|Forum topic by 1thumb||posted 12-24-2012 08:55 PM||1049 views||0 times favorited||29 replies|
12-24-2012 08:55 PM
I’ll try to be brief. A client has a rarely used staircase located in the back of his kitchen, one flight that goes down to the basement, nothing more. The railings and newel’s for this stairway are approx. 4 feet behind the island which holds the sink, bar stools, etc. So if removed, he would double the space behind the island, he needs the extra room.
What I’m trying to come up with is a way to cover the stair opening with matching hardwood flooring and at the same time allow access to the staircase. The width of the existing opening is approx. 36 inches. A rough guess is that I’d need to allow any trap door, access door, to fold, roll back at least 60 inches so the stairs could still be used without having to crawl on one’s hands and knee’s. So I’m looking at a section approx 36×60. at least.
Since access is needed I can’t simply frame in the 36 inch opening with joists unless I get borderline insane and design a hanger system to hold joists that would also allow the joists, subfloor and hardwood floor to be lifted out of the way for access to the stairway. But I need support for walking on top of this. W/o joists, 3/4 subfloor spanning the 36” opening, I don’t think is ample.
So I need to come up with a safe and relatively simple way for walking on this and also for opening for stair access. Where I’m at now is doubled up 3/4 ply spanning the 36” opening and resting on 2 by’s on each side under the existing floor, then hardwood that to match existing. Then I’m considering 3-4 piano hinges or something similar whereas the finished floor, the doubled up ply can be lifted in manageable segments, folded upon each other far enough out of the way to allow a six foot tall person to easily walk down the stairs w/o stooping
Hope this made sense and I appreciate all ideas and suggestions.