How to Build a Staircase

build-stairsWe all love making a house a home in ways that reflect our unique personalities, likes and dislikes. By renovating and decorating, we can tell the world who we are.

Building a staircase is like putting your own stamp on your home.

A staircase can become far more than just a means of getting from one floor the next.

With your own basic plans, it becomes possible to put your own creative touches on a stairway that will help define the personality of your home.

Here are some basic plans on how to build your staircase:

Measure the Vertical Height and Horizontal Length of the Stairway
You will need to measure the vertical height of your staircase beginning from the landing point to the height of the upper floor. Next, take a measurement from the bottom end of the staircase to the landing that rests on the edge of the upper floor.

Calculate the Rise
The rise can be calculated by placing a 2-inch by 4-inch plank at the very edge of the upper level. The next step is to take a measurement from the ground to the bottom of the plank. The total number of steps is found by dividing the total rise with a riser height of seven inches. Seven and ½ inches can be used as a riser height if it works better. Make sure you round up to the next greatest number in your calculations.

Calculate the Total Run
You will have to calculate the total run of the staircase as well. For most staircases, the first step is the floor. Your total number of treads should end up being one less than the riser. The exact rise can be calculated by dividing the total riser height by the number of risers. For your own records, eleven inches is the standard width of a tread.

Lay out the Stairs on the Stringer with a Framing Square
A framing square can be used to lay the stairs on the stringers. Every 11 inches the longer arm should be marked, and the shorter arm should be marked by ten inches. These will be the rise and run calculations. Once the rise and run are marked by the framing square, you can cut along the lines using a circular saw. Keep a handsaw handy to finalize any cutting.

When the first stringer is ready, it can be used as a template for the other stringer. Place your stringers at the base of the floor and the upper level and permanently secure them using lag bolts inserted through the stringer into the joist located at the top. You can pre-drill each screw to get a better finish.

Now cut the threads according to your previous calculations and fit them to the stringers. Lastly, screw the threads down into the stringers and you have stairs that are ready to be used. You can decide to finish them with paint or varnish.