How do you finish stairs with one open end if you want to install hardwood floor on the stairs ?

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Ivan Turbinca

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I want to build the below but I have balusters and an open end on the left side
How do you finish the left side verticals in such a case ? Bullnose as well ?
OY8bKs2.png
 

C.J.

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Bullnose will wrap around to finish the stair off. Do you need to remove the balusters? Cutting around them usually looks like you tried to cut around them but removing them and reinstalling them can be a pain as well as the additional thickness of the newly installed flooring will mean they will prolly need to be cut. Pictures help.

As far as the risers go that depends on what your stairs look like. Do you need to wrap around with the riser material or can you just return an end to get a finished look up next to sheetrock? Again, pics would help us to see what you got going on.
 

C.J.

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Ok, so one thing you may run into is your current stair treads are set directly onto the stringers. If that’s the case you may need some plywood on top of the stringer to beef up the treads cus 1/2” ain’t enough. So 1/2” plywood then your engineered floor? 1/4” plus 1/2” does equal 3/4” but is in no way equal to a 3/4” tread. I think the last treads I did were 1” so judge the situation appropriately. Don’t underestimate cus that will come back to bite you long after you’ve forgotten about it. Maybe you need 1/2” ply then your 1/2” floor! Either way, once you get your treads ready for some new floor I like to start at the stair nose then figure out my tread from there. Your new stairnose likely won’t be as thick as your current treads. What now. You have some designer level decisions to make. Regardless, start with the stair nose then figure out what you need for your treads.

It seems backwards but I like to work from the top down. That way your not working on freshly laid treads. It’s a juggle (struggle). You have to bounce back n forth to do stairs. You’re working from the top down but maybe you need to figure things from the bottom up. There’s some bouncing to be done. It can be done. If you’re leaving the risers white then that definitely makes things easier. One less thing to factor in.

So once you have your treads ready to install you’ll start with the stair nose then figure out the tread from there. If you’re not doing risers then you’ll want the treads to bump the existing risers net. A clear bead of silicone should finish things off. That pic you included does not appropriately show how to finish a tread to the riser. You want that shit dead nuts net. Maybe 1/32” but no more.

Do you have a stair jig? Here’s one for $20 something. https://www.amazon.com/Stair-Tread-...keywords=stair+jig+tool&qid=1662242550&sr=8-5
Get one, it will make your life so much easier. I assemble my treads and stair nose all together as one on a workbench then trace the template onto that and then install it all as one as if it was a finished tread. Lots of construction adhesive and then you move on to the next one below. Lather, rinse and repeat.
 

Ivan Turbinca

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The thread jig was something I was planning to build but the one you linked above is too cheap so I will buy it thank you
Yes the plan is to start from top
I will install the hardwood floor on the existing 1" steps! That means everything will move up 3/4" and it will be rock solid
It so happens that the last (bottom) step on the right side is shorter with 3/4" than the others which are already at 8" height
 

C.J.

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Installing on top of the existing treads is a good idea. Problem is what do you do about the overhang. Will your new stair nose cover the existing tread. Or do you need to cut back the existing tread to be flush with the vertical risers.

Lots of questions when it comes to stairs.
 

JPfloor

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I hate to butt in where I don’t belong but those stairs look to be in good shape? Can’t you just refinish them?

Also am I missing something but unless you’re raising the upper hall too won’t the top riser be 3/4” shorter creating a different height than the rest of the steps? Tripping hazard?
 
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Ivan Turbinca

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Yes I am raising the floor on the upper level and that is forcing me to do all these. It currently has 3/8" thick 1.5" wide red oak hardwood floor nailed to diagonal boards. These will stay and they will be tightened and after that they will get 3/8" plywood and 3/4" engineered hardwood , see below

I would love to be able to refinish those but I do not think that I can match this finish very well and this is white oak (White Oak Hush | Mercier Wood flooring) Alos I want a more modern look for the posts/spindles/handrails
6efc70609be0fca84335311b2b7747cef1fa4b76.jpg
 

JPfloor

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Ok I gotcha. Sounds like you got it covered. It just alway breaks my heart to see beautiful solid oak like that get covered up. Ceramic area getting new floor too?
 
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Ivan Turbinca

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I wish I could find a solution not to do all those stairs
I am OK to keep the steps as they are if there is a decent finish/design/combination of colors that would allow me to do that
I am more than OK to sand everything but the posts and the spindles
 

JPfloor

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Now you lost me. If you’re replacing the railing can’t you use any finish you like? There’s an awful lot of colors and finishes to choose from. There’s not one that works?

 

Ivan Turbinca

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You ask if I could refinish the steps
Of course I could but two things will not match:
-the grain (stairs/steps are read oak and the new floor is white oak)
-the stain (not sure if I can match the stain of the new floor AND since it is different wood there is a high probability that I will have to play with the stain a lot till I match it because it is different wood; the paint store will give me a match but the wood you apply it to will have a word to say in the final result)
 

JPfloor

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Ok I gotcha…You want a perfect match throughout. That would be difficult even with the same species of wood if they are different ages… I’ll but out now…😎
 

Ivan Turbinca

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I checked with Sherwood Williams and they say that for 80CAD they will do the testing and color matching for me close to 90% match
I am wondering if it is worth trying, I have no idea how close is 90% match
 

JPfloor

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I have no idea how close is 90% match
You would like to think that’s a fairly close match but shading differences are something that’s pretty hard to put a number on. Certainly when dealing with different species and ages of wood. You would have to try it on your steps to know if it would be acceptable to you. Their 90% could be your 70%.
 

C.J.

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How dark you goin? The darker you go the less noticeable the difference will be. Red oak has a hint of pink and white oak is brownish. Different graining between the two oaks will be noticeable as well but I think that because there is a clear separation, stairs vs floor, you’ll be alright with a little difference between the two.
 

Ivan Turbinca

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I can chose to cover the three steps you see there to the right, with the same hardwood as the floor hardwood
I can chose the leave the 9 steps to the rigth as they are, maybe refinish them
The problem that I will have is with the spindles and the posts you see in the picture, that is where the mismatch will be,. That and the bottom plate that the spindles and the posts will sit on in the landing zone
The new color/stain is a couple of posts above.
I am considering painting the posts and the spindels black or go with chrome spindles and wood posts, white oak
 

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