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Old 03-08-2011, 04:55 PM   #1
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Stair remodel questions


Hi again,

I'm preparing to tackle the stairs, soon. I will be removing the existing pine treads and risers and installing new skirt, oak treads, and risers - and eventually newel, ballusters, and rail.

I am hoping to bounce my approach off the knowledge base here so I can learn what I'm about to do wrong.

Here's what I've got to work with (pictured below):
- cut stringers heading into basement
- wall on one side (not a wall stringer)
- open on the other
- no access underneath

Here's my plan:
- remove treads/risers
- cut and temporarily replace treads to allow access for skirt boards and a place to step
- Install both skirts
- wall-side skirt will be cut as close to riser as possible
- open-side skirt I'll scribe then cut - mitering the riser cut
- start at bottom and install riser/tread riser/tread working my way up (installing newel in appropriate location).

I have a few questions on the process/technique with some of these steps, but I thought I'd stick with big picture questions for now:

1. What am I missing, doing wrong with this plan?
2. Can I install newel post now without a balluster / railing plan?
3. I'll be painting the risers, can I just use pine?
4. With a skirt-board on the wall side, I'll only have 3/4" to land my treads. Is this a bad idea?

Thanks!



Last edited by exiledgator; 03-08-2011 at 04:57 PM. Reason: poorly titled thread
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Old 03-08-2011, 10:54 PM   #2
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Stair remodel questions


Pull your treads and risers and see what you have. The wall side carriage may be spaced off the wall already. If not sawall it off the studs and put in a 2x4 and then reattach it. That will give you room for a skirt and sheetrock. Newel posts go in before handrail.

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Old 03-09-2011, 11:35 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Keith Mathewson View Post
Pull your treads and risers and see what you have. The wall side carriage may be spaced off the wall already. If not sawall it off the studs and put in a 2x4 and then reattach it. That will give you room for a skirt and sheetrock. Newel posts go in before handrail.
It's flush with the sheetrock and there's no way to move it out w/o ripping out a ton of stuff (not an option at this point). If 3/4" isn't enough for the tread I guess my only option is to land the wall-side skirt on top of the tread? Ugh.
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Old 03-09-2011, 11:43 AM   #4
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Stair remodel questions


is that door for the hobbit living under the stairs? if you want an apron at the wall you can cut the stair run/rise into finished piece that butts to carriage frame. This doesnt need to fit tight as finish treads/risers will cover gaps
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Old 03-09-2011, 11:50 AM   #5
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Unless the underside of the stair is sheetrocked move the wall side carriage.
If need be take a cats paw and pull the nails going through the carriage and into the studs. Space the carriage off the wall with a 2x4.
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Old 03-09-2011, 11:53 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by tpolk View Post
is that door for the hobbit living under the stairs? if you want an apron at the wall you can cut the stair run/rise into finished piece that butts to carriage frame. This doesnt need to fit tight as finish treads/risers will cover gaps
Yes. What, you don't have hobbits under your stairs?

I'd like to butt my treads and risers to the skirt/apron, but if I install this way, I only have 3/4" left of my stringers to attach my treads once the skirt is in place. i.e., The outside of the cut stringer is flush with the sheetrock.

Maybe this illustrates better:

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Old 03-09-2011, 11:55 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Keith Mathewson View Post
Unless the underside of the stair is sheetrocked move the wall side carriage.
If need be take a cats paw and pull the nails going through the carriage and into the studs. Space the carriage off the wall with a 2x4.
Yeah, I can't move that stringer.

I realize that this is all "engineered" wrong, but alas, it's what I've got now...
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Old 03-09-2011, 11:56 AM   #8
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Hmmm, I suppose I could sister up another stringer to the existing one, eh? If I made it dead nuts same and glued and screwed 'em together would that work?
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Old 03-09-2011, 06:24 PM   #9
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If you can sister in a carriage you can move the first one. If you choose not to then you get to scribe a skirtboard to your carriage.
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Old 03-09-2011, 07:02 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Keith Mathewson View Post
If you can sister in a carriage you can move the first one. If you choose not to then you get to scribe a skirtboard to your carriage.
Yea, the existing wall-side stringer has Sheetrock under it, so it's not moving.

If I put a skirt on, I'm left w/ 3/4" to land my tread.

Can I land a tread on the remaining 3/4" of stringer or should I sister a new one in?
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Old 03-14-2011, 07:26 PM   #11
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Just adding my 2 cents worth.

If you are painting the risers, why would you replace them?

From the pictures, I can't tell whether you have 3 stringers. If you do not, you will need one for your hardwood. If u have to add a stringer, then you will have to open up under the stairs and your problem with the wall side stringer is a nit.

Now I get to my pet "Stair change" problem. If you replace the current 1 1/2 " stair treads with 3/4" material then your stair height gets out of balance. This is a safety issue. The building code does not allow more than 1/4" variance between stair height. I've seen new stairs rebuilt when somebody forgot to factor in the floor finish thickness!! If I were doing this, I would add spacers to the top and bottom 3-4 stairs to keep the variance within 1/8".

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