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Old 06-30-2012, 11:28 AM   #1
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stair risers


Is it necessary to put quarter rounds on stair risers? Is it some sort of design gaffe to leave just the step without quarter rounds?

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Old 06-30-2012, 11:36 AM   #2
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I've never used 1/4 rd. on stairs. If someone put it there I'd guess someone messed up and there was a gap there trying to cover.
One simple trick I sometimes do is cut the stair tread at the back at a very slight angle, that way it can fit tighter againt the riser because there's less surface area making contact.

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Old 06-30-2012, 01:22 PM   #3
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Isn't the proper way to tongue the riser into the tread? That way you don't get the gaps.
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Old 06-30-2012, 02:20 PM   #4
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Not a bad idea to do it that way, I've just never once seen it done that way.

And would be a whole lot more work.
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Old 06-30-2012, 03:15 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by joecaption View Post

And would be a whole lot more work.
Agreed. But it's been the standard way of doing it here for years for cheap, mass-produced stairs. One advantage is that it enables the stairs to be strong and rigid, yet built out of cheap, thin material.
Typically, treads can be 7/8" pine (or even less if plywood) and risers can be 3/8" plywood or mdf.
My own home is 90 years old and the staircase treads are 1"piranah pine, tongued with 3/4" risers, and 1 1/4" thick strings and they're fine, with only one tread which squeaks, (but that just adds to the character).
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Old 06-30-2012, 10:29 PM   #6
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I agree, 1/4 round usually covers gaps. If it I placed on top of the tread where it meets the riser, then it is covering up a mistake. I use a tongue and groove at the intersection with 1" housed stringers.
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Old 07-01-2012, 12:41 AM   #7
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More like this, Tony. Use the dadoed riser bottoms to support the rear edges of the treads.
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Old 07-01-2012, 09:28 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by Willie T View Post
More like this, Tony.
Correct. In my haste at scribbling the sketch, I got the tongue and the groove in the wrong members; groove should be in riser.

What I have noticed on this site is that pics of stairs generally show triangular pieces cut out of the strings, so that the treads rest directly on top of the horizontal cut.
Here we still groove out the string with a tapered housing, push the tread in from the back, and secure in with glued wedges hammered in.
It makes a strong staircase but the chief drawback is that its not feasible to remove a tread if it gets damaged or splits.
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Old 07-01-2012, 11:31 AM   #9
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Here I have seen it done both ways and it really depends on the style of stair

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