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horizontal laminates
December 27, 2017
2:06 am
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Duayne Naugle

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I havn’t started yet  , I will probably bend the laminates like I always do but I do find that long sweeping curves tend to spring more than the tight ones   , they will likely require a joint in the middle to bring the handrail directly over the stringer . 

December 19, 2017
6:35 am
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Ness

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Hi Duyane,

If you have already built the form for the strings why don’t you use the same form for the handrails.

This will be much faster than horizontal laminates.

All the best,

Ness

December 13, 2017
2:33 am
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Duayne Naugle

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I think I will keep with my traditional method of laminating along a form for my stringers  , I will use the horizontal method of building the rails on the stairs ,  there should be no spring back as sometimes happens with the form method  !

December 9, 2017
9:07 am
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Ness

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Hi Duayne,

The radius is not really a concern. 

I use horizontal laminates when there is only one or very few strings with the same radius.

I always try to use this technique for cut strings because it takes away the need to cut precisely the step and riser supports. This is especially interesting for thick strings.

When there are several strings that have the same radius it can be faster to build a mould form and glue traditional laminates to the form. It can also sometime be better when strings are less than 50mm thick.

Cutting and gluing up horizontal laminates by hand will take time but if the parts are cut on a cnc this technique can save a lot of time.

Rick Suckely told me that the strings of this stair were built in 2 days:

https://stairdesignsoftware.net/traditional-wreathed-stair-using-high-and-low-tech

You might find the experience of these 2 stair builders interesting :

https://wooddesigner.org/stair-construction-using-the-horizontal-laminates-technique/

Alain Marin said:

The horizontal laminates have saved us a lot of time and hard work. We have been able to produce a stair faster and with a cleaner result than using traditional laminated techniques.

Another carpenter who used the technique shared his experience here:

https://wooddesigner.org/making-stairs-from-a-small-masterpiece-to-grand-and-majestic/

Techniques are just tools to help design and build. Choosing the right tool for the job is all part of the art of being a carpenter.

But I’d say that, it certainly helps to have as many specialist tools at hand as you can.

So hope this is helpful,

All the best,

Ness

December 8, 2017
9:24 pm
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Duayne Naugle

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I take it that you are using the horizontal laminates with tighter radius  turns and use the forms for the bigger turns .

December 6, 2017
7:52 am
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Ness

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Hi Duayne,

Horizontal laminates is not always the best way to go. In some situations I’ve opted for traditional laminates as you say.

See this article:

https://stairdesignsoftware.net/how-to-make-a-curved-laminated-string

I also have several techniques for wreathed handrails, each with it’s pros and cons, see this article:

https://stairdesignsoftware.net/how-to-build-a-curved-handrail

A lot depends on the real life situation of the stair being built.

Can you post some plans and photos of the type of stair you are trying to get to?

All the best,

Ness

December 5, 2017
2:54 am
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Duayne Naugle

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I have 2 sets of curved stairs to build , along with about 300′ of balcony rail , the stairs are freestanding with sweeping curves and rails on both sides , traditionally i would build temporary walls and bend my plywood around them , i would like to know if Horizontal laminates would be a better way or a cheaper way to do it  , I know Ness has been promoting his technique of horizontal laminates as a cheaper way  , Personally i don’t see how it could be because there appears to be a lot more time in milling the material and cluing up the chunks  , convince me that it is the way to go  .

 The balcony has lots of tight tight turns and i have been thinking about using horizontal laminates for those curved handrail sections as well as the curved stairway handrails, i just don’t know if i should just stick with my old way of forming up the stringers or try the horizontal laminate method . would like to know the pros and cons !  

   

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