Balusters fulfill a function of a protective barrier in the stair flight. They support the handrail, fill the space under it and make it safer to go upstairs. No other element in the stair flight can impart such a graceful look to the staircase as balusters. Balusters can improve on any staircase even the most arid one. Perhaps, balusters are the only element in a staircase which can have such a great number of variants of forms and sections. Round, flat, square, turned, milled, carved – it is by far not the full list of all possible variants of balusters. And these are only wooden balusters. There is also a diversity of metal balusters – simple tubes, forged, cast balusters, of different design and with different surface texture.Let’s discuss in more detail the basic forms of balusters and the scope of their application.






Wood Balusters

Round Balusters

Round balusters have a cylindrical form and a diameter from 25 to 40 mm. They are very easy to mount. It is also possible to have a combination of wood and metal tubes of aluminum or stainless steel of different diameters. To provide for strength the baluster shall be solid from the beginning to the end.
We used round wooden balusters in the drawings set forth in the section Stairs Plans.




























Flat Balusters

Flat balusters have rectangular form in section with different length-to-width ratio. These can be either separate elements or one integral element. As a material veneer wood or planks with the gage of 15-20 mm can be used.
Lateral faces as well as inner faces there can be patterned or carved. You can use a fretsaw for this purpose. Sharp edges on the butt ends shall be processed with the help of a milling cutter. But be careful, avoid too narrow and thin bridges and remember about safety. Such balusters make the staircase more closed. The can be applied together with a rectangular handrail. Besides, they are difficult to mount, and they cannot be applied on curved staircases.















Square Balusters

Square balusters have as it appears from their name a square section. With the help of a milling cutter one can apply decorative pits on the lateral faces and on the butt ends. To simplify mounting round section can be imparted the upper and bottom edges. Such balusters can be applied for cottage style staircases.
They look good with handrails of simple forms.































Turned Balusters

Turned balusters are the most widespread kind of balusters. They can communicate refined charm to a staircase with their curious and elegant forms which are opened up to us after processing of an ordinary square batten on a turning machine. The number of kinds of profiles which can be turned can amount to dozens. The main difference among them is the shape of the upper and bottom edge.
These edges can be round or square. Balusters with round edges are easier to mount.

If you plan using balusters with round edges, you shall choose a handrail without a trench at the reverse side.
The sizes of square edges shall be selected to match the handrail. Use Shoerail to fasten the bottom edge of the baluster to the stringboards.




























Milled Balusters
Turned balusters serve as a basis for manufacture of milled balusters. On the surface received after turning decorative pits are applied with the help of milling cutters, besides, these pits can either go along the baluster or curl spirally. Such treatment process communicates even more refinement to balusters. Their edges can also be round or square.



Carved Balusters

These are the most exquisite balusters in terms of beauty, the most complicated and expensive ones in terms of production. They are manufactured with modern CNC machines allowing to carry out any kind of carving. Prior to production a designer gives sketches or plaster model to a constructor, who with the help of three-dimensional simulators creates a 3D model of the future baluster. Then the model is delivered to the machine and after a while we receive a perfect baluster from all viewpoints. Such balusters are applied only for very expensive and exclusive staircases.



























Metal Balusters

Round Balusters

Round balusters have a cylindrical form and their diameter may range from 12 to 30 mm. These can be hollow chrome-plated or painted tubes. Or these can also be solid bars of different forms and sections. In the middle they can be enriched with decorative elements. Due to the round edge they are very easy to mount. The place of baluster entry into the stringboard can be covered with a trim finisher.




























Square Balusters
Square balusters are manufactured from square bars. They can be either straight or curled. They can also be enriched with decorative elements in the middle. The place of baluster entry into the stringboard can be covered with a trim finisher.



























Forged Balusters
This is the most beautiful version of balusters. The starting materials for their production can be of any kind – round or square bars, flats, metal pieces, and their combinations. The forging can be either machine or hand. For machine forging ready-made patterns are used, and the process of forging itself doesn’t take much time. The advantages of such type of forging are similarity to traditional forging, inexpensive final products, and a wide choice of ready designs. Traditional forging process takes considerably more time, and the cost of final products is much higher than that by machine forging, but the result is worth your while. An experienced master is able to communicate the sense of warmth to cold metal and to enliven it. The master can reproduce the airiness of leaves, structure of stalks, or opening of flowers stiffened in metal. Hand forging is an art, and forger is an artist. He uses metal instead of paint and fabric, and a hammer and anvil instead of a brush.
Basically conventional flower design is popular. But the design is not necessarily limited to separate balusters only. An experienced master is able to create a forged composition to fill the space between handrails and treads.
Prior to commencement of work necessary measurements are executed and necessary patterns are manufactured. Then a full-scale draft of the future ornament is produced. In this case the handrail shall be metal to fasten the forged elements, and it shall be dressed with wood from above.
For finishing of metal balusters you may use special texture paint which will communicate an “antique look” to the surface.



























Related Content :

- Stairs Types

- How to build stairs

- Stairs Models