Awkward 70's staircase

Discussion in 'Carpenters' Talk' started by Scuri, May 25, 2020.

  1. Scuri

    Scuri New Member


    So basically we are wanting to convert our banister to spindles. However, as you can see in the pictures, our bottom stringer runs into our ceiling. Now, I know its possible to have spindles running up towards the ceiling, but as far as I'm aware this is where the next issues lies. Our newel post and stringer aren't central to each other, the stringer is fixed at the rightmost side. The handrail is fixed at the leftmost side in order to reach the top newel post.

    Forgive my lack of knowledge (this is not my trade), but I'm stumped on how to move forward with this. Is it a case of opening a can of worms and having to alter my newel post to get it central? Either way I'm open to all suggestions so I appreciate any help.


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  2. wiggy

    wiggy Screwfix Select

    Centre whatever handrail you are using on the newel, run it in to the ceiling, it will protrude past the ceiling a bit so you will have to add a landing fascia above to cover it.

    To get the stringer centre to the handrail and wide enough to take a base rail you will want to pack the stringer out, a sheet of 18mm ply or whatever thickness you need screwed to the side of the stringer.

    Use the spindle base rail upside down on the ceiling for those spindles.

    Looking at pictures will help on this one
  3. Jord86

    Jord86 Screwfix Select

    One example

    You wouldn't be able to fit a full length handrail between the two newel posts unless you planted a false string on the inside of the existing string and built onto the newels to make them larger/thicker, even then you want to be careful of a finger trap on the handrail, but it is doable. Pinterest has some great ideas for transforming your staircase.
  4. Scuri

    Scuri New Member

    Jord, thanks for that link, thats what I'd ideally like to end up with. However if you look in this picture my stringer is no where near central to my newel post, and id have to pack it out massive amounts to get it that way. What options do I have?

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  5. Jord86

    Jord86 Screwfix Select

    I know,I referenced that in my post "you planted a false string on the inside of the existing string and built onto the newels to make them larger/thicker"

    You would most likely have to plant 1" mdf as a false string and on the side of the downstairs newel post in order to get it somewhere near, or forget trying to fun a full length handrail up and just plant an apron lining on the existing one/trimmer joist and copy the picture I showed you in my last post.
  6. SoManyUserNames

    SoManyUserNames Active Member

    Hi, looking at the photos, the stringer is set centrally into the newel, at some point, the handrail has been removed, this has then been replaced with planks, very 1970's, therefore the newel is in the correct position. The handrail can be fitted centrally into the newel, at the top where the handrail hits the landing, originally I should imagine the handrail ran under the landing with diminishing spindles fitted between it and the stringer capping.
    This gives an idea of how that would have looked.

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