip sheeting, comprising: a shaft; a fulcrum bar attached perpendicularly to said shaft; and a first lifting blade having a top surface and a back surface, wherein said back surface of said first lifting blade is attached to said fulcrum bar.

2. The tool for removing a shingle from a roof having skip sheeting of claim 1, wherein an obtuse angle is formed between said first lifting blade and said shaft.

3. The tool for removing a shingle from a roof having skip sheeting of claim 2, wherein said fulcrum bar and said top surface of said first lifting blade are separated by a vertical separation distance selected to place said first lifting blade beneath a shingle when said fulcrum bar is resting on the roof.

4. The tool for removing a shingle from a roof having skip sheeting of claim 3, wherein said first lifting blade is integrally formed with said shaft.

5. The tool for removing a shingle from a roof having skip sheeting of claim 3, further comprising a second lifting blade attached to said fulcrum bar.

6. The tool for removing a shingle from a roof having skip sheeting of claim 3, wherein said vertical separation distance has a value in a range from 0.6 inch (15.9 millimeters) to 4.0 inches (101.6 millimeters).

7. The tool for removing a shingle from a roof having skip sheeting of claim 3, wherein said obtuse angle has a value in a range from 120 degrees to 150 degrees.

8. The tool for removing a shingle from a roof having skip sheeting of claim 3, wherein said length of said fulcrum bar is greater than a separation distance between adjacent sheeting boards.

9. The tool for removing a shingle from a roof having skip sheeting of claim 5, wherein said first and second lifting blades each comprise two pieces joined by welding at said obtuse angle.

10. The tool for removing a shingle from a roof having skip sheeting of claim 5, wherein said first and second lifting blades are each made from a piece of flat stock bent to said obtuse angle.

11. The tool for removing a shingle from a roof having skip sheeting of claim 5, further comprising a handle attached at a right angle to an end of said shaft.

12. The tool for removing a shingle from a roof having skip sheeting of claim 5, wherein said fulcrum bar is a hollow cylinder.

13. A tool for removing a shingle from a sheeting board in a roof having skip sheeting, comprising: a blade plate having a top edge, a bottom edge, a front side, and a back side; a shaft attached to said top edge of said blade plate; a first lifting blade having a flat top surface, wherein said first lifting blade is attached to said bottom edge of said blade plate and an angle between said first lifting blade top surface and front side of said blade plate is an obtuse angle; and a first fulcrum bar attached to said back side of said blade plate, wherein said fulcrum bar is adapted to slide over a fastener protruding from the sheeting board.

14. The tool for removing a shingle from a sheeting board in a roof having skip sheeting of claim 13, further comprising a second lifting blade, wherein said second lifting blade is attached to said bottom edge of said blade plate and an angle between said second lifting blade and said blade plate is approximately equal to said obtuse angle.

15. The tool for removing a shingle from a sheeting board in a roof having skip sheeting of claim 14, further comprising a second fulcrum bar attached to said back side of said blade plate, wherein said first and second fulcrum bars are separated by a distance that is less than a width dimension of the sheeting board.

16. The tool for removing a shingle from a sheeting board in a roof having skip sheeting of claim 14, wherein said first and second lifting blades are integrally formed with said blade plate.

17. The tool for removing a shingle from a sheeting board in a roof having skip sheeting of claim 14, wherein said fulcrum bar is formed with a central slot having dimensions selected to allow fasteners protruding from the sheeting board to pass through the central slot when the tool is slid along a top surface of the sheeting board.

18. The tool for removing a shingle from a sheeting board in a roof having skip sheeting of claim 17, wherein said fulcrum bar has a length dimension selected to enable said fulcrum bar to be supported by two adjacent sheeting boards.

19. A method for removing shingles from a sheeting board in a roof having skip sheeting comprising: inserting a lifting blade on a shingle removal tool into a gap between two adjacent sheeting boards in the roof; positioning a fulcrum bar on the shingle removal tool above an upper surface of a sheeting board; positioning an upper surface of the lifting blade against a bottom surface of a shingle to be removed from the roof; manually applying a force against a handle of the shingle removal tool in the direction of the outer surface of the roof, causing the shingle removal tool to rotate about an axis through the fulcrum bar and causing a surface of the lifting blade to press against the bottom surface of the shingle; and increasing the amount of manual force applied against the handle of the shingle removal tool until the shingle is removed from the roof.

20. The method for removing shingles from a roof having skip sheeting of claim 18, further comprising sliding the fulcrum bar along the upper surface of a sheeting board until the lifting blade is positioned under a next shingle to be removed.

Description:

CROSS REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application is a Continuation in Part of application Ser. No. 11/890,593, filed on Aug. 7, 2007.

FIELD OF THE INVENTION

The present invention relates generally to a tool for removing shingles from a building roof and more specifically to a tool for removing shingles from a roof having skip sheeting.

BACKGROUND

Shingles on a building roof are generally attached with shingle fasteners such as nails, staples, or other removable fastening means to an underlying support layer known as sheathing or sheeting. Shingles are usually positioned on the sheeting with a portion of a shingle overlapping one or more shingles and shingle fasteners lower down the slope of the roof. One form of sheeting comprises rows of wooden sheeting boards with individual sheeting boards having a width of about four inches and a thickness of about one inch. Adjacent rows of sheeting boards are separated by a distance about the same as the width of a sheeting board. This form of sheeting, known as skip sheeting, is sometimes used in roofs having wooden shingles. Skip sheeting allows air to circulate underneath the shingles to improve drying of wet shingles.

After being exposed to wind, sunlight, temperature changes, impacts, and other stresses, shingles must eventually be removed and replaced to prevent or correct roof leaks. In roofs having skip sheeting, sometimes the shingles are removed by first removing the shingle fasteners from the row of shingles nearest the peak of the roof, then pulling up the loosened shingles to expose the next row of shingle fasteners down the slope of the roof. Removal proceeds down the slope of the roof until the last row of shingles are removed next to the lower roof edge. Sometimes a prying tool is forced under an edge of a shingle and the shingle is pushed away from the sheeting, pulling out shingle fasteners at the same time.

Several types of tools are known for removing shingles from roofs. Some tools are forced under a shingle and then cut or break a shingle fastener, thereby freeing the shingle for removal. Part of the cut or broken shingle fastener remains embedded in part of the roof. Other tools are forced between overlapping layers of singles or alternatively between a shingle and the sheeting, then rocked or twisted to separate the shingles. However, it may be very tiring to remove many shingles by repeatedly forcing a tool between tightly attached layers of shingles and sheeting and then applying sufficient force to pull out the shingle fasteners. Some tools cause a shingle to break or split during removal, resulting in additional effort to remove all the pieces. Part of a tool may catch repeatedly against nails that protrude from the surface of the sheeting board, making it difficult to slide the tool along the sheeting board without repeatedly extracting, lifting, and reinserting the tool. Furthermore, it is sometimes difficult to avoid gouging or splitting the sheeting during shingle removal, which may weaken the sheeting or make attachment of new shingles more difficult.

What is needed is a manual tool for removing shingles from roofs with skip sheeting that applies an amount of mechanical advantage to a force exerted by a person to quickly and efficiently remove a shingle, with the shingle preferably being removed in one piece, without damaging the sheeting, and without requiring the tool to be repeatedly forced between layers of shingles and sheeting. What is further needed is a tool that can slide easily over nails and other obstructions protruding from the top surface of a sheeting board.

SUMMARY

The present invention relates to a manually-operated tool to remove shingles from a roof having skip sheeting. In one embodiment, a shingle removal tool built in accord with the invention comprises a shaft, a transverse handle attached about halfway along a length of the handle to a first end of the shaft, a lifting blade attached on a back end of the lifting blade to a second end of the shaft, and a fulcrum bar attached to the shaft with a longest dimension of the fulcrum bar perpendicular to a longest dimension of the shaft. The fulcrum bar has a length greater than a distance separating adjacent rows of sheeting boards. Alternatively, a fulcrum bar has a length greater than a width of a sheeting board. A front end of the lifting blade is optionally wedge-shaped. Hand grips may optionally be installed over opposite ends of the handle. In some embodiments, a distance between a top surface of the lifting blade and an axis of the fulcrum bar is selected to position the upper surface of the lifting blade lower than a top surface of a sheeting board while the fulcrum bar is resting on the top surface of the sheeting board.

In some embodiments, the lifting blade is attached to the shaft by welding or equivalent strong attachment means. In other embodiments, the shaft and the lifting blade are formed from one piece of metal. In yet other embodiments, two lifting blades are attached to a blade plate and the blade plate is strongly attached to a handle. The lifting blades and blade plate may optionally be made as an integral unit, or the lifting blades may optionally be welded to the blade plate.

Some embodiments have one lifting blade and other embodiments have more than one lifting blade. A width of the lifting blade is chosen so that the lifting blade fits in a gap between adjacent rows of sheeting boards. For embodiments having more than one lifting blade, a separation distance between lifting blades is chosen to be larger than a width of a sheeting board. Some embodiments have a fulcrum bar that is long enough to contact more than two sheeting boards.

In some embodiments, a cross-sectional shape of the shaft and the lifting blade are approximately the same. In other embodiments, the shaft has a solid round or alternatively a hollow round cross section and the lifting blade has a rectangular cross section or other alternatively some other flattened shape. In some embodiments the shaft is straight and in other embodiments the shaft is formed with a curved surface.

In some embodiments, a lifting blade is formed from two pieces of metal joined together at an obtuse angle by welding. In other embodiments, the lifting blade is formed from a single piece of curved metal. In some embodiments having more than one lifting blade, a back surface of the lifting blade is attached to the fulcrum bar.

Embodiments of the invention are manually operated by placing a lifting blade between two adjacent rows of sheeting boards with a top surface of the lifting blade in contact with a back surface of a shingle and the fulcrum bar above the top surfaces of adjacent rows of sheeting boards. A person presses downward on the handle, causing a rotation about an axis through the fulcrum bar and thereby causing the lifting blade to push upward against the back surface of the shingle. A sufficient amount of downward pressure is applied to push the shingle and shingle fasteners away from the sheeting board. Neighboring shingles and their shingle fasteners may also loosened by a single motion of an embodiment of a shingle removal tool.

This section summarizes some features of the present embodiment. These and other features, aspects, and advantages of the embodiments of the invention will become better understood with regard to the following description and upon reference to the following drawings, wherein:

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a pictorial view of an embodiment of a shingle removal tool.

FIG. 2 is a pictorial view of the embodiment of FIG. 1 in position to remove a shingle from a roof with skip sheeting.

FIG. 3 is a side view of the embodiment of FIG. 1 showing a vertical separation distance between a fulcrum bar and a lifting blade and further showing an angle between a shaft and a lifting blade.

FIG. 4 illustrates an embodiment having a shaft and a lifting blade formed in one piece.

FIG. 5 represents a cross section of a lifting blade. In some embodiments, FIG. 5 is a cross section of a handle.

FIG. 6 represents a cross section of a handle for some embodiments.

FIG. 7 represents a cross section of a handle for some embodiments.

FIG. 8 is a pictorial view of an embodiment having two lifting blades.

FIG. 9 is a pictorial view of the embodiment of FIG. 8 in position to remove a shingle from a roof with skip sheeting.

FIG. 10 is pictorial view of a lifting blade formed in one piece with a bend.

FIG. 11 is a pictorial view looking toward the front side and left side of an example of an embodiment having a blade plate. In the example of FIG. 11, two lifting blades are attached at an obtuse angle to a blade plate and two fulcrum bars, one of which is visible in FIG. 11, are attached to the back side of the blade plate.

FIG. 12 is a pictorial view looking toward the back side and left side of the embodiment of FIG. 11, with the undersides of two lifting blades, the back side of the blade plate, and two fulcrum bars visible.

FIG. 13 is a pictorial view of an alternative embodiment with a single fulcrum bar having a central slot. The viewing direction in FIG. 13 is the same as in FIG. 12.

FIG. 14 is a pictorial view of the embodiment of FIG. 13 resting on a sheeting board with the fulcrum bar in contact with an upper surface the sheeting board. An example of a sheeting board is drawn with phantom lines. The view in FIG. 14 is toward the back side of the embodiment and toward the underside of the sheeting board.

FIG. 15 is a pictorial view of an alternative embodiment with a single fulcrum bar having a length selected for simultaneously contacting more than one sheeting board. FIG. 15 further shows an example of a hollow fulcrum bar. The view in FIG. 15 is toward the back side and left side of the embodiment.

FIG. 16 is a pictorial view of an embodiment similar to that of FIG. 15, in which the fulcrum bar is shown resting on the upper surfaces of three adjacent sheeting boards. The fulcrum bar in the example of FIG. 16 is solid, compared to the hollow fulcrum bar of FIG. 15. The view in FIG. 16 is toward the back side of the embodiment and toward the underside of the sheeting boards. Examples of three sheeting boards are shown with phantom lines.

DESCRIPTION

Embodiments of the invention include a manual tool for removing shingles from a roof. Devices built in accord with the invention are particularly suited for removing wooden shingles from a roof having skip sheeting, although shingles made from other materials may also be removed. Some of the benefits of the embodiments of the invention include, but are not limited to, rapid and efficient shingle removal from roofs having skip sheeting, shingle removal without damage to sheeting boards, generation of a shingle removal force that is proportionally greater than a force applied by a person to a handle of an embodiment, removal of more than one shingle with a single operating motion of an embodiment, and operation of embodiments of the invention by a person in a standing, crouching, or kneeling position.

In an embodiment illustrated in FIG. 1, a shingle removal tool 1 comprises a shaft 3 having a gripping portion near a first end. In some embodiments, the gripping portion is a handle 2. In other embodiments, the gripping portion may be curved, round, elliptical, or other shapes, or a portion of the shaft 3 may be adapted for secure gripping by a hand. A second end of the shaft 3 is connected to a back end of a lifting blade 4. A front end 6 of the lifting blade 4 is wedge-shaped. A fulcrum bar 5 is attached to a back side of the shaft 3. A length of the fulcrum bar 5 is at least as large as a distance from an edge of a sheeting board to an edge on an adjacent sheeting board so that the fulcrum bar 5 may be positioned above at least two top surfaces on two or more adjacent sheeting boards. In one embodiment, the fulcrum bar 5 is about nine inches (23 centimeters) long, the shaft is about 30 inches (76 centimeters) long, and the lifting blade is about 3 inches (7.6 centimeters) wide and about ten inches (25 centimeters) long. Other embodiments may be made by changing these dimensions singly or in combination.

A preferred material for the shaft 3 and the lifting blade 4 is an alloy of steel selected for resilience, strength, and suitability for joining by welding. The handle 2 and fulcrum bar 5 may optionally be made from the same alloy of steel used in the shaft 3 and lifting blade 4, or a different steel alloy may be used. A preferred method of joining the lifting blade 4 to the shaft 3, the shaft 3 to the handle 2, and the fulcrum bar 5 to the shaft 3 is welding, but other strong attachment means such as bolting may also be used.

The embodiment of FIG. 1 is shown in a position to remove a shingle from a roof having skip sheeting in FIG. 2. As shown in FIG. 2, two sheeting boards 8 are separated by a gap of about the same width as the width of a sheeting board. A shingle 9 is attached to a top surface of a first sheeting board 8 by at least one shingle fastener 10. Examples of shingle fasteners include, but are not limited to, roofing nails and staples. The sheeting boards 8, shingle 9, and shingle fasteners 10 are parts of a roof having skip sheeting. FIG. 2 shows a shingle 9 attached to a sheeting board 8 by two shingle fasteners 10, but the number and positions of shingle fasteners holding a shingle is variable. The front end 6 of the lifting blade is visible in FIG. 2, with a position of the lifting blade between the sheeting boards 8 indicated by hidden (dashed) lines. The fulcrum bar 5 rests on a top surface of adjacent sheeting boards 8.

A person manually operates the embodiment of FIG. 2 to remove the shingle 9 and the shingle fasteners 10 from the sheeting boards 8 by pressing downward on the handle 2, where “down” is a direction toward the outer surface of the roof. Alternatively, a person may press down at a convenient position on the shaft 3. A downward force on the handle 2 causes a rotation about a rotation axis through the fulcrum bar 5, causing the top surface of the lifting blade to press against a back surface of the shingle 9. A sufficient amount of force is applied to cause the shingle 9 and shingle fasteners 10 to separate from the sheeting boards 8. For manual pressure applied against the handle 2, the force applied against the shingle by the lifting blade is proportional to a separation distance between the handle and the rotation axis through the fulcrum bar divided by a separation distance between the rotation axis through the fulcrum bar and the end of the lifting blade. For the embodiment of FIG. 1, a constant of proportionality, that is, a value representing an amount of mechanical advantage, is greater than one. In other words, the force applied against the shingle is greater than the force applied to the handle of the tool. A method of choosing a length for the shaft 3 is to select a length that permits the embodiment to be used by a person in a preferred operating position, for example standing, crouching, or kneeling. Another method is to choose a length that provides a preferred amount of mechanical advantage for shingle removal.

In the embodiment of FIGS. 1 and 2, a vertical distance separates a rotational axis 11 of the fulcrum bar 5 from the top surface of the lifting blade 4. The vertical distance is also shown in FIG. 3, where the vertical distance marked “D” represents a separation between the rotational axis 11 of the fulcrum bar 5 and the top surface of the lifting blade 4. The vertical distance “D” enables the lifting blade to reach under a row of shingles between adjacent sheeting boards while the lifting blade is supported by two or more sheeting boards, thereby eliminating the need to repeatedly force an end of the lifting blade 6 between layers of shingles or between shingles and a sheeting board to accomplish shingle removal. Operation of embodiments of the invention is therefore fast and efficient and does not tire an operator as quickly as methods and tools previously known in the art. Alternative embodiments may be made with vertical distance “D” in a range from about 0.6 inch (15.9 millimeters) to about 4.0 inches (101.6 millimeters). In one embodiment having a fulcrum bar 5 with a diameter of 2.0 inches (50.8 millimeters), distance D is 1.25 inches (31.8 millimeters), corresponding to a vertical separation between the top surface of the lifting blade 4 and a bottom portion of the outside surface of the fulcrum bar 5 of 0.25 inch (6.4 millimeters).

FIG. 3 illustrates an angle “C” formed between the shaft 3 and the lifting blade 4. The magnitude of angle “C” affects the amount of clear work space needed to remove a shingle and also affects an amount of mechanical advantage by an embodiment. In alternative embodiments, angle “C” has a range from about 120 degrees to about 150 degrees. In one embodiment, angle “C” is about 135 degrees.

The handle 2 and the fulcrum bar 5 may be hollow cylinders as in FIG. 1 and FIG. 3. In other embodiments, the handle 2 and the fulcrum bar 5 may be solid cylinders. In one embodiment, a diameter of the handle 2 and a diameter of the fulcrum bar 5 are about 1 inch (25 millimeters). Alternatively, the fulcrum bar may be formed with a cross section having a distinct edge, such as a triangle, a square, or a rectangle, and an edge of the fulcrum bar acts as an axis of rotation. For a fulcrum bar comprising a distinct edge, the edge may comprise the rotation axis.

The positions of two sectional views are marked in FIG. 3. Section A-A is a section through the shaft 3. Section B-B is a section through the lifting blade 4. Some alternative examples of cross-sectional shapes at Section A-A are shown in FIGS. 5, 6, and 7. The shaft 3 may optionally be formed with other cross-sectional shapes than those illustrated in the figures. FIG. 5 shows a preferred cross-sectional shape for section B-B. A lifting blade 4 having a flattened cross-sectional shape as in FIG. 5 is particularly suited for lifting thin, fragile, cracked, or split shingles in a single motion, thereby reducing a number of operating motions and improving an efficiency of shingle removal.

In some embodiments, the shaft 3 and the lifting blade 4 are formed as one piece. An embodiment having the shaft 3 and the lifting blade 4 formed as one piece is shown in FIG. 4. The angle “C” and the vertical separation “D” are marked in FIG. 4 for comparison to FIG. 3. In one embodiment, a cross section of the shaft 3 marked as section A-A in FIG. 4 and a cross section of the lifting blade marked as section B-B is rectangular as shown in FIG. 5. In other embodiments, the shaft is round as shown in the cross sections of FIG. 6 and FIG. 7 and the lifting blade 4, formed by forging or a similar process to form a flattened shape from round material, is rectangular as in FIG. 5.

Removal of thin, brittle, split, or cracked shingles may be made easier by a shingle removal tool 1 having more than one lifting blade 4, as in FIG. 8. The lifting blades 4 are attached to a side of a fulcrum bar 5. The fulcrum bar 5 is attached to a side of a handle 3 as previously described for other embodiments. A length of the fulcrum bar 5 may be longer than a length of the fulcrum bar in embodiments having a single lifting blade. For example, a length of the fulcrum bar 5 may be about the same as a distance across three adjacent sheeting boards. A distance separating a lifting blade 4 from an adjacent lifting blade 4 is selected so that the two lifting blades 4 will fit into the two gaps between three adjacent sheeting boards 8, as shown in FIG. 9. FIG. 8 and FIG. 9 also show the handle 2 without the optional hand grips 7 from FIG. 1.

FIG. 9 shows an embodiment of a shingle removal tool 1 in a position to remove shingles 9 from adjacent sheeting boards 8. Three shingles 9 are attached to three sheeting boards 8 by pairs of shingle fasteners 10 in the example of FIG. 9. Some shingle fasteners 10 are drawn with hidden (dashed) lines to indicate they are below the topmost shingle 9. Pressing down on the handle 2 causes a rotation about the fulcrum bar 5 as previously explained. However, in the embodiment of FIG. 8 and FIG. 9, the two lifting blades cause the top two shingles 9 to be loosened in one operational motion. Neighboring shingles and shingle fasteners may also be loosened in the same operational motion.

In FIG. 8, each of the lifting blades 4 comprise an upper part and a lower part joined by welding to make a single lifting blade. In an alternate embodiment, a lifting blade is formed as a single piece with a curved edge. An embodiment of a curved lifting blade 4 is shown in FIG. 10.

It is often the case that nails or other fasteners used to attach shingles to sheeting boards remain in place after the shingles are removed. If the fasteners protrude above the top surface of a sheeting board, they can interfere with sliding the fulcrum bar of an embodiment from any of the previous examples along the surface of a sheeting board. Some embodiments therefore provide for a fulcrum bar adapted to slide smoothly along a sheeting board having protruding fasteners. For example, the embodiment of FIG. 11 and FIG. 12 has two fulcrum bars separated by a gap through which most protruding fasteners may pass without interfering with sliding the embodiment along a sheeting board. Alternatively, the embodiments of FIGS. 13-16 have a single fulcrum bar with a central slot through which protruding fasteners may pass.

In FIG. 11, an example of an embodiment in accord with the invention has a shaft 3 attached to a handle 2 and also to a blade plate 12. The shaft 3 and blade plate 12 are attached by welding, bolts, or similar strong attachment means. Alternatively, the shaft 3 and blade plate 12 are formed as an integral unit from flat stock. A left lifting blade 13 and a right lifting blade 14 are attached at an obtuse angle to the blade plate 12 on a side opposite the attachment of the shaft 3. A left fulcrum bar 15 is attached to a back surface of the blade plate 12.

The fulcrum bar 15 is shown more clearly in FIG. 12, which shows the embodiment of FIG. 11 in a view toward the back of the blade plate 12. In FIG. 12, a left fulcrum bar 15 and a right fulcrum bar 16 are strongly attached to a back surface of the blade plate 12. A left strut 17 attached to the back side of the blade plate 12 and to a side of the left fulcrum bar 15 and a right strut 18 similarly attached to the right fulcrum bar 16 provide additional reinforcement to prevent the fulcrum bars from becoming detached from the blade plate 12. Alternatively, a fulcrum bar and a strut may be replaced by a “U”-shaped channel with flanges on the open side of the “U”, with the flats of the flanges attached to the back side of the blade plate 12.

As shown in FIG. 12, the fulcrum bars (15, 16) are positioned such that an inner edge 19 of the left fulcrum bar 15 and an inner edge 20 of the right fulcrum bar 16 are separated by a distance corresponding to approximately half the width of a sheeting board, thereby providing clearance for fasteners to slide between fulcrum bars without impeding a sliding motion of the tool on a sheeting board. Since shingle fasteners are generally attached near the midline along the length of a sheeting board, fasteners remaining in the sheeting board will pass between the left and right fulcrum bars as the embodiment of FIGS. 11-12 slides along the top surface of the sheeting board. Shingles may therefore be removed quickly and easily by sliding the lifting blades under a shingle to be removed, pressing down against the handle to push the shingles away from the sheeting board, and sliding the tool along the sheeting board without lifting the tool to the next shingles to be removed.

In some embodiments, the left and right fulcrum bars of the examples of FIGS. 11-12 are replaced with a single fulcrum bar having a central slot. In the example of FIG. 13, a fulcrum bar 21 has a central slot for fastener clearance. In alternative embodiments, the central slot may have any cross-sectional shape that permits the tool to slide over fasteners protruding from the top surface of a sheeting board, for example, but not limited to, slots having rounded, square, “V”-shaped, or rectangular cross sections. A left edge of the central slot 22 and a right edge of the central slot 23 are separated by a distance corresponding to approximately half the width of a sheeting board. The embodiment of FIG. 13 is shown resting on the top surface of a sheeting board in FIG. 14, which illustrates a view toward the underside of a sheeting board 8. FIG. 14 further shows the left and right edges of the central slot on the fulcrum bar separated by a distance less than the width of the sheeting board so that the fulcrum bar rests on the sheeting board but protruding fasteners may pass through the central slot.

The fulcrum bar 21 of FIGS. 13-14 may optionally be extended in length to simultaneously contact more than one adjacent sheeting board. An example of an embodiment 1 with an extended fulcrum bar is shown in FIG. 15 and FIG. 16. In FIG. 15, an example of an extended fulcrum bar 24 is a hollow cylinder with a central slot. In FIG. 16, an example of an extended fulcrum bar 24 is a solid cylinder. Extending the fulcrum bars as shown in FIGS. 15-16 enables force applied to the tool's handle to be distributed across more than one sheeting board to reduce damage to the sheeting boards. The left and right fulcrum bars in the example of FIGS. 11-12 may optionally be extended in a comparable manner.

The present disclosure is to be taken as illustrative rather than as limiting the scope, nature, or spirit of the subject matter claimed below. Numerous modifications and variations will become apparent to those skilled in the art after studying the disclosure, including use of equivalent functional and/or structural substitutes for elements described herein, use of equivalent functional couplings for couplings described herein, or use of equivalent functional steps for steps described herein. Such insubstantial variations are to be considered within the scope of what is contemplated here. Moreover, if plural examples are given for specific means, or steps, and extrapolation between or beyond such given examples is obvious in view of the present disclosure, then the disclosure is to be deemed as effectively disclosing and thus covering at least such extrapolations.

Unless expressly stated otherwise herein, ordinary terms have their corresponding ordinary meanings within the respective contexts of their presentations, and ordinary terms of art have their corresponding regular meanings.