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Cupolas and Weathervanes
Adding weathervanes to cupolas can be an attractive addition to your home. Historically, we used weathervanes to indicate the direction of the wind. Today’s weathervanes are still functional but are more ornamental. It is not uncommon the find themed weathervanes on top of cupolas depicting everything from boats, farm animals and birds, to trains and Harleys. Cupolas are also used as bases for spires or other finials. Unadorned cupolas are still quite common as well.
Since a cupola is a permanent addition to your home, and because its spot on the roof makes it almost inaccessible, you should choose from cupolas that can stand up to the local weather conditions. The cupola base and roof should be made of durable, low-maintenance materials. Many cupolas are unfinished to allow homeowners to paint them to match the home. Be careful to use the proper primer and finish on your new cupola to be sure it is well protected and will last for many years.
A History of Weathervanes
Weathervanes date back to ancient Greece. They were used well into the 20th century by farmers and other outdoor workers. Children grew up learning how to “read” the weather based on sky conditions and the direction and strength of the wind.
Weathervanes helped with planting and harvesting. They also gave useful information to people who could read current conditions and predict the weather. This info affected the safety of people on land or at sea.
How Weathervanes Work
All weathervanes are made so weight is distributed evenly on each side of the center rod. The side with the larger surface area is blown by the wind. This makes the weathervane point towards the side with the smaller surface. Most weathervanes have directions fixed below the arrow. These directions will tell you if your weathervane is pointing North, South, East, or West. Or if it is pointing somewhere in between!
Shop for a Unique Weathervane
Whitehall weathervanes are made of metal, copper, or cast aluminum. Their metal castings are well known for elegance and detailing. We also have copper weathervanes by Good Directions. All of them are designed to spin around and point in the direction of the wind. Our weathervanes are typically mounted to the top of a roof, attached to a cupola, or on a post. There are a lot more types of weathervanes than just the classic rooster weathervane. Check out the styles we carry!
The MailboxWorks has a unique weathervane for every taste! Our Home and Garden catalog has everything from horse weathervanes to automobile weathervanes. Our collection of animal weathervanes includes whales, eagles, pigs, rabbits, horses, bears, deer, and more! Most of our weathervanes come with different mounting options and hardware. These include a roof mount, cupola extension rod, or a garden pole.
Modern Decorative Weathervanes
Weathervanes are still popular additions to a cupola. Modern weathervane designs range from the traditional rooster style to lighthouses and trains.
Farm Animal Weathervanes
Weathervanes continue to be added to new homes and buildings by owners who appreciate their unique place in architectural history. It is not uncommon to find homes in urban areas with farm animal weathervanes on their roofs or garages. We carry other animals as well!
Most people who install weathervanes today do so for their architectural beauty. That is why garden weathervanes have grown in popularity. Themed garden weathervanes should be oriented to take advantage of the winds.
To work well, you will need to install a weathervane high off the ground. It is also important to keep it away from objects that might get in the way of the wind direction. Many people are surprised when they discover just how large a weathervane has to be so you can read it from the ground! Our themed designs include golfing, lighthouses, and horse and carriage weathervanes.
The MailboxWorks carries a great selection of cupolas! Cupolas have been used since classical times to add function and distinction to buildings. Historically, cupolas used to provide 360-degree watchtower views as well as ventilation and light. Today you will see cupolas mainly used as bases for weathervanes. You will find that our cupolas will also add a distinction to your roofline.
The MailboxWorks is proud to sell Whitehall cupolas. Their designs include a barn, shed, and gazebo cupolas. Their products are made with the utmost quality and design.
Whitehall white vinyl cupolas are weather resistant and require little to no maintenance! These cupolas are sealed with white primer for maximum durability. They are also ready to be painted and installed. These cupolas create a unique, custom addition to your home or other building.
Garage, shed, and barn cupolas are often made mainly for ventilation and light. However, most residential cupolas today serve mostly as architectural points of interest.
Choose the size of the cupola you need based on the length of the roofline you want to interrupt with the cupola. In general, roof vent cupolas are proportioned so that roughly one inch of the cupola base corresponds to one foot of roofline. In other words, a 30-foot unbroken roofline would look best with a cupola that has a base of 30 to 36 inches. For longer rooflines, you can use more than one cupola.
There are no set rules. But most often, if you use an odd number of cupolas, the cupola in the center is usually larger to add more architectural interest to the roofline. When you use an even number of cupolas, they are usually all the same size.
Prefabricated Vinyl Cupolas
Vinyl cupolas are pre-made cupolas. Copper is often used for the roof of the vinyl cupola. That is because copper is durable as well as beautiful. Copper tends to look better with age. It is a metal that works just as well in traditional architecture as it does in contemporary architecture.
Louvers Add Ventilation
Vinyl cupolas generally feature louvered slats that allow for airflow ventilation while keeping out the rain. In fact, for those thinking about adding an attic fan, a louvered cupola is a prettier alternative.
Check Out Our Cupolas and Weathervanes
Cupolas and weathervanes have been used in architecture for thousands of years. Adding a cupola or weathervane to your home is a great way to make your roof line interesting. It will also add an extra expression of taste and style to your home.