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Old 03-02-2009, 02:55 PM   #16
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Finishing basement stairway


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If the treads overhang the risers, pull them up and put the skirt board in.
Wow, that sounds like more work than it's worth because the risers also butt up to the wall so the skirt board would still have to be notched out.

I'd have to look at the underside of the stairway to be sure but the stringers may be all the way to the ends of the treads as well.

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Or buy actual bullnose tread material and put in new treads.
They are actual 1" thick bullnose treads. I haven't looked at them closely, but I believe they're made from MDF, either that or some other kind of engineered wood material.

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Old 03-02-2009, 04:18 PM   #17
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You are correct, that is a picture I found online. The skirt board is what I'm referring to. I don't have an actual picture of the stairway. It's at my girlfriend's house 30 miles away but I can easily describe it.

Much like the photo in my first post, the stairs have finished drywall on either side and it's just MDF treads/risers. The treads overhang the risers by about an inch if I were to guess.

I though that a jigsaw was just another name for a sabre saw

I suppose if I make a pattern that perfectly matches one tread/riser and then use it to cut out the skirt board, that would do the trick. I could rough it out with a saw and then use a router to clean it up.

Do most trim guys try to use one solid board for the skirt? I was thinking of veneered plywood with an applied edge to save on material cost but it would require a joint somewhere in the middle of the stair case.

Willie, does the documentation you have talk about all the steps of finishing off a stairway?
No, it doesn't.
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I suppose if I make a pattern that perfectly matches one tread/riser and then use it to cut out the skirt board, that would do the trick. I could rough it out with a saw and then use a router to clean it up.
Probably not. But it might come close enough since you are carpeting both treads and risers.

What I would do first, is scribe all the ends of your treads to the thickness of the skirt board, saw the nosings off back to the risers, and then "pop" the little pieces of nosing off with a chisel and hammer.
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Last edited by Willie T; 03-02-2009 at 04:30 PM.
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Old 03-02-2009, 05:41 PM   #18
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What I would do first, is scribe all the ends of your treads to the thickness of the skirt board, saw the nosings off back to the risers, and then "pop" the little pieces of nosing off with a chisel and hammer.
That sounds like it would simplify the skirt board and make the cuts all right angles, easy circular saw work. I think that's what I will do. Thanks!
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Old 03-03-2009, 08:31 AM   #19
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Finishing basement stairway


Yes, most skirt boards are one piece. If I were doing this project I would cut the bullnose off the width of the skirt board, so at least you will not have to deal with "jigsawing" around the bullnose. 2nd I would make a template. This is not going to be an easy project. A 1/16th off here, an 1/8th off there, translates all the way down the board. In a perfect world measuring the rise and tread will work, however the person that built it in the first place may have had a bad day. A template would be best. Good Luck.
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Old 03-04-2009, 10:57 PM   #20
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Thanks again for all the suggestions...now here's a wrench in the gears...

Being that I'm not familiar with this stairway, I was under the assumption that it was drywalled on both sides, well I just went there today and it kind of is, but kind of not....



so....this concrete wall needs to have drywall over it. Making a template for the skirt board will help with cutting the drywall around the steps also, but my question would be:

How should the drywall be adhered to the concrete?
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Old 03-07-2009, 12:27 AM   #21
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Due to the fact that space is limited, I would use some construction adhesive on the back of the drywall, although some 3/4" furring strips prior to the drywall would be a better solution.
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Old 03-07-2009, 09:17 AM   #22
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Wow, that sounds like more work than it's worth because the risers also butt up to the wall so the skirt board would still have to be notched out.

I'd have to look at the underside of the stairway to be sure but the stringers may be all the way to the ends of the treads as well.

They are actual 1" thick bullnose treads. I haven't looked at them closely, but I believe they're made from MDF, either that or some other kind of engineered wood material.
You would have to pull the risers and cut them too. Still easier than cutting around each step. I see that you already have the bullnose treads; cut and re-use them. Another plus to this method is that your treads are likely not glued down. Before you replace them, glue them to prevent squeaks in the future.
Drywall is not meant to be adhered directly to concrete. You need to fur the wall. If you choose to go ahead and glue directly to the concrete, at least use a product like DensArmour.
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Old 03-09-2009, 12:14 AM   #23
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I was figuring that I would need to fur the wall. Should I go with 3/4" furring strips or 2 X 2? 2 X 2 would be better for sinking the drywall screws but I'm also sacrificing another inch in stairway width.

What is the best way to secure the furring strips to the concrete. Drilling into the concrete for screws or anchors seems like a long tedious job and construction adhesive takes a long time to cure.

I do have a method in mind for the stairway template. I'm planning to cut an "L" shaped piece of construction paper for each step and then tape them together all the way down the stairway. As long as I'm careful not to rip apart the template as I remove it from the steps, I can then tape it to a board and trace the lines onto it.

I was thinking...since the skirt board is going to cover the wallboard, is it even necessary to notch the wallboard around the steps. It would be easy enough just to cut it diagonally to follow the edges of the steps and let the wood hide the voids.

Thanks again.
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Old 03-09-2009, 06:47 AM   #24
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Finishing basement stairway


I would use 1'x4" PT to fur the wall (1"x2"'s split very easily). Use 1" screws and adhesive to attach the drywall so you don't have to worry about the screws bottoming out. You could shoot the strips with a powder actuated gun if you don't want to use Tapcons (rent one). I would still use adhesive also as the pins sometimes become loose (when you're nailing your skirt board up). You could cut the drywall as you suggested and put "filler" pieces where you need for nailing purposes......
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Old 03-09-2009, 12:22 PM   #25
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Rather than cover the concrete with drywall, which would require strapping, I would 'parge' the concrete and then paint it with masonry paint!
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Old 03-09-2009, 02:32 PM   #26
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Rather than cover the concrete with drywall, which would require strapping, I would 'parge' the concrete and then paint it with masonry paint!
Sounds like a lot less work than the drywall option. What type of material would I use for parging?

Can you add texture sand to masonry paint so I can match the texture on the surrounding drywall?
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Old 03-09-2009, 04:28 PM   #27
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Sounds like a lot less work than the drywall option. What type of material would I use for parging?

Can you add texture sand to masonry paint so I can match the texture on the surrounding drywall?
Last summer I 'parged' the outside of my basement walls! I bought the parging material at Home Depot.
I'm not an experienced cement finisher, however by following the instructions on the bag, I was quite successful!
Usually with parging, it is troweled on, then given a brushed finish!
I have no idea, whether sand could be added to the masonary paint!

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