Stairs models

In Stairs Types we have discussed the existing types of stairs. And as we already know, the type of stairs determines their overall view and position in the plan. But one and the same type of stairs can be built in different variants which will define the stairs model. Besides, the models can be combined among themselves which gives us even wider choice. Let us describe the existing stairs models and their combinations.










Stairs  With Closed Strings

In the stairs of this model closed strings constitute primary bearing elements. Closed strings are massive wooden beams which clamp the treads between themselves and form a steady construction together with treads.


























Fig. Stairs with closed strings


The treads are embedded into prearranged slots at a depth of 15 to 20 mm. The slots are made with the help of a router or wood chisel.
If the treads are complemented by risers, you shall prepare slots for them as well. The slots in their shape may repeat the counters of the tread and riser, or they may be wedge-shaped.

The slots repeating the counters of the tread and riser require high accuracy of manufacturing, and they are used in the case when the bottom part of the stairs will be open.














Fig. Slots repeating the counters of the tread and riser


In the place of tread or riser entry into the closed string, a gap is formed, though it can be very small. This gap is conductive to friction of the tread and riser with the closed string. As a result of this friction the squeak appears. As you already know from the section How to build stairs, in this case the central part of the riser is made 2 to 3 mm wider to eliminate steps squeaking, and the riser itself is mounted only after pretensioning of a tread.
















Fig. Pretensioning of a tread


Wedge-shaped slots are applied in cases where the bottom part of the stairs or the space under the stairs will be closed. Such shape of slots allows to fully eliminate steps squeaking, which appears when you walk due to special wooden wedges inserted between the tread, riser and closed string. For greater strength the wedges shall be glued before inserting. The depth of these slots shall make minimum 15 mm.






































Fig. Wedge-shaped slots


We recommend you to use a pattern for making slots of either type with the help of a router. You can read about it more detailed in Building Stairs section.






As you already know from the section How to build stairs the forefront of all treads shall be rounded. Radius of rounding shall be from 4 to 8 mm. The same radius shall be repeated by the slots on the closed string. This radius is not indicated in the drawings in  Stair Plans section. It shall be chosen depending on personal preferences and availability of cutters of certain diameter.

The front face of treads can also be furnished with a decorative molding.

The closed strings together with treads and risers between them are fastened with the help of coupler screws. The openings from the side of the closed string and under the treads are covered with decorative moldings. Coupler screws shall fasten every tread in the flight. This fastening technique is more labor-consuming but it hides the fasteners inside the stairs and makes their appearance more aesthetically acceptable.









Fig. Treads fastening to the closed string


The closed strings can also be fastened with the help of long threaded studs. The studs will be positioned under the treads in the middle of the closed string at intervals of 2 - 3 treads. The studs shall go parallel to the forefront of the treads. If the stairs have wedge-shaped treads in the area of the curve, the studs shall also go parallel to the forefront of the treads. By the increase of an angle at which the tread contacts the closed string, the nut will be screwed on the stud at a wide angle, and it may cause the protrusion of the nut relative to the closed string. Therefore it is better to apply the first technique here. The openings from the side of the closed string shall also be covered with decorative moldings. The technique of fastening with long studs is easier but it somewhat deteriorates the appearance of the stairs.








Fig. Fastening of closed strings together


You can read about treads fastening techniques in detail in Buiding stairs section.

Wall-adjacent closed strings can be fastened immediately to the wall, it means that the stairs will be joined with the wall, or they can be joined in the corners by the intermediate newel posts, then the stairs will stand apart from the wall. All the drawings in the section Stairs Plans are designed for application of newel posts at outer corner joints. But if you need to fasten the closed strings to the wall, you simply do not use the newel post, at that you shall previously make allowances in the drawing for the joint of the corner. You can read about assembling of stairs in more detail in the section Building stairs.







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Related Content :

- Stairs Types

- How to build stairs

- How to calculate Stairs