Stair Parts for Dummies

If we're going to talk stairs, there are a few things you need to know.  Here is your 37 second lesson on Basic Stair Part Terminology.


(If you are asking yourself at this point, "Then What in blue blazes is a Banister?" - cuz maybe you talk to yourself like that, who knows - A banister is the sum of all the things: A handrail combined with the balusters makes a banister.  Ok?  Ok.)

Now you know everything you need to know.  It is important for you to know this, otherwise the entire time you are reading this post you will be saying "What are you talking about again?" Which is exactly what Richard says everytime I want to talk Stair Parts with him. 

This is how my stairs look right now.

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Those 2 posts you see are the Newel Posts.  They are installed and secure.  That square block just hanging out there on the wall to the left is the rosette.  The handrail will end there.

Newel Posts are good.  But you can see that it is still 100% possible for people to fall right off of the stairs, or right over the edge of the landing at any time.  As such, we can not yet say that these stairs are "DONE" in the conventional sense.  I don't like to knit pick, but to really feel done I'd say we still need a handrail and balusters.

We got all our stair parts from a local place, and Lani the Builder took all the balusters to a shop somewhere to have them painted.  I don't know why, but this took a couple of weeks.  But they finally came back.  Hooray!  Here they are!  In a stack!  By a Dinosaur!

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But when he went to install them, he realized that half of them were too short.  

Let me demonstrate with another diagram I didn't make:


Those are the same measurments we needed for our balusters, but all of ours are only 36".  I don't know whose fault it is, but the question is somewhat pointless.  What matters is that we don't have what we need, and we need to get what we need.  It was decided that Lani will make us some new balusters, get them painted, and then bring them here and install them.

Maybe by the end of THIS week I won't have to hold my breath every time the kids walk up and down the stairs?

So now you know.  I challenge you to take this new stair knowledge and go show it off at home shows or at Parent Teacher Conference.  Everyone is sure to be impressed!