The DIY Challenges of Building an Interior Hand Railing

The concept of building an interior wood hand railing is almost always misinterpreted by the do-it-yourself homeowners out there. The idea and concept is great, the challenges are sizable and often times misjudged and the room for mistakes is significant, and expensive. Are you thinking of building a hand railing? A good understanding of the concept is the first and foremost part of the project.

The first challenge is understanding all the wood parts that make up a handrail. Doing research and just looking at other handrails can give you an idea although there is nothing like a how to manual that explains all the parts of a handrail and how it is built to understand the full process to be successful.

Your unique and particular situation of where you are building this handrail may or may not include all of these parts. You may even elect not to have some of these more elaborate parts depending on your budget or just the appearance you are looking for.

After you have figured out all the parts of the hand railing required for your particular project, the next thing is working out the amounts or quantities of each certain part. An example would be figuring the distance between newel posts or walls to calculate the number of balusters or spindles needed to fill this space legally per OSHA codes.

Getting accurate measurements for the length of the rails and newel posts is also crucial because of the OSHA codes and the cost of these materials. Knowing and following these OSHA codes is critical for your own protection as well as others. Here is where investing in a manual for building handrails will help out tremendously and possibly save some serious money due to miss cuts and mistakes while in the process of building.

Once you determine what parts you need for your particular hand railing then you can decide on how stylish or simple it will be. Some of these choices will include the style you prefer and a few different sizes, as well as wood species, which these handrails come in. The variety of styles will include each particular part. An example would be choosing between a square or a turned newel post and square or turned balusters.

The next challenge is having all the right tools for the project. Having the right tools is a huge factor for quality. Poor tools can some times produce poor quality. Poor tools can fuel aggravation. So be sure to buy, borrow or rent the best tools you can. Knowing how to use these tools safely and effectively is also a must. Practice a while with these tools on some scrap wood to familiarize yourself with them.

Another challenge is figuring out the proper steps to take as you go. If this would be the first hand railing you are building research is critical. This trim wood that makes up a hand railing is expensive and one easily made wrong cut could be disastrous. Then off to the store you go to buy this particular handrail part again. Again, an inexpensive manual on building a handrail is invaluable for saving time and instruction on where and how to start and these expenses can be easily avoided.

The last challenge that is equally important is your attitude and mood. I have built hundreds of these hand railings and I know for a fact that your mood, attitude and general mind frame directly affects the quality and performance of your work. You need to be at the top of your game for optimal performance to achieve a professional and quality built hand railing. For a good understanding of getting the right mind set for a project like this I wrote a short article which can help out tremendously before you begin your project. This article is titled "Getting the Mind Set for Finish Carpentry."

These are just a few of the challenges you will be up against while doing your project. There will undoubtedly be others as there are so many different scenario's and different situations of where handrails are built. Every single hand railing I have ever built posed its own unique little challenge. Building a hand railing is like building your own personal master piece. Finishing the project successfully will bring you quite an intense feeling of satisfaction and gratification. Even after building hundreds of these I still enjoy those great feelings.