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wombosi 03-26-2010 04:06 PM

porch post ideas
i'll be rebuilding a porch soon.
it's a simple victorian style with turned porch post in the corner.

the railing is not original.

anyway, my problem with the existing post is that the bottom unturned section is only 22" high. the current railing is mounted higher up on the turned portion and looks like dog ****, in my opinion.

one option is cut about 5" off the top square part, cut off the bottom and glue/dowel on a 27" bottom portion. i know this still doesn't pass code, but it was the common railing height back then and looks a hell of a lot of nicer.

another option is to just take a 6X6 or even 4X4 and dress is up/box it in, trim it a bit. although i think the problem with this is framing limitation and the dressed 6X6 would be pushed too far over the edge of the framing (it's limited to the roof above.)

third option is to either buy a used, new, or turn my own porch post using a friend's longbed lathe.

what would you guys do?


Mark Harvey 03-26-2010 05:17 PM

I would try to manufacture something as close to the original style as you can. Any "patch work" will probably end up looking like a ... well patch work. In the long run, if you consider selling, this little item may become a factor.

troubleseeker 03-26-2010 09:05 PM

If I interpret correctly, you want to cut 5" off the top and add it to the existing bottom square 22" portion? The key is to make nice square clean cuts so the butt joint will fit tightly. After you are satisfied with the joint fit, prepare four straight pieces of wood for clamping to the sides of the post to form a "pocket" for the 5" piece to set in, so they will hold all the sides of the two pieces flush. Use a two part epoxy or other weatherproof glue to coat both post pieces and set them together,wrap the wood strips in wax paper or plastic wrap like Saranwrap, and tightly clamp them onto the old post. Now clamp them onto the short section, snug enough to hold everything in place. Drill clearance holes through the 5" piece, counterbore for the heads, and secure with 3/16" hot galvanized lag bolts or timber screws (which have a built in washer on the head), sucking the two pieces together. when cured, clean up everything with a sander and fill any imperfections in the joint line , prime and paint.
It will last as long as the post and if you were carefull to align the pieces, no one will ever know unless you tell them.

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