As I mentioned earlier, HoneyDo wanted to vault the ceiling several feet up into the attic.
I thought that sounded like an awful lot dirty work.
We went back and forth for months, while we were working on the other parts of the house.
Him: But think of how awesome it will look!
Her: But think of all the drywall and insulation in my hair!
Him: It will open up the room and make it feel so much bigger!
Her: Hello? Hair?
In the end, HoneyDo sold me on a "compromise." We wouldn't vault it per se, but we would include the rafters within the space of the room and lay tongue and groove ceiling boards above them. That would add 6-8 inches to the height of the ceiling and give us a beam ceiling, which we both really wanted.
So we dove in and tore down the ceiling. And this is what our great room looked like:
He Says:The existing ceiling was 5/8 drywall under paired side-by-side 2x4 rafters. The span of the ceiling was max 12'6", and the 2x4's sagged a bit at that length. It looked bad, but hey, if the house wasn't a piece of crap, we could never have afforded it.
I did want to do the big vault up to the roof beams, but what we ended up with looks better than that would have, and was a ton easier to build. Good compromise.
The ceiling boards are 1x6 pine Tongue and Groove. Lifting them up into the attic was the tough part.
I built a jig on my 12' worktable to construct the beam-covers from 1x6 and 1x4 lumber. This kept the beam-covers straight, and when they were built, we lifted them into place over the old beams and nailed them on.