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G'day from Pete Ripley - Yallingup. Western Australia
July 22, 2014
4:41 pm

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Hi Pete,

Great to see you on board.

Thanks for your intro and sharing your experience. 

I’d love to do some videos on carpenters squares they are a fascinating tool, but I have never used one.

Don’t even exist in France!

I’ve made some complicated roofs but always done it with drawing full size or CAD plans.

I’ll stick to stairs for the time being.

See you soon about your stairs.

All the best,


July 22, 2014
4:35 pm
mark nichols

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Welcome Pete.

Looks like you have found the right place. 

And may I say you cannot possibly get much further south west on that big lump of rock. 


July 22, 2014
4:28 pm

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Hi Pete,

Great first post, thanks for letting us know what you’re up to. Looking forward to watching stair no.2 get built.

All the best

July 22, 2014
4:19 pm

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Interesting read Pete. Welcome. Im sure you will gain alot from the site particularly with Ness’ knowledge of stairbuilding.

all the best


July 22, 2014
4:11 pm
Pete Ripley

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Well, I live in South-West  Western Australia and am a traditional sailmaker by trade. About 3 years ago the opportunity presented itself to build a house. Having not done this before there was heaps of reading and you-tubing involved.

I submitted plans for the house about 25 months ago and they kept on getting rejected- on account of the stairs… How hard can it be? ….till I find out the dood at the council spent 15 years of his life building stairs for a living. Anyway, after a few coffees with him he set me straight on what regulations we have to follow in Oz…

No wurries, off home to draw it all up again…until my CAD skills clashed with my understanding of stairs and timber…back to square one- the couch and more web surfing. 

Now I don’t know how much they charge to build stairs in your part of the world but the cheapest I could find as about $4000 for a set of MDF stairs… I have necer been a fan of mdf apart from soaking up kero to make firelighters. $6000 for a timber set!!!

Thought to self…’I am in the wrong trade…again…’

Anyway, after more couch surfing I luckily stumbled on Ness’s site and You-Tubes. Bloody brilliant!

anyway, the first set of StairDesigner steps went well, onto the more complex set now.




oh, Ness, you need to do a you-Tube on how to use a carpenters roofing square to work out hip and valley cuts around dormer windows. There isn’t any videos on this yet. Fair did my head in until a Yorkshireman showed me how to do it!

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