Whether it is the
romance of a Scarlet O'Hara or the functionality of traditional stairs,
we have your stairing needs covered. Stairs are custom designed
to suit your home. They are built to specifications in our wood
shop and transported to your site. We provide installation and
This massive set of
cedar stairs is handcrafted from 6" western red cedar and provides a
breath taking focal point in the owner's log home.
The treads are mortised into the stringer. Fabricated in our
shop, and assembled on site, these stairs required a winch to set them
Custom made solid
pine newels and rounded two by two spindles grace this home and
complement the maple flooring.
This picture was taken while these stairs were still a work in
progress. Two toned treads are made from light maple and red
oak. The pine stringers and trim lead to a solid raised panel
railing that provides privacy to the loft and dampens sound from
below. The landing is finished in maple hardwood flooring.
Gracefully curved pine spindles were added later to ensure security.
Since stairs are a
major cause of accidents in the home, we developed a gate system that
can be closed and locked to prevent accidental falls. The gating
also provides additional support when transitioning to a handrail.
Safe Stair Systems
When designing your home and positioning the stairs,
bear in mind that the stair opening for an 8' ceiling must be a minimum
of 10' long . This not only provides adequate headroom but
allows builders to make stairs that rise on a 38 - 40 degree
angle. Longer runs also allow for wider treads to make stair
climbing safe and comfortable.
The width of the stairs leading to a second storey is normally 36" to
48". While wider widths are best for moving furniture from one
floor to another, the second consideration is that stairs act as a
conduit for the exchange of warm or cold air. Since closed
stairwells draw air more rapidly than open stair designs, it may be
advisable to consider placing a door at the bottom.
Rail systems are
composed of several parts that fit together to ensure solid support.
Though the make up of a stair system varies depending on the type of
stairs, the parts are essentially: the newel post, handrail, fillers
(spindles or solid panels), shoe rail, and fillet.
The main anchor of any rail system is the newel post. These posts
are placed at any point where the stairs start, stop, or change
direction. The newel must also be solidly anchored, not just to
the stairs, but where possible to the floor joists beneath and, in some
systems, above the stairs.
Half newels are used at walls both for esthetic reasons and to provide
a solid anchor for handrails.
Available in many different profiles, handrails complete the framework
of the rail system. Like the masts of ships, handrails are most
commonly made from hemlock. This strong and relatively
lightweight wood is easier to shape than the hardwoods that often
comprise the rest of the components and is more resistant to
Metal can also be used for handrails. Generally topped with wood
or vinyl, metal handrails provide a modern and distinctive look to the
The filler portion of the stairs serves several purposes:
- the prevention of falls
- esthetic appeal
- sound dampening or privacy
residential stairs feature wood spindles or panels, cedar rails, turned
metal, plexiglass, and chain or rope are also used. For safety
reasons, upright spindles should be installed more further apart than
Solid panels made from tongue and groove lumber, plywood, or raised
panels (like cabinet doors) can act as a sound barrier and
privacy screen to lofts.
Rails and Fillets
The shoe rail acts as a finish moulding on both inside and outside of
the fillers. When using spindle, fillets fill in the gap
between the spindles to provide a finished look. Fillets are also
used to fill the gaps on the underside of the handrail.