Handrails for Seventy Somethings

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Project by RussInMichigan posted 10-09-2011 02:59 PM 1458 views 1 time favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Some seventy-something friends around the corner have two sections of stairs going to their basement. The lower section, the longer of the two, had no handrail at all and the upper section had a 3/4 inch dowel which was very difficult to grip.

To make the stairwell safe for them, my wife and I installed a post at the bottom of the long stretch, then a put in a 2 X 4 for a backer for the handrail. For the upper, short, section we anchored a 1 X 4 to the wall studs. Then, we put in solid oak handrails on solid brass supports.

The pictures here show everything as we built it with the raw wood. After getting the install right, we pulled the handrails, finished them with a couple coats of wipe on polyurethane, sanded, primed and painted the post and backers and reinstalled. Now, it’s much easier, and safer, for them to negotiate their stairwell.

4 comments so far

View Wolffarmer's profile


407 posts in 3264 days

#1 posted 10-09-2011 05:05 PM

Now that is a nice handrail. and a nice neighbor. way to go


-- That was not wormy wood when I started working on it.

View littlecope's profile


3071 posts in 3528 days

#2 posted 10-09-2011 11:44 PM

Nice Job Russ, and Mighty Neighborly too!!

-- Mike in Concord, NH---Unpleasant tasks are simply worthy challenges to improve skills.

View miles125's profile


2180 posts in 4032 days

#3 posted 10-09-2011 11:48 PM

I gotta do all that when i get 70? What if i just take the sheetrock off so i can grab the 2×4’s in the wall?

-- "The way to make a small fortune in woodworking- start with a large one"

View RussInMichigan's profile


600 posts in 2807 days

#4 posted 10-10-2011 12:42 PM

Thanks, lumberjocks.

miles125, I don’t think you have to do all this at 70. I think you can take off the sheetrock and cling to the studs at any age!

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