The stair has a lot of different parts and the function of every single part are different and unique. In this blog post, I am going to walk you through the technical terms of the stair, Types of stairs, what are the requirements for good stairs, and the stairs of different materials.
Stair | What is stair ?
The stair is a medium of transportation between different floors of the buildings or houses and the stair have a series of steps that lead from one floor to another.
Components of stair | Various components of staircase
Here are the various components or technical terms of the stair and their definitions.
- Walking line
Baluster | What is baluster in staircase?
On the stair, the baluster is a vertical member which gives support to the handrail and the baluster is fixed between string and handrail.
Baluster gives safety and a beautiful appearance to stairs and makes the house more wonderful in looks.
Barrister | What is balustrade in staircase?
The barrister is the combined part of baluster and handrail and the barrister is also known as a balustrade.
Flight | What is flight in staircase?
On the staircase, the flight is a continuous series of steps between the starting point to the landing.
In a staircase, the number of steps in one flight is around 8 to 12, and after the 8 to 12 steps a landing is provided.
Going | What is going in staircase?
On the staircase, going is the distance between two consecutive risers excluding the distance of nosing.
Handrail | What is the handrail in staircase?
On the staircase, the handrail is an inclined rail over the string. The handrail is provided for support when someone going up or down, they simply put their hand on the handrail and move one floor to another floor easily.
Headroom | What is the headroom in staircase?
Headroom in the stair is a vertical distance between the nosings of one flight and the nosing of another flight.
Landing | What is landing in the staircase?
On the stair landing is a space provided between the two flights. The landing is used as the rest while someone going up or down and it also changes the direction of the stairs.
Newel | What is newel in the staircase?
Newel is vertical support that is placed at the end and the top of the flight and it connects the handrail. Newel is also a central pole or support column.
Scotia | What is scotia in the staircase?
On the stair, scotia is used to improve the strength of nosing and tread and it is placed below the nosing and tread.
Riser | What is the riser in the staircase?
The riser is a vertical member between each tread in a staircase.
Rise | What is the rise in the staircase?
In the case of stairs, the distance between two successive tread is known as rise.
Pitch | What is the pitch in the stair?
In the case of stairs, the pitch is the angle between the stair with the floor.
Nosing | What is nosing in the stair?
In stairs, nosing is an extended part of tread beyond the riser, and most traffic of the foot land on the nosing area.
Step | What is the step in the staircase?
In the case of stairs, the combination of riser and tread is called a step.
String | What is the string in the staircase?
The string is an inclined member which supports the steps in the case of stairs.
Tread | What is tread in the stair?
Tread in stairs is a horizontal distance of a step.
Waist | What is the waist in the stair?
In the reinforced cement concrete stair, the thickness of the structural slab is known as the waist.
Walking line | What is a walking line on the stair?
In the case of stairs, the walking line is a line of movement of people on the stair going up and down.
Different Types Of Materials Used To Make Stairs
While constructing stairs in a building, the material we pick for making the stair is very important because choosing a good material, gives a wonderful impression on appearance, and material also gives strength, durability to the stair.
The choice of the material is mainly dependent on the architectural design.
Here is the following list of material that is used while constructing the stairs :
- RCC Stairs
- Stone Stairs
- Timber or Wooden Stairs
- Metal Stairs
- Brick Stairs
RCC Stairs | What are reinforced cement concrete stairs?
Due to the better resistance to fire and easily molded to the desired shape the reinforced cement concrete stairs are used in all types of constructions.
In the case of RCC stairs, the finishing of steps on stairs is easily done by finishing materials such as marble, terrazzo, tiles, etc.
RCC stairs are easily rendered and it is durable, strong types of the stair.
Stone Stairs | What is a stone stair?
In the construction of stairs, the stone material is widely used at the place where the ashlar stones are readily available.
Stone stairs are widely used in workshops, warehouses, and other public places. Due to the heavyweight of stones, the structure of the building should be good enough to sustain the load of stone.
Timber or Wooden Stairs
The timber or wooden stairs are easily constructed due to their lightweight and easy movement of wood. The timber stairs give a pleasant appearance and it is constructed in residential buildings.
The biggest problem with the wooden stair is, it is not good enough to resist the fire, due to this problem the wooden stairs are basically constructed in the low fire areas.
There is some timber that is better in fire resistance such as teak. So we used teak timber in such areas where the fire cases are high.
We make teak timber more fire-resistant by keeping the thickness of teak is about 4.5 cm.
Now a day the metal stairs are extensively using in the apartments, office, hotels, factories as well as in the residential buildings because they are less expensive, gives high strength, and they have awesome durability.
The good thing to use a metal stair is, the maintenance cost is very low and we spend very little money to paint the metal stair and protect it from corrosion.
The metal stairs are made up of the cast iron, bronze, mild steel, etc.
At the entrance of the house, the brick stairs are generally used and it gives a good appearance, but nowadays different types of brick stairs are not used frequently.
In the case of brick stairs, the treads and the risers are generally made of equal length and height of two layers of bricks respectively.
Types Of Stairs | Classifications Of Stairs In Civil Engineering
These are the classification of different types of stairs:
- Straight stairs
- Turning stairs
- Circular stairs
- Geometrical stairs
Straight stairs are running only in one direction with one or more flights. Straight stairs are normally used in narrow width and long length.
In turning stairs flights take turns. The turning stairs are further divided into the following category:
- Quarter-turn stairs
- Half-turn stairs
- Three-quarter-turn stairs
- Bifurcated stairs
When stairs turn through one right angle either in the right or left direction, it is called quarter-turn stairs, and turn occurs at landing.
Quarter-turn stairs are also known as L-stairs because when the quarter-turn stairs turn to 90 degrees they form an L shape.
When the flight of quarter-turn stairs turns through 90 degrees and as rises it connects other levels of the building.
When a stair changes its direction through a 180 degree or reversed its direction then these types of stairs are called half-turn stairs.
Half turn stairs are further divided into three parts :
- Dog legged stairs
- Open newel half turn stairs
Dog legged stairs
The stairs where no space is provided between two flights and the flights running opposite to each other such types of stairs are called dog-legged stairs.
The dog-legged stairs are used where the width of space provided for the stair construction is twice the width of steps.
Open newel half turn stairs
In open newel half-turn stairs, there is provide some space in between two flights, that the basic difference between the dog-legged stairs and open newel half-turn stair.
The space provided between two flights may be rectangular or of any shape and the space is used for lift purposes. Example of such stairs is open geometrical stairs, open rectangular well stairs.
If a stair turns through three 90 degrees angles, or if the stairs change their direction three times with its upper flight, then these types of stairs are known as three-quarter-turn stairs.
The three-quarter-turn stairs are constructed where the vertical distance between the two floors is large.
In the three-quarter-turn stair, there is a free space.
When the quarter-turn stair is branched into flights at the landing, then these types of stairs are called bifurcated stairs.
Circular stairs or Spiral stairs
The circular stairs or spiral stairs are constructed where the space is very less and these types of stairs do not have any landing and intermediate newel post.
When we see the circular stairs from the top then it looks like a circle with a radius. In the circular stairs, there is no restriction to the continued number of turns.
The spiral stairs are used where the traffic is less. These types of stairs are not comfortable to carry any luggage with you and the construction process is very complicated due to its complicated design.
The construction of circular or spiral stairs needs skill.
The geometrical stairs are those stairs where we consider any shape to construct the geometrical stairs that mean there is no restriction to use only one shape.
Geometrical stairs are complex so while constructing these types of stairs there is required some skill.
Nowadays the stairs are less in use because of the lift and moving stairs also called escalators. We can easily see the uses of lifts and escalators instead of stairs in our daily life.
Requirements For Good Stairs
As we already know the stairs are a medium of communication between the floors of a building, so for convenience communication between the floors here are some important points to consider while constructing the stairs.
- Location of stairs
- Design of stairs
- Handrail of stairs
Location of stairs
Location matters most in the case of stairs, so the stair should be placed at a place from where all the house member easily access their room without disturbing other’s privacy.
Make sure the stairs have a good ventilation system like lighting, proper passing fresh air through the stairs.
In a large building like residential buildings, the location of the main stairs is centrally located so the people cover less distance and easily access the stair.
Design of stairs
In the case of stairs, the design of stairs plays a very important role in their appearance.
Handrail of stair
For safety, purposes handrail plays an important role and it also gives a wonderful appearance to the stairs.
For the small length flight of stairs, at least one side of the stair handrail is provided, and for the long flight, both sides of the stairs handrail must be provided.
In some public places where the stair is too wide, there should be a medial handrail.
Winder of the stairs
The winder is the step that is narrow from one side than the other and the winder helps to change the direction of flight.
For the good stair, we should avoid winder, as we know we can not completely ignore the winder, so we put it at the bottom of the flight.
Flight of the stairs
The length of flight must include 8 to 12 steps, If the step increases more than 12 then it is not good for the users and it takes time to reach the landing. If we provide a suitable landing, then it gives users comfort.
Materials of the stairs
The stairs play an important role to passing the fire from one floor to another floor, so the material of the stairs should be fire-resistant.
And the material of the stair is also durable, has good workmanship and sound material.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here is the list of frequently asked questions on the staircase.
What is a stairway?
The space occupied by the stair in any building or house is known as a stairway.
What is a staircase?
The staircase is a location of stairs in an apartment or room of a building.
What is soffit in the staircase?
Soffit in a stair is an undercover area of the stair.
What is the run in the staircase?
In the case of stairs, the total length of stairs in the horizontal plane is known as the run.
What are the different types of steps in the stair?
Following are the 7 common types of steps in the stairs
Winder – It is a tapering step, used to change the direction of flight.
Splayed Step– It becomes wider at one end or both ends of the step.
Flier– It is a rectangular step.
Round-ended step– Its ends are semi-circular in the shape.
Dancing or balancing step– Its steps are not common from a common center.
Bullnose step – It is a circular quadrant in a plane.
Commode step– It coved riser and tread.
What are the different types of string in stairs?
There are 3 types of string in the stair
1 A cut or open string –
2 House or closed string
What are the different types of turning stairs?
There are four types of turning stairs:
1 Quarter-turn stair
2 Half-turn stairs
3 Three-quarter-turn stairs
4 Bifurcated stairs
What is the function of the staircase?
The main function of the staircase is to connect each floor of buildings and flow the traffic from one floor to another floor.
What is the formula for calculating the number of risers in stairs?
The formula of the number of risers in stairs is:
Number of risers = Total height of floor / Height of riser.
What is the formula for calculating the number of treads in a flight?
Number of treads in a flight = Number of risers – 1.
What should be the height of the handrail above the riser?
The height of the handrail above the riser should be 80 cm.
What is the minimum width of a stair?
The minimum width of the stair is 80 cm.
What is the height of the rise in a residential building?
The staircase in the residential building should not have a rise of more than 23 cm.
What is the length of going in the residential building?
The going is less than 23 cm in the residential building.
What is the height of rise in public buildings?
It should not be more than 18 cm.
What is the length of going in the public buildings?
Not less than 27 cm.
What are the requirements of good stairs?
Here are the following requirements of good stairs:
Design of layout
Treads and risers of the stairs
Materials and workmanship of the stairs
Location of stairs
Handrail of stairs
Flight of stairs
Headroom of the stairs
Width of the stairs
What is the ramp?
A ramp is an inclined surface or tilts from one level to other. Nowadays ramps are using a substitute for stairs to connecting between two floors of a building.
What are the important features of the ramps?
Here are some important features of the ramps:
1 Ramp included both side handrails.
2 Ramps are of any shape.
3 The ramp’s surface should not be slippery.
What are the different parts of stairs called?
Here are the different parts of the stairs, called Baluster, Barrister, Flight, Going, Handrail, Headroom, Newel, Landing, Scotia, Riser, Rise, Pitch, Nosing, Step, String, Tread, Waist, Walking Line.
That wraps up my analysis of Technical terms of the stair, Types of stairs, and the Stairs of different materials. I hope you found the data interesting and useful. It’s time to hear what you have to say.
Maybe you have any questions, let me know your thoughts in the comments section below.