Pergola Rafter Tails

What are pergola rafter tails? They are the bits you can see sticking out of the end of the rafters on the top of the pergola. You can see a curved rafter tail design in the photo below.

The Design Templates

It's great to have your own individual style, and the pergola end design templates will help you to achieve a truly individual look for your pergola.

There is one plain design and seventeen other pergola rafter tails to choose from, which have curved edges and classy lines!

Included are designs for both 6" and 4" deep rafters.

All you have to do is download the file, print off the design you like, copy it onto card and mark it on the end of your rafters.

Simple - yet very effective.

"Built our pergola before we found your site...would have been very helpful. But love the templates for the Rafter Tails! Using Design #5.Thanks so much."

California, United States.

Curve Appeal

There are 18 pergola rafter tails here to choose from, ready for you to use. All you do is simply place the template onto your rafter end, draw the outline and then cut with a saw. Easy!

Copyright image: Pergola rafter tail end design.

Using the Rafter Tail Templates

The templates show how to cut the notches for rafter tails that sit flush with one another. This is what they look like. To achieve this style, the notches are cut to half way.

Copyright image: Pergola rafter design - flush fitting.

Another type of rafter is the raised rafter. It gives a really great effect. The notches are cut part way (at 1" instead of the 2" halfway mark) in order to make the top rafter sit slightly higher than the supporting rafter.

Copyright image: Pergola rafter design - raised.

The third rafter style is a very easy way to build a pergola: no notching required! The rafters are un-notched so that they sit fully on top of the supporting rafter.

Copyright image: Pergola rafter design - unnotched.

These modifications mean that you can make significant style changes to your pergola, not only with the different pergola rafter tails, but also in the way that the rafters are fixed together.

Choose which style you would like. Mark the rafter tail and notches with your template, and you are ready to go!

View the Templates

You will need Adobe Reader (the latest version is recommended) installed on your computer in order to open and read this file. It's a simlpe process and it's free! Many website use it now so it will come in handy for the future.

You can get Adobe Reader here (a new window will open so you can download without leaving this page).

If you want to open the file in your browser window, you can just click on the link.

However if you want to download the file to view later, then right click on the link and choose "Save Target As" or "Save File As." Then select where you want to save the file on your hard drive.

Once you have saved the file, locate where you saved it, and double click to open.

In order to print, open the downloaded file, and select the "Print" option from your file menu.

Tools You Will Need

Copyright image: Building a pergola - notching out.

All you need to cut the straight rafter tail ends is a hand saw.

To cut the around the curved template marks you will need a jigsaw and a workbench. If you don't have these or a friend that can lend them to you, you can buy one online by following the links below:



Downloading the Templates

It's easy to do.  Just fill in your name and email address in the form below and you will be able to download the 18 Free Rafter Tail Templates immediately.

Check your inbox for the email that contains the download link and password.  

If you can't find it, please check your junk/spam folder. 

Copyright image: Pergola climbing plants: a beautiful pink climbing rose growing over a pergola trellis.

"I did look at design tails and I used some of the dimensions. The information was excellent. This is a really useful site and has lots of information within it. Some of the links are also handy too. Thank you!"

Buckinghamshire, United Kingdom.

Subscribe to 'Love Gardening' and Get Your Free Plans Now!

All the free plans are packaged together, so you will have access to: 

  • The Main Pergola Plans
  • Both Simple Pergola Designs
  • 18 Free Rafter Tail Templates
  • The Raised Bed Plans to use as a simple pergola planter.
  • 'Love Gardening!', my ezine publication, which keeps you informed of offers and exclusive voucher codes on a whole range of gardening products, updates to the website, hints and tips on gardening, landscaping, garden design and makeovers, fact, all things to make our gardens fantastic places to relax and unwind!

Here's to building the garden of your dreams...

Download Now

E-mail Address
First Name

Don't worry — your e-mail address is totally secure.
I promise to use it only to send you Love Gardening.

home | pergola rafter tails | all pergola plans | adapting the plans | climbing plants

Enjoy this page? Share it with others. Here's how...

Would you prefer to share this page with others by linking to it?

  1. Click on the HTML link code below.
  2. Copy and paste it, adding a note of your own, into your blog, a Web page, forums, a blog comment, your Facebook account, or anywhere that someone would find this page valuable.

 Advertising Links

This page may contain advertising links earning a small commission, at no extra cost to you. It is my hope these links will help you to make informed and creative choices.   

Love Gardening! Ezine

Join the 'Love Gardening!' Ezine and receive garden and landscaping tips, exclusive voucher codes and updates to the website.  More...

E-mail Address
First Name

Don't worry — your e-mail address is totally secure.
I promise to use it only to send you Love Gardening.

Recently Released

Copyright image: the hexagonal pergola with a pitched roof and kingpin.

Pitched Roof Hexagonal Pergola 

Pergola Plans

Copyright image: how to build a DIY pergola from the simple pergola plans.  Design 2.

Free Simple Pergola Plans

Copyright image: Attached lean-to pergola plans.

Attached Lean-to Pergola

Copyright image: Raised bed plans that can be used as a pergola planter.

Free Raised Bed Plans

Copyright image: Corner pergola plans.

Corner Pergola

Copyright image: Hexagonal pergola plans.

Hexagonal Pergola

Copyright image: Asian pergola plans.

Asian Pergola

Copyright image: A beautiful arbour with seat, trellis and curved rafters.

Seated Arbour

"The plans were great, very concise, easy to follow and I couldn't have managed without them!" T.

“Well done for a really useful site!” Mike.

Love the templates for the Rafter Tails! Using Design #5. Thanks so much." Laura.

"I love your website! Your entire site is incredible. I was able to get ideas for my pergola, which looks fantastic." Wayne.

Great service. Now all I have to do is build it! Martin.

"Your plans look amazingly comprehensive. I see you are intending putting the plans for the corner pergola on this fabulous site. Could you please tell me when the corner pergola plans will be available to purchase...yours is the nicest design I have seen!" Michelle.

Plants and Seeds

Pergola Kits and Accessories

Stylish outdoor seating area.

Grow Your Own

Sales & Offers

Beautiful 'Gainsborough' gazebo

Save £204!

Rattan furniture sale 8 seater.

See the 'Fantastic Offers' page for more bargains on pergola kits, tools and all things gardening!