Anatomy of a Staircase

Balusters. Newels. Risers. If you’re considering a new stairway system, you may think you need to learn an entirely new language! Don’t worry … we’re here to help.

While it can seem intimidating, understanding the anatomy of a stair system is really fairly easy. First of all, you can order a “post to post” or an “over the post” rail system. Just as this sounds, your banister (or handrail) can run from one newel to another to connect the system or it can run on top of the posts in a continuous flow.

Selecting your infill is one of the most exciting parts of creating your own stair system. You can choose from vertical designs that go between the stair risers and the top of the handrail. You have many wood and metal options here --- from the most simplistic styles to ornate balusters. Or you can choose horizontal infill options such as metal panels, stainless steel cable or tube.

See for Yourself

The diagrams on our Stair System Anatomies website page show in great detail the different parts of a stair system. If you’re interested in learning more details, you can also visit our Stairway Terminology page for definitions on dozens of terms associated with rail systems.

Here’s how we make it even easier at L.J. Smith Stair Systems. We provide five simple steps to Selecting a Stair System on our website that makes it easy for you to order the custom stairway that can perfectly accent your home. Here’s a sneak preview:

Step #1 – Choose either a Post to Post or Over the Post style stair system.

Step #2 – Decide on an Open Tread or Kneewall stairway.

Step #3 – Select your balusters --- Stainless Steel Cable, Stainless Steel Tube, Metal Panels, Iron Balusters or Wood Balusters.

Step #4 – Choose a handrail (we have over 30 different styles!)

Step #5 – Select your coordinating Newel Post style.

These five steps make it fast and easy to create a stairway system for your home. We also give you the opportunity to mix and match options and see them immediately by using our free online Stair Designer. With this great tool you go through the steps as many times as you like to create and see the staircase of your dreams!


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