How to build outdoor stairs
Building outdoor stairs for your garden or any other purpose is not such an easy task to accomplish as you may tend to believe. The first thing you need to do is a detailed plan which has to include the layout of the stairs. You can choose from various materials such as stone, metal, wood, concrete or logs.
If you plan to build your outdoor stairs with your own hands you first need to choose the materials you want to use for this purpose and a nice design. If you have no skills in doing this type of work or you are a beginner, do not choose a complex design for your project. Pick up simple outdoor stairs for a good result. As for the materials, you can choose oak, rosewood or cedar wood. If you have a low budget, wooden rounds cut from large logs are the best alternative. These will give your stairs an old appeal.
How to do it
After you have all the necessary materials and tools close at hand, measure the exact size of your stairs. It is to be noticed that a staircase is made of three elements. The tread represents the surface of the stair that is walked on. The riser is that part which is placed under the tread. The stringer is the element of the staircase that sustains both the riser and the tread.
The first thing you need to do is to determine the entire rise which is the general height of the stairs. Use a board and calculate the distance from the landing position to the top of the staircase. For example, if the result of your measurement is sixty-four, divide it by seven (normal rise of one step) inches to find out the number of step and the rise of each of them. As a result, you have to build nine steps. Next, divide sixty-four by seven to determine the rise of each step. You will find out that it should be seven inches.
Check your measurements one more time before starting your construction. After that, you have to decide on the position of the stringers. You can attach them between the joists or attached to them, under the deck. Cut the riser along its length.
Prepare a framing square that fits with the stair gauges. Use it to mark the tread notches and build the stringers. We must say that stair gauges are little fixtures made of brass. Attach one of the stair gauges to the tongue of the square which is straight at the rise size with a clamp. Connect the other stair gauge to the structure of the same square at the run dimension. Put this square on to the 2×12 square inches plank with the gauges facing the border of the plank. Make visible and precise signs for the risers and the treads. Glide the square down ad make visible signs for the other treads and risers. Take a circular saw and cut the previous notches out. Use a handsaw to finish your cuts. To give your stringer a smooth look, trim its lowest part.
Secure all nine risers to the stringers using decking screws. Before doing that, make sure that the risers measure 7.11 inches length. Use more screws to secure the treads but keep ¼ inch distance between them. Install wooden stair railings for your outdoor stairs and fix them with screws. All you have to do now is to stain and varnish your staircase if you want.
Once you have gained some experience, you can build more complex stairs for your house if you want.
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