Finish Contractor – Handrail Construction

Handrail Construction

Recommendations & Tips

Interior finish work includes everything from installing baseboard to the solid construction of the main stairway and handrail. The main staircase is usually considered a piece of furniture. By this I mean, it takes an experienced Tradesman to make everything fit together flawlessly.

There is nothing more disappointing than grabbing the main newel post as you start your way up just to find that it is loose and is cracking the handrail connection. This has always been an important step for me, as a Carpenter.

I usually sink the primary Newel into the floor framing through the sub floor. Before doing this you must expose the framing by cutting out some of the floor right where the newel will go: not a big deal if you know what your doing.

What a Finish Carpenter does after this can mean the difference between a rock solid connection to a pathetic attempt. Don’t get me wrong,although this is an extremely important step..the Carpenter or Contractor must spend some time planning and making sure the stair ends up where it is supposed to.

Building codes have to be strictly maintained in the construction process.

The rise and run of each tread and riser must be consistent and should not vary even 1/16 of an inch. Those are my standards. Ever walked up a stair and accidentally tripped on one of the treads? This may have been caused by an improper install or someone trying to correct a measurement so the stair meets up with the top floor.

Very important this all comes together properly. That’s why it is so important to check clearances,all measurements,wall and floor levels.

The final step is to install the handrail and this better be done right. A nice flowing appearance and solid connections are a must. Nothing worse than someone trying to fill a bad connection with putty or some kind of wood filler. That will show up “Ugly” after the finish paint or clear lacquer is applied.

So much care needs to be taken in the handrail construction because parts and material are very expensive. The Carpenter or Contractor could make good money on the job or end up losing drastically if things go wrong.

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