It can be very difficult to install the common ladder in the small houses, as there’s not enough space to accommodate it. The area is too small to place the ladder that can take up almost a half of the first floor. Sometimes, the way out is to install the spiral ladder. However, it is not always possible for many reasons related both to the house architecture and the technological characteristics of such ladder.
Besides, spiral staircase is not safe for the movement, which you should consider if there are small children, older people or invalids in the house (even though it looks very attractive). Moreover, it is very difficult to build the circular staircase on your own, focusing only on the picture in the magazine. In this case, you should consider building the circular staircase on the second floor 90 or 180-degree turns with the winding steps. Having certain skills and abilities, you can make it with your own hands.
Types of circular staircases with the winding steps
Depending on the rotation angle of the staircase on the second floor, the circular staircases are divided into:
• L-shaped – 90-degree turn;
• U-shaped – 180-degree turn;
• Curvilinear – with an individual structure and configuration.
Theoretically, winding staircase is also a turntable ladder with a rotation angle of not 90 or 180, but 360 degrees, but they’re usually defined as a separate type.
At the design stage, it is recommended to take a photo and make a floor plan, which allows you to make a layout correctly and clearly, calculate the size and location of the bearer on the first floor.
The structure is completed with the winding steps, situated at the top of the ladder or closer to the second floor access (sometimes in the middle, to provide 90- or 180-degree turn). Sometimes it is necessary to install the inter-storey staircase landing between the floors. The length of flights defines the height of riser and the space the staircase will “take away” from the first floor. Most people use the place under the stairs for the wardrobe attic to maximize the use of the free space.
Most people prefer to buy the finished product they found in the catalog of the carpentry company or order an individual project, but the others prefer to make everything on their own. Anyway, the photo can’t give the full picture of what the end result would be. Therefore, you must consult the specialists beforehand.
Even if you’re going to build the staircase with your own hands, keep in mind that the end result must fully comply with the technical regulations and guidelines. Otherwise, the use of such structure won’t be safe. It’s not enough to focus on the photo in the catalog or magazine. The advice of professional architect or carpenter is required.
Carelessness in designing the ladder may result (at best) in the failure of the device or (at worst) the disaster.
You must carefully calculate the load, the height of winding step, the width of the step, the length of the flight and consider many other parameters that will affect the product’s operational characteristics. It is very difficult for a layman, even if he/she has used to make everything with his/her own hands.
Choosing the manufacture materials, you can focus on any picture you found in the catalog of the construction company, in the magazine or Internet. The homeowners usually aim at their own tastes or financial capacity, while the designers rely on the overall concept of interior.
Stringers or bowstrings usually serve as the basis. On the one hand, the wall is used as support, and on the other – stringers or bowstrings, as in the common rectangular stairs. In the places of rotation, you must attach the additional fastening to the supports, installed on the first floor. They reach the height of the second floor, where you should install the second support, or the height of the turn itself, having only the bottom fixation point. Accordingly, in the turn of 90 degrees, you need only one support between the floors, and in the turn of 180 degrees – two. The support is usually made of metal bars or thick longs. The width of section depends on the turning radius of the staircase. Later on, you can re-paint or decorate the support– everything depends on the interior and the overall design of your apartment.
Stringers or bowstrings are usually made of metal or wood. You can make the steps of the following materials:
The main difference of the winding steps from the common rectangular ones is their trapezoidal shape. The space between the steps can be filled with the risers, but you can do without them.
Sometimes you can find the structures fully made of reinforced concrete or brick. However, they look cumbersome and unattractive. Besides, such staircases make it impossible to realize 180-degree turn.
There are many types of staircases. It’s enough to look at the photo from the catalogs of the specialized firm. You can often find such structures in the country houses, cottages, multi-level apartments, offices and shopping centers. Making such staircase with your own hands is a little harder than the common rectilinear one, but it’s possible. However, before starting the building, you should consult the specialist to prevent mistakes in designing the steps.
Have you already made your own staircase? Are you gathering the knowledge before building? Tell us about your own experience in the comments!