There are plenty of staircase terms and often it will depend on who you deal with and especially the country. So, to begin with here are just a few terms with some pictures, which you might hear and perhaps this will help.

  • Baluster(or spindle): The vertical posts that make up the railing on a staircase.
  • Balustrade: The railing along the edge of a staircase, consisting of balusters, a handrail, and sometimes a baserail.
  • Going: The horizontal distance between the treads (nosing to nosing) (A) of a stair.
  • Handrail: The rail on a staircase that is intended to be grasped for balance while using the stairs.
  • Landing: A platform at the top or bottom of a flight of stairs, or between flights.
  • Newel: The large post at the top, bottom, or turn of a staircase, where the handrail terminates.
  • Nosing: The overhanging edge of the tread that projects beyond the riser.
  • Platform: A landing, especially a large or elaborately designed one.
  • Rise: The vertical distance between the tops of two adjacent treads. The total rise of a flight of stairs is the vertical distance between the starting and ending floors.
  • Riser: The vertical board at the front of a step.
  • Run: The horizontal distance under a tread, in the direction of travel.
  • Skirtboard: A board that is fastened to the underside of a stringer to hide the underside of the treads.
  • Stringer: The inclined board along which the treads and risers of a staircase are supported.
  • Tread: The horizontal part of a step that is walked on.
  • Winder: A triangular or wedge-shaped tread used to change the direction of a staircase.

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