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Choosing the Best Wood for Stairs

Whether you live in a two story house or not, stairs likely play some role in your daily life. And while you’re familiar with using them, you’re probably not aware of how they fit into the design of your home. The truth is, your stairs help tie your house together and give insight to the overall mood you convey to others when they visit your humble abode. Don’t believe it? Think about classic movies like Gone With The Wind and Vertigo, or contemporary films like Titanic or Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. If you’re considering installing a new set of stairs or redoing them, there are some basics things you should know. For example, a stair and a stairway might sound similar, but they mean different things. A stair is the board you step on while a stairway describes the actual space in which a stair fits. A flight of stairs defines one set of stairs. Similarly, multiple flights are made of multiple sets of stairs. No matter how basic or dramatic stairs may be, they are all made of four distinct parts:

TREADS

Treads are the flat boards that you step on when traveling up or down the stairs. The vertical pieces between each tread are known as risers. The most common woods that treads are made of include cherry, mahogany, maple, and oak.

NEWEL POSTS

The large posts that are found at the bottom, landings, and top of the stairs are referred to as newel posts. These posts provide a sturdy base for handrails and come in a variety of shapes and sizes. The most common woods that newel post are made from include beech, maple, oak, and poplar.

BALUSTERS

Often the most noticeable aspect of any staircase is the upright posts that fit between the handrails and the base, known as balusters. These pieces can often appear very basic or extravagant since they come in numerous shapes. Common woods that balusters are made from include alder, cherry, and mahogany.

HANDRAIL FILINGS

The handrail filings are the fitting that you grab or rest your hand on as you navigate the stairs. While they are often flat or rounded, there are several designs that they can come in. Popular woods that handrail filings are made of include alder, beech, maple, and oak. If you are interested in ordering wood for your staircases, feel free to call (909) 920-5430 or fill out our information request form to find out more information. Cherokee Wood Products looks forward to helping you with any and all of your wood-product needs.