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Old 06-04-2011, 04:42 PM   #1
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Advice on staircase renovation issue


removed carpenting from staircase and was happy to find hardwood treads underneath. however all 13 steps have 3 large nails on the tread surface. Some of the treads have a nail that is bent over and not sitting flush with the surface. pics are attached to show the issue. 9 of the 13 steps are boxed in on both sides and sitting in a groove on the stringer so I am not really sure if the nails are serving much of a purpose. how would one go about correcting this? if it is a matter of pulling the nails out how can i do this so as to not damage the tread surface?
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Old 06-04-2011, 06:27 PM   #2
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Advice on staircase renovation issue


Hmmmm? Any tool used to remove these nails in my arsenal would cause more damage than necessary...on their way out, they like to chip the surface further. In your situation, it sounds like they serve no purpose. Just pound them below the surface with a nail set and wood fill over. That's prob gonna be your best bet.

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Old 06-04-2011, 07:28 PM   #3
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Advice on staircase renovation issue


For the nails with the head showing only, you can use a drill bit the size of the nail shank, or just a hair larger, and drill the head of the nail off then set the rest of the nail deeper and fill. For the nails bent over you will have to get something under the bent nail so you can get hold of it with a hammer. Place a piece of 1/4 plywood or some other wood under the hammer so it doesn't mar your tread. Pull the nail and fill the hole. If the treads are oak chances are you will not be able to pull the nail. If you cannot pull the nail, bend the nail back and forth until the nail breaks then set it below the surface and fill.
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Old 06-04-2011, 08:50 PM   #4
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Advice on staircase renovation issue


You may want something thinner and flatter than the nail pulling side of a hammer. I would try a the edge of a strong flat bar. You will still need a shim, wedge or something under to leverage again or you will dig into the tread.

Looks a little weird but if those nails are the only thing anchoring the treads to the stringer you don't want to eliminate them?

You sure that is a hardwood by the way?
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Old 06-04-2011, 09:12 PM   #5
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Advice on staircase renovation issue


Treads are oak, risers are pine. Nails aren't the only thing holding treads in place but am going to follow jiju's advice. Thanks all.
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