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Internal staircase project, definitely a daunting challenge. Help required

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Forum topic by anthm27 posted 07-20-2019 11:43 PM 3358 views 0 times favorited 73 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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anthm27

1124 posts in 1557 days


07-20-2019 11:43 PM

My friend is currently building an A-Frame style timber framed house in Japan.
I will be visiting and onsite for a week next month, he,s eluded to me taking on the internal staircase project.

I,ve spent a couple of days thinking about it and it is all seems rather daunting. I haven’t built a proper staircase for many many years, I,ve built some external deck stairs but nothing as important as this project.
(i only wish I still had my technical college notes of stair building from when I was an apprentice over 30 years ago)

Is there any experts that are reading that can set me in the right direction and start to simplify whats become quite cluttered in my mind.?

The specs are roughly, (will have exact measurements later today)

The total Rise of: 2845 mm (9feet 4inches)

The upper floor opening: 2736×900 (8feet 11 inches x 3 feet)

The nature of the A, frame building I suspect it will be a L shaped staircase with a landing at the 90 degree turn in stairs.
Attached is a very very basic first preliminary idea sketch.

Some questions I have:

The stair case does not have to be elaborate , actually It can be quite simple, I suspect with open risers and a simple balustrade, It needs to be nice though well built and strong and finished properly but not necessarily elaborate.

How do I work out my riser and tread spacing to make sure its comfortable to walk up and down?
Do I check out (dado) for the treads?
Do I sit the treads on horizontal supports attached to the stringers?
How do I incorporate the balustrade with all this?
Do I go with straight stringers or cut them out with a rise and a tread to support the treads?
These questions and many many more.

I definitely need help on this one.

-- To be a true artist one must stick to their own thought process


73 replies so far

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recycle1943

3121 posts in 2069 days


#1 posted 07-21-2019 12:14 AM

Anthony
I googled ‘comfortable stair riser and tread’
There’s a LOT of info there

-- Dick, Malvern Ohio - my biggest fear is that when I die, my wife sells my toys for what I told her I paid for them

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GR8HUNTER

6319 posts in 1160 days


#2 posted 07-21-2019 12:41 AM

14 steps total you must subtract the landing from that this is with 8 inch rise :<)))
so with 36 inch landing 10 inch treads your looking at 7 steps to top and 7 to lower level
you need the other Tony for this :<))))

-- Tony---- Reinholds,Pa.------ REMEMBER TO ALWAYS HAVE FUN

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SMP

1304 posts in 353 days


#3 posted 07-21-2019 12:44 AM

At the big box stores and construction lumber yards you can buy stringers. That kind of solves the math issue, then you just build around that. Unless i am not understanding. Just make sure to check local code(i won’t bother saying the code here)
Another place i have ordered from and gotten ideas from is this site:
https://www.stair-parts.com/product-category/staircase-steps/stair-stringers/

I am currently redoing our stairs in wood and wrouhht iron, but slow going

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Grumpy

25523 posts in 4298 days


#4 posted 07-21-2019 01:43 AM

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Delete

439 posts in 819 days


#5 posted 07-21-2019 03:00 AM

As Tony above said the other Tony is your best bet for detailed information and hands on info. If your looking for some literature I have half a dozen good books on stair building, this is probably the best one, covers many modern styles, and does most of the math for you, with tables.

That doesn’t help you much unless you can find it. A better source for books is the Internet Archive, the books are older (mostly) but stair math and many designs haven’t changed with time.There are 58 books and magazines at this link.https://archive.org/details/texts?and%5B%5D=%22Stair+Building%22&sin=&sort=-publicdate&and%5B%5D=languageSorter%3A%22English%22&and%5B%5D=loansstatusstatus%3A%22-1%22&and%5B%5D=mediatype%3A%22texts%22

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Ripper70

1294 posts in 1356 days


#6 posted 07-21-2019 03:37 AM

Yup. You need Tony_S to chime in here. Or, just send him a PM.

-- "You know, I'm such a great driver, it's incomprehensible that they took my license away." --Vince Ricardo

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Tony_S

996 posts in 3530 days


#7 posted 07-21-2019 10:13 AM

I feel a lengthy thread on the horizon…lol!

The specs are roughly, (will have exact measurements later today)

The total Rise of: 2845 mm (9feet 4inches) 7-1/2” is comfortable, which sets you at a total of 15 rise.

The upper floor opening: 2736×900 (8feet 11 inches x 3 feet) Start with a basic landing size of 48”x48” with a 60” height(from main floor). Draw your upper flight with an 11” run/12” tread and a 7-1/2” rise(7 rise 6 treads). This leaves you with an 8 rise (@ 7-1/2”) on the lower flight. You can keep the run the same, or change it depending on encroachments/restrictions of the lower staircase.
Keep in mind, these are very vague and basic measurements. Somewhere for you to start. There are other configurations that will work as well.

Some questions I have:

The stair case does not have to be elaborate , actually It can be quite simple, I suspect with open risers and a simple balustrade, It needs to be nice though well built and strong and finished properly but not necessarily elaborate.

How do I work out my riser and tread spacing to make sure its comfortable to walk up and down? See above for a starting point.
Do I check out (dado) for the treads? Normally, yes.
Do I sit the treads on horizontal supports attached to the stringers? You can, but it typically looks like an unfinished basement stair.
How do I incorporate the balustrade with all this? One piece of valuable advice…find out the rough specs(sizes) of the railing and posts that your friend wants and take that into consideration when you’re designing the staircase. Too many times I’ve seen staircases designed and build that won’t accommodate the ‘envisioned’ railing system. Or very poorly so. ie: extra miters and or turns that clutter and detract from what is envisioned.
Do I go with straight stringers or cut them out with a rise and a tread to support the treads? See above re: basement stairs
These questions and many many more.

- anthm27

I’m not clear on the configuration of the second floor opening. You may need to consider ‘Headroom’ as well if it’s rectangular shaped vs. open as you have it drawn.
Also consider any possible floor openings below this staircase, if there are any, and any support posts to hold up the landing.
Also consider any building code restrictions re: rise and run stair widths etc. I’m not up on the Japanese building codes. LOL!
I’ll try and check back in later today….I have to go fishing now.

-- It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. Aristotle

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anthm27

1124 posts in 1557 days


#8 posted 07-21-2019 10:13 AM

Thanks for all the input Gents, I,ve been researching all day actually and have learnt a huge amount.

The actual site measurements came in late this afternoon and really put a damper on my ideas.
Its going to be extremely difficult to get a comfy set of stairs in at all.
I am definitely going to need to talk to an expert.
Hoping that someone here is reading,

Kind Regards
Anthony

-- To be a true artist one must stick to their own thought process

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anthm27

1124 posts in 1557 days


#9 posted 07-21-2019 10:18 AM


I m not clear on the configuration of the second floor opening. You may need to consider Headroom as well if it s rectangular shaped vs. open as you have it drawn.
Also consider any possible floor openings below this staircase, if there are any, and any support posts to hold up the landing.
Also consider any building code restrictions re: rise and run stair widths etc. I m not up on the Japanese building codes. LOL!
I ll try and check back in later today….I have to go fishing now.

- Tony_S

Hi Tony,
Thanks very much for checking in, Um, yes I sent the above post before I read yours.
This thing is complex to say the least. Not so worried about the regulations of Japan that is one plus. This house is in a prefecture of Hokkaido out of the normal building inspections. (thats the only positive at the moment)
I,ve been playing around on this,
https://perpendicular.pro/en/calc/3d-l-shaped-stair-calculator
Head height is big problem.
I,ve drawn it out on grid paper also.

Enjoy your fishing.
Kind Regards
Anthony

-- To be a true artist one must stick to their own thought process

View kroginold's profile

kroginold

34 posts in 1496 days


#10 posted 07-21-2019 10:34 AM

You might consider a spiral staircase. I’ve seen this in an A Frame before, and it looked good. Will require some hardware but might be easier to build. And you can get hardware kits.

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anthm27

1124 posts in 1557 days


#11 posted 07-21-2019 10:42 AM



You might consider a spiral staircase. I’ve seen this in an A Frame before, and it looked good. Will require some hardware but might be easier to build. And you can get hardware kits.

- kroginold

We might have to, are they doable in timber only? or require steel king post type of thing???

-- To be a true artist one must stick to their own thought process

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4wood

22 posts in 401 days


#12 posted 07-21-2019 03:03 PM

Here is a website that may be of some help. You can print the drawings after you selected what you want.

http://www.stairplan.com/stairplans.htm.

This is one of their ideas for saving space.

http://www.stairplan.com/stair-plan-catalogues/SPACE-SAVER-STAIRCASES1/index.html

The company is in the UK and does manufacture and ship the parts. Since you only have one week to complete the job I would think a pre-fabricated staircase would be the only option.

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Tony_S

996 posts in 3530 days


#13 posted 07-22-2019 09:57 AM

The new measurements do restrict things quite a bit more.
The numbers I entered in are about as ‘comfortable’ as it’s going to get unfortunately.
I can’t copy/past my version, it keeps reverting back to your drawing for some reason. All I did was change
C=12
P=2
Check off SP
The stairs and landing aren’t terrible, but they are steep with a short unit run and rise(8-1/4”x7-7/8”). One other problem is the headroom at the landing. I don’t know what the depth of the joist is around the second floor opening, but assuming it’s about 12” you end up with close to 75”. The building code here is 78”.
You could eliminate 1 rise total on the landing to correct that issue, but that would increase the unit rise and make the main flight even more uncomfortable. Doable though.

Regarding a spiral staircase. It isn’t doable in this situation.
You would need a square floor opening of approx 6’x6’ minimum for it to work. With the narrow opening you have, the joist would be at stomach height by the time you turned 180 degrees.
Even if you could accommodate a spiral I would recommend against it. They’re cool to look at, but thats about it. They’re dangerous as hell, particularly traveling down.

-- It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. Aristotle

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LeeRoyMan

205 posts in 174 days


#14 posted 07-22-2019 01:10 PM

I built a set many, many, years ago. call it a 1/2 and 1/2
don’t know if it would work for you or not, I had plenty of head room.
(eat your heart out Tony) lol

( David, My employee back in 92’, in case your following :)

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Delete

439 posts in 819 days


#15 posted 07-22-2019 02:55 PM

LRM thats is both creative and very eye appealing, but your still going to need a second floor opening of 6 X 5 or larger.

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