A spiral loft staircase is a great way to add a unique element to your loft. And it doesn’t have to be a difficult home addition. Follow these steps and you’ll be able to start the remodel on your stairs.
The first thing you want to do is to check with your local building codes office to make sure you are going to be able to do this. Even a small staircase may need permits.
If you purchase a spiral staircase kit the company may send an inspector out before they ship the kit. Once you’ve verified that this is allowable, you can get the tools you need and start working.
Where to Work
It’s going to be much easier if you work on building the stairs directly under the opening where you will install. Trying to move a set of stairs from a wall to the installation will be much harder than just building it from the right spot to begin with.
You need to make sure you have enough room. Remember, you will want to keep enough space to work and attach the stairs. Measure the height of the staircase as well as the diameter. Be sure to include clearance of 2 inches or more from the walls for a handrail.
You will also need to figure out what the tread height will be. Remember this is determined from the outside, not the inside of the step.
Select Wood And Cut
You will want to select the wood for your staircase after you’ve got the measurements. If you’ve purchased a kit then this isn’t necessary as it should be included. Remember not to skimp on the wood, this will be a big factor in how long your staircase will last.
Once you’ve purchased the wood, you can begin to cut the stair risers. Be sure to cut them no more than four inches wide. If you cut wider than this the spiral won’t be noticeable, and basically, be useless.
Once the risers are all cut, you can start to glue the pieces together after you sand the marks left from the cut.
You will want to cut the internal part of the staircase with a band saw to get that circular pattern. Be sure to mount the stair before you begin cutting so you can keep the dimensions of the radius accurate.
You will need to mark the center where the pole will go. When you mount this be sure to use a plumb bob. This will keep the pole from swaying as you’re trying to install it. Remember that the complete weight of the staircase needs to be supported by this pole, so it will need to withstand the weight. The pole should be the exact height as the floor-to-floor height is measured for the stairs.
Start by welding the bottom stair to the pole, then the top stair. This will give you the leverage you need to install the remaining stairs.
After the top and bottom have been done, go ahead start attaching the rest of the stairs to the pole.
Now that the stairs are all set up, you can install the handrail. You will need to use a handrail made specifically for spiral stairs.