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Old 05-31-2008, 03:24 PM   #1
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Restaining handrails


Our floor refinisher is ready to sand and stain floors and stairs but will not do the newels or handrails. What is the best plan: 1. Disassemble, sand stain & reassemble. 2. Sand & stain in place. 3. Take apart & replace newels & handrails with newly stained ones ? (The ballusters will remain white.) See pictures
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Old 05-31-2008, 05:27 PM   #2
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Restaining handrails


Chances are, you won't have much luck disassembling the handrails and newels without really tearing into things. Most ballusters are glued, and some are even nailed.

Are you changing the stain color? Or are you just wanting to give it a new clear coat?

If you're changing the stain, good luck. That is a heck of a job, especially if you're working on the parts in place. If you just want to refinish the clear coat, you can give everything a light sanding with 400 grit to remove any scratches and to roughen the surface of the existing clear coat. Use a tack rag to remove all dust, then re-apply a couple coats of polyurethane, sanding with 0000 steel wool or very fine sandpaper between coats.

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Old 05-31-2008, 08:42 PM   #3
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Restaining handrails


Thanks KC - yes the wife wants to change stain color. I'll plan on disassembly & 90+ % probability of having to replace newels & handrails. Can't quite figure out how the newels are attached to the floor. Bolted?
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Old 06-01-2008, 06:45 PM   #4
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Restaining handrails


The newels could be installed a number of ways. I would image that they're fastened to the floor framing from the side, or at least fastened to the stair stringer. There are a few proprietary systems as well. In order to be pretty solid, they usually project below the floor level.

Be sure to take out the newel before your floor is refinished, just in case you damage a piece of hardwood in the process.

I'd also suggest taking the railing apart in as few pieces as possible and keeping it until you're done putting the new one in. That way you have a nice template to work off of!
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