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Stairs 101

Though stairs may seem like simple structures, they are actually composed of a myriad of different construction elements and surfaces, all of which must align and fit together properly in order to create a safe and comfortable means to move from one level of a structure to the next. Below is just a short list of common stair terminology:

Staircase - Describes the entire stair structure, including steps, balustrades, landings, treads, etc.
Stairwell/Stairway - The void or empty space that accommodates the stairs.
Spindle/Baluster - The decorative or plain vertical element that fills the space between the baserail and the handrail.
Tread - A step's horizontal or top surface.
Riser - The board forming the face of a step. Typically 220 mm or about 8.7" high in domestic environments.
Step - The combination of tread and riser.
Rake - The pitch of a flight of stairs.
Balustrade - Term for the complete assembly of handrail, baserail, spindles, caps, newels, etc.
Nosing - The front edge of the tread that projects beyond the riser's face.
Bullnose Step - Usually at the bottom of the stairs, a step with a quarter-circle design at one or both ends.

As stair specialists, North Shore Stairs has the experience, skilled craftsmen and installers to implement stair construction from the design and planning stages through to installation of the finished product. Our broad knowledge of the intricacies and specialized elements of stair construction also makes us expert in the repair and maintenance of existing stairs.

We can design and construct stair projects in virtually any material or configuration our customers require, including:

The "Stair Experts" Difference
Stairs and stairways are specialized and often complex and intricate structures. It is important that the designers, craftsmen and installers who design, build, maintain and repair them are familiar with the specialized techniques used in their construction. It's not enough to simply retain a general carpenter or someone who is handy with a hammer and nails to make repairs or build new stairs. Safety and durability are paramount, and
North Shore Stairs has the personnel and experience to build and repair stairs that will meet our own high standards and the building code requirements in each area that we work.

ADA Compliance and Senior Safety
At North Shore Stairs we are well versed and experienced in meeting ADA compliance standards. We are also sensitive to the comfort and safety needs of seniors or other individuals who may require special accommodation or adaptation of stairway construction. Please let us know if you have special concerns or questions about construction options. We are happy to work with you to meet your needs.

Call North Shore Stairs today at 847-295-7906!