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Old 08-25-2008, 03:54 PM   #1
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Small Gaps between tread & skirt board


I installed 1" red oak staircase. It is enclosed on both sides. The skirt board bows out for some 3-4 steps in the run, following the countour of the wall. I did not scribe the steps, they were straight cut. I am snug where the nose meets the skirt, end up having 1/8" to 1/4" gap as you approach the riser. I intended on staining the stairs.

Any suggestions how I fill these gaps? Scribe in a shim? Putty? Quarter round over the gaps?

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Old 08-25-2008, 05:14 PM   #2
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Small Gaps between tread & skirt board


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I installed 1" red oak staircase. It is enclosed on both sides. The skirt board bows out for some 3-4 steps in the run, following the countour of the wall. I did not scribe the steps, they were straight cut. I am snug where the nose meets the skirt, end up having 1/8" to 1/4" gap as you approach the riser. I intended on staining the stairs.

Any suggestions how I fill these gaps? Scribe in a shim? Putty? Quarter round over the gaps?
go under the stairs and shim the stringers in, to close the stair carriage.

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Old 08-25-2008, 05:16 PM   #3
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Small Gaps between tread & skirt board


That's a tough one...

Are the skirtboards stained or painted? If it is stained, problem. If painted, you can mask and caulk, then remove the masking tape when the caulk is still wet. When dry, re-mask and paint the same color as the skirt.

If it is stained, I think I'd use a block plane to form an oak shim, and would glue it in. Wood putty would have to be used to fill in the narrow gaps. This will be really labor-intensive, and unfortunately the grain will be running the wrong way so it may still show up.

Heck, you might be able to find some colored caulk that wouldn't stand out too bad.
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Old 08-25-2008, 05:16 PM   #4
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Small Gaps between tread & skirt board


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go under the stairs and shim the stringers in, to close the stair carriage.
Or do that! Not a bad idea there Bob!!!!!!!!!
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Old 08-25-2008, 05:20 PM   #5
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Small Gaps between tread & skirt board


I hope I understand what he is trying to explain?
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Old 08-25-2008, 06:50 PM   #6
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Small Gaps between tread & skirt board


Bob / thekctermite, thank you for responding. I really appreciate it. The skirt is 12" poplar to be painted. Going to be jamming the shim a long way before it start to reach the affected areas. Is that still feasible?

What about taking a scrap of that exact tread, cutting a wedge & hitting it in with a rubber mallet, securing with poly glue? I could then sand flush with the tread? I've attached a picture of my issue.

Risers & skirt will be painted.

Thanks again!

-Jim
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Small Gaps between tread & skirt board-step.jpg  
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Old 08-25-2008, 11:57 PM   #7
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Small Gaps between tread & skirt board


Yeeouch!

Can you get to the underside of those stairs?

If so, pop off the riser board. Then use shims between the wall and the skirtboard to lessen the gap between it and the tread. It won't gain you much, but it might buy you a little.

If you're painting the skirt, I'd go with caulking on the tread to a masked line. If you caulk every tread the same it might not look too bad.

No way to talk you into removing and re-cutting those treads?
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Old 08-26-2008, 04:43 AM   #8
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Small Gaps between tread & skirt board


I do have access to underneath.

We're talking about 3 treads...yes I can buy 3 more and re-cut. How much space is generally acceptable between the skirt & the tread? Zero? 1/16?
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Old 08-26-2008, 05:08 AM   #9
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Small Gaps between tread & skirt board


Those look like poplar skirt boards, so I am assuming that those areas will be painted. So, you might be able to hide some of that with white caulking, and the skirt board paint. It won't look perfect, but the only other option is to remove those 3-4 treads and template new ones.

FWIW: We use a set of these: http://www.collinstool.com/base.php?...gauge_ends.htm

Best of Luck.
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Old 08-26-2008, 06:42 AM   #10
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Small Gaps between tread & skirt board


I see now. I was under the impression these where A set of boxed stairs. shimming is not going to help much because your cuts are off for those treads. I would do as Atlantic states remove and re-cut new ones.
Take a piece of card board or cut up an old shoe box. lay it on the tread and scribe it to the skirt board, keeping it tight along the riser, cut out the outline with some scissors. put the template you just made back into position and mark the rear of the template on the stairs. do the same for the other side with a new template. holding it tight to the skirt mark the stair tread. remove the tread and lay it on top of the new tread then install your template on top of the old tread keeping the back edge even with the mark you made on the tread. this is your scribe. do the same to the other side trying to not move the tread in the process. mark and cut .
They do make a stair jig for this type of installation. I'll see if I can locate it to post for future OP's BOB
here is a site where a home owner built on hope it helps
http://www.woodworkingbuzz.com/forum...hread.php?t=71

Last edited by buletbob; 08-26-2008 at 06:49 AM.
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Old 08-26-2008, 06:57 AM   #11
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Small Gaps between tread & skirt board


Thank you all very much for your feedback. Most appreciated.

Regards,

Jim
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Old 08-26-2008, 08:54 AM   #12
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Small Gaps between tread & skirt board


Gentleman, in lieu of tearing up the tread, kctermite suggested caulking & taping...

How bad/good would it look if I were to fill the gaps, sand them flush, tape a line approx. 1" from the skirt, and paint that area, along with the skirt and riser the same color. I would then stain and eurthane the unpainted majority of the tread.

Thoughts?
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Old 08-26-2008, 12:19 PM   #13
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Small Gaps between tread & skirt board


If I was the contractor doing this install and came to the job to see what my men have done, there would be no second guessing about ripping those few treads out and replacing them. But this is your project and your home you will have to be the judge, we don't know what your talents as far as painting and staining are. It could turn out fine and then again it might not, if it does not then the whole stair is ruined. I'm sorry to say its your call. Whats the cost of the tread, Around 20 dollars ? and what have you invested into the whole project. is it worth taken a chance and have to look at this, every time you walk up the stairs?. let us know what you decide so we can help you further. good luck BOB
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Old 08-26-2008, 12:43 PM   #14
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Small Gaps between tread & skirt board


Alright Bob, you got me. I wanted to hear you say I could skirt my way around it, but as I thought, I have to take it down.

I'll be sure to post back finished pics when I get to it... in October.

Thank you all again!

Jim
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Old 08-26-2008, 01:06 PM   #15
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Small Gaps between tread & skirt board


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Alright Bob, you got me. I wanted to hear you say I could skirt my way around it, but as I thought, I have to take it down.

I'll be sure to post back finished pics when I get to it... in October.

Thank you all again!

Jim
Good choice!you will be proud of your self when your finished and every time you walk up and down the stairs. when these stairs are down correctly there absolutely beautiful. when your ready to cut your step tread post back we will help you through it. BOB

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